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A Personal Investigation of Loch Ness

Posted by: John Kirk on October 6th, 2006

As if my luck at being at Lake Windermere in England a few days after a sighting was obtained of an unknown creature wasn’t enough, I happened to be visiting Loch Ness when British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club (BCSCC) member, Andreas Trottmann, alerted me to a sighting that had taken place at Dores.

This was simply too good an opportunity to pass up so I decided I would investigate.

I had actually come to Loch Ness to say goodbye as I am fairly convinced that there is no cryptid to speak of in the loch. The evidence produced to support the presence of an unknown animal in Loch Ness is beset with problems and is not very useful at all. So I decide to make one last cryptozoological journey to the loch to put to bed my interest in the creature, once and for all.

Putting aside my interest in the Loch Ness cryptid does not mean I will not be going back again. Ness is a place of splendid beauty and wonderful sights so I will go back again and again just to enjoy it for its wonderful setting and the vistas it affords of so much of the Great Glen.

The Highland News out of Inverness carried this report which Andreas relayed to me:

Achtung Nessie! Loch anglers in Dores drama

By Claire Doughty

Published: 17 August, 2006, Highland News, Inverness

A STUNNED German schoolboy spotted Nessie last week and shouted to his dad: "Look, a U-boat!"

Ryan Macdonald’s father, Gordon, who also got a monster fright, declared: "I used to think Nessie was a joke, but now I am not sure." Gordon and his eight-year old son and Gordon’s pal, Tony Mulgrew, caught sight of the legendary beast during a fishing trip near Dores.

Joiner Gordon, of Drakies, Inverness, told the Highland News: "We were near the Dores Inn when we saw this object.

"Whatever it was rose out of the water by about a few metres. It was there for five or six seconds.

"Ryan said it looked like a U-boat coming out of the water. We weren’t scared, we just couldn’t believe it.

"He’s now desperate to tell his friends back in Germany where he stays with his mum, but he is worried they won’t believe him.

"I was totally sceptical about From Page 1 stories of the Loch Ness monster in the past, but to see something that big was just unbelievable.

"It was about three quarters of the way across the loch, I wanted to take a picture, but it was too far away."

Gordon added: "It was massive. The wash that was created from this thing was as though a boat had passed at high speed, but there was definitely no boat in the area."

Tony Mulgrew said: "It is hard to say what it was exactly, but I have fished up at the loch 300 to 400 times and I have never seen anything like that.

"There was something strange. There was an upsurge of water and a lot of froth came off the object. Whatever it was was going towards Drumnadrochit."

The father and son’s Nessie sighting is only the second this year.

The news has come as a relief to Gary Campbell of the Official Loch Ness Monster Fan Club who was worried that global warming had made the loveable beast reluctant to surface.

He said: "It is great news. It is such a relief there has been another sighting of Nessie. This is only the second this year.

"Just a few weeks ago we were saying that she has been put off coming to the surface because of global warming and the increased temperatures, but I am glad that she has proved us wrong."

However, Willie Cameron, director of Loch Ness Marketing, was more down to earth about the alleged sighting.

He told the Highland News: "There has been a boat going up and down the loch at tremendous speeds.

You won’t necessarily see that it is a boat from so far away, you will just see a solid mass.

"It could have been either the ferry or this speed boat which both create a tremendous wash.

"I am not saying that that is what they saw, I am just being open-minded."

He added: "There haven’t been many recorded sightings this year. It can be disappointing getting an explanation as people come here and they want to see something.

"My late father was one of the people who have had one of the best sightings, so I am not saying it doesn’t exist because I would be calling my father a hoaxer. I am just explaining what it might have been."

I dragged myself out of bed early one morning to head down to Dores to check out the sightlines where the sighting had taken place. I got there before seven in the morning and even monster-seeker Steve Feltham was still asleep in his famous Nessie camper on the beach at Dores when I arrived.

