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Sunday, September 4, 2011

Searching for Nessie XVI


Searching for Nessie XV


Searching for Nessie XIV

The Evidence

Important Information Please Read First
All sighting and photographic references on this page are documented and can be verified through various publications.


Drawings and Opinions

Drawing of NessieThis drawing was done by the son of a Mrs Finlay from Inverness, 1952.Mrs Finlay a resident of Inverness, and her small son happened to be near the north-east shore of the Loch near to Aldourie Pier off Tor Point, when the monster appeared quite literally a few yards away in the water. She said she could of hit it with a pebble.

"I was sitting outside the caravan when I heard a continual splashing in the water. After several moments past and realising this was not the usual wash from a boat I walked round. To my surprise I saw what I believe to be the Loch Ness Monster. My son and I stood looking at this creature in amazement. Although I was terrified, we stood and watched until it submerged, which it did very quickly causing waves to break on the shore . We had an excellent view as it was so close to the shore. It's skin was dark in colour and looked very tough. The neck was long and held erect. The head was about the same width as the neck. There were 2 projections from it, each with a blob on the end. This was not a pleasant experience. I certainly never want to see the monster again."

Drawing of Nessie
This drawing is of a sighting in 1934.
In May 1934 Mr Alexander Campbell, a water bailiff for over 40 years at Loch Ness had a sighting of the monster. He was standing at the mouth of the River Oich one beautiful morning in May gazing across the Loch in the direction of Borlum Bay. His attention was drawn to a strange object that seemed to shoot out of the calm waters almost opposite the Abbey boathouse. His description as shown in his sketch, is of a swanlike neck reaching 6ft or so above the water at its highest point, and the body, a darkish grey glistening with moisture was at least 30ft long. He gauged this carefully in his minds eye by placing 2 ordinary rowing boats of 15ft overall length end to end, and he didn't think he was far wrong with size. Watching and wondering if he had time to run for his camera, he heard the noise of the engines of 2 trawlers which were proceeding down the lower basin of the Caledonian Canal, which enters the Loch almost along side the Abbey boathouse. The animal certainly must of heard, or sensed, the approach of these vessels too, for he saw it turn its head in an apprehensive way, this way and that, and, apparently being timid, it then sank rapidly out of sight, lowering the neck in doing so and leaving a considerable disturbance on the mirror-like surface of the Loch. He said the animal would hve been some 400 yards from where he stood, possibly less, and he had a very clear view of it which lasted several minutes.

Drawing of Nessie's ancestor
This is a sketch of a possible ancestor of the Loch Ness Monster an Elasmosaurus(Plesiosaurs).


The picture on the right is the skeleton of a Plesiosaur, extinct for 70 million years.

Searching for Nessie XIII

The Evidence

Important Information Please Read First
All sighting and photographic references on this page are documented and can be verified through various publications.


Drawings and Opinions

Below you will find other evidence which people have put foward over the years. This includes drawings, sketches and facts as told by themselves.

Various body shaped drawings.
This drawing shows various body shapes sketched by different observers.
Statistics : In 20% of sighting a back or body is reported as distinct from the appearance of humps, and the most common description is that of 'an upturned boat', but others have said : "It looked like an elephants back - stood about 4ft high and 10-12ft in length - an egg-shaped body - seen end on there is a distinct angle at apex of back - a long dark body - like a gigantic eel 25ft in length and 5ft in diameter." description such as these are not very specific and the best that can be said for them is that the majority refer to some very large object.

A Nessie drawing

This one is an impression of the monster based on average statistics showing the 2 humps most commonly reported.
Statistics : "Humps" appear in no less of 45% of sightings, but these must be sub-divided because the number of humps vary in quite an extraordinary manner. From amongst 45 separate statements, 8 refer to 1 hump, 19 to 2 humps, 9 to 3 humps and the remainder to a varied number of humps or 'coils' up to a counted total of 12. Generally speaking, there appear to be 3 basic triangular humps, the largest in the middle, standing 3 to 4ft above the surface, 5-6ft inlength at the waterline, and separated by 6-8ft of clear water from the other 2 humps. This adds up to an overall visible length of 30ft or so. In all the hundred reports no one has ever referred to a hump as a fin. Probably the only certain thing about them is that they are most peculiar, and a complete stumbling block to science.

This is a drawing of the animal described by Mr and Mrs Spicer seen crossing the road near Dores in 1933.

On the 22nd of July 1933 a most extraordinary thing happened, so extraordinary it taxed the imagination of even the most confirmed believers. Driving down the narrow road, early one morning, between the village of Dores and Inverfarigaig, Mr Spicer and his wife saw 'a most extraordinary form of animal' crossing the road ahead ; which at this point lay some 20 yards from the water. First a long neck appeared, undulating rapidly, forming a number of arches. It was a little thicker than an elephants trunk and stretched the width of the road, and behind it a huge ponderous body, lurched againly towards the Loch. In seconds it crossed the road, and disappeared through the bushes out of sight. The Spicers ; at first some 200 yards distant, accelerated towards it, but when they arrived there was nothing to see, just a gap in the undergrowth through which the creature must of passed. They heard no splash, but the noise of the car engine might well of drowned it ; neither did they see any limbs, but the creature's lower extremities were obscured by a dip in the road, which at this place was some 10-12ft in width. The animals body was about 4ft high and together with the neck, about 25ft in length. Staggered and curiously repelledby what they had seen the Spicers withstood the barrage of questions levelled at them after the event by various interested people.

Drawing of Nessie
This is a drawing of the animal seen by Mr Grant near Abriachan, on the 5th of January 1934.

For more details of this sighting see ' Searching for Nessie'

Drawing of Nessie

This sketch was done by a Mrs Moir of Inverness. The sighting occured in October 1936. Mrs Moirs statement is as follows :

One October afternoon a friend took my sister, mother-in-law, my young daughter and myself for a little trip by car to Foyers. On the return journey, at a place where the road runs very close to the Loch, about 3 miles from Foyers, my sister suddenly shouted, "Look, there's the Monster". We all got out of the car and ran to the waters edge. There, before us , at a distance of 1/3 of the width of the Loch away from us was this wonderful creature. It was a perfect view, if we had a camera the most convincing picture of the Monster ever taken could have been obtained, but alas! we had neither camera or binoculars. It was a perfect setting. There were three distinct humps, a long slender neck ending in a small head, and the overall length appeared to be 30ft approximately. I could see no details of eyes, mouth etc. but the outline was all beautifully clear - the three humps, head and neck. The middle hump was the highest, the one behind the neck was smaller and the in between size was at the back, sloping in a graceful line down to, and under, the water. The creature was quite stationary and it often dipped it's head into the water either feeding or amusing its self. We watched in awe and amazement, for about 5-8mins; then suddenly it swung round away from the shore, and shot across the Loch at a terrific speed, putting up a wash. All the time I could see a small dark spot, perhaps the highest hump, perhaps the head. When it eventually came to rest I noticed the humps had disappeared ; the back was now more or less straightened out, but the neck and head were as before. The creature was in full view for 14mins. I have no idea how much of the body was underneath the water, but what we saw was a huge creature, evidently very powerful, graceful and quite at ease on and in the water. A thrilling experience - I actually saw the Loch Ness Monster, resting, and travelling at speed, I saw the humps, then the straightened out back.

Searching for Nessie XII

New Loch Ness Mystery
George Edwards
Auxiliary Coastguard George Edwards
A new Loch Ness mystery has unfolded with the discovery of a huge underwater cavern which sections of the media have dubbed 'Nessie's Lair'. Auxiliary coastguard and Drumnadrochit businessman George Edwards made this spectacular find when he was on a coastguard training exercise on the Loch. He picked up an abnormal signal on his sonar. The depth of the Loch is around 750 ft, and as he made a circular manoeuvre with his boat he got a reading of 812 ft on his sonar equipment. George, who over the years has seen many strange shapes on the Loch, has been a tour boat operator for 12 years. His findings have been quoted by experts as 'the most significant in years', but it has only come to light now as he was fearful of being accused of promoting self-interest. Being a firm Nessie believer, George says there must be more than one creature in the Loch and this cavern could lead to a network of caves. He feels the time has come to investigate the underwater caves and has been contacted by a North Sea oil company offering equipment and experts to seek out 'Nessie's Lair'.
Sonar readout of loch bed         Sonar readout of Loch Ness
These are sonar readings George took on his travels in his boat showing the contours of the Loch. The picture on the left shows the steep sides of Loch Ness and the right picture shows a very flat bottom.
Actual sonar picture of 'Nessie's Lair'
©George Edwards
We are now free to show you the actual sonar contact made by Captain George Edwards of the 'Nessie Hunter'. The sonar picture highlights the cavern now called 'Edwards' Deep'.
As this exciting mystery unfolds we will keep you informed of developments as they occur, and hopefully we will have more photographs and information for you.

Searching for Nessie XI

The Fish of Loch Ness

Important Information Please Read First
All sighting and photographic references on this page are documented and can be verified through various publications.


Salmon (Salmo salar)
Thousands of miles and up to four years may separate a salmon from its river of birth, but when time for spawning comes the fish will find its way from the Atlantic to the waters where it hatched. The Earth's magnetic field or even the stars may control the salmon's direction-finding in the ocean. At the coast, a chemical memory enables the fish to "smell" its own river. A salmon arriving in fresh water at the end of winter is silver and sleekly plump from its diet of small fish, sand eels and crustaceans. It does not eat again until the autumn spawning is finished, but it will snap at items in the river or loch - including anglers bait. The journey to the headwaters is strenuous, often through wild water and up waterfalls. Large salmon can leap heights of up to 10ft (3m), jumping best from deep water. A salmon can lose almost half its weight from these exertions.
Salmon enter Loch ness and wait until its river has enough water to carry it back to the pool it was born in and there it spawns.
Making the return journey to the sea after spawning results in the death of many of the fish.

