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The Thetis Lake monster is a reptilian humanoid claimed by many proponents of cryptozoology to have been seen in 1972 near Thetis Lake, near Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. The legend has been attributed to the mistaken identification of an escaped Tegu lizard, and remains mostly unknown to locals. However, one of the original "witnesses" of this monster recently came forward and admitted that the entire thing had been a hoax.

Location and original sightings

Thetis Lake was the first regional conservation area in Canada, established in 1958, and spans approximately 831 hectares of protected forest and parkland. Approximately 20 minutes from Victoria, and located next to the Old Island Highway and a regional trail, it is a popular spot for hiking, swimming, fishing, and boating.[1][2]

However, on 22 August 1972, the Victoria Daily Times reported that two local teens claimed to have been chased from the beach at Thetis lake by a creature which roughly resembled the eponymous Creature from the Black Lagoon.[1] One of the teens claimed to have been slashed across the hand by the creature, which displayed three toes and fingers along with a barbed fin on its skull, prompting an investigation by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. It was described to be "roughly triangular in shape, about five feet (~1.5 m) tall[3] and five feet across the base". At the time, the officer stated that "the boys seem sincere, and until we determine otherwise we have no alternative but to continue our investigation."[4][5]

A day after the story was reported, two other boys claimed to have spotted the creature on the opposite side of the lake from its first appearance. According to one, "it came out of the water and looked around. Then it went back into the water. Then we ran!"[4] The men described the creature as "shaped like an ordinary body, like a human being body but it had a monster face, and it was all scaly [with] a point sticking out of its head [and] great big ears." They believed the creature had a humanlike face, although it appeared to have scaly and silver-coloured skin.[4][3]

Similar creatures have been reported from places such as Ohio, Delaware, Louisiana, and North Carolina, for at least the last century. They are said to be related to another cryptozoological creature, the chupacabra. Haida mythology from the Queen Charlotte Islands describes a similar creature, with a humanlike face, two tails, and often wears a hat. This creature is often feared by Haida canoeists.[3]

Mystery solved?

A Tegu lizard — an explanation for the monster

On 26 August 1972, The Province received a call from a man claiming to have lost a pet Tegu lizard in the area the previous year. Tegus, indigenous to Latin America and mostly carnivorous, can grow up to four feet in length. They are commonly kept as pets. The investigating police officers believed the lizard matched the description the creature and the case was closed.[6]

Despite the sensational claims, repeated in some cryptozoology literature which portray it as a genuine cryptid and relative of the Loveland Frog, no other sightings have been reported since leading the monster sighting to be "a fact widely unknown among swimmers."[1] Local historian Ross Crockford remarks that the advice given in Haden Blackman's 1998 Field Guide to North American Monsters to carry a flaming torch to defend oneself from the monster is probably more dangerous than any monster, given the tinder-dry nature of the park.[6]

One of the original "witnesses," Russell Van Nice has said, "it was just a big lie," his friend [Mike Gold] was, "trying to get attention." According to Van Nice, his friend was "famous" for being a habitual liar. [7]

References

  1. ^ a b c Mason, Alister (2006-06-22). "Dragons in the Water". The Epoch Times. http://en.epochtimes.com/news/6-6-22/43063.html. Retrieved 2008-04-13.  
  2. ^ "Thetis Lake Regional Park". Capital Regional District. 2007. http://www.crd.bc.ca/parks/thetis/index.htm. Retrieved 2008-04-13.  
  3. ^ a b c The Field Guide to Bigfoot, Yeti, and Other Mystery Primates Worldwide, Loren Coleman and Patrick Huyghe, Illust. Harry Trumbore, ISBN 0-380-80263-5
  4. ^ a b c Coleman, Loren (2002). Mothman and Other Curious Encounters. Cosimo, Inc.. pp. 90–91. ISBN 1931044341.  
  5. ^ Godfrey, Linda (2003). [[1] The Beast of Bray Road: Tailing Wisconsin's Werewolf]. Big Earth Publishing. p. vi. ISBN 1879483912. [2].  
  6. ^ a b Crockford, Ross (2006-04-07). "The Gill Man of Thetis Lake". Unknown Victoria. http://unknownvictoria.blogspot.com/2006/04/gill-man-of-thetis-lake.html. Retrieved 2008-04-13.  
  7. ^ Loxton, Daniel. "Junior Skeptic #35: The Shocking Secret of Thetis Lake". http://www.skeptic.com/junior_skeptic/issue35.   Skeptic Vol. 15, No. 2. (Altadena: Skeptics Society, 2009) pp. 74-81
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.]] The Thetis Lake monster is a reptilian humanoid cryptid claimed by many proponents of cryptozoology to have been seen in 1972 by Thetis Lake, outside of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. The legend has been attributed to the mistaken identification of an escaped Tegu lizard, and remains mostly unknown to locals and cryptozoologists. However, one of the original "witnesses" of this monster recently came forward and admitted that the entire thing had been a hoax.