No one was around for quite a while so I was free to traipse along the beach and the picnic site by the Dores Inn at leisure. The loch is pretty narrow at this point and only Lochend a little further to the north at the northern end of Loch Ness is narrower. I was very surprised to see how I could clearly make out what types of vehicles were being driven on the western or opposite side of the loch. The witnesses to the above sighting had extraordinarily good views and I deduced that it would be very difficult for them to have misidentified a boat as an animate creature.

Yes, it was too far away to photograph, but I seriously doubt that one could get a boat and an unknown animal mixed up in such a confined area, relatively-speaking. I could see quite far down the loch before it became difficult to identify objects on the water. While Willie Cameron – and I very much respect his opinion – thinks it might have been a boat, I would have to disagree with him on this occasion. In case you did not know, Willie’s dad was the late Det. Sgt. Ian Cameron who watched an unknown object move around Loch Ness for 40 minutes. Sgt. Cameron, a police officer, holds the record for the longest ever sighting and his sighting and a handful of others are the only reason that I think something unusual uses the loch for transit purposes.

I spent over an hour looking over the Dores area until I was satisfied that I had covered all the bases in the vicinity and it is my opinion that this may well have been a sighting of something other than a boat. However, I still do not think that anything extraordinary lives in Loch Ness, but it is possible that some large animal transits the loch on its way between the Beauly Firth and saltwater Loch Linnhe at the other end.

While I was Ness I also visited Drumnadrochit, the area around Urquhart Castle and Fort Augustus as well as briefly looking at Lochs Oich and Lochy which reportedly boast their own unknown animals. I did not see anything unusual, but then again, I did not expect to. I will, however, thoroughly investigate these lochs at some future time as they are magnificent bodies in a truly spectacular setting and I would be really excited if I did find evidence of a cryptid at any of these lochs.

In future when I am at Loch Ness I will finally be able to enjoy a monster-free visit and at last enjoy the loch as one of Scotland’s most spectacular scenic treasures.

If you do go to Loch Ness you will have to go to the gift shop at the Loch
Ness 2000 exhibition as it has the some of the best cryptid t-shirts ever depicting a menacing and mysterious Loch Ness Monster. They are incredibly illustrated and a must for any collector of Nessie memorabilia.

John Kirk About John Kirk
One of the founders of the BCSCC, John Kirk has enjoyed a varied and exciting career path. Both a print and broadcast journalist, John Kirk has in recent years been at the forefront of much of the BCSCC’s expeditions, investigations and publishing. John has been particularly interested in the phenomenon of unknown aquatic cryptids around the world and is the author of In the Domain of the Lake Monsters (Key Porter Books, 1998). In addition to his interest in freshwater cryptids, John has been keenly interested in investigating the possible existence of sasquatch and other bipedal hominids of the world, and in particular, the Yeren of China. John is also chairman of the Crypto Safari organization, which specializes in sending teams of investigators to remote parts of the world to search for animals as yet unidentified by science. John travelled with a Crypto Safari team to Cameroon and northern Republic of Congo to interview witnesses among the Baka pygmies and Bantu bushmen who have sighted a large unknown animal that bears more than a superficial resemblance to a dinosaur. Since 1996, John Kirk has been editor and publisher of the BCSCC Quarterly which is the flagship publication of the BCSCC. In demand at conferences, seminars, lectures and on television and radio programs, John has spoken all over North America and has appeared in programs on NBC, ABC, CBS, PBS, TLC, Discovery, CBC, CTV and the BBC. In his personal life John spends much time studying the histories of Scottish Clans and is himself the president of the Clan Kirk Society. John is also an avid soccer enthusiast and player.


13 Responses to “A Personal Investigation of Loch Ness”

  1. eireman responds:

    Another example of why eyewitness accounts can only take you so far. It’s quite easy to go to a newspaper and claim a sighting – anyone can do it. Anecdotal evidence isn’t really evidence. It can be used as a litmus test of sorts or to discover the epicenter of supposed sightings for further on-site research but it is in no way tantamount to “proof.” Often when it’s all we have, it’s all we cling to.