Trout (Salmo trutta)
Wide variations in colour and growth rate, depending on the local environment, have resulted in many forms of the trout - for example, the silvery seatrout, the dark spotted Loch Leven trout, Orkney trout and Irish trout. However, they are all one species which has a migratory habit over part of its range.
The large eggs of the trout contain copious reserves of yolk. They may take over six weeks to hatch into alevins, or sac-fry (so called because the yolk sac remains attached). For two or three weeks - or longer if the water is cold - the alevins obtain nourishment from the yolk. Gradually they start searching for food. Growth rate depends on food availability.

Sea Trout
Sea Trout feed on small fish such as sprats. They grow much faster than river and loch dwelling trout, whose diet is chiefly invertebrates such as insect larvae - though some freshwater trout turn to feeding on small fish and grow much faster.
After two or three years, both sea and freshwater trout move upriver to spawn. Trout live for about five or six years, but 20 year specimens have been caught.

Eel (Anguilla anguilla)
The eel has been fished, farmed and eaten in Europe for centuries - yet scientifically there is still much that is mysterious about its life. For example, the yellow eel is found as two distinct types, by far the most common with a broad, blunt head, the other with a slim, sharp snout. Why two types exist and how they are related is not known.
In fresh water their food includes snails, frogs, tadpoles and fish eggs. The freshwater stage of their lives may last up to 30 years.

Charr (Salvelinus alpinus)
Charr closely resemble their relatives the trout and salmon, but occur less widely. Several lakes in England have charr populations. The fish are also found in a number of Scottish lochs including Loch Ness, Irish loughs and in Llyn Peris and Llyn Padarn in Wales. Most populations show minor differences in size and colouting, and in some cases they have been given different names. The Welsh charr is called torgoch (red belly).
In different lakes and lochs spawning habits, feeding and growth rates differ. In Britain there appear to be two groups; those that spawn in deep water in late winter or spring and those that spawn in shallow water in autumn. Both groups may occur in one lake. Yellow eggs measuring 3mm are shed on gravel in still or flowing waters.

Sturgeon (Acipenser sturio)
Sturgeon, any of the numerous fishes of the family Acipenseridae, native to temperate waters of the Northern Hemisphere. Related to the paddlefish and perhaps to the bichir,sturgeons have five longitudinal rows of bony plates(scutes) on the body,an unequally lobed tail fin, and a long snout with a toothless mouth and four sensitive barbels on the underside of the snout. The barbels are dragged over the bottom in search of invertebrates, small fishes, and other food.
Sturgeons may attain great size and age (possibly 200-300 years in the beluga). Members of most species live in the sea and ascend rivers (possibly once in several years) to spawn in spring or summer. The eggs are small, sticky and numerous. The young grow rapidly until maturity,after which growth continues slowly for several years. Sturgeons are valued for their flesh, roe (or caviar); they are readily overfished, however,and fishing in some areas is strictly limited.
The common Old World sturgeon occurs from Scandanavia to the Mediterranean.

Searching for Nessie X

A Geological View of Loch Ness and Area
Loch Ness
Loch Ness is the largest of three lochs located in the Great Glen which divides the North of Scotland along a line from Fort William to Inverness. The loch is large by British standards, being 23 miles long and a mile in width, and averaging 600ft in depth. Its catchment is hilly and wet, and is drained by 6 major rivers which flow into the loch. It contains over 2 cubic miles of fresh water, and the River Ness outlet, although only 5 miles long, is one of the greatest in Britain for average flow.
The trench-like feature which contains Loch Ness is ruler-straight and runs SW - NE for over 60 miles across the Highlands. It follows the line of the Great Glen Fault. This fault splits the Highlands from Fort William to Inverness and then goes on Northeast to form the coastline of Ross-shire and Sutherland. Beyond this, it may extend from Caithness to Shetland. Its root has been noted on seismic surveys in connection with the oil exploration of the Moray Firth. The fault is not a simple fault and is complex for 3 reasons:-

(a) It is a transcurrent (tear) fault.

(b) Movement has produced a zone of shattered rock half to a mile wide.

(c) There is also a vertical component with uplift (and erosion) to the north of the fault.
The fault is a very old feature and has been active since Mid Devonian times (c.400 million years ago). A concensus of the evidence for movement along the fault would suggest that the north moved c.80 miles to the SW (sinistral), followed by an adjustment of c.18 miles in the opposite direction (dextral). This latter firth being out of alignment. With regard to the sinistral movement, much interest has also centred on the similar Foyers and Strontian granites presently 66 miles apart which may have originated as one intrusion.

The shatter belt of rock produced by the fault movement is mostly under Loch Ness, and the ease with which erosion could remove this rock accounts for the wide straight trench of the Great Glen. Shattered rock is very evident in road cuttings by the loch at Castle Urquhart and Foyers. There are deposits of mylonite to the SW of Fort Augustus, proving the heat and pressure produced by the movement.
The Loch Ness area is still seismically active and averages 3 earthquakes per century at Richter 4. This shows that the fault is still moving and storing enough energy for earthquakes. The epicentres are usually around Lochend and Dochgarroch. Slight damage has been caused by these quakes in the Inverness area. The last notable dates for these were 1888, 1890, and 1901. The most severe locally recorded was that of 1816, strong enough to be felt over most of Scotland.
Solid Geology
The bulk of the basement rock on either side of Loch Ness is classified as metamorphic, mostly schists. Those in the North have always been classified as Moine, mostly psammites and semi-pelites. Originally similar rock to the south were also designated as Moine. However, as modern field-work continues among these metamorphics, they are increasingly being regarded as Dalradian. Thus there could be a 200 million difference in the ages of the rock between the two side of Loch Ness!
Interestingly, the highest point around Loch Ness, the 'sugar-loaf' Mealfuarvonie (2284 ft) is a sedimentary mountain - a residual of Old Red Sandstone conglomerate. These conglomerates are also found on the Foyers side of the loch, and were formed from the erosion of Caledonian metamorphics and igneous rocks along the fault scarp in a desert climate. At that time, Scotland was probably in the latitude of present-day Namibia. Younger sandstones of the Old Red Sandstone are mostly found between Foyers and Dores, with very occasional fossil bands.

Two further areas of interest in the solid geology are the zone of ultrabasic rocks and altered limestones around Glenurquhart, and the extremely fragmented area of rock to the east of Foyers. These may also include faults older than the Great Glen Fault.
The present day Loch Ness is about 10,000 years old and dates from the end of the last Ice Age (which lasted more than 20,000 years). During that age, the Great Glen was occupied by a huge glacier which filled the valley above the level of the present watershed, and extended into the Moray Firth. This glacier found the shattered along the fault easy to erode, which accounts for the great depth of Loch Ness to 600ft BELOW sea-level. The sub-marine sides of the loch are glacially smoothed and very steep. Above Foyers at the deepest section, there is 500ft of water only 60ft out from the bank!
The floor of the loch is remarkably flat and smooth. There is a layer of sediment 25ft deep, and below that, a hard clay which has not been penetrated. So the actual depth of the rock floor of Loch Ness may be much deeper than the 740ft maximum recorded.
At Lochend, the loch is blocked by glacial sediment, and the basin of the loch may extend to Inverness and beyond. Around the sides of the loch, there are many features resulting from the glaciation, such as meltwater channels on the watershed, the gorge at Inverfarigaig, the falls of Foyers, and the peri-glacial screes at Abriachan. Towards Inverness, the melting of the Great Glen glacier gave rise to the kames, eskers, and gravel sheets at Dunain, Phadrig, and Tomnahurich. The River Ness is really a braided glacial river, and Loch Ness - a 'drowned' glacial landscape!

Searching for Nessie IX

About Loch Ness
In Search of Eioch Uisge
by George Edwards
I was awakened by the sound of the telephone next to my bed, I checked my watch, it was 6.15 am, who could be calling me at this unearthly hour. As I reached for the telephone I wondered who it could be, my wife Lenora had gone to Durham to visit her parents and had phoned the previous evening to let me know that everything was fine, her father had had a heart operation the previous summer but had made a good recovery.
My son Tim was at university in Dundee, and despite us giving him a BT charge card seems to view telephones as if they were spitting cobras, it couldn’t be him, my daughter Corry was asleep in the room next door, I had heard her coming in earlier after one of the numerous all night parties that teenagers seem to attend, so it could not be her, calling to let me know (once again) that she had forgotten her door key and “could I come down and let me in”, who could it be at this unearthly hour!

Good evening, this is the New York Times, is that George Edwards, the Chief Loch Ness Coastguard Officer, we believe you have found a cave at the bottom of Loch Ness, that is the home of “Nessie”, can you tell us about”, and so it began, little did I know that for the next month, 24 hours a day, such calls would be the norm, rather than the exception.
This story begins back on 30th November 1989 whilst a friend of mine, Ian Jack, the former mechanic on the Aberdeen Lifeboat, and myself were taking part in a coastguard exercise on Loch Ness. The scenario for the exercise had been planned by Mike Armitage the section officer for HM Coastguards, Inverness area, which includes Loch Ness. The scenario was that a passenger vessel and a fishing vessel had collided on Loch Ness, resulting in a fire in the engine room of the passenger boat, the fishing vessel sinking, with some of its crew taking to a life raft and approximately six other persons from the fishing vessel and passenger boat missing.
The exercise involved all the main emergency services and most the other vessels which operate on Loch Ness, including the cruise boat “Nessie Hunter”, of which I am the skipper.
The exercise was due to begin at 12 noon when a “distress” signal would be sent out by the passenger vessel, whereupon all the emergency services and other vessels involved would spring into action. My remit was to be in the position, that I would normally be, with Nessie Hunter at that time of day, which in my case would be in the vicinity of Urquhart Castle. Unfortunately, as with the best laid plans of mice and men, things did not go according to plan, a real situation had developed in the North Sea, and the R.A.F Sea King helicopter, which was to take part in the exercise, was called away, and I was instructed to maintain a holding pattern in the Urquhart Castle area, and await further instructions.

