Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Book Review: Nick Redfern's Chupacabra Road Trip

I am a frequent reader, I've read close to 500 books on the paranormal, cryptozoology, ufology, and other topics of high-strangeness. Every once and a while I pick up a book that will change my entire point of view on a certain topic. An example was Mothman Prophecies by John Keel. Another was Chupacabra Road Trip by Nick Redfern.
I have been reading Redfern's books since I initially got interested in the unexplained. I have always loved his writing and how each book he writes is significant to the subject. Chupacabra Road Trip was even more than that. It convinced me that there is more the the Chupacabra mystery than just coyotes with mange and mass hysteria. 
In Chupacabra Road Trip, Redfern leads us along as he explores the misty jungles of Puerto Rico, examines the strange looking corpses of hairless canines, and even gets peed on by a bat!
The book is filled with fascinating information about the Chupacabra, much of which has never been explored before. Redfern leaves no stone unturned as he investigates every aspect of the goat-sucker, examining ever possible aspect with his unique sense of humor. 

Chupacabra Road Trip is a journey that anyone interested in the truth about the goat-sucker of Puerto Rico and hairless dog of Texas should absolutely love. You can buy the book here

(On a side note, I will be down in Mississippi for the next week. After that I will be going to Harrisburg, PA for a long weekend. Because of this, I will be unable to put anything up on the blog for the next two weeks. I will be doing some paranormal related stuff so I will make sure to write about that when I get back.)

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Book Update

I am changing my focus for my upcoming book. I decided instead of rewriting the same cases that everyone knows, I want to contribute something specific to the field.
Because of this, I have adjusted the focus of my book to looking at paranormal aspects of cryptids.

I have a great interest in the 'fringe' ideas about unknown animals. Here is the list of the chapters I will have as of right now:

  • UFOs
    • this will be to explore the idea of a connection between UFOs and cryptids; specifically Bigfoot, flying humanoids, and lake monsters
  • Extraterrestrials
    • this will be to explore the idea that some cryptids are extraterrestrial in nature: specifically Bigfoot and the chupacabra
  • Lover's Lanes
    • this will look at popular Lover's Lane cryptids such as Bigfoot, Goatman, Mothman, and Owlman
  • Earth Energies
    • this will explore the idea that cryptids have connections with 'earth energies' which would include subjects such as ley lines and powerful places (stone circles, graveyards, etc.)
  • Psychic
    • this will look at the idea that some cryptids have a psychic aspect such as Bigfoot, flying humanoids, and black dogs
  • Fairies
    • this will look at the possible connection between fairies and cryptids
  • Tulpas
    • this will look at the idea that cryptids are thought-forms created through the power of the mind
  • Ultraterrestrials
    • this will look at John Keel's idea of multi-dimensional beings (this chapter will also discuss the djinn)
  • Where does this leave cryptozoology?
    • this will discuss what will happen to cryptozoology if these creatures really aren't unknown animals

If you have any suggestions for inclusions in the book, let me know in the comments!

False Alarm: 'Kraken' Photo is Just a Rock

I recently posted about a new photo of a supposed giant squid captured by Google Earth.
Well, as it turns out, the photo is of an interesting rock outcropping known as Sail Rock.

You can find more about the Sail Rock here.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Werewolf of Defiance

Defiance, Ohio, a sleepy little town, about 55 miles south of Toledo, had a series of unusual encounters in 1972 that will become whispered legend in the years after. Defiance is your average, small, Midwestern American town. Most of the people who live there make their living by working at one of the handful of factories around the area. Defiance is best known for its Fort Defiance, which has a colorful historical significance . So what happened in Defiance all those years ago? Possibly the oddest couple of Dogman encounters ever reported.
On July 25th, 1972, when two employees a local freight train company were working the graveyard shift, inspecting railcar braking systems. Ted Davis, one of the witnesses, during an interview with the Toledo Blade said, “I saw these two hairy feet. Then I looked up and he was standing there with a big stick over his shoulder. When I started to say something, he took off for the woods.” The creature was also described as having, “huge, hairy feet, fangs, and it ran side-to-side like a caveman in the movies.”
About a week after the first encounter, Davis claims to have seen the creature, at the same place as the first encounter, the rail yard. He said it looked at him from the edge of the woods, and the turned and left. That same night, a grocer reported an attack from a hairy, animal-headed creature wielding a two-by-four.
In a small town, nothing stays quiet for long. About a week after the initial events, the local newspaper caught wind of the unusual story. The headlines wrote “Horror Movie Now Playing on Fifth St.” and opened with the famous poem from The Wolf Man:
“Even a man who is pure of heart,
And says his prayers by night,
May become a wolf when the wolf bane blooms,
And the moon is clear and bright.”
The Crescent News, the local newspaper, and the Toledo Blade, ran a total of four articles about the incident. The longest of the articles focused on the local police force’s investigation into the incident. Headed by Donald Breckler, the police chief at the time, the police searched extensively for the “werewolf”. Although the general public thought that it to be a bored teenager’s prank, Chief Breckler considered the club-wielding, animal-faced assailant was a threat to the community. Eventually, after days of looking and no results, the search soon ended.
It is worth noting that Defiance, Ohio is no stranger to unusual phenomena. Within the past fifty years Defiance has seen hundreds of Unidentified Flying Objects, a Dracula lookalike running amuck, and numerous other tales of the weird.
Later this year, Ken Gerhard will be running a symposium about the Dogman and it is located in the town of Defiance. You can find more info here.

