Tag Archives: Lake Monster

Ogopogo Lake Monster

Context: The informant is a Canadian-American who has family from the regions surrounding the Okanogan lake, reportedly the home to the “Ogopogo,” a monster treading the waters.

[Speaking face to face]

“So it’s like… Ogopogo, and it lives in… yeah I think it’s the Okanoga. But, um, yeah right so Ogopogo is basically Lochness Monster for Canada and it says like… it’s to live in Okanogan Lake in British Columbia. And it was, according to Wikipedia, it was allegedly seen by the first nation peoples in the 19th century. Um… so it was like… as far as Canadian folklore goes, it kind of all I know.”

KA: How did you hear about that?

“My mom, I think, yeah. Um… but like, everyone knows about Ogopogo in my family, ’cause like, most of my family is from British Columbia. I mean, the Okanogan- like my family lives in the Okanogan, so wait… where is Okanogan Lake because I might’ve actually been there. Oh right, I’m actually closer to this lore than I thought. Um, my aunt lives in Colona, and it’s IN Colona, where the Okanogan Lake is. It’s a very big lake, but… yeah. I think even if you go to the… I think there’s like some mini golf type thing there in Colona, and they have like, an Ogopogo monster… like… in the place. It’s like a family fun center”

Introduced: The informant knows of the legend due to it being socially constructed around them, having family from British Columbia. It was primarily introduced through Informant, (LG)’s mother.

Analysis & Interpretation: The Ogopogo is clearly comparable to the infamous Loch Ness Monster of Scottish folklore. I find it interesting how though it is perceived as such a prevalent part of Scottish culture and identity, particularly regarding inhabitants of areas directly surrounding Loch Ness, it is such an internationally recognized legend. As someone from the U.S., I grew up hearing of Loch Ness and not necessarily attributing that to a specific region; Essentially, anywhere you went with a body of water could potentially be home the infamous Nessie. I’ve found that many children may tend to generalize it and attribute it to their own location. But beyond this, the Ogopogo, very far from reported Loch Ness Monster (Nessie) sitings, has exemplified the globalization of a multi-version mysterious lake creature.

 

For similar renditions of the hidden lake monster tale in other regions, refer to the Scottish based “Loch Ness Monster” legend at:

History.com. (2019). Loch Ness Monster [Video file] https://www.history.com/topics/folklore/loch-ness-monster-video

Champ: Vermont’s Loch Ness Monster

This story was told during a moment between friends when talking about stories and weird traditions from our hometowns:

“Okay um, so Champ. Champ is a seas monster that lives in lake champlain which is where i grew up. We, it’s like, explained as the Loch Ness Monster but in Lake Champlain, um, and it just kinda like, i think the folklore around it, it’s like, it’s not like a fun thing that we joke about, everyone is pretty sure that it’s real, like, we’re all trying to prove it. Like there’s this little Vermont boathouse that’s run by this French-Canadian family where you can get penny candy, you can rent boats for five dollars an hour, it’s like everything’s so cheap, a land lost in time. Um, his sister, who’s like the face of the operation now, um has the store and was interviewed by the news because she saw it come up on the land. And why would she lie? She’s the most trust-worthy person in all of burlington. Um, so like that’s kinda it, we’re all trying to prove that theres a seamster in the lake. Because it’s the deepest fresh-water lake in the continental US. I think in the US. It’s just so deep, not that big, but so deep. There’s gotta be something down there, it could survive. Um, it’s kinda one of those things that I don’t remember hearing about for the time, because it’s so engrained in the culture, especially in burlington which is the main tourist town around the lake and so much of the imagery around the waterfront is Champ related, um, but I can remember, like i don’t remember if this is, the most memory that I can think of is that there’s a fun little statue of champ, like very cartoony, in front of this like, like, club, but a place you’d go to have a nice dinner and listen to music, so like that, we went there one time and I saw it and I was like what’s that and my mom was like that’s Champ! but yeah, all the imagery is around champ, our vermont minor league baseball team is the Vermont Lake Monsters… so my parents aren’t from burlington, and they aren’t from burlington at all, and a lot of my friends are fourth or fifth generation vermonters, and there’s a place called Ken’s Pizza, and we call it Kens, but the real vermonters call it the pub. It was the part of the place that I get to be a part of that my parents weren’t to be a part of the folklore and be a real Vermonter.”

Champ is a local figure of Lake Champlain in Vermont and New York. Folklore surrounding Champ dates back all the way to the native populations before white settlers. Today, the lake is protected safe waters for the sole purpose of maintaining Champ’s habitat. It’s even been put into legislature! You can find out more by looking up Champ’s folklore, of which there is many.

 

Illiamna Lake Monster

My informant states that there have been accounts of people seeing a giant monster in the lake. My informant states that his friend whom is a bush pilot has seen a giant ripple shaped as a V, moving through the lake. My informant stated that this creature is known to be bigger than a blue whale and people have seen it for over hundreds of years. People have seen sightings of this creature. This creature is described as giant whale like creature, however it is a fresh water creature. People are not scared of this creature and actually still fish there even though this legend is prevalent in Alaska. My informant has also heard that there have been attacks on fishermen and people by this creature as people have been knocked out of their boats.

My informant heard this from his friend and he tells this story to guests who visit him in Alaska. He also states that this is a very popular legend in Alaska, as many different television shows that focus on capturing “mythic creatures.” have attempted to catch the laker monster.

When I asked my informant if he has nay ideas what this creature is, he stated that it could be a whale that adapted to freshwater. Scientists and Alaska Department of Fish and Game have actually research for this creature and have not found anything. My analysis on this is that it is the same as other tales about lake monsters in other countries. The water has always been mysterious for human beings as it is an environment where people are out of their comfort zone, thus fears start to creep into people’s mind and create monsters. This could also be a tourist attraction for people to visit this specific lake.

Interestingly this legend was annotated in two television shows, one was the River Monster’s episode Alaska Horror, where the host, Jeremy Wade attempted to capture the lake monster. Jeremy Wade in the end of the episode stated that he believes that the creature is a giant white sturgeon, however he had no proof that his claim was true. Discovery Channel also had a special where two fishermen from The Deadliest Catch attempted to capture this creature, however they came up empty again.