Monday, 23 April 2018

A Photograph from 2006




Last year a reader informed me of a previously unreported eyewitness account  that had been posted on the Internet. I contacted the witness and discussed the case with him before agreeing to republish the account here. What was not published back then was the photograph that he said was taken by his girlfriend due to loss of contact with her. I am now happy to say he has obtained her consent and the photo is now included in this article. I reprise the account as told by the boyfriend that day over eleven years ago.


I am writing this under a pseudonym. I am an American working in a field involving considerable professional scrutiny. The one time I discussed this, at a family holiday party after a few drinks, I was laughed at and ribbed for the next few years, so I can only imagine how my present employers might react!

In March of 2006, I visited Loch Ness with my then girlfriend. It was the last week of the month (either the 28th or 29th). We were at Inverness for business purposes, hers not mine. We decided to visit the famous castle on the water and as we drove from Inverness we saw something in the water. 

The time was late afternoon, I would say between four and five. We'd been day drinking which made driving on the other side of the car even more interesting than it already was! It also somewhat compromises the specific details such as precise location and time.

 When my girlfriend began exclaiming that "there's something in the water," I laughed and said she was joking. Finally I realised she was being serious and pulled off to a lay by somewhere near the Clansman hotel (I remember because we went in afterwards to the gift shop to tell everyone what we had seen). As soon as I pulled over, my girlfriend was pointing at the water and I saw it. 

I can't really judge size on water, its not my speciality, but it was HUGE. It looked like a whale. I would say it was grey like an elephant with a neck that was swinging side to side over the water. That was really what it looked like, an elephant waving its trunk. There was a huge commotion in the water behind it. The thing was just massive. It was swimming back toward Inverness the way we came. 

My girlfriend was fumbling to get her camera out of luggage in the back seat before the monster was gone. She was tipsy and we were both shaking. She finally got it out of her bag and took a picture through the car window. We were so shaken up that neither of us thought to roll down the window. She tried to take another snap but her memory card was full, and as she fumbled to delete sightseeing pictures to make more room, it was gone. It just sort of went down while it continued swimming toward Inverness. 

In retrospect I wish we had taken photos of the water afterward which was quite disturbed, but it wasn't until I began reading up on the subject that I realised it might have been of value. We took the picture to the gift shop and the lady at the counter told us to go the exhibition centre to show it, but we got cold feet and just went back to the hotel at Inverness and drank some more. When we got back to the States, we put it on the computer and pretty much never looked at it again or even talked about the experience. It was almost like we felt guilty. 

My girlfriend and I long ago broke up and I have since married, and the one time I told my wife (it was the holiday party at her family's house), the response was so embarrassing that whenever she jokes about "that time Justin saw Nessie," I just sort of laugh it off.

 I just found the picture last week on a CD rom containing files I removed from my ex's computer before I moved out following the breakup. It was in a folder with 90s alternative rock mp3s! I hadn't looked at it in years and while the quality isn't great considering it was just a point and shoot she'd owned for a couple years, it still made my heart skip a beat. Seeing it again caused me a sleepless night because I am sure I saw something that isn't supposed to exist, and over the years I sort of talked myself out of it (too much beer that day, etc). Now its all back again, and I feel a little shaky.

It wasn't a pleasant experience, even though there was no threat of physical harm. 

I am not a Loch Ness Monster enthusiast and know as much as the average person. I didn't care about it and certainly wasn't looking for it. Same with my ex. All I have is the photo, taken through the passengers side window (slight camera reflection) showing a dark body and neck low over the water.
 
Based on that photograph, I make some observations. Firstly, I have confirmed the location of the photo as the Clansman Hotel area. Secondly, There is no EXIF data with the image, so I cannot confirm the date it was recorded. I have been to the area twice and took some comparison shots, which I outline below. I would add that the photo, going by the difference in the distant houses in the original and comparison shots was likely at a point south of the Clansman Hotel.

The object is blurred as if to indicate motion. This is indicated by the fact that the background hills and foreground bushes show less blurring. The presumed neck is more blurred than the bulk of the body, which is consistent with his description of the neck moving from side to side. There is a strong wake behind the object which indicates said motion and also that it is rapid. 

The image size is about 320kb, so closer inspection of the object is not possible. Access to the original Mb image would be useful (as well as for the exif data). Detecting image manipulation would required the original image, but I see no indications of image manipulation. The camera taking the picture is reflected in the image indicating the car window was rolled up as testified.

I then indulged in some speculations. The only object of comparison would be a dark boat. Most boats are light in colour or multicoloured. Either way, other unorthodox objects need to be considered and eliminated as required - jet skis, speedboats, windsurfers, yachts. None seem to fit the shape of this object unless they assumed some strange "instant in time" contortions. 

The object is basically blackish which is curious since I also did a calculation as to the sun's position at the stated time and date. The sun would have been behind the observers and slightly to their right. The conditions look overcast in the picture, so there may not have been much reflection. All this would indicate an intrinsically dark object. 


COMPARISON SHOTS

The object is hundreds of yards away so details are confined to gross morphology. Comparison shots which included a Jacobite cruiser and a cruise boat were taken by myself days ago and is shown below. The previous article used an older comparison shot, but the recent ones are better. The witness photograph was then overlaid onto this picture, aligning the background hill contours as carefully as possible.

 


The picture I think again shows the Jacobite Warrior cruise boat. Its beam or width is 8 meters and measuring the relative image sizes of the two, an estimate of object size can be made as follows based on measurements I made with a ruler on the computer screen display. 

Jacobite Warrior beam/width = 8m 
Width on screen =20mm
Width of object "body" = 10mm maps to 4m (13ft) 
Width of whole object = 18mm maps to 7.2m (23.5ft)

This tallies with my previous Jacobite comparison which estimated 21 feet for the black object. In the cruiser boat shot, I measured the boat at 24mm and the object at 28mm though here the distance between object and boat looks farther and so estimating the size is more difficult but these boats can vary between 30 and 40 feet long.

