Saturday, 27 December 2014

Nessie Review of 2014

Recollecting the events of 2014, let us look back on the Loch Ness Monster and those who claimed to have seen or represented Scotland's most famous inhabitant.

As the Referendum on whether Scotland should be an independent nation approached, it was less than seriously suggested that there would be no Nessie to spot as various cartoons were published showing Nessie heading south for more stable waters.

Not that I would blame her for making that decision, but as it turned out, there was no need to panic as Scotland remained in the Union. Below is one example of the Loch Ness Monster cartoons that amused us during some tiresome and heated campaigning. Shades of Godzilla!




Nessie, as a major Scottish icon, also made an appearance at the successful Commonwealth Games in Glasgow during the August Opening Ceremony. You can't keep a good monster down! However, I think the hybrid tyre form is a reminder that not all things we see are necessarily the Loch Ness Monster.




But what of the creature itself? Back in April, the newspapers got a bit heated about an object that had appeared on Apple's satellite images of Loch Ness. I actually covered this image at the tail end of 2013, but it took a few months for it to be picked up by the wider media. The consensus definitely moved towards this being one of the Jacobite cruise ships, albeit it looked a bit odder than previous images.




Following hot on the heels of this satellite image was a sonar image that raised eyebrows only days later. It was recorded in Urquhart Bay by one of the aforementioned Jacobite cruise ships. The object was about 30 feet below and registered a signal stronger than that the similar crescent shape we would see for the swim bladders of fish. Was it the monster, a seal, a sonar recording anomaly or something else? No seal was reported in Loch Ness and one is left in an inconclusive state as to what was registered that day.




Consulting Gary Campbell's web log of sightings, two other stories come to the fore. The first was an object seen on Google Earth by Bjarne Sj√∂strand, once again in April. You can see the vertical filament object at coordinates 57°10'25.30"N, 4°36'53.53"W just off the Horseshoe Scree. It is just above the centre point on the image below.




Now, we have seen similar objects on Google Earth before back in 2011 and were non-committal on them, mainly because they were un-Nessie like in their shapes. This one looks no different. However, we did have two more traditional sightings from people who spotted strange objects from their vantage points on the loch shore.

Referring to Gary Campbell again, nine people watched an object and its wake from Brackla on the 20th May about 10am. They watched it for 15 minutes before it submerged. Photographs were taken, but at over a kilometre away, these are inconclusive.

Eighteen days previously (May 2nd), a local gamekeeper is said to have watched an object at the head of a 50 foot wake progress southwards from Dores. He is stated as saying it was

 .. an amazing sight. I travel this road to Whitebridge daily and have never seen anything like it.

However, neither of these accounts made it into the newspapers. The bottom line these days appears to be, "No Picture, No Story", and by that we mean a semi-decent image. Thankfully, we have people that still collect these verbal accounts for the record.

This year was also the year that Jonathan Bright's hump photograph went viral at the time of the Scottish Paranormal Festival in October. And, no, I don't think it is a wave.

But, in keeping with the Loch Ness Monster, we did have our false alarms. In November, a local by the name of Richard Collis filmed an object looking like a long neck sticking out of the water. Not committing to anything until the witness was spoken to, our own man on the spot, Jonathan Bright, was on the case within hours, and revealed it was no more than a lifeless object, perhaps a branch or something else.


In fact, I was told recently that the object is still there and is probably not a branch but a human artifact, such as a boat part. The main thing is, it lingered, and real Nessies tend not to hang around!

We also had a blast from the past in October as archive research by David Clarke revealed that there was a monster battle in 1934 when Nessie fever was high. An academic tussle arose between the Natural History Museum in England and the Royal Scottish Museum for the rights to the carcass of the Loch Ness Monster. Was Nessie a British monster or a Scottish monster? An appropriate topic in this year when Scotland decided its national fate.

Back in 1934, they never had the opportunity to put it to the test. Let's see what 2015 brings!




34 comments:

  1. How refreshing. Perfect article for the conclusion the the year. First of all, I like things to stay the same the UK is intact. Call me old fashioned. The google Images, as always dubious . Show me a clear pic of a live animal and you have me The head shot is dubious at at best..We still await for that one!

    ReplyDelete
  2. So in summary, 2014 yielded images of a boat, a wave, a log, and an undetermined sonar hit.