It was a lovely autumn morning, barely a ripple on the lochs surface, and we began a holding pattern involving figure of eight's and decreasing and increasing circles, whilst monitoring the VHF radio. We had settled down and were having coffee and sandwiches when I happened to look at the sonar screen, and much to my surprise, I noticed a depth reading of 787 feet, about 37 feet more than I had previously recorded in this area! I pointed this out to Ian and immediately all thoughts of the chocolate biscuits which we were to have with our lunch were forgotten and we began to further investigate this area of Loch Ness which is now known as “Edwards Deep”. We began to retrace our route and take compass bearings, at this time Nessie Hunter did not have GPS, and eventually we recorded a depth of 812 feet, the greatest known depth ever recorded in Loch Ness! In the 1960’s a mini-submarine supposedly recorded a depth of 975 feet, but to my knowledge, no evidence to support this claim, has ever been presented, I have the picture to support my claim, and since 1989 my findings have been verified by several other vessels. Shortly after my discovery the exercise began and our attention was diverted to the business in hand.
At the beginning of February ‘97 a friend of mine, Gary Campbell, was browsing through some old copies of the Inverness Courier when he came upon an article about my discovery in Loch Ness and was amazed that it had not been more widely reported, especially as at that time it was described as “the most significant discovery ever made in Loch Ness, and merited more investigation”.

Gary telephoned and asked me if I had ever thought of pursuing the matter, but I explained to him, that being a local, I have lived in the Loch Ness vicinity for 36 years, our views and opinions about Loch Ness are generally ignored, or treated by the world media as the ravings of drunken highlanders. It would appear that you have to be a “foreign expert” or “quasi-scientist” before your opinions or findings are sought by the media. His reaction was that he would like to rectify this, in view of the fact that despite numerous so-called expeditions over the past 30 years we were still no closer to proving or disproving the existence of “Nessie” and asked my permission to relate what I had told him to a journalist friend of his. I saw no harm in this and gave Gary my permission to tell his friend, and so it all begun!

Within hours of Gary talking to his friend the story went “down the wire”, and from that day onwards the world and his brother want to talk to me about “Nessie's Cave” or “Nessie's Den”. Let me state quite categorically here and now, that at no time have I ever described my discovery as anything other than an anomaly on the bottom of Loch Ness and that I am not the Chief Loch Ness Coastguard Officer, I am merely the skipper of Loch Ness Cruises passenger boat, the Nessie Hunter, who also happens to be a voluntary auxiliary coastguard.
Over the next few days the story began to appear in the world's press, and radio and television stations world-wide expressed a desire to interview me. I was delighted to hear that a major German owned North Sea Oil Company had volunteered to provide deep sea equipment to investigate the anomaly, however, what they did not say was that we would have to provide a support vessel to carry all the equipment at an estimated cost of £55,000, needless to say I am not in a position to finance such an expedition. After the story of this apparently generous gesture by the Oil Company appeared in the Aberdeen Press & Journal one or two other companies expressed an interest in sponsoring an expedition, but to date no firm financial commitments have been forthcoming.

For the record I would also like to state that despite giving hundreds of press, radio and television interviews, I have never capitalised on my discovery, to date I have received a grand total of £30.05 (approx. $50) from BBC Scotland, for a radio interview in Inverness, however, I am still as intrigued as everyone else about my discovery and hopefully someday, someone will come along with genuine intentions to investigate the anomaly that is “Edwards Deep”
George Edwards Sonar screen of Edward's Deep


Searching for Nessie IIX

Searching for Nessie  (continued...)

Important Information Please Read First
All sighting and photographic references on this page are documented and can be verified through various publications.

Project Urquhart
Project Urquhart (named after the castle which stands on the shore of the loch ) was the idea of Nicholas Witchell the BBC news presenter and Loch Ness enthusiast since 1970.
He wondered if he could get the scientific bodies interested in studying loch ness and to his suprise they said yes. The Natural History Museum in London, the Freshwater Biological Association, Simrad the marine electronics company and the Discovery Channel all agreed either to help or sponsor work at the loch, not to search for the monster but to study the loch and its workings as the largest body of fresh water in the British Isles.
The first stage, which took place in 1992 was carried out by the Simrad company using their research ship MV Simrad from Norway. They carried out the first complete hydrographic survey of the loch since 1903 when Sir John Murray plumbed the depths of the loch using nothing more than a long piece of pianowire and a weight.
Simrad travelled nearly 500 miles in the loch using the latest em1000 multi beam swath system which sends out 120 sonar signals at once in a pan beneath the boat  taking a total of 7 million soundings.
Tim Dinsdale's Film
A new maximum depth was found a couple of miles north of Invermoriston of 786 feet compared  with the depth of 754 feet found by John Murray just south of Urquhart Castle and despite rumours that have been around for years no evidence was found of any caves or tunnels in the loch ( or Edwards Deep ). The loch proved to be a very regular steep walled trench.
While cruising the loch Simrad noticed a line of objects, dubbed the footprints, running from Foyers to Fort Augustus at about 60 metres apart. A small remotely operated submersible fitted with a video camera was sent down to look at one of them and it turned out to be a large metal wheel barrow. It is thought that they are calibration targets put down by the Ministry of Defence to test sonar, when sonar was in its early stages of development and they were using the loch for trials.
July 1993 saw the arrival at the loch of the 65ft research ship Calanus and its support boat Seol mara. Calanus carried some of the most sophisticated sampling devices and fish detecting sonar ever seen on an inland freshwater loch before and was to clock up almost 200 hours of intense sampling of the loch.
What they found is that the loch did not quite act like they expected and several unusual features still can not be explained.
The northern end of the loch is more productive than the southern end so it would be expected to hold a denser population of phytoplankton (microscopic vegitation) but the next step in the food chain the zooplankton (microscopic lifeforms) and fish are more abundant in the southern end of the loch.
They thought that this may be caused by the deep water currents taking them towards the southern end or that the zooplankton may be feeding on material washed down from the rivers entering the loch at Fort Augustus. Even the vertical distributions of phytoplankton and zooplankton did not follow what would be expected with the zooplankton being found some distance below the phytoplankton. Also, the open water fish distribution was some what unusual with the bulk of the fish living between 20 and 30 metres in total darkness.
Trawling the loch produced around 200 fish from the epilimnon (top warmer layer) most of which were charr. This is a very small amount for a stretch of water the size of Loch Ness but what the open water area lacked the more localized areas such as river mouths and near the shore line more than made up for and passed what would be expected from far richer lakes.
Because of this we still have no figure for the amount of fish in the loch with estimates made by the loch ness project of between 27 and 30 tonnes being the last figures to be released.
Tim Dinsdale's Film
The Natural History Museums part in 1993 was to find microscopic animals in the loch which most of us will never have heard of. The nematode worm is found everywhere in the world from the highest mountain to the deepest oceans living in the sand soil and sediments as well as in the tissues of  plants and animals.
In all 41 core samples were taken with most of the worms found in the top 1 centimetre. In just one of the samples 274 nematode worms were found covering 27 different species and one of these the ethmolaimus sp being new to science now with a new home in the vaults of the Natural History Museum in London. The purpose of the study is to see which and how many of the worms live in the loch to give them some idea of how a large freshwater lake should be and to see what the changes in the climate could have on it.
This will help them with studies throughout the world into global warming and pollution . but of more interest to most of us are the unusual sonar contacts made in both 1992 and 1993.
Although the project were not there to look for the monster they did, while using their sonar, see some large contacts in the loch that they could not explain.
On Tuesday the 28 of July 1992 at around 7pm the Simrad research ship was heading south between Foyers and Invermoriston when the automatic tracking sonar locked on to a target and held it for around 2 minutes. Thor Edland, the Simrad specialist who was operating the sonar at the time, described it as a very strong echo in comparison to the fish traces they had been recording.
During the 1993 operations the Simrad sonar aboard the Calanus recorded 4 sonar contacts in mid water.
Birnie Lees, the senior Simrad engineer who studies the traces described them as "strong high value targets ". One in particular he said was "far too large to be one of the lochs known fish". So the biological study of the loch has shown us that the loch does not behave like we would expect a loch of its size to.
The old question of "is there enough fish in the loch to feed a monster " is no nearer an answer.
A new mini monster has been found in the loch, but again sonar contacts have been recorded at the loch this time by people who were not even looking for the monster. Again the sonar screen shows us that something large is moving around in the depths of the loch that should not be in a freshwater loch in the middle of the Highlands of Scotland.

Searching for Nessie VII

Searching for Nessie  (continued...)

Important Information Please Read First
All sighting and photographic references on this page are documented and can be verified through various publications.

