Friday, 13 January 2012

New Witness Corroborates 2011 Sighting

I was going to post another item this weekend but I felt this partly finished article ought to go out now. The reason is because of the William Hill award for the best Nessie sighting of 2011 and there are four contenders including the sighting in this title. The winner will be decided at the end of January and I thought it best to complete the story on this sighting so that whoever judges will have a fuller picture.

Note, I have no interest in who the eventual winner is and I do not stand to gain financially from it! The award candidates do not even know I am writing this. In fact I have been looking into this case since July and was awaiting further information, but so be it.

Back in July I was at Loch Ness and stopped at the shop of the Hargreaves at Foyers to buy some provisions (I documented that in an older posting). So I talked about their sighting with them and before I left the lady said that an Ala MacGruer had seen something too. I noted the name and headed south back to Edinburgh.

When I eventually found and got round to talking to Mr. MacGruer, he did indeed confirm that he too had seen a strange creature around the same time that day but closer to the shore. He was driving along a local road further downhill when his attention was taken by an elongated object in the water. He stopped the car to have a look and described an "eel-like head" with a neck about two feet out of the water.

He described it as going at quite a fast speed towards Sand Point. In other words, the creature was heading in the general direction of the loch where the Hargreaves saw their head and neck. Eventually it disappeared past Sand Point. Mr. MacGruer estimates it was up to 300 yards away from him and so substantially closer than it was to the Hargreaves.

I hope that is as accurate as I can state it as it was conducted over the phone and then by letter and with my lack of knowledge of local small roads in Foyers. Ala sent a drawing of what he saw.

Ala MacGruer is a pensioner and has spent his life living by Loch Ness. He is an experienced angler and has spent many, many hours fishing on Loch Ness and beyond. His knowledge of the loch and what can fool a person is therefore above the average witness standard. I asked if he had seen anything like this in his life before but he said he had not. He recalled how one could be fooled by birds observed in mist and hence giving a wrong impression of size, but that day such conditions did not prevail. Those who may suggest that he merely saw a seal ought to give him some leeway given his lochside experience.

Clearly, Mr. MacGruer's account adds weight to what the Hargreaves saw and diminishes the chances that something was misidentified - especially with a good witness at a shorter range. Reports of the Loch Ness Monster seen by multiple witnesses are good. It is even better when they view the creature independently and unaware of each other's situation.

As an aside, readers familiar with the history of the Loch Ness mystery may recognise the surname MacGruer. Indeed, without me prompting him, Ala declared that his uncle William MacGruer had seen the creature on land as a young lad. I told him that this was no surprise to me as that case from almost 100 years ago is part of the Loch Ness Monster lore.

That particular case was reported in the Inverness Courier on the 3rd October 1933 and describes how a group of children playing on a bay near Fort Augustus were surprised and terrified to see a large creature with a long neck and a camel like head lurching out of the bushes and entering into the loch. It seems that his uncle stuck to that story to his dying day.

So I give you Mr. MacGruer's account and hope it adds to the credibility of what happened on that day on the 15th June 2011.

More on the Hugh Gray Photograph
Parthenogenesis and Nessie


  1. Fantastic work -- along with Mrs. Cameron's sighting, the old MacGruer land sighting was the other one I was thinking of in my email of this morning. I'm so glad to see that people are still having head and neck sightings, and that there are investigators and researchers that are quietly tracking down these new reports. I'll have to check my files and books, but was MacGruer's grandfathers sighting more akin to Cameron's and Fordyce's, or more like the Spicers? If I recall, it's more like the former. Once again - fantastic work!

  2. William MacGruer's sighting was a sandy coloured creature with a camel like head on a long neck whilst swinging its head from side to side. It waddled into the loch and disappeared.

    It was one of the smaller creatures I recall.

    You would think witnesses would just give us the good old roaring plesiosaur routine, but truth is stranger than fiction.

    Explanations? The usual weak deer or otter arguments. Or if struggling with that, apply the safety net (i.e. hoax).

    Any other suggestions from anyone?