    I face the beginning of 2015 more sceptical than ever.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I don't think this has been mentioned before on the original thread but...does anyone else but me think that the recent Richard Collis Nessie sighting bears a vague resemblance to the 1977 Shiels photograph. I'm sure that most of the forum user on here will remember that there was another photograph that bore a remarkable similarity to 'Doc' Shiels first photograph as it appeared in the book Modern Mysteries of Britain by Janet and Colin Bord. If anyone wants to see the pic (which is in b+w) I will try and make a scan of it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've seen this second photo which is almost identical to the well-known Shiels one. I'm sure I read that it also came to the public's attention via Shiels himself, who claimed it was given to him by an anonymous cyclist! Enough said.

      Delete
    2. Ah! yes, the Shiels pic, the one they dubbed the Muppet shot.

      Delete
  4. Hi all. I have tried a little experiment today. I set about sketching what nessie could look like based on the images Roland supports as genuine on his blog. I hit an immediate snag. The head Roland sees on the Gray photo is totally different to any possible head interpretation of the Bright photo. Age and gender of the animals could not possibly explain the differences so I am wondering if Roland believes there are more than one species of unidentified monsters in the loch? If you support both photos then that's the only available conclusion. Wishing you all a happy new year.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My own take on the Bright photo is that it shows not the head but the back of the neck of the creature. So no contradiction for me.



      Delete
    2. Interesting. Bright thinks it's a head facing the camera, you think it's a neck with a head facing the other way. Kinda implies people are seeing what they want to in a wave, don't ya think?

      Delete
    3. Does that include everyone interpreting the photo?

      Delete
  5. Hello,

    2015 will see me forge into other areas of the blogosphere, in areas which may or may not be of interest to you.

    That will require more of my time and energy, but it is not my intention to stop writing on the Loch Ness Monster. So expect the articles to keep coming while I have the ability to do them.

    But to that end, the comments section will cease. You can still contact me at my usual email address plus the new one of lochnesskelpie@gmail.com.

    A Happy New Year to all when it comes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh no! No more comments section! That was half the fun of reading the articles. I guess you have finally had enough or you've staled on Nessie. What on Earth will Geordy do? Maybe he can move on to Bigfoot, UFOs, Ghosts or other areas of the paranormal, as his skeptical mind dictates. Give us a hint of the other areas of your interest. Will they still involve the paranormal? Anyway, Happy New Year to all and good luck on you're new endeavors Roland.

      Delete
    2. I have written on other areas before this blog was conceived, mainly in the area of economics. I wrote an investment newsletter prior to the credit crunch when it stopped. How that all may re-appear is a current matter of research.

      I am sure GS will find somewhere else to display his prodigious debating skills ....

      Delete
    3. Well whatever form it takes, I'm sure somebody can learn something from you still. And who knows maybe you will return to the comments section one day. Good luck!

      Delete
  6. Good luck to GB and all my other fans. I'm afraid I won't be debating other fringe topics but I might soon put in an appearance on the Lake Monsters facebook page.

    Bye to everyone here.

    GS

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bye and good luck to you to Geordie. It's been fun! Good to to know you won't be disappearing from the Lake Monster scene. Your spirited debates with us believers and GB was interesting to say the least. You are one die-hard skeptic!

      Delete
  7. Well thats bad news to end 2014. I enjoy these posts! Well 2014 had a couple more reported sightings than 2013 so lets hope 2015 will bring more! Happy new year to everybody!!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Not sure if I'm too late to get in my goodbyes, thank yous, and well-wishes, but here goes; Roland, thank you for this blog and all your work. As I've said before, it has renewed my interest/belief in the Creature of Loch Ness, and I am eternally grateful.

    My new punk/metal band will be named "Glasgow Kiss", in your honour. Because you are made of awesome.

    Hope your holidays were lovely, and wish you much success in the New Year, whatever you choose to do. Just promise me you'll do some more Night Hunts in the summer, and fill us in?

    Cheers, thanks a lot,

    Storm

    ReplyDelete
  9. I hope you do a u - turn GB !!! I do enjoy the blogs and also its a good information service. Any latest news on nessie u can find here. But if not.....all the best!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Yes, thanks. The blog is not going away. I am currently finishing off an article on the 1938 John MacLean sighting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well that's very comforting! Where else would we Nessie enthusiast go for a comparable site so rich in it's scope, breath and story telling. Don't mean to be pushy, just trying to get my last words in before you go “Off the Air”, as it were, but I'm still waiting for an article and your analysis of the Ian Monckton supposed land pic of Feb 2009. Also, what about the land sighting by the Scottish girl and her two Canadian friends of Jan. 2004. I've heard say that could be a hoax.