So the "monster" is over 20 feet long including what we presume to be the neck, which was a little more difficult to estimate due to motion blur. Again, this is consistent with the witness' description of the object being "huge". 

There are some caveats. The "monster" is a bit further out for the Jacobite comparison and so is actually bigger in terms of perspective. The boat front is at a slight angle to us and so the apparent foreshortening makes its measured length a little less than 8m. These two observations probably cancel each other out to a certain extent.  

Based on this, I am pretty sure that is not a bird like a swan or cormorant taking off as it disturbs the water with its feet. The object in the picture is uniformly dark and swans are white. Given the sun was behind the photographer, I would not expect a white swan to turn out black. I also note an absence of anything I would call wings in the picture which would surely appear in a picture of a rapidly moving bird.

Cormorants are darker, but the "body" in the picture looks larger in proportion to the "neck" than for cormorants which have quite big necks/heads. Besides, I again think this object is further out than that. There is a line below the object which is most likely a boat wake, so we are out there with the boats. 


DEBLURRING THE OBJECT

In an attempt to bring out further detail on the object, I employed some deblurring software which can compensate for motion blur and general out of focus subjects in an image. Applying some deblur parameters and zooming in produces the following images. The first is the original object while the second applies a deblur factor of width 2 (how many pixels to shrink). The final image is more complex in that it applied a motion deblur factor of 4 in a 140 degree direction. Why this should be 140 instead of 180 is not clear, though this may suggest another direction of blur possibly brought on by camera shake.




You can form your own opinion on these, but it does bring out a little more detail. Note if this was a cut out "monster" on the car window, one should not expect any compensation for motion blur.


THAT SWINGING NECK

One final feature caught my attention and that was "a neck that was swinging side to side over the water." Now you may think this is a counter-intuitive action when moving forward, but it is a feature reported on at least two occasions and they are both land sightings. The first was the William MacGruer case where it was seen "twisting its head from side to side" and the second was the Una MacPherson case with a "relatively slender neck, and it turned from side to side". In both of these cases, the object was also moving forward. That doesn't prove everything is true, but it is an interesting point.


CONCLUSION

As an aside, the witness took a considerable bit of flak on another forum when he refused to publish the picture. Part of that would be the usual sceptic disdain, but some of it I suspect was an attempt to goad the witness into publishing, which he resolutely refused to do. Whatever the mix of intentions, witnesses with a story to tell may be deterred from coming forward when they see exchanges such as this. That is very sad, but in the end the picture can finally be published for discussion, though we can expect attempts to debunk it which will likely focus on the usual photoshopping tricks.
 

The author can be contacted at lochnesskelpie@gmail.com

108 comments:

  1. Clearly the object in question is much too big to be any know creature from the locality. It's not impossible to suggest a forgery, but if it is, it's a clever one. The wake is repetitive, but not so much so that it suggests cutting and pasting. One thing that is odd is the wake slightly in front of the object. I'm not sure if this is a common feature in the surface movement of animals.

    I would disagree with you over the issue of subject blur. To me it looks as blurred as the rest of the image. As shot through a window by someone who has a shaky hand on a low resolution camera, it's probably what one would expect.

    There's something about this that just looks genuine. The object could be cut and pasted in quite easily, it's the colour tones in the wake that would be much more difficult. There are very subtle transitions that are extremely hard to replicate accurately. Nowhere do I see manipulation. Of course it's easier to fake a blurred shot than a sharp one. Could it be a photo of a boat wake with the object pasted in? Well, I don't know what common boat wakes look like on Ness, but I have the feeling that this is a wake that shows speed and power, maybe more than the average cruiser. The supposed creature straining forward reinforces that notion.

    I don't think it'll convert sceptics, but then what will? Myself, I think this might be one of the most important photos I've ever seen.

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  2. For what it's worth, the accompanying explanation could have been written by 'Doc' Shields... the only thing missing is the reference to a beer can floating near the neck.... I for one think there's a large, unexplained animal in Loch Ness, but I'll be astonished if this turns out to be it's photograph! One photograph only, then the memory card conveniently maxes out.... so they decide to go for more
    drinks.... please..... Something that huge, running down the center of the Loch during daylight hours, and they are the only ones to see it??? please...... Something is distinctly off about this whole escapade.

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    1. Funnily enough, when I went to take some comparison shots with my digital SLR at the Clansman Hotel, I took one picture and then got an "out of memory" error on my viewfinder. It turned out I had left the memory card at home and it was using its very small internal memory. Would people have accepted that if it was the monster and not a boat I was photographing?

      Fortunately I always have a second camera to hand. As for no one else seeing it, well how would we know that? FWIW I dont think the object passed in front of the hotel.

      The Loch Ness Monster story is full of "why didn't others see that" questions.

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    2. I agree about the memory card issue. In my professional capacity, I can't afford to turn up with the camera half full. Others are much more lax to be honest. I'm amazed by how many people keep really important photos on one memory card (sometimes for years), in the camera, and then lose it. Since I get the strong impression these people were sceptics, it figures that they weren't well prepared. Also, it was this continued absence of luck that seemed to weigh heavily on Ted Holiday's thinking, shaping his future view. And I can see where he was coming from.

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    3. In my original response, I should have typed "Shiels". One of the things that brought him to mind was the resemblance to his Cornwall sea-serpent photo, with the body riding high in the water like this one. But, again going back to this photo, there are at least 4 references to drinking and being drunk, then the memory card failing, then the non-availability of the photo for over a decade.... it's just a question of the usual excuses piled on excuses for why those who photograph the LNM couldn't get A: one clear shot B: sequential shots, however blurred C: any shot of any kind that is corroborated by another witness to the same event, with or without another shot from that witness from their angle. It's one of the most watched pieces of real estate on the planet and it's just inconceivable to me that something that big was churning down the center of the loch in late afternoon in front of a hotel housing scores of people desperate to see just that event! I restate that I think there is something large and unexplained in the loch, but that this photo is most unlikely to be it. But, as Roland quotes one of the well known skeptics, I'll be delighted to be proven wrong!