Operation Deepscan

Operation Deepscan has been by far the largest and most intense search of Loch Ness to attempt to find the proof of the mystery known as the Loch Ness monster.
The newspapers claimed it was "a sonar exploration of Loch Ness, an operation which would sweep the unfathomable depths of the loch from shore to shore and end to end with a curtain through which nothing could escape".
But how did the operation start and what was the results of the plan estimated to cost £1million.
It was the brainchild of Adrian Shine, the leader of the Loch Ness project who teamed up with Darrell Laurence head of Laurence Electronics, Tulsa Oklahoma. He thought Loch Ness would be a good testing site for his sonar units (not to mention the publicity).
So trials started at the loch in October 1986 using ten boats fitted with Laurence X-16 sonar units. The x-16 sonar unit was used because it would record on a paper chart anything seen in the lochs depths.
The units had a range of 1300ft and could target objects as small as 1ft and separate objects just 1in apart.
The boats, which were supplied by Caley Cruises set out from the New Clansman Hotel into the loch and tried to form a line down the loch but bad weather and winds up to force 6 stopped any chance they had to gather information so all they had to show was yards of meaningless sonar readings. Operation Deepscan was therefore cancelled for that year.
It was decided to go ahead with Operation Deepscan the following year.br So on October the 9th 1987 started the largest sonar sweep of any fresh water loch anywhere in the world.
The boats again supplied by caley cruises met at the New Clansman Hotel. As well as the 24 boats that were to take part in the operation every layby for miles around the loch were full of interested spectators and their cars.
Over 250 newspersons and 20 television crews turned up to record the the event for the newspapers and tv stations from all over the world.
Nearly every boat that could be hired was on the loch that morning including a pleasure steamer hired for the media and an helicopter buzzing around the line of boats.
The proceedings started with Adrian Shine talking to everyone taking part, which included volunteers from the Docklands Fund and the Drake Fellowship, through a megaphone asking they do it for
"all the maligned eyewitnesses who look to you for vindication ".
The media loved it and spirits were high for the start of the operation.
The boats edged out into the loch, where they formed a line of 19, all fitted with lowrance X-16 sonar units with other boats following including the New Atlantis fitted with a Simrad scanning sonar which can still be seen on the loch today.
The first problem they encountered was the sonars forming the curtain interfered with each other so the sensitivity had to be turned down to almost minimum or the readings would be indecipherable. This problem solved, the searchers moved down the loch towards Fort Augustus keeping in line using flags set on several of the boats.
On the first day 3 strong sonar contacts were recorded from 78 metres (256ft) to 180 metres (590ft). The best of these was made just off Whitefield opposite Urquhart Bay.
The object entered the the sonar at 174 metres (570ft) and was tracked for 140 seconds. The new atlantis moved forward to try and engage the target with the Simrad scanning sonar but without success.
The position of all three targets was taken using Decca navigation equipment so they could be revisited later.
The boats returned to the New Clansman Hotel and everyone waited with bated breath for the debriefing in the hotel that evening. In the debriefing it was reported that 3 strong sonar contacts were made that day, larger than would be expected from a fresh water loch.
David Steensland of Laurence said that the 78metre (256ft)target might be of a very large known fish but thought that unlikely at that depth. Of the other two targets he said they were very strange and larger than those he picked up from sharks off the coast of Florida.
Darrell Laurence said that all the contacts were larger than a shark but smaller than a whale. Adrian Shine, leader of the Loch Ness project said in his opinion all 3 targets were unlike those which could be expected from the lochs known inhabitants like salmon eels or shoals of char and that they are deep midwater contacts of considerable strength.
  So the first day of the operation ended with great optimism for the following day of the search.
Day 2 started with the 19 boats lined up just north of Fort augustus and the sweep started back down the loch all the way to abriachan. Apart from a couple of indistinct contacts nothing was seen to match the 3 contacts of the previous day.
The media, assembled at the debriefing with hopes of more good contacts, took the no contact news badly. Adrian explained that he had sent 5 boats out that morning to check the sites of the previous days contacts but nothing could be found that could have made them. That proved that they were not fixed objects but moving mid water targets.
It was estimated that the search covered 60% of the total loch area as the sides and bays could not be covered.
The media left the loch some what dismayed that the Loch Ness Monster had not been dragged from the loch for all to see and some reported Operation Deepscan as a flop. Whatever they may say or print the operation was a success. It did record 3 large sonar contacts in the loch of a size too large to be made by anything known to live in the loch.
So what were the 3 contacts which were said to be larger than a shark but smaller than a whale?
I am afraid we will never know anymore about what can be seen on the sonar contacts of October 9th 1987.


Searching for Nessie VII

Searching for Nessie  (continued...)

Important Information Please Read First
All sighting and photographic references on this page are documented and can be verified through various publications.

Chris and Melissa

This latest sighting occurred on 13th July 2000 at approx 11.00am
by Melissa Bavister and Chris Rivett
Melissa and Chris were on holiday in Scotland. On the 13th of July this year they were travelling on the North shore of Loch Ness near Drumnadrochit when they stopped in a lay-by to take a scenic picture of the Loch a camera with a 23mm lens. They hadn't noticed that also in the pitcure was the now familiar humps that are associated with Nessie.

Here is their own story of events that morning.

Melissa said: "We had stopped at a lay-by and I'd snapped one picture using my little Kodak camera.
"I just wanted a scenic picture to show people back home. I was amazed when I looked at the photograph."
Chris said: "Melissa and I were just admiring the beautiful scenery and saying how much we had enjoyed Scotland when I spotted this shape in the picture. "I said to Melissa that there are no islands out in the middle of the loch and that got us wondering just what was it out there on the water.
"To be honest, neither of us saw anything that made us think: 'There's the monster', and take a picture.
"At the same time, we are positive we never saw anything else, such as a boat, that could have given this image.
"Had something attracted our attention, I would have grabbed a camera with a telephoto lens from the car."
The couple, from Northampton, had visited relatives in Edinburgh and Perth before going on to Loch Ness. Melissa said: "We drove out from Inverness on the Urquhart Castle side of the loch on the main A82 road.
"Just past the village of Lochend the big lay-bys with the fixed telescopes were crammed with visitors, so we drove on about a mile or two until we found a lay-by that was empty.
"It was a fine clear day and we are positive there were no craft on the loch or birds flying about."
Experts have agreed the single photograph showed a very large object in the water half a mile from either shore.
The exact location, near the reputedly haunted Boleskin House, is one of the deepest parts of the 23-mile-long loch, believed to be around 700ft deep.

Alistair Bowie, the Inverness photo lab technician who developed the print, confirmed that the image is on the negative. He told a local newspaper:"The object is on the film and it's not a mark on the negative. Whatever this is, it was there when the picture was taken." The startling image was also examined by Jim Cordiner, senior lecturer in photography at Glasgow's School of Building and Printing. He also told the same newspaper: "It's certainly one of the more interesting monster photographs I have seen."
So is it Nessie? Jim said: "Most pictures are explained away. What we have here is a large object with two clear, definable humps in the middle of a loch."

Searching for Nessie VI

Searching for Nessie  (continued...)

Important Information Please Read First
All sighting and photographic references on this page are documented and can be verified through various publications.

This sighting occurred on Saturday 19th September 1998 and is told by
Mr and Mrs Robert Carter from Marsden, West Yorkshire.

We had just arrived at Strone Holiday Chalet near Urquhart Castle, overlooking Urquhart Bay. It was about 3:00pm. We parked the car at the rear of the chalet and were preparing to unload the car. My husband decided to stand and admire the view over Urquhart Bay, when he noticed a black object in the water of about 14 foot in length. He stood for some 30 seconds trying to identify what the object was and not being able to he ran back to the car, opened the boot and reached for his binoculars. He asked me to come and look at the object with him. We both went to the side of the chalet and I also saw the same dark object in the water. My husband stood looking at it through binoculars for about 30 to 45 seconds until it disappeared under the water. I myself was looking at it with the naked eye and can also say it was a large dark object, around 14 foot in length. It looked to have a body and a head and it was animate, then it sunk into the water without any obvious diving motion.
My husband's description of the object is very similar to mine. He saw a black, slick object of about 14 feet in length and stood 3 feet out of the water, there was no visible signs of flippers, fins, or a tail. It's head appeared to be perfectly round, like a football, but with obvious sign of a muzzle i.e. like that of a seal. The object was moving slowly through the water with a slight bow wave, and it did not arch its back to dive, it just gently slipped below the water. On Saturday the 19th the weather conditions were fine and clear and we did not notice any vessels in the Bay at the time, the water was very calm.
Both my husband and myself have in the past observed dolphins and seals in the wild and this object did not look like either. We have been visiting the Loch Ness area for about 4 years and have seen the Loch's water in many different moods, also we have observed the wakes from boats and have seen wind slicks and dark shapes on the water which are often mistaken for Nessie. What we observed was none of the aforementioned, it was a solid object moving through the water.
Although we have ruled out what it was not, neither of us know what it was. All we can say is that we saw a large, black animal in Loch Ness.

Searching for Nessie V

About Loch Ness

Important Information Please Read First
All sighting and photographic references on this page are documented and can be verified through various publications.

A Closer Look at Loch Ness
Loch Ness
In the Beginning
Loch Ness is part of the Great Glen or Glen Mor in Gaelic, a scar like fault line which runs over 60 miles from Inverness in the north to Fort William in the south. It is made up of 3 lochs, Loch Lochy, Loch Oich and Loch Ness, with Loch Ness being by far the largest.
The loch is a tectonic lake resulting from a movement in the earths crust. Around 500 million years ago tremors opened up the crack that is now Loch Ness as the land to the north moved around 65 miles south westerly.
During the last ice age, which ended about 10 to 12 thousand years ago, the whole area was covered in 4 thousand feet of ice. In fact the only land mark would have been Ben Nevis to the south. It was this ice which gauged out the trough that loch ness lies in. Tremors can still be felt around the loch, the last one in December 1997. The hills surrounding the loch are still rising by 1mm per year.