      Delete
  11. Bit late to say so - busy new year - but adding my thanks to GB and commentators here. Was nice to feel part of a community interested in the latest from Loch Ness, even if opinions differed wildly.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Good to know u will still be doing blogs GB.good to know if there are any sightings we will get to know about them just as u did with the 2014 sightings off Gary Campbell. Intrestingly he said someone came forward after a reports of no sightings in 2013 to say they had a sighting in 1976 but never reported it till now. Further proof that there are people who dont report what they see as i have found in my regular visirs to the loch.which as i speak i am booking my next trip in the middle of march..... :)) roll on .....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I will also keep an eye on the continuing blog. But as I think I've made clear over the last year - sighting reports without photos or videos are of no real interest anymore. In 2015 they certainly don't cut it anymore (for me).

      Agree that this will probably still be the go-to site for the latest Nessie news.

      Delete
    2. No real interest to you, you mean? I will always find them of real interest.


      Delete
    3. Yes I meant me only. I'm well aware that there are plenty of people following your blog who think eyewitness reports still carry weight, and I am sure you will continue catering to their needs. It will be odd reading your articles without the comments though.

      Delete
    4. Well there are other ways of making a living ,Geordie.Perhaps bricklaying?

      Delete
    5. Geordie Sceptic(s)5 January 2015 at 12:05

      Good point Anon! How will the 3 of us pay our mortgages now GB has ended the comments section?

      Regards,

      Morning GS, Afternoon GS and Nighttime GS.

      Delete
    6. Nowt wrong with bricklaying!!!!!! ������

      Delete
    7. Sebastian Postlethwaite6 January 2015 at 10:23

      Quite frankly, I would be inclined to disagree, Jake. I regard bricklaying as a rather menial and terribly working class occupation. My father didn't send me to Eton for such a life path.

      Sebastian

      Delete
    8. Yes Sebby. I have bin down that road. Got a bit bored though with Eton so tried bricklaying and nessie hunting. Much more fun old chap

      Delete
  13. Here we go again, GS want's the last word! OK for what it's worth let me add mine. I'm one of those who needs catering. Lacking any irrefutable photo evidence, eyewitness word of mouth carries a lot of weight with me. Specially when attributed to sober, honest, credible upstanding people. Testimony that, used in a court of law would probably stand on it's own. Here's a legal definition of testimony: “Oral evidence offered by a competent witness under oath, which is used to establish some fact or set of facts” I stress competent. .Hurry up with the new article GB, sans the comment section, of course. We're heading down a slippery slope.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Happy New Year Mr Watson and readers.

    I've read this blog at least once a month for 4 years. Always enjoyed it, always drawn back to it. The reasons being firstly the articles and secondly the ensuing discussions. The last two years have been particularly enjoyable.

    I'm an Inverness man born and bred. There's nothing more us lot love than a fiery but good natured debate. It's what us Scots do! In our genes if you like. Just see what happened during the referendum. Passionate and essential discussion of the issues. The result wasn't what I wanted but I am proud of how my country freely debated all aspects.

    So I am less than happy about the loss of the comments on here. I understand Mr Watson's reasons of time management but I cannot abide the idea that sceptical comments are a slippery slope and need to be banished forthwith! John I thought you were American.... free speech and everything? If you think the articles will be better without debates I just don't think you get the democracy programme!

    Anyway, raising a glass to Mr Watson's continuing blog but wiping away a tear at the loss of ensuing conversation.

    Anon and goodbye...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, you got me all wrong Anon! I was being facetious and sarcastic. It was a lighthearted jab at Geordy and his constant one-upmanship. I see nothing wrong with a good spirited debate. Even though this blog “caters” to the Nessie believer, how boring it would be if we all agreed on everything!

      I to hate to see the comments section gone, but it's Roland's decision not mine. As I mentioned in a previous post, half the fun of following this blog was the comments, not only pro and con but also tidbits of information offered by readers.

      Perhaps Roland got weary of moderating the great debate and feels he needs a break to devote more time to other pursuits. I even suggested that maybe one day he would return to them. As the new format seems inevitable, I was just saying let's get on with it and move on.

      Delete