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    4. I thought of the Shiels Cornwall photo right away. It must have been on the surface for quite some time according the witnesses story, which states that she saw and had to convince him that she saw something. Then they had to find a layby. I don't think I'm buying the story either...

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  3. On further inspection I see what you're saying about the neck being blurred as if to indicate movement. Although my guess is that the thinner neck is disappearing due to the low resolution of the camera. It's quite a wide shot, so the subject to photographer movement is low, and motion blur is generally not encountered (although there are a lot of variables for this and you would need to know camera settings etc)

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    1. I don't know anything about the camera spec and this is a copy of the original. I don't think we're going to get more than what is here.

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    2. Most non professional digital cameras from this era were not very good. I suspect, even in focus at this range and we wouldn't learn much more than we know already.

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  4. Someone has posted elsewhere that he thinks the photo is a fake constructed by sticking a black Nessie cut out on the car window, waiting for a boat to pass and snapping just as the boat is hidden by the cut out. He surmises this based on the object being "badly out of focus".

    Interestingly, Loch Ness cruise boats have offered this stunt to passengers for years by sticking a Nessie on the cabin windows. I did it myself once, the figure in the resulting picture was far from "out of focus".

    The overlay tests above suggest any standard cruise boat or indeed a Jacobite would be too big for the "cut out" to completely cover. A smaller boat which could generate the same powerful wake would be required.

    Having said that, the commenter started (rather than finished) his train of thought. He now has to prove his theory is useless or useful by testing it and posting his results for all to see.

    It should be pointed out that reproducing a Nessie photo via a certain technique does not prove that was the circumstances it was taken in. For some strange reason, sceptics insist it should be. Any photograph can be reproduced if enough time and money is thrown at it.


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  5. Great work in obtaining this fantastic photo, Roland...it reminds me of the Gordon Holmes video from (I think) 2007. Both photo and video seem to show a kind of 'leaping' motion. Loved the new book btw and have left feedback.

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  6. Is the original memory stick an absolute gonner Roland ? That would have added a great deal to the photo without saying a word. Still, taking them at their word, which is the least they can hope for, it’s certainly indicative of something large & unusual in the Loch.

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    1. I am not hopeful, but you never know. Could still be lying around somewhere.

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  7. GB, are you confident in the alleged witness? I say this because this sighting is reminiscent of the one from a year or so ago where the couple claimed to witness a hump and head/neck surface close to shore, and which turned out to be, in your words, "fake news." I hope you're not being played.
    An observation: The object looks to be riding rather high in the water, but that could conceivably be accounted for if it swims with a sort of rolling motion (kind of like a butterfly stroke) and the camera caught it in the upward part of the motion. The inclined pitch of the body would seem to support that notion. On the other hand, a neck moving side to side would seem to be at odds with a body moving up and down.

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    1. I know, I know. People turning up trying to hoax this blog are rare, but they cannot be discounted but if I waited for something to be proven beyond some level of doubt to be a non-hoax, I may be throwing away the good with the bad. So I will make some degree of assessment, publish and let others form their opinions as well.

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  8. Wat an intrestin photo!! Suprise suprise some sceptics say its a hoax straight away...sometimes u wish they could be a bit more open minded!! Wat i find unusual is the fact he admits to drinking..something i find hard a hoaxer wud do! At first it looks too blurry but taking into account its taken thru the car window plus she was prob shaking and if the thing is moving there cud be the answer! Could it be a boat? Im not sure about the hoax theory.....maybe its a long shot but could the clansman gift shop be contacted to see if any one can remember them coming in?? Long time ago but ya never know! Anyway nice to see a new photo to discuss instead of the old hat like the surgeons photo haha! Great piece GB...love this blog.....Roy

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    1. Roy, good points about the drinking and the Clansman staff. Maybe I could pop up there next week and ask around...I'm certain to know some of the staff!

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    2. Great Riitta!! Its a long shot but ya never know! If sumone remembers it then surely that wud rule out the hoax idea that GB mentioned!!

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    3. Nothing to lose, someone may remember, but if no one does, that does not mean someone was a witness but no longer works there.

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    4. Ok then...get back to you...Will not be till next Monday/Tuesday though...my days off work!

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  9. That thing is huge, almost too huge. The wake looks very much like a bird taking off, as you can see the beat of the wings, a space, another wing flap, a space, and so on. The shape is very much as a Nessie is described, but right now I'm going with it being a very blurry, long, exposure picture of a cormorant...

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    1. Whatever it is, I don't think it is a bird. No sign of wings and the wake also looks like the cruiser boat wake picture I took. Too big for a bird as well.

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    2. Well the size thing is interesting. If it is a Nessie, consider how much of the body is showing, and therefore how much (more) is below the surface. That is why I say it is too huge. But a fast moving bird would leave a blurred image that reads as larger than it actually is. Everything else is still, so the distortion of that one moving object is very accentuated. As far as wings - they are on the downstroke. There is something in the photograph where a wing could/should be; it could also be where a flipper would be if it is a Nessie. If we are to accept the basic concept of what a Nessie (probably) looks like, there is going to be a front appendage of some sort, right? There is something in the image that certainly implies wing or flipper. And finally the wake; I do not agree that it looks like the cruiser boat wake, as it the cruiser boat wake (at least what is visible) has a very one sided pulse. The object in the photo shows a pulse on each side - wings, or flippers. And if I were to take your point about the wake of the object compared to the cruiser boat as the key; well then I'd have to say that the witness did in fact a cut'n'paste job if they resemble each other...

