Jun 07, 2022 I Nick Redfern

The Loch Ness Monster: From Time-Travel to M.I.B. and Paranormal Portals

When we think of Loch Ness, Scotland, it’s all but certain that the first thing that will spring to mind is the Loch Ness Monster. Or, to be correct, the Loch Ness Monsters. A large number of people claim to have seen the long-necked, humped leviathan of the deep. Some have even photographed and filmed it. Nessie, as the beast is affectionately known, has been a staple part of the world of the unexplained since 1933, when the phenomenon of the monster exploded in spectacular, planet-wide fashion. Since then, millions of people have flocked to the shores of the 22.5 miles long and 744 feet deep loch, all in the hopes of seeing the elusive creature. Attempts have been made to seek out Nessie with sonar-equipment, aircraft, balloons, and even submarines. Theories abound as to what Nessie is – or, far more likely and correctly, what the Nessies are. Certainly, the most captivating theory, and the one that the Scottish Tourist Board, moviemakers, and the general public find most appealing, is that which suggests the monsters are surviving pockets of plesiosaurs. They were marine reptiles that the domain of zoology assures us became extinct tens of millions of years ago. The possibility that the monsters are actually giant-sized salamanders holds sway in more than a few quarters. As does the idea that perhaps massive eels are the culprits. Then there are scenarios involving sturgeon, oversized turtles, catfish, and even crocodiles, giant frogs, and hippopotami! 

(Nick Redfern)

Numerous Nessie enthusiasts, investigators, and authors have spent years – decades, in some cases – pursuing their quarry. They have done so in a fashion that uncannily mirrors the obsessive actions of the fictional Captain Ahab, in Herman Melville’s acclaimed 1851 novel, Moby Dick; or the Whale. But, it’s all, and always, to no avail. No matter the number of days, hours, weeks and years spent, and no matter just how advanced the technology utilized to find the animals might be, it forever ends in failure. After more than eighty years of intensive investigation, the Nessies still evade capture, discovery or classification. Is this all down to sheer bad luck and inept investigations? Certainly not. Rather, it’s a case of people looking for the answers in the completely wrong direction. Over the decades numerous numbers of books have been written on Nessie. For the most part, they all follow the same path. It’s a path that is becoming more and more weary, predictable, repetitive, and worn, as the years go by. Those same books typically take a near-identical approach: they chronicle the most famous sightings, the chief players in the saga, and the theories that exist to explain the monster – and then they leave it at that. All of which brings me to the theme of the article you are now reading. Namely, the connection between Loch Ness, the creatures and time travel. We’ll begin with a tale of time travel at the Loch from a famous, acclaimed writer.

One of the strangest stories of paranormal weirdness at Loch Ness comes from an author on all manner of mysteries, Andrew Collins. As Christmas 1979 loomed, Collins – with colleagues Graham Phillips and Martin Keatman spent a week in Scotland, investigating the Nessie enigma. It involved interviewing witnesses, spending time poring over old archives in Inverness' library, and checking out the loch itself. It was while they were deep in the heart of their investigation that the trio uncovered a very weird story. Back in the early 18th century a young couple inexplicably vanished while riding a horse and trap near Loch End, on the south shores of Loch Ness. Rumors circulated that the pair was either murdered or abducted. And neither the horse nor the trap were ever seen again. It would have remained a complete mystery, were it not for one thing; a very uncanny thing. More than one hundred years later, and at the height of tumultuous thunderstorm, a young man and woman walked into a local almshouse, inquiring if the priest that oversaw it would give them shelter for the night, which he did. The priest couldn’t fail to see that the pair was dressed in the kind of clothing that was popular around a century or so earlier. Plus, they seemed very confused, dazed and bewildered, and completely unable to explain where they were from. They remained in that odd, altered state for a couple of days, after which they simply walked out of the almshouse and were never seen again. When the story got out, however, several of the locals recalled old tales of the events of a century earlier, and the missing pair of young lovers. Was this, perhaps, a case of a slip in time having occurred? It might have been.

Moving on: During the course of his investigations into the world of the U.S. government's Remote-Viewing programs, the late conspiracy theorizer and author Jim Marrs learned something incredible. Namely, that the U.S. government, in the 1980s, had a secret team that had focused their psychic skills on the creatures. In doing so they stumbled onto something amazing, and which added much weight to the argument that the Nessies were not what they seemed to be. Marrs said that over the course of a number of attempts to remote-view the Nessies, the team found evidence of what appeared to be physical, living creatures – ones that left wakes and which could be photographed and tracked. They even prepared drawings which suggested the Nessies might be plesiosaurs. But, there was something else, too: the ability of the creatures to vanish – as in dematerialize. The remote-viewers were in a collective quandary: their work certainly supported the theory that some seriously strange creatures lurked deep in Loch Ness, but they were creatures that seemed to have supernatural and abnormal qualities about them. Of course, in light of that story of time-traveling at Loch Ness, you could make a case that the reason why the Nessies are so elusive is not because they are paranormal in nature, but because they have the ability to surf time - just like that 18th century couple referenced above - and exit the present for the future. And return again. 

