The Bigfoot creatures live in the woods. The Loch Ness Monsters lurk in the depths of that famous Scottish lake. Alien Big Cats are mainly seen in the U.K., the U.S. and Australia. That is, until they all decide to hit the road – so to speak – and leave their normal territories behind them. Such things certainly don’t happen all the while, but there’s no doubt they do from time to time, as you’re about to see. We’ll begin with Bigfoot: they are huge, hair-covered things that spend most of their time in the forests of the United States. But, what about when they hit the waters? That’s right: occasionally the animals will say “adios” to the woods and the land, and instead spend their times swimming in lakes. Yes, you did read that right. Bigfoot is a good swimmer. The North American Wood Ape Conservancy say: “Swimming must be examined alongside the terrestrial gait of the wood ape since it appears to be an important means of locomotion throughout the range of this species in North America, especially on the west coast. Circumstantial evidence, such as reports of the presence of wood apes on small islands off the coast of British Columbia, has suggested they swim. Observations of wood apes actually swimming have confirmed this.”
One of the most fascinating examples originated near Ketchikan, Alaska, at some point around the turn of the 1960s. It was a story provided to long-time Bigfoot authority and investigator, John Green. The story had a bit of a “friend of a friend” aspect to it, but that makes it no less fascinating. It revolved around a young boy named Errol, who, on one particular night, was out fishing with his father, when his flashlight illuminated something terrifying standing in the water: a large, humanoid creature, but one which was clearly not human, staring intently at him. Not surprisingly, the boy screamed at the top of his lungs and fled for his life. A posse of men came running, just in time to illuminate the dark waters with their flashlights, and who saw to their astonishment the huge beast dive into the water and start swimming “like a frog,” before vanishing from view, as it plunged ever deeper into the depths. In moments, it was gone – demonstrating its skills as a powerful, fast swimmer. Rupert Matthews, the author of Bigfoot, reports: “In July 1965 a Sasquatch was seen swimming some distance away from the shore of Princess Royal Island, British Columbia. The fisherman who saw it realized with no little apprehension that it was actually swimming for his boat, so he started up his outboard motor and sped off. At this point four more Sasquatch appeared on a nearby beach and watched him.”
Now, let’s move onto the creatures of Loch Ness. How many people know there have been more than forty sightings of the Nessies on the land, sometimes on the shores and on other occasions in the woods? Here’s a classic example from January 1934. On this occasion, the witness was a man named Arthur Grant, of Glen Urquhart. That Grant was a student-veterinarian, added to the weight and credibility of his report. A keen motorcyclist, twenty-one-year-old Grant was on the roads, heading home at around 1:00 a.m. when he very nearly became the first person to ever have a head-on collision with a Nessie! Fortunately, however, neither monster not motorcyclist were injured. That the night sky was dominated by a powerful, eerie moon meant that Grant had a very good view of the beast, as it loomed before him, and caught in the glare of his motorbike’s headlight. It was at a distance of around 120 feet that Grant caught sight of something unusual in front of him. Exactly how unusual it was near-immediately became apparent. Grant said of his sighting that he was practically on top of the monster when its tiny head – sat atop an elongated neck – suddenly turned in his direction. Evidently just as shocked as Grant was, the monster made two bounds across the road, headed down to the loch and vanished into its depths with an almighty splash. The incident was over.
Now, onto Puerto Rico. No, I’m not focusing today on the Chupacabra. Rather, I’m talking about those strange and mysterious creatures: the Alien Big Cats. It’s rare to see such an animal on the island. It happens from time to time, however. My fifth foray into the world of the Puerto Rican vampire was in late December 2008. It turned out to be a profitable trip, but not in the way I had anticipated. Pretty much as soon as I arrived, I learned that one particular part of San Juan – Rio Piedras – was living in what could only be termed a state of downright fear. For more than three weeks, there had been sightings, exclusively at night, of a large black cat creeping around the neighborhood. Around four feet long and muscular, it was believed to have killed and eaten at least fifteen pet cats in the area, savaged a sheep or several, and apparently terrified a handful of people who crossed paths with it in the backstreets of Rio Piedras, late on one particular Saturday night.
Local authorities took swift action. I know this for sure, as I took time out of my schedule to chat with a representative of the Department of Natural and Environmental Resources of Puerto Rico, specifically a spokesperson for the then secretary of the agency, Javier Velez Arocho. It was confirmed to me that an official file had been opened on the ABC encounters, that attempts had been made to humanely capture the beast, and that on three occasions live goats had been used to try and entice the cat to show itself – something which, it was hoped, would allow it to be tranquilized by the police. No luck: just like the ABCs everywhere, this one skillfully avoided all attempts to catch it or kill it. In light of all the above, it would be wise and careful to take note of the possibility that, one day, you might come face to face with a strange creature – but in a location where you would never think to see such a thing.