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    3. Aside from the obvious difficult issue of proving any object to be a 30ft+ monster, we can readily examine the "natural" explanations and see what is left standing - if any. I don't think any bird can travel fast enough to extend itself across an image. I will add the cruiser boat wake to the images above for comparison.

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    4. This bird is moving very fast.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QOxzpKoOj9M

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    5. I agree that bird is moving very fast, but it is not running on the water attempting a take off.

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  10. Almost all non professional digital cameras of that era did not have the capability of long exposure. Plus the details on the water would be even more non existent if it was a long exposure.

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    1. Not an exposure that you could control precisely, no, and I may have not chosen my words correctly. I've still got one of those little boxy jobs, a Canon Powershot A520. It has 13 different settings, and as I got it from my girlfriend (she stepped up to a much better camera) who tossed the book I still don't know for sure what each one does. Main point being - if the setting was not correct, and I opted for no flash, I would often get a blurred image. The slightest motion by me or of the object - the photographer was "tipsy" in this case, and the object was probably moving - would cause blurring.

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    2. I know what you mean, though the distance of the observer from the object is large, so motion blur of the subject would be much less likely (ie. it's relative speed of movement across the frame is small). However the general out of focus nature of the photo could be explained by the autofocus selecting the window as the point of focus. On an SLR, this would generally mean that the photo would be next to useless due to sensor size and much shallower depth of field. On these old digitals, and lower end phone cameras in general, the outside world might well remain relatively in focus, if not a little blurry. My guess would be that if the photographer was suffering from serious hand shake then the camera reflection image would not be easily visible, as close objects are much more susceptible than further away ones. As the details on the camera are clearly visible, I'd suggest they weren't very shaky at all.

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  11. Congratulations Roland, fantastic work again getting hold of this photograph from 12 years ago.I have never seen a photograph like this before,very strange.I agree with you its far too big for a bird and i have never seen a wake or wave like it.The image and story around it needs further investigation.Well done again Roland.

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  12. In my opinion, this is the most exciting Nessie photo to be released since I started following the mystery in 1995. A photo doesn’t need to show a dinosaur to be compelling (nor should we ever expect such a photo). The mystery is what thrills me, and this photo is stacked. It’s size, the colour, the massive wake, the outstretched neck and it’s cohesion with the story. What ever it is, it is monstrous.

    If it’s a hoax and I’m confident it is not, 12 years is a long time to wait to unleash it. There isn’t much sense in that.

    Very exciting. Thanks Roland.

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  13. Intriguing photograph! It frustrates me though to hear about someone sitting on this for years as though it was not such a big deal. I enjoy a pint as well but I would have omitted that from the report knowing it would damage credibility to the witnesses - maybe this couple are just completely honest and tell it like it is.
    As a LNM enthusiast and believer it is maddening to hear an account from people removed from the mystery possessing a photograph that if genuine could be the best image of a huge Nessie right there in broad daylight not reporting this!!
    If any of you Nessie believers reading this had that experience and taken that photograph what would you do?

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  14. My copy of " When Monsters come ashore " arrived the other day and I am enjoying reading it that's for sure!! Cheers Roland on writing such an interesting book as well as uncovering another mystery within the Loch as we have in this article. Keep up the great work!

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  15. Fabulous photo. Highly suspect backstory. And sadly without the photographer owner coming forward I can't take it seriously. I suspect it's a decent bit of Photoshop. Possibly removed a boat that was there and replaced it with what you see. Shame. If the owner came forward to support it I would say it was one of the best pictures of the creature ever taken.

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    1. I know. I would have liked the owner to prove who they were on facebook or somewhere, but that is not likely to happen. Then again, there were fakers who were quite happpy to tell us all about themselves (Searle, Shiels).

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    2. I think u mean ' Parker' as it was him and Stanley that played the hoax on Gibson..who then showed the foto believin they had seen summit!!

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  16. I think after looking at the story as a whole and the photograph, we can rule out most things like birds or wakes. I think its either a large animal or we have a classic bit of photoshopping on our hands.I agree with someone above that it is worth finding out at the gift shop if anybody did actually see this photograph and meet the couple at the said time.If someone can recall this event then surely that would count out the photoshopping ,then we really would have an interesting photograph on our hands and probably one of the best ever images of the loch ness monster in the history of the subject.

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  17. When I looked at this photograph my first thoughts were it looks to high in the water.After looking at the images with the deblurring software applied the object does not look too high.The water looks like it is almost lapping over its back.

    If animals of this size are swimming in Loch Ness and showing themselves on the surface,I am surprised that they are still unknown.

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    1. High body line monsters fill the literature. As for surfacings they are very, very rare to see irrespective of what this photo implies.

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  18. Hi Roland, I remember you showing me this photo on your phone at the time, I am glad to have finally been able to get a better look at it, here's what I see....
    Firstly , I am thankful for your two comparison pictures which save me having to drive round to the clansman to confirm my suspicions.
    I agree that you have found the place on the north shore from where the picture was taken, the tree line angles running down the hill on the south shore line up well,
    However, your two pictures angle to the water is much lower down than the originals, I can see that your pictures are not taken from that high up, (I am sure you are ahead of me and know where I am going with this...)
    Also, to clearly show that your pictures were taken from lower down you only have to look at the field in front of the cottages on the hillside in the three pictures. In the original there is a greater width of field showing between the cottage and the lower tree line at the bottom of the field, than there is in your two pictures, and yet they should be much the same width , also it's clear in that oval patch of field to the right of the houses that the angle is different.
    The original has a distinct feeling of having been taken from quite high up, we're as your two do not.... and yet you are in the same location, how can this be?
    Leaving that detail aside for a minute I looked at the actual object..... somethings not right, in fact two things immediately strike me as impossible,
    Firstly , if this is supposed to be a large object moving towards Dores with its neck outstretched, what part of its anatomy is causing the disturbance on the water a considerable distance in front of it?
    Secondly , the objects 'body' looks substantially more blurred than the water disturbance around it.
    Now to the glass, if they are heading back into town then the photo is taken from the drivers seat, but to me the camera reflection looks further away from the car window than it should be...anyway...
    So, your comparison photos were taken from across the width of the A82, from the car park of the clansman hotel, the fence tells me that, but that fence only went up about two years ago. In order for them to get the right amount of height they would have to be.....
    (Drum roll please...)
    In the upstairs bar of the clansman hotel, photographing a random mysterious boat wake, whilst lining it up with a blob of bird shite on the window of the bar.which is why the blob is more blurred, because it was right in front of them on the glass.
    The clues are all there.
    They were in the bar, thus proving that the only bit that wasn't made up was the fact that they were on the shot.
    Thanks again for saving me the trip round to the clansman.

