International Cryptozoology Conference 2018

Ucumar Zupai – Killer of Horses Part III

Posted by: John Kirk on March 13th, 2006

In addition to Patricio Saldano’s close encounter, two top class biathletes witnessed the hairy creature South American creature known as the Ucumar at close proximity on a trail in Cerro Termal and also filed an excellent report.

Humberto Sosa and Susana Romano were out on a training run when they suddenly heard branches being loudly crunched in a wooded area on a hillside. They were aghast when they saw what was making the noises – an ape of some sort moving smoothly parallel to the athletes. It then suddenly jumped into the growth where the birds there abruptly took off and then there was an eerie and dead silence.

Discretion being the better part of valour, Sosa and Romano took off in a bid to get away from the alleged Ucumar and it was then that the thing suddenly began to deliberately pace them in the bush some 10 metres away. The very loud crunching noises emanating from the woods indicated to Sosa that whatever was following them was very heavy indeed to have been able to make that kind of racket.

Before his sighting, Sosa had opined that the reports of a manlike beast were all due to the effects of mass hysteria, but now having seen the beast for himself, Sosa was adamant that what he had seen was a large ape of unknown variety.

Sosa’s report rekindled memories of an incredible report made known to the authorities by cattle rancher, Rogelio Martinez, following a fantastic incident that took place in 2001.

It seems that a gaucho (Argentine cowboy) Martinez was acquainted with, and who we only know as Posadas, was riding through a heavily wooded area very early one day when he encountered a fearsome looking hair-clad creature two metres in height, with the characteristic long arms and sharp claws. The hominid had an oval-shaped head and its huge mouth was dominated by a pair of vicious-looking fangs.

Now this mystery would have been solved by now if Posadas had been able to follow through with his thought of shooting the creature. Now let me make it clear I am NOT advocating shooting a hominid to prove it exists, but merely stating an outcome as it might have happened if events had transpired differently. Posadas dismounted and moved to draw his shotgun from the saddle, but for the brief moment he took to do this, there was adequate time for the quicksilver beast to rapidly withdraw from the scene and then for it not to be seen again by the perplexed and hapless gaucho.

There ends the modern day spate of reports of Ucumar sightings, but, fortunately, they may not be the last we ever hear of this critter if a determined individual with a fire in his belly for hominid research has his way.

For, you see, my friend John Andrews of Washington state, has conducted considerably more investigation into the puzzling Ucumar phenomenon than I have, and John has shown me a variety of materials dating back many years that indicate the Ucumar has been around for a very long time and descriptions of this creature are a very close to those match to those we have heard for sasquatch and yeti except for the strange claws.

John is hoping to be the first foreigner to travel to Argentina in search of the Ucumar and when he does ultimately do so, I will wish him every success as “he boldly goes where no one has gone before.”

Now that is a Kirk saying if I ever heard one!!

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.

5 Responses to “Ucumar Zupai – Killer of Horses Part III”

  1. dewhurst responds:

    If the Ucumar is as I suspect a Sasquatch it would not be suprising to find that it has developed claws-many species of animal have evolved to live in certain environments and have developed different physical attributes-I do not know why Sasquatch should be any different. I have read reports of Sasquatch being a competent hunter-and there are certainly reports of it having ‘fang like teeth’ an old story of Bigfoot killing a trapper and leaving fang like neck wounds spring to mind. Also if Bigfoot or its more aggressive hunting/clawed cousin where abound in North America it may go some way to linking Sasquatch even more to the Native American legends of creatures like the Wendigo. Food for thought?

  2. CryptoInformant responds:

    I do not agree that Sasquatches have fangs any longer than that of a gorilla, and those are only for intimidation, not killing. Based on a southern US sighting that Bigfoot’s favored method of killing is picking something up and beating it against a tree. If the ________ Devil is a primate, it represents a whole new group.

  3. M Valdemar responds:


    Ucumar Zupai = Bear Devil (or more likely, Devil Bear). See comment here.

    Unless you disagree that ukumari/ucumari/ucumar are the same word in Quechua. In which case, you know more Quechua than I do, which is not unlikely. 🙂

  4. M Valdemar responds:

    I recall that about 10 years ago a lot of mainstream publications (National Geographic, Smithsonian, etc.) were buzzing about the possibility of giant ground sloths surviving in remote areas of South America. Then all that excitement died out.

    Is it possibly that the Ucumar Zupai is a ground sloth that adopts a bipedal plantigrade stance? That would explain the large feet, the claws, and possibly the teeth as well. After all, we don’t really know what the relationship between a surviving ground sloth and fossil ground sloths would be. And I’m not sure you could safely assume that a ground sloth would be as slow-moving as its arboreal cousins.

    Also, a ground sloth would be more “bear-like” than a bipedal ape.

  5. Kronprinz_adam responds:

    I was very curious about this creature, and I found the following (in spanish) here:

    A short summary:
    Ucumar is a “bear-man” that lives in the wilderness and mountain ranges in the frontier with Bolivia…
    The legend says, “that the mother of Ucumar is a young huntress that was lost in the jungle and
    was captured by a bear. They gave birth to the whole Ucumar race”.
    It has a big belly, long, black hair, the hair covers a semi-human face, legs are similar to a bear, but the big toe is wide open. Some people says it has the feet backwards, which disorients the people who follows its tracks. Tracks are common near water sources.
    Small eyes, it posseses an extraordinary strenght and if the wind is favorable, it is possible to hear its strong howling. People is afraid of Ucumar, because it kindnaps humans of the opposite sex, and procreates with them.
    Kidnapped people tells always a similar story: they lived in a cave, but Ucumar covers the entrance of the cave with a big stone. When the hybrids of Ucumar and the humans grow up, they inherit the great strenght of the beast and are able to remove the stone, thus liberating the kidnapped people, who is able to return to their villages. Ucumar is generous with the captured people, it takes care of them, it feeds them with honey and fruits”.

    [Backward feet and kidnapping are also said about central american Sisimite. The big stone stories and the people returning to their villages appear also in some native american bigfoot stories. The indians also call Ucumar to the andean bear, and this remind me of some european folk tales, where the bear man is also the wild man in some cases]

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