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New Champ Sighting: Wilcox Dock Incident

Posted by: Loren Coleman on June 6th, 2009

Carl Roberts of Plattsburgh shows where he and two friends saw something strange near Wilcox Dock while fishing in Lake Champlain Thursday evening [June 4. 2009]. “It’s too surreal,” he said of the possibility that it could be the legendary lake creature Champ. “It’s like seeing an alien.”
Michael Betts / P-R Photo

Wilcox Dock (Semi-Protected Canal Terminal Wall) is located in Lake Champlain on the New York State side (the west bank) at Plattsburgh, at 44°42’29″N 73°26’38″W. The address is given as 90 Cumberland Ave. Plattsburgh, NY 12901.

Carl Roberts was enjoying a pleasant evening with friends Thursday [June 4, 2009] while fishing at Wilcox Dock.

They had been casting their lines since 6 p.m. and had caught quite a few perch, but the fish unexpectedly stopped biting around 8 p.m. [June 4, 2009].

The wind was calm, the sun was still shining above the western horizon, and Lake Champlain was as tranquil as could be.

RAPID MOVEMENT
But then, a movement out on the lake caught the angler’s attention. Something in the water was moving rapidly from left to right about 100 yards beyond the dock.

“It had to be 50 feet long, from what I could see of the humps (rising above the lake surface),” Roberts said Friday morning as he recalled the unusual sighting, still energized with excitement from the experience.

“There was no wind, no boats, no explanation whatsoever. It was so close that I could see the texture of the skin.”

His girlfriend, Randy Patnode, was nearby talking to her grandmother on her cell phone. Roberts called to her, telling her to get a picture of the creature before it moved out of sight, but her cell phone was low on power and prevented her from getting a shot.

Still, the group watched the object as it continued to move toward the peninsula just south of Wilcox Dock.

“It didn’t move like a snake,” said Roberts, owner of Adirondack Birch Worx furniture shop in Plattsburgh. “It was not like a porpoise or dolphin, either. It moved straight and fast, with its bumps up high and then down lower in the water.

“I’ve never seen anything like it before,” he added, noting that he grew up on Cumberland Head and has seen 20-foot lake sturgeon close up before.

The creature’s skin was “whale-like,” he said, and had a shiny greenish black tint to it.

DROPPED DOWN
As the object moved toward the peninsula, it suddenly dropped below the surface and did not appear again, one solitary wave slowly inching toward shore from where it had been.

Roberts said he has never really believed in the Lake Champlain monster and stopped short of saying that this was Champ. But it was definitely not something normal, he said.

“It was no log, no boat, no animal I’ve seen before. I just can’t believe it. I couldn’t sleep because of it.”

Roberts, Patnode and their friend Lincoln Collins were the only three on the southern edge of Wilcox Dock. Several other people were on the northern edge, facing Georgia-Pacific, but did not see the creature, Roberts said.

The trio continued to fish for another hour or so, but the perch that had been so abundant earlier had disappeared.

“I know one thing,” Roberts said. “I’m not swimming in this lake again.”

VERMONT SIGHTING
This is the second Champ-like sighting within the last few days. Eric Olsen, a Vermont man, posted a video on YouTube of something he had seen on the Burlington waterfront Sunday [May 31, 2009].

In that video, a blurry clip shows a swimming animal raising its head above water several times before dropping from sight.

Roberts knew about that video and said he “wasn’t trying to jump on the bandwagon” but that he and his friends definitely saw something unusual Thursday night [June 4, 2009].

Source: “Unusual creature seen in Lake Champlain: Group sees creature while fishing in Lake Champlain,” by Jeff Meyers, Press Republican, Plattsburgh, New York, June 6, 2009.

Bernard Heuvelmans’ Super-Otter (below) compared to an image from Eric Olsen’s new footage (above).

Loren Coleman – has written 5491 posts on this site.
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.


4 Responses to “New Champ Sighting: Wilcox Dock Incident”

  1. cryptidsrus responds:

    That Bernard Heuvelmans picture gave me chills when I looked at it, Loren. Uncanny is the least word I can use when comparing that to the Olsen video.
    Could this be the beginning of a “flap?” We’ll have to wait and see.

  2. korollocke responds:

    Not really surprised by these new sightings. One person saw something and got some media attention, now others want media attention aswell. The first though seems a bit over whelmed and unhappy about all the media attention he has garnerd for himself. Personally I still thinks it’s a log or drift wood, doesn’t move like anything alive. Just my opinion. I would be thrilled to be wrong and have a new creature discovered though.

  3. chabuhi responds:

    Just as every skeptic should have an open mind, every true believer should practice a little skepticism.

    I mean no offense to anyone here, but if you think this Olsen video doesn’t look at all similar to a moose, deer, or similar animal moving in water, then you should really examine some such film evidence.

    I’m completely open to the possible existence of any number of mysterious creatures, but I just think that in this case Ockham’s Razor (pardon the cliche) is in full effect.

  4. chabuhi responds:

    Another thing to keep in mind when viewing the Olsen video (or any cell phone video for that matter) is that, unfortunately, the only thing he had available to film with was a cell phone which are not known for superb quality — especially at a distance. The device has a limited number of pixels within which it can represent what it “sees” and so cannot possibly digitize every bit of info we see with our eyes. Digital cameras have to make approximations, and that often leads to the types of strange anomalies we see in some videos or photos.

    This is part of the reason (I believe) Loren is always so adamant about forensic analysis.



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