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    1. I'm a bit wee confused about your thinking regarding your comparison photos actually Roland. You were very thorough in lining the far shore up, and getting the exact location along the A82 that the photo must have been taken from,right at the Clansman hotel, but don't seem to have concidered the lack of a suitable lay-by.
      Also normally with new pictures you are very good at doing "height and angle to the water calculations to work out at what precise height a photograph was taken. With this particular one I can see just by looking at the 3 pictures that you were too low down, and yet you seem not to have turned around and looked up at the first floor bar window of the Clansman hotel,and then wondered if you might just be able to get a better angle from up there.
      Did you dismiss this possibility for some reason that i can't see?

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    2. It is also a worthwhile Excersize for anyone doubting my explanation to Google the Loch Ness Clansman hotel, and then scroll through the photos, there are a few taken from the upstairs bar and restaurant that include the treetops.

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    3. .... Can I also make a quick prediction please.
      Now that it is apparent that the photo was tfaken from the upstairs bar on the clansman hotel, I predict that the gentleman who took it will update his story, saying that this is correct (which it is) but that he didn't want to mention it in the first place for fear that people would dismiss his story because he was in a pub.... Oh, and that nessie was there causing the wake, but unfortunately when the picture was taken she was accidentally obscured by an unnoticed drop of poo on the bar window.
      I also predict that this photo will still go round the world as the latest picture of Nessie.

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    4. Hello Steve, I think Aleksandar beat you to the blob on the window theory (see "24 April 2018 at 04:50") and I gave my thoughts on that.

      As to elevation. I was standing at the Clansman car park which is about four feet above the road, plus the road is about 20 foot above the loch at a guess. Add my height and the camera height was about 29 feet. Add the "BeastRo" window height of say 10 feet and you have a difference in elevation of 10 feet. Plug these humbers into a trigonometrical equation for a distance to the hills of 5280 feet and we get rough angles of incidence of 0.31 and 0.42 degrees respectively or a difference of 0.11 of a degree. So I would not expect much of a difference between someone by the road or someone in the restaurant if photos are taken.

      I am not sure what you mean by a change in camera height leads to a change in width between objects in the photos?

      As for a blob overlaying a boat, that needs to be tested rather than talked about. A caley cruiser would be too big at that distance to be covered IMO.

      Regarding the dark area under the "neck", it could be the "neck"'s shadow. Certainly the comparison cruiser boat picture I took shows no dark area ahead which kind of dictates against a boat overlay since one would have to explain how the dark area was introduced. Perhaps some shrapnel from the bird bombing? :)

      I am still not convinced close up objects are necessarily blurred as per the fake nessie stickers on cruise boats. if these always turned out blurred what is the point in sticking on this tourist gimmick?

      As i stated before, I don't think they were at the Clansman Hotel. The houses on the remote hills have shifted somewhat horizontally, but then again the difference in the camera specs may account for that - which makes any discussion on minutiae probably pointless.

      Delete
    5. Steve, the treetop theory has also been discussed, you can take a picture that includes treetops (or bush tops) that does not mandate a high camera height. Trees grow right down to the shore and I note that the road is quite high above the loch at points.

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    6. "Now that it is apparent that the photo was taken from the upstairs bar on the clansman hotel".

      I think that is a premature conclusion Steve!

      Delete
    7. Sorry if everything I am saying has already been said here in the comments and dismissed by you, to be totally honest with you I hadn't read any of the previous comments because as you rightly say "theories are ten a penny"
      The only thing relevant to be digussed is the gentlemans photo and how he says he came about it.
      I haven't got time to listen to arguments about whether it's a cormorant taking off or not.
      Your two comparison photos are of use because they show clearly where it was not taken from, just look at the angle at which you are looking down on the near water for instance, that's from some height, not the roadside.
      And anyway, where are you proposing that they pulled up?
      He said....
      "Finally I realised she was being serious and pulled off to a lay by somewhere near the Clansman hotel (I remember because we went in afterwards to the gift shop to tell everyone what we had seen). As soon as I pulled over, my girlfriend was pointing at the water and I saw it. "
      Where was this lay by then?
      Must have been before the clansman because he doesn't say he turned round and went back to the clansman. There isn't a lay by anywhere near there where he could have taken this picture.

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    8. As to this...
      "Now that it is apparent that the photo was taken from the upstairs bar on the clansman hotel".

      I think that is a premature conclusion Steve!"

      It's not premature at all, the evidence for the location is completely identified by the three photos, corroborated by his statement that they were out drinking all day and continued straight after.

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    9. Are your two comparison photographs taken from the same location and altitude above the water in your opinion? And I would appreciate a straight 'yes' or 'no'

      Delete
    10. .. .. I've now wasted some time going back through the comments looking for this "Alexsander" post you referred to, I think I've found the reply from you to a comment that isn't even on this page, and doesn't at all cover my explanation
      Whoever you are replying to is talking about a sticker stuck on the car window... I haven't proposed that at all, do you think that's what I am suggesting?