Facts about Loch Ness
Loch Ness
Loch Ness is the largest body of fresh water in Britain.
(1) There is more water in Loch Ness than all the other lakes in England, Scotland and Wales put together.
(2) It is around twenty two and a half miles long and between one and one and a half miles wide, a depth of 754 feet with the bottom of the loch being as flat as a bowling green.
(3) It holds 263 thousand million cubic feet of water which is around 16 million 430 thousand million gallons of water with a surface area of 14000 acres and could hold the population of the world 10 times over.
(4) It is fed by 7 major rivers the Oich, Tarff, Enrich, Coiltie, Moriston, Foyers and Farigaig plus numerous burns, with only one outlet the River Ness which flows 7 miles through Inverness into the Moray Firth 52 feet below the loch surface.
(5) During a heavy rainfall the lochs level has been known to rise by as much as 7 feet and a rise of 2 feet is common place.
(6) The rain catchment area for Loch Ness is so large that a rainfall of just quarter of an adds 11.000.000 tons of water to the loch.
(7) It is said that the loch never freezes and this is true.
(8) Because of the great amount of water in the loch a thermocline lies at around 100 feet down in the loch.The top 100 feet of water alters temperature depending on the weather conditions but below the thermocline the temperature never alters from 44 degrees Fahrenheit. So as the surface water cools in winter and nears freezing point it sinks and is replaced by the warmer water from below. This can cause the loch to steam on very cold days, in fact it as been estimated that the heat given off by the loch in a winter is the equivalent to burning 2 million tons of coal.

Nessie - The Beginning

Most people think that the Loch Ness monster first appeared in the 1930s and it is certainly from this time that Nessie became famous but sightings of something unusual in the loch date back much further than this.
It is said that the residents around the loch used to tell their children stories of the kelpie to keep them away from the dark dangerous waters of the loch. The story was of a fearsome beast who lived in the loch and when hungrywould leave its watery home and transform itself into a beautiful horse which would wait for some unlucky traveller to climb on its back then it would gallop straight into the loch and feed on its victim. I can see how this would discourage children from playing near the loch but it never stopped the locals from fishing the loch for salmon.

The first recorded sighting of the creature dates back to 565 by Saint Columba. The Saint was an Irish priest who was touring the Highlands teaching Christianity to the Picts. One day while travelling along the side of the loch he came upon a group of locals burying one of their friends who had swum out into the loch to retrieve a boat that had come loose from its moorings and been savaged by a great beast. Columba asked one of his followers to swim out and retrieve the boat and when he did the beast rose from the loch with a mighty roar and went to attack the man. At this point St Columba held up his cross and shouted "Stop go thou no further nor touch the man ". Upon hearing this the beast returned to the depths of the loch seemingly never to roar again.

Next we jump to around 1650. At this time the English army were trying to gain more control over the Highland clans and to help with this a large ship was built at Inverness then moved to the loch using rollers. The idea of the ship was to transport supplies and men around the loch to quell any trouble before it became serious. On board the ship was a writer called Richard Franck who was part of Oliver Cromwell's (Lord Protector of England) army. He wrote about the famous Loch Ness well known for its floating islands. Franck explained the floating islands as mats of vegetation moving around the loch but because of the peat content in the water very littlevegetation grows near its shores as the sunlight can only penetrate a few feet below the surface.
Other reports of strange things seen in the loch can be found from the 18th and 19th centuries but it was 1933 which heralded the start of the Loch Ness monster as we know it.

In April 1933 Mr&Mrs Mackay were driving down the lochside from Inverness to their home in Drumnadrochit when Mrs Mackay saw a disturbance in the loch which she at first thought was ducks fighting but as she watched she saw a large beast in the middle of the loch rolling and plunging in the water causing a great disturbance.The sighting was reported to Alex Campbell, a local game keeper and a reporter for the Inverness Courier (Campbell claims to have seen the monster on no less than 18 occasions). The story appeared in the paperon 2nd of May 1933 and the Loch Ness monster as we know it today was born.
Loch Ness

This is the first picture taken which claims to show the Loch Ness monster. It was taken on the 12th of November 1933 by Hugh Gray at Foyers.
Mr Gray was returning from church and was walking near to where the River Foyers meets the loch.He saw an object of considerable dimensions rise out of the flat calm waters of the loch to what he estimated was a height of about 3 feet. He immediately got his camera ready and took a series of 5 photos before the loch had returned to being flat calm again. Mr Gray thought he had missed anything of interest so the film stayed in the camera for the next three weeks until his brother had it developed but only one of the pictures came out andthis is now one of the classic pictures of the Loch Ness monster .The picture has been studied by four photographic experts and all have found it to be without trace of tampering.Dr Maurice Burton a zoologist believed it to show an otter in the act of diving but F. W. Holiday, a well known fishing writer, thought it was some kind of giant marine worm.
Interest in the monster soared so the Daily Mail newspaper decided to send a team to the loch to look for evidence. It was headed by Marmaduke Wetherall, a famous big game hunter who turned up at the lochand hired a boat to search for the beast. He intended to use his tracking skills to hunt the monster to its lair.Daily reports appeared in the paper and after only two days at the loch the headlines shouted the story of Wetheralls find of footprints on the shore of the loch. Plaster casts were taken and sent to the British Museum of Natural history to be examined. The footprints were soon discovered to have been made by a stuffed hippopotamus foot so with heads bowed low the Daily Mail left the loch to find other news stories with which to tempt its readers.

The next big event at the loch and probably the one which has had most impact over the last 66 years is the photo taken by Robert Kenneth Wilson on the 19 of April 1934. Better known as the Surgeons photo it must be one of the most easily recognisable photos in the world. Wilson and a friend were in the Highlands wild fowl shooting and when travelling down the side of the loch pulled their car over to stretch their legs near to Invermoriston. As they stood looking at the loch they noticed a considerable commotion on the surface about 200 yards away and as they watched they saw something break the surface and his friend shouted "my god ,its the monster ". Wilson ran the few yards back to his car and retrieved his camera and ran back down to his friend near the loch. He focused the camera on the object and took four pictures of it. By the time he had taken the photos the object had disappeared back into the loch. Wilson thought he might have something on film.When he had the photos developed only two came out the best one being the now famous head and neck shots which he sold to the Daily Mail newspaper. When questioned over what he had seen in the loch that day Wilson said he was too busy setting up the camera to take notice of what it was and he had just seen something strange in the loch.


The first big organised attempt to find the monster started in July 1934.Sir Edward Mountain, owner of the Eagle Star insurance company, had been following the news at Loch Ness and while staying in the area decided to organise a search for the monster. He hired captain James Fraser to run the expedition for him with the help of 20 men from the Inverness labour exchange who were signed up to be"watchers for the monster". They were all supplied with binoculars and cameras and each day a bus would take them around the loch and pick them up at the end of the day. Each man was paid £2 a week but they had the added incentive of a bonus of 10 guineas for a good picture of the monster. Over the next 5 weeks a total of five photos were taken but 4 of these could be seen to be made by boat wakes but the fifth one shows an isolated area of disturbance with spray being thrown up which does not look like it was made by water birds. The best results from the expedition came after the 20 men had finished the search. Captain Fraser and an assistant were standing below the road just north of Urquhart Castle on the morning of 15 of September when they noticed something in the loch about three quarters of a mile away. He looked at it through his binoculars and he could see a dark object in the water which looked like an upturned boat. He started to film it which he did for about 2 minutes until with a plume of spray it disappeared. The 16mm film was sent to London for developing but nothing much could be seen on it as the distance had been too great.
Many sightings were still reported from the loch but the next classic photo was taken in 1951 by a local wood cutter. Lachlan Stuart lived in a croft at Whitefield on the shores of the loch across from Urquhart Castle. On the morning of 14th of July at around 6.30 am he came out of his croft to milk his cow when he looked at the loch and saw what at first he thought was a speed boat coming down the loch but soon realized that it was moving too fast to be a boat. He called to his wife and a friend who was staying with them to come down to the waters edge and bring their camera. He watched as three humps rose out of the water and when his wife with Taylor Hay arrived he took one photo before his camera jammed. On the photo you can see three large humps and Lachlan claims that just out of shot was a long thin neck which bobbed up and down in the water. Again the film was checked and no proof of tampering could be found.

Peter Macnab a Scottish bank manager was returning from a holiday in the Highlands in July 1955 when he pulled up his car just above Urquhart Castle and prepared his camera to take a picture of the castle ruins.But as he prepared his camera he noticed a large dark object rise above the surface of the calm loch and start to move across the bay. He rushed to fit his main camera with a 150 mm lens and was able to take one shot with this and another shot with an instant camera. When he had the photos developed both showed a large dark object moving across the bay but when he showed the photo to his friend all he received was skepticism and much leg pulling. So much so that he threw the negative of the second photo away. What the photo shows is of great interest because the size can be guessed as we know the tower of the castle is 64 feet high so the largest of the two humps can be estimated at around 50 feet in length.

R H Cockerell was a fish farmer from Fort William who had a keen interest in the Loch Ness monster. His expedition in the autumn of 1958 consisted of him paddling around the loch in his canoe at night with a specially designed camera fitted to his helmet. On the last night of his expedition just before dawn he was in themiddle of the loch just out from Invermoriston when the breeze dropped and he was sitting on a mirror calm surface. He noticed about 50 yards away something which seemed to be swimming steadily towards him.He thought it looked like a very large flat head 4 or 5 feet long with what looked like another line just behind it .He was convinced that he was looking at the head and neck of some very large creature and with some great effort decided to move nearer to it. He was somewhat shocked to see that it appeared to move towards him with some speed so he took a shot with his camera while he had the chance. As he continued to move nearer a light breeze moved across the loch and the object seemed to sink but when the breeze passed he could still seesome thing on the surface. As he reached it all he found on the lochs surface was a long stick about 1 inch thick. He left the loch and returned home thinking he had just seen and filmed a stick until he had the film developed and saw that the object he had filmed was very large and did have a wash on an other wise flat calm surface.

