in Top Ten

T3: Aaahh!!! Real Monsters

After witnessing the umm antics of the film Strange Wilderness (which is about a film crew searching for Bigfoot) I thought it might be fun to do a T3 on cryptozoology.This maybe a foreign term to some, but to the nerdy and fans of the bizarre it’s become one the most popular pseudo-sciences around (Maybe they’ll offer a degree for it at Evergreen someday, ha ha). We hear about them from legends, from TV specials, books, and even in movies starring John Lithgow. I myself have always been a big fan of these mysterious creatures, though I’m aware that probably about 95% of them to 100% don’t actually exist… Then again people used to consider the Silverback Gorilla to be a legend until the early 1900s so who knows. Thus I decided to rank up these beasts, ordering them by their level of fame and status as legends. It’s a little wordy so if your not about that than talk to me later and I’ll give you the gist of it.

10. The Thunderbird
Supposed Location: North America
First Sighting: Arizona – 1890
Description: Giant bird
: No not the marvelous TV show or Jonathan Frakes’ directed film (Which exceeds the elements) I’m talking about the legend of those mythical birds inhabiting the skies over North America “Thunderbirds”. A creature thought to be close to 15 feet in size, this legend was drawn from the stories of Native Americans and witnessed regularly by the end of the 19th century (particularly in the southwestern states). There’s even a handful of bizarre photographs from the 1890s of men supposedly holding the creature which to this day are yet to be explained, you can find them all over the web they’re pretty creepy.

9. Rods (Sky Fish, Solar Entities)
Supposed Location: U.S., Canada, the Philippines, China
First Sighting: N/A
Description: Flying Rod shaped insects
Invisible to the naked eye “Rods” have become a fascinating phenomenon in recent years. Only visible through cameras and photographs, Rods are thought to be inter-dimensional beings with the ability to fly at incredibly high speeds and possibly even a relative of Anomalocarids which is a a kind of of shrimp. Some experts have believed this phenomenon to be no more then tricks of light from video images but this a tough one to pin down, even on the History Channel program Monster Quest

8. Champ (Champtanystropheus)
Supposed Location: Lake Champlain, New York, Vermont, Quebec
First Sighting: Quebec – 1609
Description: Giant Sea Serpent
: Here he wave the monster that put Burlington, Vermont on the map as a major tourist attraction. First spotted in 1609 by French explorer Samuel de Champlain, this large “chameleonesque” serpent has been supposedly witnessed over 300 times since then and regularly brings in skeptics, scientists and tourists to look for the mysterious creature. For the most part Champ has been thought be nothing more than a large fish, yet in 2003 the Discovery Channel recorded the sounds of animal similar to a whale, but not of any species native to the lake… Hmm, whether real or not people haven’t given up the search and probably never will.

7. John Tesh (John Frank Tesh)
Supposed Location: Orange County, CA,
First Sighting: Garden City, New York – July 9th, 1952
Description: A tall blonde humanoid creature (Possibly an Extra Terrestrial)
Rising to fame in the mid 80s on the popular television show Entertainment Tonight, the charismatic yet mysterious John Tesh has today become more widely known as a performer of New Age/Contemporary Christian music. With his ear splitting synths and terrible compositions, John Tesh is a force to be reckoned with and a phantom in the nightmares of the youth.

6. Ogopogo (N’ha·a·itk, Naitaka)
Supposed Location: Lake Okanagan, British Columbia, Canada
First Sighting: 1860 – Canada
Description: A humped snake-like sea creature
: To some the name may sound like gibberish, but to others you have the legendary beast that dwells in the waters of Lake Okanagan “Ogopogo”. Also known as “N’ha·a·itk, Naitaka” this creature was originally feared by the tribes of Okanagan who often sacrificed animals to the lake in exchange for a safe trip across or for fishing. As a matter of fact pictographs of the creature (located near the waters) pre-date the areas western settlement. Unfortunately in modern times sightings have been somewhat scarce. Some of the best footage surfaced in 1968 and again in 1989 but most experts have debunked that footage as just beavers. Though despite all this, Ogopogo’s legend has lived on as somewhat of a whimsical fantasy character and the subject of many Canadian folk songs.