  2. OKCurious responds:

    This is exactly why eyewitness accounts are great for police investigations, but mean very little in the court room. Our brains may receive what we see, but what is process is that image coated with our bias, perceptions, emotional mood, stress, excitement, etc. We can “see”, but not really be accurate enough to positively claim a proper description of what we’re seeing.

  3. mystery_man responds:

    I agree, eyewitness testimony can only go so far. This is still a compelling story, though and I’m glad Mr. John Kirk went over there to investigate it. Would love to see the Loch myself one day.

  4. kittenz responds:

    I wish there was a Nessie. I kinda wish Santy Claus was real too – he could save me a bundle at Christmas time.

    I would love to visit Loch Ness because it is steeped in rich, vibrant history. But I don’t expect I’ll ever see a Nessie outside the gift shops.

  5. Sharm responds:

    Yes you should go visit the loch. It’s simply stunning.

  6. Trapster responds:

    As a child I used to imagine Nessie captured and swimming around in a huge marine science center somewhere for everyone to see. As time has past I must admit to having the feeling that there is not a large unknown animal living there. My suspicion is that as a result of its fame, anything sighted in the water which is not immediately identified becomes Nessie. Floating debris, schools of fish, a million other things.

    The “large male eel theory” I’ve heard seems plausible, also.

    I wouldn’t rule out “sea monsters” in other places. But Scotland is ranking fairly low on my list these days.

  7. springheeledjack responds:

    The point is, dear people, seeing is believing. Time to go buy tickets and see for yourselves.

  8. crypto_randz responds:

    Everyone shouldn’t be disappointed. I have studied loch ness, it is one of the most toughest cryptid places. The one problem which is a major problem is how dark and gloomy the underwater region is, to find what is lurking down there would really take very good equpment, alot of good underwater survelliance. So many years of past and still loch ness is still my favorite mystery place, so many sightings, photos but maybe the eel theory would be the ideal conclusion. Dr. Roy Mackal always mentioned that loch ness could be the home of amazingly enormous huge sized eels. In the past there were many reports from scuba divers that have seen a mysterious animal that resembled a sea dragon, some scuba divers would come back up to the boats shaking and very terrified of what they saw. The majority of the scuba divers will not scuba dive in loch ness. So I continue to think positive that there still is a possibility that something still maybe roaming at the bottom of loch ness.

  9. CryptoInformant responds:

    I am fairly convinced that something warm-blooded lives in Loch Ness, and, taking into account the Antarctic plesiosaurs, it could range from them to seals and whales.

  10. crypto_randz responds:

    Good information on the antarctic plesiosaurs. Yes I’ve studied them, they could be a candidate for the loch ness creature. The one description that always seems to be mentioned that leads to the loch ness dweller being the plesiosaur is the long tapering neck. I also wouldn’t rule out the possibilty it being some type of animal that evolved from the brontosaurus.

  11. mystery_man responds:

    Could be stuff roaming around in there. Never know. Lake Tahoe in California is not that big, lots of vacationers, but it has a creature too. Mr. Jacques Cousteau himself went in there and saw something that scared his socks off. I believe he said “the world is not ready for what’s down there.” So I’m keeping an open mind on the Loch Ness thing for now.

  12. crypto_randz responds:

    What is also puzzling about the photos is what kind of animal could make humps in such a lake? I mean the humps this animal makes are huge, maybe the animal could be a enormous water snake, eel, a pleisosaur or another candidate. Recently I was talking to a friend, he mentioned maybe a sea dragon. But I do believe the sea dragon can be classified as a sea serpent, so whatever this animal its quite impressive it certainly stays out of human contact.

  13. mystery_man responds:

    That sure is the mystery, how it manages to remain hidden so well. A lot of theories about underwater caves, etc. Even a theory I read about that Nessie just passes through the loch on a migration elsewhere.



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