Meldrum, author of Sasquatch: Legend Meets Science, got the idea for the blimp-based search from William Barnes, a Utah man who claims to have encountered Bigfoot in 1997 in Northern California. Barnes pitched the idea to Meldrum and the two are now collaborating on what they’ve called the Falcon Project — a remote-controlled airship they hope will take flight next spring, sweeping remote wilderness areas for proof of Bigfoot’s existence.

In order to achieve his goal, though, Meldrum needs to raise $300,000-plus in private donations to build the dirigible, according to Reuters. While the University of Idaho gave the project the go-ahead, Meldrum has to find funds for the project himself. The money he raises will not only get him a blimp but will also be used to equip it with a thermal-imaging camera to capture evidence of the manlike ape (or apelike man) hiding under the trees. According to Reuters, getting financial support for the venture has been slow going. However, with the popularity of Animal Planet’s show Finding Bigfoot, it seems only a matter of time until a television channel steps in to fund the expedition. In fact, Meldrum told Reuters that two cable channels are already vying for rights to produce a reality series following the expedition. Heck, we’d watch it.