5. Mothman
Supposed Location: West Virginia, USA
First Sighting: Point Pleasant, West Virginia – November 15th, 1966
Description: A glowing bipedal insect man
: : When he’s not traumatizing a stressed out Richard Gere, this supposed paranormal being haunts the highways of West Virginia, going as far as giving several witnesses severe psychological trauma. First sighted back in the 1960s The Mothman has been described as a tall, (about seven feet) winged, bug-like creature with glowing red eyes. The legend of The Mothman, and the aftermath of some people who have viewed the creature were most popularly chronicled in John Keel’s 1976 novel “The Mothman Prophecies” recounting John Keel’s two year investigation of the creature (later made into the 2002 film of the same name starring Richard Gere) Today the Mothman has become somewhat of an icon to the town of Point Pleasant, why he even has his own statue

4. The Jersey Devil (Leeds Devil)
Supposed Location: New Jersey, USA
First Sighting: Pine Barrens, New Jersey – Early 1800s
Description: Devil-like winged mammal
: Some say it’s a demon, a spawn of Satan roaming the woods of Pine Barrens, New Jersey feeding upon livestock, an ancient beast rooted in Native American legend… Some believe people may just be mistaking a large bird the “Sandhill Crane” (a bird common to the area) for this terrifying being. One thing is for sure is it’s a hell of a legend and the subject matter of a terrible movie starring and co-written by Cliff Robertson.

3. El Chupacabra (The Goat Sucker)
Supposed Location: Central/South America
First Sighting: Puerto Rico – 1990
Description: Reptile-like mammal
: As a feared slayer of farm animals, “El Chupacabra” has supposedly killed over hundreds of sheep, goats and other livestock from Latin America all the way to Maine since 1995. Described as a small reptilian creature, “The Goat Sucker” reportedly kills animals and sucks their blood. Many believe the beast to be nothing more than coyotes or some kind of wild dog, then again there hasn’t been any concrete evidence supporting either point of view since the sightings began. With so many reported cases , El Chupacabra has since established itself as the Bigfoot of Latino Culture and every once in awhile still pops into stories of the bizarre.

2. The Loch Ness Monster (Nessie)
Supposed Location: Loch Ness, Scotland
First Sighting: Loch Ness, Scotland – May 2nd, 1933
Description: An ancient Plesiasaur or sea serpent creature
: There are plenty of legends about sea serpents, but none more memorable than that of the mysterious beast of Loch Ness. It was in 1933 that Londoner George Spicer witnessed Nessie carrying a dead animal into the lake, and the reports have been piling in ever since. With an endless slew of Sci-Fi and Discovery channel documentaries, terrible B-Movies, and other appearances in various faucets of pop culture, The Loch Ness Monster has become a world renowned legend. You’d think by now that scientists would of discovered a serpent in that lake (due to it’s size) by now, but due to the severe deepness of the lake they just wont give up.

1. Bigfoot (Sasquatch, Skookum)
Supposed Location: The Pacific Northwest, USA
First Sighting: Pacific Northwest (what is now Spokane, WA) – 1840
Description: Large primate/man
: Going back to Bluff Creek, California on October 20, 1967. We have the setting for the most famous encounter with numero uno Monster “Bigfoot”. For on that day one Robert Patterson (accompanied by his friend Roger Gimlin) set out into the woods in search of the legendary creature in order to make a documentary. What they shot would end up being the infamous footage that I think we’ve all seen today. Now many have believed this to be an all out hoax (which is probably the truth) but even today the mystery of this footage and this creature is yet to be officially debunked. Scientists have done everything from using microscopic technology to find seams on the suit, to trying to imitate the exact movements of the creature. Both of these have failed in disproving the hairy legend. Another belief is that Patterson had some connections with a Hollywood costume maker, thus having the suit made for him to shoot that day without even telling Gimlin. Unfortunately, Patterson died back in 1972 and even on his deathbed swore that the creature was no hoax. So will we ever know? Probably not, the idea of a legendary creature roaming through various forrest land throughout the Wester United States does sound obserd, but for some reason it’s stuck with fans of the bizarre and the inability to fully disprove it has only strengthened it’s status.

Honorable Mention: It’s tough to narrow down the greatest when there are so many icases (The Yeti, The Skunk Ape, etc) I mostly went ahead with the ones I find to be the most interesting, with the best legends.


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