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Blog > The Return of the Loch Ness Monster

A veteran "Nessie"-hunter, Irishman Eoin O'Faodhagain, has dragged the legendary Loch Ness Monster (not literally) back into the spotlight once again. Via his webcam he has recorded three sightings in 2021 - making that four altogether this year.

Mr O'Faodhagain has said: "There was disturbance of water and a wake is also visible with a black shape seen rising up and down".

The monster is notoriously publicity-shy, declining all opportunities to appear in the mainstream media. However, he or she, or they, have never really been away. The first 'authenticated' photo in 1934 turned out to be a hoax; an early example of 'fake news' before the term was invented. But Nessie's legend lived on, and ever since then avid hunters have spent many hours in pursuit of the reclusive beast; the large number of photographic and video records, as well as serious scientific research attest to the ongoing fascination with the Loch Ness Monster. There was even a movie in 1996 staring Ted Danson. Those familiar with the rather quirky UK science-fiction series 'Doctor Who' may also know that versions of the monster appeared on the programme twice; on one occasion attacking London's Houses of Parliament before returning to Loch Ness. Perhaps on that occasion Nessie was seized by a fit of Scots Nationalist fervour, earning cheers and applause all the way back to Scotland.

1987's Operation Deepscan was the largest search for Nessie to date costing around £1million. After three days of scouring the loch's deep waters with state-of-the-art sonar equipment, the monster had still refused to show up. But the sonar apparatus did detect three large objects at depths of between 256 and 590ft near Urquhart Castle on the loch shore. A researcher said that the sonar traces would be consistent with a creature - or creatures - 'larger than a shark but smaller than a whale'. So hope still remained for the true believers.

Scientists on a BBC survey in 2003 were far less obliging. At the conclusion of their fruitless search, using 600 separate sonar beams and satellite navigation technology to cover the whole loch, they announced that the Loch Ness Monster was a 'myth'. And if that isn't being a downright spoilsport, I don't know what is!

Actually, the beginning of the Loch Ness Monster story begins in the mists of time: in 565AD St Columba is believed to have taken a swim in Loch Ness and when approached by the beast he made the sign of the cross and said: 'Go no further. Do not touch the man. Go back at once.' Nessie on this occasion beat a hasty retreat. Whether this or any of the other early apparitions were linked with consumption of the equally legendary Scottish "water of life" ('uisge-beatha' in Gaelic - aka whisky) is not known.

Deep and dark, Loch Ness itself is a place destined to foster mystery and legends. Running for 24 miles through the Great Glen with a depth of 788 feet and a length of about 24 miles it contains the largest volume of fresh water in Great Britain (more than the lakes of Wales and England combined). Surely, one hopes, such a deep and mysterious body of water still has secrets to reveal. With spectacular highland scenery all around, the opportunities for hiking, sailing, cruising or just admiring the majestic views are not to be missed. And who knows, if you are patient and lucky, you might be the one to meet the Loch Ness Monster face-to-face, so make sure you have your camera ready!

Date: 19/03/2021 | Author: Jonathan Taylor

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