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BC Lake Monster Like “A Hippo”

Posted by: Loren Coleman on November 11th, 2009

Lethbridge Herald
Lethbridge, Alberta

September 19, 1928

Creature Seen in Lake

By B.C. Clergyman Looked

Like a Hippopotamus

WILLIAMS LAKE, B.C. – (By Canadian Press) – Inhabitants of this little Cariboo town know now why the Indians dread the deep waters of a nearby lake and will venture on its surface only when the ice is two feet thick.

While on a camping trip to a remote section of the lake, Rev. A. D. MacKinnon and his family came upon a huge, horny-pelted creature which they described as resembling a hippopotamus. The animal, which appeared to be as much at home in the water as on land, crawled about in the muddy, shallow waters near shore, browsing in the mud and snapping its huge jaws at passing fish. Mr. MacKinnon and his party did not dare approach the beast as they had no weapons of defense in case it showed fight. They merely gazed at it in bewilderment from a safe distance and when it had vanished under the surface they returned in excitement to the town to spread the news of their awesome discovery.

For years it has been well known that huge sturgeons inhabit Williams Lake and that some of these weigh fully half a ton, but Mr. MacKinnon insists that the strange creature which he saw was no mere fish.

“It looked more like a hippopotamus than anything else I’ve ever seen,” said the pastor, who has had charge of the Union church here for years and whose veracity is unquestioned. “I wouldn’t say that it was a hippopotamus but it certainly looked like one.”

Nor did it resemble the beast seen on several occasions in Okanagan Lake, to the south, and which has become world famous by the name of Ogopogo. Ogopogo is more like a sea serpent even though its head is said to be like that of a sheep; but the Williams Lake monster was not serpentlike and its
head was much more massive than that of the Ogopogo.

Thanks to Jerome Clark for the archival story.

About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013.


8 Responses to “BC Lake Monster Like “A Hippo””

  1. jayman responds:

    Interesting… some years back there were reports of a “Hippo-like” creature being sighted in the Olentangy River in central Ohio.

  2. inbetween responds:

    this is just another formulaic story , they always include a few specific ingredients , either a judge or a preacher , there is never a weapon to take the monster down ,they are always followed with a bit about how the witness is beyond reproach and is usually given a bit of background to prevent any questions , such as he was head of the Union church , if you were to try and verify this I think you would find a different story , one that shows this person never even existed or if he did never made such a claim , there is also never a photo or any real evidence.Stories like these are what bring suspicion and doubt to the real field of Crytozoology.

  3. sschaper responds:

    This reminds me of the Gaelic name for the Loch Ness monster, which translates more or less the same as the Greek term “hippopotamus”

    Mangy wild boar in the Canadian instance? What else could it have been?

  4. cryptidsrus responds:

    Great story, as usual, Loren.

    Inbetween:
    Even with a “photo”—a lot of people would not count that as “evidence”. Look at what happened with Roger Patterson. Even with footage of Patty folks still do not accept it. The only 100% way to get genuine “proof” of a cryptid that EVERYONE would accept would be with a DEAD BODY.

    So the idea that this is “fake” because “there was no photo or any real evidence” really is redundant.

    It all comes down to whether you would believe the clergyman. The OVERWHELMING majority of “incidents” reagrding Cryptids come down to “Eyewitness Testimony.” There has been Physical, Aural and Olfactory Evidence, but the most “credible” of it comes down to eyewitness testimony.It ultimately depends on You whether to accept the testimony or not as “credible”. Many do, many don’t.

    And you cannot verify with certainty whether the clergyman actually went through the experience or not. Maybe, maybe not. You would have to verify that by looking at records.
    You’re “a-s-s-u-m-i-n-g.” And you know about how assuming makes an “ass out of u and me?” :)

  5. steele79 responds:

    Hmm well i have to say having been to this lake many times i find this story garbage if a creature ever existed like this its not there now.
    the lake is surrounded by cottages and homes on or by the water and a small town of about 10,000 on the western side and the eastern part of the lake has a marshy /wooded area.
    but some farmer uses a large part of it to make bails of hay and the described creature couldn’t hide there most likely a sturgeon that for some reason got stuck in a shallow area by the shore and was thrashing around probably old and or sick and dying

  6. wuffing responds:

    …resembling a hippopotamus. The animal, which appeared to be as much at home in the water as on land, crawled about in the muddy, shallow waters near shore, browsing in the mud…

    If it looks like a moose and behaves like a moose it is obviously a cadborosaurus :-)

  7. Dj Plasmic Nebula responds:

    I wonder if is a Platybelodon or a kind of platybelodon or just an unknown variety of hippo.

  8. springheeledjack responds:

    The maddening thing about sightings like this is that everyone always tries to describe something based on the closest animal that would “fit”–in this case a hippo. It doesn’t mean it was a hippo, or really even that it was that close to looking like a hippo, but more probably that the creature seen reminded the eye witness of a hippo, and that’s what stuck. We don’t even know if he saw the entire creature, or just a part of it.

    I mean, we have no idea what to do with this other than to say, “huh.” I understand that people don’t always look at things with a critical eye for future explanation, and especially when they’re seeing something out of the norm.

    I think it is possible this is a real account…the “preacher” tag, while it may seem like a fake, is neither here nor there to me–the vagueness suggests of the report adds validity to me, because hoaxers often add details to make their story seem more plausible.

    In the end it’s a moot point, because we have nothing more than a vague account of something out of place being seen there. Catalogue it for future reference (taking note of place and time, etc.) and move on:)



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