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    11. Roland, what on earth are you saying with this reply to me....
      "Steve, the treetop theory has also been discussed, you can take a picture that includes treetops (or bush tops) that does not mandate a high camera height. Trees grow right down to the shore and I note that the road is quite high above the loch at points."
      I agree that the road is quite high above the road at points, but what has that got to do with anything at all? I think we both agree that this picture was taken in front of, or upstairs in the clansman, there's no choice in that, that's where it lines up.
      Well like it or not, fudge around it as much as you want, you can't take a photo of treetops from the car park.
      You just can't. And the angle is wrong,regarding the water, and the far fields.
      On the other hand you could take a photo matching the original complete with treetops, and it being at the same angle to the water from the upstairs bar of the Clansman hotel.
      (that is until they cut the trees down to put in the new fence and landscape it).
      Treetops having "been discussing doesn't interest me one bit.

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    12. There are laybys very close to the Clansman in both the Inverness direction and Fort Augustus direction on the loch side of the road, according to Google Earth.

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    13. Steve, I think you've got the right path on this one. The postition of the camera's reflection always seemed a bit wrong to me; if the camera was pressed up close to the window we would not see the reflection of it the way we do, but if it was further from the window certainly we should see some of the car, right? Not if this was shot through a huge plate glass window at the Clansman...

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    14. Hopkarma, a simple question to which I ask for a convincing explanation. If they took this picture from the window of the Clansman Hotel, why not simply say so? Why construct a story about driving in a car. A convincing explanation please.

      As for your question on camera to window distance, there is only one way to find out, is there not? (assuming the picture is not cropped).

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    15. If they were in the Clansman than there would have been other witnesses; even if the place was empty besides the witnesses the staff would have been there - a waiter, or bartender - even if all they saw was a huge wake, at least they could have corrobated part of the witnesses story. And I doubt they even went to the Clansman gift shop to tell everyone what they saw; wouldn't someone there have suggested they go over and report it at wherever one reported sightings at the time, seeing as how they had a photo and everything?

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    16. That doesn't chime with me. If they were near the Clansman Hotel, there would still be witnesses by your logic, so why change the location? He did say in the account above that the staff suggested to go and see Adrian Shine at the Loch Ness Centre but they got "cold feet".

      Wise move, if they had gone to Adrian, he would have told them it was birdshit on the window!

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    17. Yes they were told to show it at the exhibition centre but got cold feet about it. He said so in his original account above.

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    18. Yes - they were told to show it to the LNC. When I went back to check his reference to the Clansman I stopped looking after the first mention of the gift shop; my mistake. But Roland; as to other witnesses if they were near to the Clansman and not in it...they were driving, and pulled over into a layby according to his account. That is where she took the picture. If there was any other cars in the layby, they would have instant confirmation of the sighting. They were not all that shy about sharing their sighting; if they drove to the Clansman to share the sighting they would have alerted any cars in the layby at the time, yes? So we can rule out any other witnesses at the layby, or anywhere else for that matter. And if they were so willing to stop at the Clansman gift shop of all places to tell people of their sighting why would they get "cold feet" when told more or less "hey; we're a gift shop. Go tell someone who will do something with this very important photo"?

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    19. I thik you would have to discard almost the entire sightings record if you insisted that every eyewitness account was corroborated by another independent witness. It's not going to happen, people see things and there is no one else around. When I was there cars were not stopping at the laybys - it looked liek the clansman hotel was a magnet for parking. That doesn't mean cars don't park at laybys - there is no proof either way whether there were other cars nearby.

      Remember a question of inquiry is not a statement of proof. Humans do unexpected things. If they really had seen a monster which unsettled them, how would that make them depart from what you perceive as normal behaviour?

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    20. One of us seems to have gotten a bit off topic - I do not intend to say or imply that every sighting needs an independent corroboration.I was responding to your question "If they took this picture from the window of the Clansman Hotel, why not simply say so?" I'll try and give a more direct answer this time: because if they said they were at the Clansman there very well should be at least one other witness, if not a room full. On the other hand - we saw it from the road? Much easier to say "no one else it". But what about Mr Feltham's theory? If they said they saw it from the window of the cottage they were staying in there would be even less chance of another witness...

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  19. Had another chance to look at this - extremely dodgy cover story aside - it's interesting you can see the camera reflection in the shot.

    So let's say it's photoshopped - the almost clear neck could possibly be the result of movement - and an object making a wake that size would probably have to go quite fast so I don't mind that. And the breaking wave in front could be because it's displacing a lot of water because of its size. My issue is more the solid blackness of the object itself. And when you zoom in close it just looks a bit too angular. The wake looks very similar to the one from the boat foreground comparison shot you put up GB.

    It would be quite easy to Photoshop this. As I said above you could remove the boat and replace it with the "monster" you see. I've done similar things in Photoshop myself. But again, none of that particularly bothers me - it's the lack of coming forward with a tantalising image yet the owner wants to remain anonymous. Why?

    Still a good photo though ;) But it's either definitive proof of the monster or it's a fake.

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    1. If think if this is faked, the boat is in front of the alleged creature, rather than replaced by it. That would explain a wake in front of the alleged creature, which seems attached to nothing, and what could be a white splash, at which the possible wake terminates unexpectedly. I think as Roland said, you can fake any photo, given the resources.

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    2. Yes, people can come up with dozens of explanations as to how to reproduce a photo. It's all a big game and ultimately only proves people have imagination.

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    3. True enough. I think if one sets out to debunk for the sake of it, that's a waste of everyone's time. As for me, I really hope that this is the genuine article.

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  20. Bird shite on the window? Well thats a new one. If it is then it really is a hoax with a difference. I think we could safely say, it is a shite hoax :-)

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  21. When a straight edge is held up to the wake marks they all line up perfectly including the one in front.