And Finally
Tim Dinsdale
What was and still is classed as the greatest piece of evidence for the Loch Ness monster was taken in 1960 by Tim Dinsdale.
After reading Constance Whytes book he became interested in the monster and for the next few months read everything he could find on the subject which convinced him that some kind of unknown creature lived in Loch Ness.
He decided to man a one man expedition to the loch in April 1960 with a pair of binoculars and aborrowed 16 mm cine camera. He spent 5 days at the loch rising at dawn and spending all day scanning the loch for signs of the monster but with no luck until the last day of his search he was returning to his hotel for breakfast.
It was the 23rd of April at around 9 am as he drove down into Foyers and as the loch came into viewhe noticed a dark object about half way across the loch and as he studied it through his binocularsit started to move away from him across the loch. He started to film it with the 16mm Bolex cine camera with long bursts as it moved across the lochthen turned parallel to the far shore and headed down the loch in the direction of Fort Augustus.He noticed he was running out of film so decided to rush down to the lochs shore with the hope of the object turning back across the loch so he put down the camera and raced down the narrow winding road at break neck speed until he reached the shore but to his dismay the object had returned to the depths of the loch leaving no sign of itself.
On his return home the film was developed and instantly became the conclusive proof that some large unknown animal lives in the depths of the loch. This roll of 16mm film became and still is the basis for more peoples belief in the Loch Ness monster than any other evidence.
This was strengthened in 1966 when the RAF studied the film and came to the conclusion that it wasnot a surface vessel or submarine but some animate object in Loch Ness. It was partly due to this film that saw the formation of "The Bureau for Investigating the Loch Ness Phenomena Ltd " or the LNI as it became known as.
It was formed by MP Sir David James, Constance Whyte ( whose book Tim had read and was published in1958 ) and naturalists Sir Peter Scott and Richard Fitter.
Its first expeditions to the loch lasted only two weeks using volunteers but later ran them formonths at a time.
The expeditions ran for ten years and their main study was surface watching using manned camera stations either fixed or mobile around the loch.
It was one of these mobile units which gave them one of their best pieces of photographic evidence.
Dick Raynor was on a expedition with the LNI in June 1967 and on the 13th he noticed a white wakeline on the opposite side of the loch near Dores Bay. Through his binoculars he could see a dark object at the head of the line so he started to film it with a 16mm cine camera. As he was filmingt he Scott ll pleasure boat came into view about half a mile from the object he was filming.
Again the film was studied by the RAF film unit JARIC ( Joint Air Reconnaissance Intelligence Centre)and they stated that the object at the head of the wake was a solid object which measured 7 feetlong. This was good news for the LNI as nothing of that size is known to live in the loch.
During their ten years at the loch the LNI tried many ways with which they hoped to spot the monster from playing search lights on the lochs surface to manned submarines fitted with sonar they even used an autogyro that was used in a James Bond film but at the end of their days at the loch they still did not have the proof they wanted to show the loch ness monster was a real life creature. Many one man searchers carried on at the loch and some are still there to this day and the only organized team at the loch now is the Loch Ness project which studies the loch from a more scientific basis which in the end may give us the answers to the mystery of the loch.
The next question we should be asking is what could it be in the loch that people are seeing even to this day.
Well many theories have been put forward for what lives in the loch but none of then really explainall the sightings.

The most exciting theory put forward is that the Loch Ness monster is in fact a plesiosaur. Very little is known about their life style or breeding habits but still the theory goes on.

The surgeons photo did more to add to this as it showed what could be a plesiosaur rising from the loch.
Nessie Photo

Around 70 million years ago a group of primitive reptiles gave rise to several different off shoots two of which became successful lines.
One was the pliosaurs which had large heads and short necks and the other being the plesiosaur withits small head and long neck. It is thought the plesiosaurs were always marine animals (lived in the sea ) but we know this can be overcome as crocodiles turtles and dolphins are known to survive in both fresh and salt water. It is still not known if the plesiosaur was warm or cold blooded and this would make the difference as to whether they could live in the loch or not. Cold blooded animals must live in warm climates to keep active, whereas warm blooded animals like ourselves generate heat themselves from the food we eat. If the plesiosaur was warm blooded then they may have found their way up the River Ness into the loch and still be there today. So if plesiosaurs do live in the loch the next question would be is there enough food for them to live on.

Studies done on the food chain in the loch give estimates from 1 to 27 tonnes and we are told this is not enough to feed a population of plesiosaurs on.The only answer we can think of to this is are all the migratory salmon which pour into the loch included in these figures and what about the unknown amount of eels which live at all levels of theloch?

There have been several sightings of a long necked creature seen eating fish in the loch like the one from John Maclean who in 1938 while standing near the loch shore at Invermoriston saw a monsters head and neck 20 yards away which looked to be swallowing food by opening and closing its mouth several times then tossing its head backwards. When the monster dived he saw two distinct humps and the entire length of the tail. It came up again a few yards further out and lay there for 2 or 3 minutes. He described it as around 20 feet long with the tail being around 6 feet long the neck was rather thin and several feet long.
The common eel anguilla anguilla starts its life 1000 feet down in the Sargasso Sea in the Gulf of Mexico. After drifting with the gulf stream for around 3 years they turn up on our shores in there thousands to find there way into our rivers and lakes to live for around 10 years before making the journey back to the Sargossa Sea to breed. It has been noted from studies done by the Freshwater Biological Association in Lakes Windermere and Ullswater that some stay in fresh water all there lives and those that do grow to sizes larger than would be expected.
The rod caught record for Britain is 11lb 2oz but much larger ones have been caught in nets. There have been reports of eels weighing up to 50lbs being caught and this would be at least 6 feetlong. In a body of water as large as Loch Ness it could be possible for them to grow much larger than this.I have spoken to people at loch ness who say they have seen eels as large as 15 feet in the loch. No real studies have been done into the eel population in Loch Ness but it is known that they can live at all levels of the loch from the many bays to the bottom were they are only seen by the underwater cameras that are sent down to look for the monster.

Another thing in the eels favour is the fact that they can leave the water and move across land for great distances this could explain some of the many land sightings that have been seen over theyears.
If an eel could grow up to say 20 feet with a body width of 3 feet then this could explain many of the single hump sightings.

The European catfish or wells was introduced into this country at the end of the last century inlarge houses as a source of food. The wells which derives from German to wallow lives in lakes or the deeper parts of rivers.They feed mainly from the bottom with the use of 2 long feelers on the top of their jaws and 4 small barbules underneath. Their food mainly consists of carrion but they will take fish and have been known to take water fowl.
The largest rod caught catfish is 202lb taken from the Banude and took 5 hours to land but in Russia specimens of up to 660lbs have been caught with a body length of 16 feet.
Warm windless weather is the best time to catch them usually during early morning or late evening.This is also the same conditions and times a large number of nessie sightings are made.
Many specimens are now caught in this country over the 50lb mark and one caught in Essex was 97lb.
It may be possible that one of the large houses around the loch or in one of the glens stocked catfish in there private lake only for one or two to escape and enter the loch and be seen today by people and reported as a sighting of the monster.
Who would know that the large hump they had just seen was a 16 foot catfish.

The sturgeon is a true prehistoric fish that has not changed for millions of years.They are known to appear around our coast and in 1833 a specimen weighing 203lb and 8 foot 6 inchlong was caught at Findhorn which is only 15 miles up the moray firth from Loch Ness. A report from the Inverness Courier in the 1930s say one was seen heading up the River Ness towards the loch.
The heaviest to be taken in British waters is 460lb from a net and they can grow up to 11 feet long and be as wide as 4 feet.

Again as with the catfish who would realise that the hump they had just seen belongs to a fish that has been around for the last few million years. We must remember that not all of the reported sightings are of the Loch Ness monster. Some of them are genuine mistakes by people who do not know the loch and its moods.
Seals are sometimes seen in the loch and people who do not know what they look or behave like will think they have seen the monster.
It is only recently that seals have been filmed in the loch and until then some people, even those who have studied the loch, thought that seals could not or would not enter the loch but in reality they do so several times a year, entering the loch from the River Ness.
Several photos and video have been taken of what people thought was the monster only to show when examined to be nothing more than a seal in the loch.
Strange waves can be seen on the loch most days and some of them look very much like lines of humps twisting across the loch surface. Logs can be seen floating on the lochs surface which can look like a large hump and the lochs birdlife can sometimes look like strange beasts which suddenly dive below the surface.
After taking all these explanations away, there are still people, both tourists and locals, who see things onthe loch that they can not explain.

People who have lived at the loch all their lives and seen nothing suddenly see something in the loch which should not be there.
The only thing we can do is to keep looking at the loch, keep listening to the people who see things that should not be there, examine the photos that are taken at the loch every year and hopefully one day the one piece of evidence that we need to prove to the world that the Loch Ness monster is a real living thing will finally appear.
If you think you have seen something strange at the loch or taken a photo at the loch that you think may be important please let us know as all the evidence needs to be examined if we are to ever solve the mystery. Your sighting and photos will be examined under the strictest confidence and only used by us with your approval.

Searching for Nessie IV

Map of Loch Ness
Map of Loch Ness

Searching for Nessie III

Searching for Nessie  (continued...)

Important Information Please Read First
All sighting and photographic references on this page are documented and can be verified through various publications.