History

Thetis Lake was the first regional conservation area in Canada, and was established in 1958. It spans approximately 831 hectares of protected forest and parkland. Approximately 20 minutes from Victoria, and located next to the Old Island Highway and a regional trail, it is a popular spot for hiking, swimming, fishing, and boating.[1][2]

However, on 22 August 1972, the Victoria Daily Times reported that two local teens claimed to have been chased from the beach at Thetis lake by a creature which roughly resembled Gill-man from the Creature from the Black Lagoon.[1] One of the teens claimed to have been slashed on the hand by the creature, which displayed three webbed toes and fingers along with a barbed fins on its skull, arms, and legs, prompting an investigation by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. It was described to be "roughly triangular in shape, about five feet (~1.5 m) tall[3] and five feet across the base". At the time, the officer stated that "the boys seem sincere, and until we determine otherwise we have no alternative but to continue our investigation."[4][5] Four days after the story was reported, two men claimed to have spotted the creature on the opposite side of the lake from its first appearance. According to one, "it came out of the water and looked around. Then it went back into the water. Then we ran!"[4] The boys described the creature as "shaped like an ordinary body, like a human being body but it had a monster face, and it was scaly [with] a point sticking out of its head [and] great big ears." They believed the creature had a humanlike face, although it appeared to have scaly and silvery-blue colored skin.[3][4] Similar creatures have been reported from places such as Ohio, Delaware, Louisiana, and North Carolina, for at least the last century. They are said to be related to another cryptozoological creature, the chupacabra. Also, lake monsters like this one, are said to exist all over the world. Haida mythology from the Queen Charlotte Islands describes a similar creature, with a humanlike face, two tails, and often wears a hat. This creature is often feared by Haida canoeists.[3]

Mystery solved?

On 26 August 1972, The Province received a call from a man claiming to have lost a pet Tegu lizard in the area the previous year. Tegus, indigenous to Latin America and mostly carnivorous, can grow up to four feet in length. They are commonly kept as pets. The investigating police officers believed the lizard matched the description of the creature and the case was closed.[6]

The sightings have been repeated in some cryptozoology literature which portray it as a genuine cryptid and relative of the Loveland Frog, no other sightings have been reported since leading the monster sighting to be "a fact widely unknown among swimmers."[1] Local historian Ross Crockford remarks that the advice given in Haden Blackman's 1998 Field Guide to North American Monsters to carry a flaming torch to defend oneself from the monster is probably more dangerous than any monster, given the tinder-dry nature of the park.[6]

One of the original "witnesses," Russell Van Nice has said, "it was just a big lie," his friend [Mike Gold] was, "trying to get attention." According to Van Nice, his friend was "famous" for being a habitual liar.[7]

References

  1. ^ a b c Mason, Alister (2006-06-22). "Dragons in the Water". The Epoch Times. http://en.epochtimes.com/news/6-6-22/43063.html. Retrieved 2008-04-13. 
  2. ^ "Thetis Lake Regional Park". Capital Regional District. 2007. http://www.crd.bc.ca/parks/thetis/index.htm. Retrieved 2008-04-13. 
  3. ^ a b c The Field Guide to Bigfoot, Yeti, and Other Mystery Primates Worldwide, Loren Coleman and Patrick Huyghe, Illust. Harry Trumbore, ISBN 0-380-80263-5
  4. ^ a b c Coleman, Loren (2002). Mothman and Other Curious Encounters. Cosimo, Inc.. pp. 90–91. ISBN 1931044341. 
  5. ^ Godfrey, Linda (2003). The Beast of Bray Road: Tailing Wisconsin's Werewolf. Big Earth Publishing. p. vi. ISBN 1879483912. http://books.google.com/books?id=h_Po8ixCCqUC&pg=PP1&dq=1879483912. 
  6. ^ a b Crockford, Ross (2006-04-07). "The Gill Man of Thetis Lake". Unknown Victoria. http://unknownvictoria.blogspot.com/2006/04/gill-man-of-thetis-lake.html. Retrieved 2008-04-13. 
  7. ^ Loxton, Daniel. "Junior Skeptic #35: The Shocking Secret of Thetis Lake". http://www.skeptic.com/junior_skeptic/issue35.  Skeptic Vol. 15, No. 2. (Altadena: Skeptics Society, 2009) pp. 74-81

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