    I would not expect this regularity from an animate object.

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    Replies
    1. Why not? My cruiser boat comparison wake lines up? Theories are ten a penny!

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  22. Roland you have brought this photograph to our attention and gone out of your way to obtain similar photographs and get the same area so i dont understand why Steve Feltham is coming on here with his arsy attitude towards you! I think after his falling for Edwards's hump( when everybody else could clearly see a hoax) he is a changed man, hence his catfish idea. Keep up the good work Roland and take no notice of this offish attitude off some people on the nessie scene.

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    Replies
    1. Steve is entitled to come on and reason out his opinions on the picture but like every other opinion he should expect anything said to be put to the test.

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  23. Hi G.B.in my previous post I was making an observation rather than proposing a theory.It is entirely possible that I am wrong on this but I was expecting an animal to leave a more organic/irregular wake.An overhead shot would give us a lot more information,hence your drone and I wish you a lot of luck with that.I expect cruiser boat wakes to be regular as they are produced by mechanical means.

    I am not a 100% sceptic or debunker this is a mystery I have been interested in all my life,which is why I visit your blog.

    FOR GEZZA,thanks for the shite hoax comment it gave me a chuckle

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  24. Im not sure how a bit of bird shite could cover a 30ft cruiser. And if so how do you explain the wake still at the front of the object?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Just try it yourself out of your window in Wales, you will see that it's incredibly easy.

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    2. Wales? and sorry no lakes by my window :-)

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  25. After reading over these comments i do agree the foto looks like its bin taken at a higher level than the car park! Hopefully steve can pop round to the clansman sumtime and take a foto from the bar in question and then we can compare..or if steve hasnt got the time then sumone else could! ...cheers Roy

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  26. Well, I suppose I have you to thank for a very pleasant afternoon Roland.
    Due to reading some of the intrenched attitudes on here of the
    "if the man says he photographed nessie then he must have photographed nessie" kind, and your 'put your money where your mouth is' responses.
    I have just spent an enjoyable hour round at the clansman, well not quite the clansman, but one of the holiday let cottages next door.
    One called 'ness side cottage to be precise, where a kind gentleman from Hull who let me spend quite some time photographing specks of mud on his lounge window.
    You know how the principle works iam sure, that if you took a photo out of your lounge window in Glasgow, the picture would only line up exactly in that exact position, not from your next door neighbours house, not from a lay-by down on the loch side, not even from the upstairs bar of the Clansman hotel.
    Well that was the photos that I was able to achieve this afternoon.
    You will want corrisponding tree tops (that match) and I am sure you will want to see a blob of mud on his holiday cottage window.
    I suspect you will want to see what caused the other reflection on the glass apart from his camera too...
    That's what I have got.
    Unfortunately, I can't post pictures of my own on this sight, here I can only make comments, so instead I will write it up and post it in full on my website.
    Iam sure you will also want to see a few pictures taken from the lay by down on the loch side, so I will post them too... Not that their of much use because you can hardly see the water through the shrubbery, but they will clear up whether or not the gentleman took his picture from there, and regarding that iam afraid it's bad news.
    I hope this doesn't make me a "sceptic" in yours and your followers eyes, I have always strongly believed that the minimum requirement when investing this great mystery is an open mind, if you don't have that then you are wasting your time.
    Thanks again for making me get off my arse and go and do some investigating.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It takes all types to make a forum, Steve. I will check your anaylsis and do some of my own in due course oerhaps with a digital camera of that day. As I said elsewhere, any photo can be reproduced to some degree, it is down to the individual how they interpret that. Regular readers may note I personally grade Nessie photos 80-20 or 55-45, etc. In other words, the "20" or "45" part allows for doubt, misidentification or hoax.

      Delete
    2. Sorry, I don't understand the relevance of how you personally grade photos, do you mean that you consider your opinion to be the guidelines to treat a photo by?

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    3. No I mean that is how I view photos in case anyone thinks I am 100% for all photos. Just a personal comment nothing more. I presume you are 100% against this photo?

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  27. I've spoken to the Window Cleaner at The Clansman Hotel and he's not a happy bunny. Not happy at all. 'Those windows are kept spotless, day in day out. I use pink windowlene and everything. I've checked my diary for the 28th March, and me & Tam had used a new bucket & 2 'out of the packet' JML shammys that very morning. If their was any shite on display, the bloke must have brought it with him and sprayed it across the window as he took the photo, the heathen sassenach. I can't speak about the 29th March though, as I was buying a new ladder in Inverness with the wife'...personally, I think this is on the verge of almost conclusively ruling this theory out !

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    Replies
    1. You're having a laugh, I think. I must admit, we like to get into the nitty gritty of analysis here, but I didn't think it would extend to the splash patterns of bird excreta. One bird helpfully bombed my car yesterday and it had that expected vertical drop down effect. At Tesco, my curiousity was piqued as I checked out other parked cars. All had that look of a can of paint being thrown at something. Horizontal shapes didn't show up. Enough of that, you do have a minor point about the Clansman Hotel taking pride in cleanliness, but who knows?

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  28. In the true manner of forensic rigour maybe someone can source an early 2000s digital camera and try to recreate the bird poo on the window trick. I think it more difficult than one would think.

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  29. Ive seen it all now. People with attitude complaing about people with attitude :-) I think most writers on here have kept it very civil here over the last few months despite a difference in opinion. Obviously some people have not got the respect that others have.On to the photograph,i await to see these new photographs of mud on a nearby window and to see if they do indeed resemble the said photograph. Time will tell.

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  30. Done it already, on the window that lines up with the photograph, remarkably easy a piece of mud no bigger than a grain of rice is all you need. Unfortunately I can't post it here.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Post it on your monster hunter Facebook page that we may see it and critique it, Steve.