The day after Mr Cockrell's sighting the monster was seen by a Mr Brown and his wife from Invergordon in the same place but closer to shore. They described it as three thick black humps moving through the water with 50 ft ahead of the humps a movement which seemed to suggest a head.
24th May,1960
A member of the Northern Naturalists Organisations, Mr Peter O'Connor from Gateshead, Durham had a sighting. From the garden of the Foyers Hotel he and a number of other people saw the creature at around 4 o'clock in the afternoon. At first he thought it was a rowing boat about 200 yards from the Foyers shore but using his field glasses he could see a brown coloured object which was slowly sinking.
Nessie near shore 27th of May, 1960
Mr O'Connor encountered the monster yet again 3 days later. Between 6 and 6:30 a.m. he went for a walk along the shore beside Foyers Bay and the monster glided into view around the headland. He waded into the water up to his waist to get a closer view. It features were small and sheep-like and a very, very strong neck. It's skin appeared smooth, very like a seal. He turned to yell to his companion and then turned back and took this photograph, to the right, as it disappeared into the turbulence it had created.

27th June to 23rd July 1960
This date is generally regarded to be the first major scientifically planned expedition of its kind to visit the Loch was conducted by The Universities (Oxford and Cambridge) Expedition. The purpose being to make a general study of Loch Ness, paying particular attention to the possible existence of the Loch Ness Monster. Participant in the expedition numbered 30 volunteer graduates and under graduates who used cameras and an echo sounder mounted on a boat. They did encounter one visual sighting of what appeared to be the monsters back moving through the water. Another sighting they had was of an object that continuously changed shape on the surface of the water. Numerous echo soundings were taken which were of unusual character.

7th August 1960
A sighting was reported on this date by a witness who wished to remain anonymous. The witness was driving south-westerly along the main road towards Abriachan pier when he noticed a small yacht travelling up the Loch. He then realised there were two V wakes parallel to one another. The closest of the two wakes came from the yacht and the second appeared to be caused by something just under the water. The object surfaced and looked just like a midget submarine without its periscope. The colour was greenish black, about the size of the yacht, which was in fact 48ft by 10 ft.

Saturday 10th November 1973
In 1973 an interesting sighting was reported by a Mr Jenkyns of Pointclair, Invermoriston. Mr Jenkyns had a head/neck sighting in a close range observation. The sighting report is as follows : Mr Jenkyns lived in a house which is 12 yards above the surface level of Loch Ness. On Saturday 10th November 1973, at about 11:45am he tried to start a tractor which had been stuck for some weeks on a piece of rough ground sloping down to the loch edge to partially built jetty it was a cold slightly damp day, with a strong south-westerly wind on the surface giving a heavy swell with waves over 2ft high. Mr Jenkyns used an engine chemical to start the tractor and as the tractor did not have a silencer there was an explosive noise, so loud that Mrs Jenkyns heard it in the house, despite all the windows being double glazed. Immediately after the noise of the starter, Mr Jenkyns heard a very loud splash, which he described as an impact splash as if something very heavy had been thrown into the water. It was a single noise and was not followed by any further splashing. Being under the impression someone must of thrown a heavy object into the water, he got down from the tractor, walked round it and a good look along the shoreline. He then went back to the tractor and 2 mins after hearing the splash noticed in the water 5 yards of the end of the jetty a ring of concentric circles, showing despite the waves. While he was looking, a little to his left an animal emerged quietly and smoothly (the distance from the observer being about 45 yards) in a north-easterly direction parallel to the shore, then submerged straight down. Throughout, the object maintained a rigid pole-like posture and its motion through the water was very smooth, with no apparent sign of any jerky movement. The head and neck were slate-black, quite rigid and about 9 inches in diameter. He observed a slit mouth, what appeared to be some large scales on the top of the head but not the neck, and above the mouth an eye or possibly a vent. The eye was quite tiny in proportion to the mouth. When the object rose out of the water, it formed an angle 80 degrees to the water, but when it started to move and throughout the movement it formed a 60 degree angle. There was no sign of any fins, horns or other appurtenances. The water at this point is estimated to be only 10 - 20ft deep.

13th July 1979
Going on a number of years, this sighting was by Paul H. Biermasz who was on holiday in the Loch Ness area. This is Mr Biermaszs' own account of his sighting. In July 1979 I had a Nessie sighting that goes as follows :
I was driving from the camp site where I was staying at Invermoriston, north to Inverness on the main road when a few miles after Urquhart Bay, passing a layby with a good Loch view, I saw 'It'. 'It' was at a distance of some 200-300 metres, shaped like an upside-down (black) rowing boat, speeding away from the shore. The speed was remarkable because of the wave 'it' produced. Other people must have seen 'it', a sailing boat crew might have spotted something as 'it' was coming their way. A touring bus was in front of me and crossed the road to pull into the layby. Passengers in the rear of the bus were pointing at the Loch also. Everything happened in seconds. The time of this sighting was between 10 and 11 a.m.. The sky was cloudy but the Loch could be clearly seen and the wind was very low. Back in Holland the story of my sighting was not believed so I have kept quiet about until now.

17th June 1993
Edna MacInnes and her boyfriend, David Mackay said they watched the creature for 10 minutes. Miss MacInnes said that the 40ft beast waved around its giraffe like neck then vanished into the water. Later on the same day James Mackintosh and his son also spotted a brown thing with a neck like a giraffe break the surface. Mr Mackintosh remembers: "It was an eerie experience, it was swimming quite swiftly away from the shore."

9th of April,1996
A Lancashire man, named Bill Kinder, observed a black, shiny object rise out of the water and leave a 10 metre wake. This took place on this date 1996 around 10:00am, just north of Fort Augustus. Also on the same day, the Ling family from London who were travelling behind Bill Kinder on the west shore, reported seeing two humps rise out of the water and leave a long trail.

10th of April, 1996
Two large brown shapes were spotted by a couple from the Black Isle, which appeared to be 10 feet in diameter and 3 feet apart. The object was 200m from the shore near Urquhart Castle, it then travelled across the Loch and disappeared.

14th of May, 1996
A representative of Union Commercials, named Jonathan Murphy, on his first visit to Loch Ness to make a television commercial for Vodaphone, contacted a local paper and said he saw something in the water. He had photographed the object which was then sent to NASA for a thorough investigation.

13th June, 1996Staff and guests of the Craigdarroch House Hotel, Foyers, witnessed at 8:30pm, a bubbly disturbance which was followed by a wake, it then travelled zigzag across the water, creating movement on the Loch for around 10 minutes.
21st of July, 1996
During their visit to the Loch Ness Caravan and Camping Park at Invermoriston, Emilio Demnio and Nikhi Banjeri from Preston, reported seeing a dark brown or black hump appear in the middle of the Loch and stayed for around 10 minutes, at 2:15pm.

1st of August, 1996
While on the pier at Fort Augustus, three witnesses including holidaymaker Nick Watson saw at around 5:30pm a black hump approximately a mile from the shore. It was creating a large commotion on the surface. A few minutes later it headed away from them and disappeared.

18th August, 1996
A camper at Invermoriston photographed what looked like a head and a neck emerging from the Loch. Glaswegian Craig Kerr reported it to a national newspaper. The object appears in the background of a photograph he was taking of another subject. He did not realise this until the film had been processed.

In 1996
Staff members at the Clansman Hotel beside Loch Ness, during their lunchbreak around noon witnessed several humps appear in the Loch. They appeared to be black and were around 1 metre long. They disappeared and shot to the surface again further out in the Loch within moments.

September 1996
This sighting was made by Frank Meyer of Cincinnati, Ohio. These are his own words :
As someone with scientific education (physics) I will not believe in anything I don't know for sure. But I was on Loch Ness for four days in 1996 during the first days of September with four relatives, we saw something we could not quite explain: We had rented a motor cruiser to travel on the Caledonian Canal for two weeks. We spent one night at the Foyers pier. The weather had been fine in the evening, and the loch was very quiet in the morning, practically no waves at all, clear weather. Around 8:45am, I noticed something like the trunk of a large tree, floating motionless just under the surface, about 100 meters in the direction of Urquhart Castle. My four fellow boaters saw it, too, after I asked them what it was. It did not move for at least 15 minutes (well, one of us thought it had moved slightly). We speculated what it could be, we watched it with binoculars (which revealed that it was not a single blob of darkness, but had limblike substructures, as if it really was a dead tree), but nobody took a single photo! I still can't believe it... Finally we took off to visit Urquhart Castle. I took a course that would take us close to the point the mysterious object was floating. Due to the position of the steering wheel, I could not see it during the beginning of the approach and relied on the others to take a close look. But when we got there, nothing was visible. Not only that, but nobody had actually seen it disappear. One moment it had been there, a moment later it was gone without a trace. It was obviously no tree. Was it one of the almost stationary zones of rippled water that can occur on lakes due to wind and current? It was so isolated - one dark spot in a wide totally quiet surrounding - and stayed unchanged for 15 minutes or more, and it was darker than the normal shadow - to me that explanation seems practically impossible. The same reasons exclude a cloud shadow. For a mirage it was not far enough, and one thing I am absolutely sure of: It was under the surface. The only thing I can think of as possible explanation is a thin floating layer of dark particles, slowly collected overnight by the currents of the Foyers bay and of the open loch, clearly visible only because of the flat viewing angle. But then, why didn't it disappear gradually when we approached the spot?

16th February, 1997
A family reported seeing an object travelling quickly through the water.

A local man from Glenurquhart filed a report about seeing two humps in the water near to Abriachan.

21st March, 1997
A South African holidaymaker reported to have seen two humps appear from the water near Aldourie Castle beside Loch Ness.