Here is one of the articles about the Defiance Werewolf

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Has a Kraken been captured on Google Earth?

People frequently find weird things on Google Earth, even the Loch Ness Monster has been seen a couple times. Recently another aquatic creature has surfaced which has cause some waves in the internet.

The image below is what has caused the discussion. Some people are saying it is a giant squid, while others are arguing that it is a surviving Plesiosaurus.

You can read more about it here.

What do you guys think? I personally think that it is a giant squid. The size (which is approx. 100 feet) fits as well as the shape. Some people are saying that the shape above the water is a plesiosaurus fin but plesiosaurus only got to be about 11 feet long, much smaller than this.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

UFO in Cleveland, New YouTube Video

A recent UFO video has surfaced and is currently making its rounds through the internet. A YouTube "underground" UFO news profile known as SecureTeam10 originally posted the video on the 13th of this month.

You can watch SecureTeam's video here.

I am undecided about the video, on one side, it is far away and doesn't have the crisp shape and distinct features that many hoaxes do, but it also gives off that hoax vibe.

What do you think? Let me know in the comments.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Future Projects

I have four projects I am currently working on, all four of which should be completed by the end of the year.

The first project is mostly done, there is just some revisions and adjustments left. The project is a regional listing and evaluation of various diminutive humanoids. Essentially it is a directory of dwarves. I will put the directory on the Kindle Store as an ebook sometime in the future.

The second project ties into the third one; I am writing a book about the history of fortean, paranormal, and occult within the last two centuries. I am hoping it will be out by September but I am unsure.

The third project ties into the second because it is a card game which focuses on important paranormal events. More about that to be announced.

I run the paranormal club at my school. We are currently in the works of planning a paranormal conference to raise funds and to generate some cases. Again, more about that to be announced.

If you have any questions about the projects, email me or comment.

Friday, June 10, 2016

The Diversity of Ohio's Bigfoot

As I have said previously, I have the great privilege of living in such a diverse state when discussing the weird. Ohio is a hotbed of everything from UFOs, to ghosts, to Bigfoot. Ohio is probably known in most cryptozoology circles for its large number of Bigfoot sightings.
Not only is Ohio in the top five for most Bigfoot sightings in the USA, it also is home to a handful of its own hairy humanoids.

The Grassman is probably the best known of Ohio's Bigfoot creatures. The name pertains to an old folk story repeated to children in order to scare them into behaving. The Grassman was equatable with the Bogey-man, if children were bad, he would kidnap them and devour them. He was known as the Grassman because he was said to lurk in tall grasses.
Grassman reappeared in cultural memory when Bigfooters in Ohio began to find large domes of reeds and grass around Ohio. The domes appeared to be woven like baskets. It was quite logical to dub the creatures making these domes, Grassmen.
Ohio Grassman - Documentary | Bigfoot Research News
Monster Quest's rendition of the Grassman

Another Ohio ape-man is the Minerva Monster. I recently did a blog post reviewing an excellent documentary about the Minerva Monster. You can find it here.
The Minerva Monster was the name given to a large, hairy ape-like humanoid seen in Minerva, Ohio in 1978. The creature quickly became ingrained within the town's culture. There is even a small festival dedicated to the creature every year.
The poster for the documentary on the Minerva Monster

The final weird ape-man I will talk about is called Orange-Eyes.
This creature is best known for its habit of visiting popular teen make-out points and peering into the windows of cars. It is named for its extremely bright, glowing eyes which are a fluorescent orange. The act of probing cars and make-out points is actually common for Bigfoot creatures.

Ohio is full of Bigfoot creatures. If you have another regional name for one or have seen a Bigfoot in Ohio, tell me about it in the comments!

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Minerva Monster Documentary Review

I recently went to the wonderful event, Creature Weekend, and while I was there I got a chance to meet the producer and director of a documentary which has become very popular, Minerva Monster. The documentary was made by a team known as Small Town Monsters, who also have a documentary on the Beast of Whitehall.
I was excited about getting the documentary because I live about 45 minutes away from Minerva and when I began to be interested in cryptozoology, the Minerva Monster was one of the first creatures I looked into.
I was not disappointed. The documentary was level headed, open minded, and was very respectful of the witnesses. It was similar to any documentary on a small town and an important event within the town. It reminded my of one of Lyle Blackburn's books except in a documentary format.
I especially liked that the team treated the event as history, which it is.

