Lake Monsters in our World
Mysterious Eel-like Creatures

Lake Monsters in our World
Mysterious Eel-like Creatures

For centuries, mysterious creatures have been sighted, photographed, and videotaped in countless lakes across the planet. Native Americans often described gigantic "water demons" inhabiting many lakes across North America. Are they prehistoric survivors from the past? Are they new creatures entirely?

A lake monster or loch monster is a purported form of fresh-water-dwelling megafauna appearing in mythology, rumor, or local folklore, but whose existence lacks scientific support.

A well known example is the Loch Ness Monster. Lake monsters' depictions are often similar to some sea monsters. They are principally the subject of investigations by followers of the study of cryptozoology and folklore.

Cressie is a mysterious, eel-like creature which is reputed to lurk in the depths of Crescent Lake, in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada.

The creature was first reported in ancient Native American legends, in which it was referred to as "Woodum Haoot" (Pond Devil) or "Haoot Tuwedyee" (Swimming Demon).

It was feared by the local residents of the lakeside, but reports of it by the settlers only began in the early 20th century.

In the 1950s, two men saw what they thought was an upturned boat heading upwind, but upon approaching it, it flipped itself around again and dived below the lake.

In the 80's a pilot crashed and drowned in Crescent Lake, and while two scuba divers attempted to retrieve his body, they were attacked by a school of uncommonly large eels, and were forced to retreat.

Other sightings have included an incident in July, 1991, when a "Cressie" was seen swimming on the lake's surface, and in the summer of 2003, when a woman saw the creature swimming again.

Cressie is consistently described as appearing like a large eel. The creature's length varies, but could be from 10 to 30 feet long and "as thick as a man's thigh".

There have been multiple sightings of the creature, but the most common is at Crescent Lake in Canada. "Cressie" is actually an uncommon but unique name across the world.

Another lake monster found in our world is named the Rainbow Serpent. The Rainbow Serpent is a common motif in the art and mythology of Aboriginal Australia. It is named for the snake-like meandering of water across a landscape and the colour spectrum caused when sunlight strikes water at an appropriate angle relative to the observer. The Rainbow Serpent is seen as the inhabitant of permanent waterholes and is in control of life's most precious resource, oils and waters.

He is the sometimes unpredictable Rainbow Serpent, who vies with the ever-reliable Sun, that replenishes the stores of water, forming gullies and deep channels as he slithered across the landscape, allowing for the collection and distribution of water. Dreamtime stories tell of the great spirits and totems during creation, in animal and human form they moulded the barren and featureless earth.

The Rainbow Serpent came from beneath the ground and created huge ridges, mountains and gorges as it pushed upward.

The Rainbow Serpent is known as Ngalyod by the Gunwinggu and Borlung by the Miali. He is a serpent of immense proportions which inhabits deep permanent waterholes.

Serpent stories vary according to environmental differences. Tribes of the monsoonal areas depict an epic interaction of the Sun, Serpent and wind in their Dreamtime stories, whereas tribes of the central desert experience less drastic seasonal shifts and their stories reflect this. It is known both as a benevolent protector of its people (the groups from the country around) and as a malevolent punisher of law breakers.

The Rainbow Serpent's mythology is closely linked to land, water, life, social relationships and fertility.There are innumerable names and stories associated with the serpent, all of which communicate the significance and power of this being within Aboriginal traditions. The myth of the Rainbow Serpent is sometimes associated with Wonambi naracoortensis, a large snake of the now extinct megafauna of Australia.

Canadian Lake Monster

Ogopogo or Naitaka ("lake demon") is the name given to a cryptid lake monster reported to live in Okanagan Lake, in British Columbia, Canada. Ogopogo has been allegedly seen by Native Americans since the 19th century.

The most common description of Ogopogo is a forty- to fifty-foot-long (12 to 15 m) sea serpent. It has supposedly been photographed and even been caught on tape.

Proponents of the Ogopogo's existence claim that the first documented sightings of the monster date back to around 1872, and occurred as the area was being colonized by European settlers.

Perhaps the earliest mention of the Ogopogo was the story of a man in 1860 leading horses that were swimming across the lake near Rattlesnake Island.

They were pulled under by some unseen and unknown force later attributed to the then common native myth of the Ogopogo.

In 1926 a sighting is claimed to have occurred at an Okanagan Mission beach. This event was supposedly witnessed by about thirty cars of people who all claimed to have seen the same thing.

It was also in this year that the editor of the Vancouver Sun, Bobby Carter, wrote, "Too many reputable people have seen [the monster] to ignore the seriousness of actual facts."

The first alleged film of the creature was made in 1968 by Art Holding. The film which is often incorrectly referred to as the 'Folden' Film shows a dark object propelling itself through shallow water near the shore. The film was shot from on a hill above the shore.

Ogopogo was allegedly filmed again in 1989 by a used car salesman, Ken Chaplin, who with his father, Clem Chaplin, claimed to have seen a snake-like animal swimming in the lake, which flicked its tail to create a splash.

Some believe that the animal the Chaplins saw was simply a beaver, because the tail splashing is a well-known characteristic of beavers.

However, Chaplin alleges the animal he saw was 15 feet (4.6 m) long, far larger than a beaver (beavers are approximately 4 feet (1.2 m) long). A few weeks later, Chaplin came back with his father and his daughter and filmed it again.

British cryptozoologist Karl Shuker has categorized the Ogopogo as a 'many hump' variety of lake monster, and suggested it may be a kind of primitive serpentine whale such as Basilosaurus.

However, because the physical evidence for the beast is limited to unclear photographs and film, it has also been suggested that the sightings are misidentifications of common animals, such as otters, and inanimate objects, such as floating logs.

Another suggestion is that the Ogopogo is a lake sturgeon. It is also possible in some cases that Ogopogo could be the misidentification of a seiche, a standing wave in a lake that travels below the surface in a long serpentine motion.


Many skeptics consider lake monsters to be purely exaggerations or misinterpretations of known and natural phenomena, or else fabrications and hoaxes.

Most lake monsters have no evidence besides alleged sightings and controversial photographs and a large portion are generally believed not to exist by conventional zoology and allied sciences.