22nd of March 1997
Travelling down the south side of the Loch Richard White of Muir of Ord saw a number of humps moving on the water around 200m from the shore

15th April, 1997
A visitor from the Isle of Skye reported seeing something odd in the water near Foyers.

14th June, 1997
An object which looked like a pole appeared from the water near Dores, the top of which looked like a small head that looked around and then disappeared.

21st of June,1997
About 1 mile south of Urquhart Castle, at around 9:00am, a dark object was spotted moving swiftly across the Loch.

21st of June, 1997.
Another sighting was reported by the producer and technician of an American film team who were filming a documentary at Strone Point, above the castle. They spotted a dark object moving swiftly across the Loch about 1 mile south of Urquhart Castle around 9:00am. Unfortunately it had disappeared before the cameraman had time to record it on film.

21st of June, 1997
The "Royal Scot" from Fort Augustus reported two sonar contacts at a depth of 400 ft in a trench just north of Fort Augustus.

2nd July, 1997
The "Royal Scot" again reported a similar contact at a depth of 300 ft.

9th of August,1997
There was a report of a camper, who was staying at the Loch Ness Caravan and Camping Park at Invermoriston, which told of her experience during an incident at around 3:00am. She had heard something splashing about in the water and realised some ducks nearby were becoming restless for some reason. Then she said she heard a strange buzzing noise from the Loch but it didn't sound like a boat or other engine.

13th August, 1997
A report of a large, dark, coloured object appearing in the water near Abriachan and moving at speed.

Saturday 30th May 1998
The first reported sighting of the the Loch Ness Monster in 1998 was made by a 22 year old female tourist from Marlborough, Wiltshire at 8:55am. She saw a large black object rising about 10 feet out of the water just beneath Urquhart Castle and claimed she had been able to see the object for a full 2 minutes before it disappeared.

June 17th 1998
Around 5 a.m. a group of young men on a hill walk claimed to have witnessed Nessie as they were descending a hill near Inverfarigaig. The men, brothers Adam and Mark Sutherland and Peter Gillies from Inverfarigaig and Peter Rhind from the Black Isle watched the shape for about 45 minutes through binoculars before it disappeared under the water. They described the shape as being about 300 metres from the shore, massive in size with a long tail. The Loch was flat calm at the time.

July 13th 2000
At approx 11 a.m. Melissa Bavister and Chris Rivett, a couple on holiday in Scotland from Northampton. were travelling on the North shore of Loch Ness near Drumnadrochit when they stopped in a lay-by to take a scenic picture of the Loch using a camera with a 23mm lens. They hadn't noticed that also in the pitcure was the now familiar humps that are associated with Nessie. When they returned home and had the film processed Chris noticed the humped shapes in one of the photographs. They were just passed the village of Lochend. "It was a fine clear day and we are positive there were no craft on the loch or birds flying about." said Chris.
Experts have agreed the single photograph showed a very large object in the water half a mile from either shore.
The exact location, near the reputedly haunted Boleskin House, is one of the deepest parts of the 23-mile-long loch, believed to be around 700ft deep.

Early May 2001
Approx 6 a.m James Gray and Peter Levings were fishing on Loch Ness near Invermoriston, about three quarters of a mile from where the River joins the Loch. Mr Gray said the conditions were absolutely peaceful in the middle of the loch. He then spotted a movement 150 yards away and saw something sticking out of the water. He grabbed his camera and took a few snaps. The object then raised up a couple of feet and was rising as he looked at it. He said: "Soon, it was about 6ft out of the water but secods later it had become a black kind of blob as it disappeared. It had curled forward and gone down." He added: "This was certainly no seal. It had a long black neck almost like a conger eel, but I couldn't see a head. It didn't seem to bend very much but as it went under it sort of arched and disappeared. "We circled for twenty minutes but found nothing."

Have a look at this sighting:

June 1st 2003
This proved a good day for monster spotting with no less than three sightings in eight hours. Two of the sightings were from the cruise boat Royal Scot and the third was claimed by a fisherman at around 10pm. All were reported in the Fort Augustus area. The skipper of the Royal Scot spotted a fast moving wake in the water at around 2pm, but thinks he was the only person aboard to see it at the time. "The loch situation at that time was flat calm - absolutely mirror glass," he recalled. "It was travelling at 30 to 35 miles per hour. It was probably chasing salmon. It seems to be some sort of fish eating machine." The second sighting at 8pm lasted for 35 minutes and was witnessed by all 25 passengers and three crew aboard at the time. "What we saw was the top of a hump four or five feet long and five or six inches out of the water," the skipper revealed. The sightings came a week after the boat's sonar detected an object 20 feet long and weighing almost two tons, 320 feet below the surface in the same area. The third sighting was reported at Borlum Bay. A fisherman saw something resting on the surface for three or four minutes before it did a surface roll underwater and disappeared. It was described as almost black in colour and close to a seal in size.

Tuesday 17th August 2004
Tom Clegg of Worcestershire saw what he is certain was the monster just before 4pm. Tom saw the creature in the south of Loch Ness between Invermoriston and Fort Augustus. "I saw three dark humps in the water," he recalled. "It was maybe about 150 metres out into the loch. The humps were three to five metres in length maybe. The skin seemed very smooth. It didn't look like anything I'd seen before." He watched the humps for three to five seconds before they appeared to slip below the water. Tom remains convinced he saw an animal of some kind and rejected the suggestion he may have been fooled by a boat wake. "That was the first thing I checked for, but there wasn't a wake. There weren't any boats in sight," he said.

Thursday 11th August 2005
Nigel Bell and his family from Newcastle watched what they described as the head of a large animal move through the loch at 6pm. The family, who were on the veranda of a holiday lodge at Foyers at the time, said that the head was larger than that of a cow and was about a third of the way across the loch. Regular visitors to the area, they were convinced what they saw was not the result of a boat wake or wave movement.

Sunday 28th August 2005
Kelly Yeats and Neil McKenzie from Bridge of Deee, were staying at Foyers Bay House when they saw a "long necked, curved-headed" creature in the loch at 8.30am. The sighting lasted 10 minutes.

Friday 9th September 2005
A retired Master Mariner was cruising just south of Urquhart Bay in a Caley Cruisers' boat at a speed of nine knots when it was overtaken by an unknown object which came between them and the south shore. The sighting lasted several minutes and the object only disappeared as the boat moved towards it. A regular boat user on the loch, the captain said that there was no rational explanation for the object, which was unlike anything any of the boat's occupants had seen before.

Saturday 15th October 2005
Robbie Girvan. owner of the Loch Ness Caravan Park at Invermoriston, took five pictures of what he described as a four foot high head and neck at 6pm when he was walking his dogs by the loch shore. He said he saw a long neck come out of the water and had time to return to the house, get his camera and return to take the pictures. Previously a non-believer, he said the "dark green and silvery" creature could only have been Nessie.

Tuesday 27th March 2007
Sidney Wilson, an English holiday maker from Nottingham, took a cruise down the loch to view the sights. As they approached Urquhart Castle two power boats appeared leaving a large wash in their wake. Sidney took two quick photographs of the boats and on the second one there appeared to be something in the water. After enlarging the image Sidney could see a head and a fin on the photograph.

Saturday 26th May 2007
A two-minute video clip, recorded on this date, shows what appears to be a long, black creature swimming just below the surface of Loch Ness. Click here to view Gordon's video. The creature's head breaks the surface as it propels itself through the water. Images from the tape also clearly show how the creature creates a wake on the surface of the water as it swims in the direction of Inverness. The film was taken by amateur scientist Gordon Holmes, from Shipley, Yorkshire, who estimates the "creature" was moving at around 6mph. Mr Holmes, who works as a technician at Bradford University, was in the area using hydrophones to detect underwater noises from the loch. He said he saw the monster at 9.50pm while he was filming the loch from a layby on the A82. Mr Holmes, 55, said: "I was minutes from going home but I saw something moving and dashed out of the car and switched the camcorder on. "About 200 yards away from me I could see something in the water. It was definitely a creature propelling itself through the water. It was fairly bubbling along the water. It was streaking along."

Wednesday 15th June 2011
Foyers shop and cafe owner Jan Hargreaves and her husband Simon believe they caught a glimpse of "Nessie". It was while taking a break on the store's front decking, looking out to the loch, when Mrs Hargreaves and kitchen worker Graham Baine spotted an unusual figure cutting a strange shape on the loch. "We were standing looking out and saw something that looked bizarre," said Mrs Hargreaves. "I said to my husband to come and have a look. "We stand here all the time and look out and see boats and kayaks but it didn't look like anything we have seen here before." Despite the unidentified creature being quite a distance from their vantage point, Mrs Hargreaves said it had a long neck which was too long to be that of a seal and it was black in appearance. "It went under the water and disappeared for probably 30 to 40 seconds and then came back up again," said Mrs Hargreaves. "It was around for a good four to five minutes. It was just so strange." Keen to stress she is not seeking publicity, Mrs Hargreaves does firmly believe what she saw was the Loch Ness Monster. "It was so exciting," she said. Nessie hunter Steve Feltham said he heard about the possible sighting when he popped into the store and believes because it was from residents rather than tourists, it is more credible. "I'm excited by the fact it was locals who had seen it," said Mr Feltham. "It's quite a distance from the shop to the water and they watch everything that goes on there." What particularly excited Mr Feltham was that it was from the exact same vantage point where Tim Dinsdale shot the best footage of the legendary creature back in 1960. "I'll put the sighting with the other sightings," said Mr Feltham. "I will also continue to carry out surface observations." The sighting was recorded between 2.30pm and 3pm.