(Nick Redfern) Jim Marrs, Remote-Viewing and the Loch Ness Monster

I could also make yet another reason as to why there is a time-portal at Loch Ness. There is the story of a man named Peter Smithson, who told ghost-investigator, Bruce Barrymore Halpenny, of his encounter with a ghostly airman at the loch in 1978. Smithson said it was early one morning, just as dawn was breaking, when he saw someone coming towards him – from the depths of Loch Ness. Smithson’s first reaction – and a quite natural reaction – was to assume there had been some kind of accident. It was easy to understand why Smithson assumed that, as the man before him was dressed in military clothing, and was dragging behind him a parachute. But, what baffled Smithson was the fact that the uniform the man was wearing was clearly out of date. It was far from modern-looking and far more befitted the era of the 1940s, when the world was engaged in trying to defeat the hordes of Adolf Hitler. Smithson shouted to the man, to see if he was okay. The response Smithson got was an eerie one: the man slightly turned and pointed towards the waters of Loch Ness. Smithson said that the man suddenly dematerialized, leaving him with a “funny feeling,” and a suspicion that what he had seen was “a ghost airman.” He commented: “What a damn fool I felt, confronted by a ghost, my camera around my neck, yet I never had an inkling to take a photo.” Seven exact encounters of this type at Loch Ness have led a number of researchers to suggest there is a time loop at the loch, one that endlessly plays over and over again.

Now, we come to another weird affair: on the night of June 2, 1973 Ted Holiday, a renowned Nessie-seeker - did nothing less than try and exorcise the beasts of Loch Ness and banish them to the supernatural realm he believed they came from. It was a tumultuous night, one which saw him take to the dark waters and try and forever eject the monsters from the legendary loch. By the end of the night, he was emotionally exhausted and fraught and frazzled. The day after, however, proved to be even more terrifying. It was while he took a walk down to the loch’s shoreline, shortly after breakfast, that Holiday encountered something terrifying. At first, everything seemed normal: the skies were clear, the sun was shining, and the oppressive atmosphere of the night before was well and truly gone. As Holiday looked around, however, he could see – at a distance of perhaps thirty meters – a man dressed completely in black; a man who was staring right at him from the top of a small peak that overlooked the lair of the long-necked monsters. On seeing the man, said Holiday, highly astutely: “I felt a strong sensation of malevolence, cold and passionless.”

(Nick Redfern) A Man in Black at Loch Ness

That was barely the start of things: despite the sense of dread that had enveloped him, Holiday decided to walk towards the man and confront him. What a most unwise choice that was. The closer Holiday got, the weirder things became. Holiday could see that the stranger in black appeared to be dressed – neck to foot – in some kind of tight-fitting, shiny black plastic. A black helmet of sorts – vaguely like the kind of thing a biker would wear– covered his head. A thick pair of tinted goggles were the only things that Holiday could see of the man’s face: a black cloth was wrapped around his nose, face and chin. Even his hands were covered. Holiday sucked in a deep breath and took more steps forward, his heart thumping and the adrenalin pumping. Holiday called out to the man but got no reply: the M.I.B. stood his ground, as if goading Holiday to come closer, which is exactly what he did. Holiday was plunged into a state of cold fear when, as the pair was within ten-feet of each other, he could now see that there appeared to be…no eyes behind the goggles…just an impenetrable nothingness Suddenly, the air was filled with a shrill whistle and the M.I.B. vanished into oblivion before a stunned Holiday. Now almost overwhelmed by fear, Holiday half-stumbled and half-ran for safety. He did so for around a couple of hundred feet, before stopping and looking back. The M.I.B. was still not to be seen. Holiday sighed with relief. He should have realized, however, that the Man in Black was not yet done with him. 

Exactly one year later, and at precisely the same spot where he had encountered the M.I.B. the previous year, Holiday suffered a serious heart attack. He perceived this a warning to keep away from Loch Ness and its paranormal denizens. If only he had done as he was told. Holiday, however, was not going to let a heart attack get the better of him and his research. When he was recovered, a few months later, Holiday was back to his Nessie studies. It was, however, all too late. In 1979 Holiday had another heart attack. That one killed him. We have to wonder: did the Man in Black know that Holiday would die exactly one year later, and on the exact same site? Of course, if the "man" was a time traveler, he would know the exact time and date of Holiday’s medical emergency.

Nick Redfern

Nick Redfern works full time as a writer, lecturer, and journalist. He writes about a wide range of unsolved mysteries, including Bigfoot, UFOs, the Loch Ness Monster, alien encounters, and government conspiracies. Nick has written 41 books, writes for Mysterious Universe and has appeared on numerous television shows on the The History Channel, National Geographic Channel and SyFy Channel.

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