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    2. Most bird bombings are way bigger than a grain of mud!

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  31. After mulling over the comments an the detective work i think the evidence is thst it is indeed a hoax!! The foto does look its bin taken further up and if mr feltham says there is no lay by there then the story is a lie! Neva mind.. just shows how difficult it is to pull off a hoax cus the foto looked good wen it first came out! Great work by u GB and mr feltham i must say! At least we had summit new to mull over but as ive alwayys thought..we need to get rid of all the hoaxes and mistakes and see wat we are left with! No harm done and least it prooves ya cant pull the wool over everyones eyes!! Lets hope the next foto is the real deal!! I will be up again in the summer and might go for a beer in clansman bar just to compare the fotos! Amazing how sumone thought up of putting bird poo onto a boat wake??? Mad lol and new haha...roll on the summer....cheers ..Roy

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    Replies
    1. I would not be so hasty to pronounce judgement, Roy. No one has attempted a reproduction of this photo, let alone a convincing one. I suspect I will be undertaking that experiment anon.

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  32. Your wrong I am afraid Roland, as I have told you I have reproduced it to my satisfaction, unfortunately tonight I wrote it all up on Evernote and as yet can't work out how to make it shareable on Facebook. So no need for you to come up and conduct any experiment.
    Soon as I figure out how to share it, or re-write it I will.

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  33. There you go, my research into this fake are now posted in my Facebook group,
    Steve Feltham Nessie hunter interactive collective.
    Now you can pass judgement Roy.

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  34. https://www.evernote.com/shard/s21/sh/f713ab85-f4f0-4a00-b007-61b495618525/42c62b40dbb50151efd79430eb0efd6b

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, I will analyse your research and post a reply anon. That may involve a counter visit to put your conclusions to the test, but certainly an interim reply will be forthcoming which deserves a blog article in its own right rather than more obscure comments.


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  35. I await your version Roland, lets see if they match up with Steve's theory.

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  36. Well, this has been a roller coaster

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  37. Im working away at the mo so only using my phone to come on here and cant load or find mr felthams experiment! So ok GB i will pass judgement till i see it though im quite satisfied to my own mind that this is a hoax...i cud be wrong of course but only my humble opinion and thats all that counts in my casual research into this great mystery!! But i will wait till i see the experiments of u and mr feltham for a full answer.....With summer nearly here who knows we might get sum new fotos or vids to look over.hope so...cheers ..Roy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There is a small problem Roy. Steve did not complete the experiment!

      Delete
  38. Read Steve's blog on the image - well researched and certainly plausible. How it was done is almost an irrelevance to me - any image without a traceable owner is pointless to take seriously, tempting as it may be. I have dozens of animator/SFX friends in the film industry who could knock this up either practically or on a computer. Our best way of confirming a genuine image is through the image owner first and foremost. Here, that was impossible. Love your work Roland but unless the owner comes forward I'll never be convinced. Looking forward to your follow up rebuttal to Steve's none-the-less.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Are you saying I should not have sought the image to be published because sceptics will come in with their half baked theories? That is what is called stifling debate and suits them perfectly.

      If we step back from publishing what people in sincerity say they have saw or snapped just because sceptics will turn round and call them liars and dish out insults, it's a sda day for open debate.

      There are questions sceptical people cannot answer adequately here. Why not just say he was in a house instead of a car? There is nothing to gain from a risky switch.

      Why did he decline to allow publication a year ago, sit on it and then say "yes" recently?

      Why did he make enquiries on another forum a year ago and take the usual dogs abuse from sceptics and consistently refuse to publish?

      Does that sound the usual MO of someone who has faked a picture and wants to get mileage out of it? I don't think so.

      Delete
    2. Let me be clear: your work in encouraging the publication of this photo and convering of the details available are, as per usual, thorough and fascinating. If people are worried about ridicule then it's cool you've created a possible haven and I enjoy all your articles very much regardless of whether I agree or not.

      It's a good thing it's out there and even holistic benefits such as getting Steve Feltham to do some loch side research is cool. At the very least we can all have a debate about the photo and make our own minds up about it.

      But for myself I find the back story completely ridiculous. It reminds me of all the other infamous hoaxes and even when I try to seperate it from those as best I can I still find the back story hilariously convoluted.

      This photo is either 100% the monster given it's size and shape or 100% a fake. It's one or the other. Disregarding the image itself (which is very intriguing, I freely admit) the story rules the entire thing out for me to the point where I am not prepared to take it particularly seriously.

      If the owner puts their name to it then I'll start to consider what it really could be though I'll still remain more sceptical than if they had come forward in the first place.

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  39. This is indeed a roller coaster ride as someone pointed out.Has Steve completed his work or not? and where is it? You make some very good points there Roland in your last take, some baffling actions if it is indeed a fake.

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  40. After numerous photos of bits of flotsam and jetsam at last something worth debating. Has a certain look of authenticity about it in so much as it does look like something large travelling up the loch. I fear the bird shite may become to this photo what the 'Labrador' became to Grey's photo. I once saw something huge move just under the surface of an isolated farm pond many years ago. Something that could not possibly have been sustained by a small pond ecosystem. Don't know what goes on at Loch Ness but in the words of the Great Bard ' there are more things in heaven and earth . . .

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  41. Martin, regarding the small non-exif image, I was copying some 2004/5 photographs off my late Mum's PC recently and noticed how they were of a similar size (100s of Kbs) and the camera exid data was also missing. However, some of them had the camera model as "epson stylus cx3200" which leads me to conclude the image was derived from a flatbed scanner. In those days, I guess a PC which supported an SD card slot was not mandatory. Scanning from ones printer would certainly have been a common method - I did it myself.

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  42. Hi Roland,
    any chance of showing Steve Feltham's photo recreation on your blog.

    Best wishes for coast to coast tonight.

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