As China continues to modernize, urbanize, and develop, it’s natural that vestiges of its rich tradition of myths and legends will keep popping up here and there where its past intersects with its future. Several creatures once thought to be merely the stuff of folklore have turned up on camera recently, from “dragons” flying above China’s iconic karst mountains to the legendary qilin appearing in the Middle Kingdom’s remote northwest. Now, a new Chinese cryptid has reared its ugly head (literally, maybe) in typically grainy cell phone footage and nearby residents are afraid of what might be lurking in the waters of western China.
The footage was reportedly captured in Luoping County in Yunnan province. In the video, a crowd of onlookers can be heard screaming in shock and horror as, well, something appears to stir in the murky waters of a lake.
It’s impossible to tell what the object might be from the footage, but given that a ring of froth has formed around whatever it is, it could simply be some type of an underwater gas leak sending up debris. China doesn’t exactly have the best track record when it comes to disposing of industrial wastes, so there’s no telling what might be down there.
According to The Mirror, a CCCP spokesperson claimed the ripples and so-called 'head' of this “Chinese Nessie” were merely a couple of sacks floating in the water. Official Chinese government explanations are often laughable, and I doubt such a crowd of onlookers would gather around to watch sacks bob up and down in a lake. While a new Nessie cousin would be a welcome addition to the world of cryptozoology, this footage - like nearly all cryptid footage - remains inconclusive. Guess we can add this one to the growing list of Chinese fakes of well-known Western icons.
Still, though, there have been numerous reports of large mysterious beasts inhabiting Chinese lakes going back over a century. All of those legends about dragons had to come from somewhere, right? As always, while I want to believe, there’s not enough to go on to call this one credible.