Overall, Minerva Monster is a great examination of a small town and its claim to cryptozoological fame. I recommend this to anyone who lives in Ohio and to anyone who is interesting in cryptozoology.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Respected Bigfooter John Green has Passed Away

We all woke up to somber news this morning, John Green passed away. He left us on May 28 but news didn't get released until just now. I have always respected Mr. Green immensely and am very sad about his passing away. We are loosing more and more of the people who were the first in the field.

I don't think I could do an article about Mr. Green that would be worthy of his contribution and significance to the field, but here is Loren Coleman's article about him. 

Monday, June 6, 2016

Fairies.... In Ohio?

Fairies have been getting increasing amounts of attention in the field of the unknown. More and more people are examining reports of fairies from around the world. I recently received two reports from someone I know. He would prefer to remain anonymous so I will refer to him only as "Paul".

Paul has been hunting almost all of his life, and he swears up and down that he has never seen anything like that since.

Paul's first encounter happened on April 19, 2010 at around 6 AM. He was turkey hunting in thick brush and since the sun had not come up, the area was cast with a greyish tint. He was facing a dirt road when he saw "Small white cat or cat-like mammal coming down [the road] toward me, followed by 2 small independent blue orbs of light." He described the orbs as "blue, about 3 ½ to 4 feet off the ground, moved in single file and followed the white creature," he also specified that the orbs moved independently of each other. The cat slowly turned down the road and walked away, the orbs followed.
Paul said that he felt that the area was protected. He even said that he, "shot 2 tom turkeys later that month. Both got back up and ran away. I have not experienced that since, I have killed a total of 15 turkeys in my hunting career and I have never had that happen."

His second story is even more strange.

On September 26, 2010, Paul was deer hunting in a tree stand, on a friend's property. He was surrounded by weeds and trees. Around 4:30 PM, he began to hear a strange buzzing sound near his head. After a split second, a large, brownish tan winged creature flew close in front of his face. He said it was larger than a Dobson fly or dragonfly. He described it as a small, 8 inch tall, humanoid with two sets of wings. He said the wings were moving extremely fast. The encounter lasted about five seconds and then the winged creature flew away into the woods. He got the impression that the creature did not want him to shoot anything and was protecting the area.
Paul said that the elderly woman who owned the property passed away later that year. In her will, she wanted her son to plant a ring of trees right in front of where the 'fairy' was seen by Paul. The son also, after being told about the encounter, said that there have been previous encounters and that he wasn't surprised, given his mother's enthusiasm for the Little People.

This is the sketch by "Paul" of the fairy creature he encountered in September of 2010

I think these two stories are very interesting. Paul is an experienced hunter and still says he has no idea as to what he encountered those two days.
Something I think is very interesting is that both sightings have the element of a sense of protection for the wilderness, which is commonplace in fairy lore. Also, note the face of the winged creature, it resembles that of a Grey alien. 

Interesting stories. Let me know what you think in the comments!

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Creature Weekend

I have gone to a lot of paranormal conventions and conferences; the Mothman Fest, Pittsburgh and Erie MUFON conferences, the Butler Paranormal Conference, and now Creature Weekend. Out of all of those, Creature Weekend has managed to take all of my favorite components of all the others and improve upon them. I had a blast!

The speakers were all extremely nice and great to hang out with. I already knew Ron Murphy and Ken Gerhard so we got to hang out more. I did get to meet Ron Morehead who is very laid-back and cool to talk with.
With my good friend, Ron Murphy

With the one, the only Ken Gerhard

With the infamous Ron Morehead

The Center for Cryptozoological Studies was also there, of which I am a proud member. Brian Seech and Terrie Seech are some of the nicest people you will ever meet.
I got to run the Center for Cryptozoological Studies' evidence table

At the evidence sharing event with Brian Seech
The Ohio Bigfoot Co-Op was there as well. They gave an interesting presentation about their research in Salt Fork State Park.
The esteemed Steven Blair and Mark Hudak of the Ohio Bigfoot Co-Op
I also got a chance to see the new Beast of Whitehall documentary from Small Town Monsters, which was great. I purchased the Minerva Monster documentary which I will be reviewing soon.

The Creature Weekend was an awesome event, one of my favorites. The atmosphere was super laid-back and everyone was awesome to hang out with. I loved every minute of it. I am definitely coming back next year.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Creature Weekend is soon!

I try to go to as many paranormal conferences as I can. I have gone to two MUFON conferences, the Mothman Festival, and the Butler Paranormal Conference. I love meeting all the different researchers and witnesses, having discussions, buying books, and attending talks on a wide range of topics within the weird. This weekend has an upcoming event which I have anxiously looked forward to since I had heard about it.
So what is the long awaited event? Creature Weekend.
Creature Weekend is a chance for lovers of cryptids and monsters to meet, talk, hang out, and learn lots about every creature you can think of.

This year has an awesome set of speakers;
Ron Murphy... Ron is a really good friend of mine, he is an expert on fairies and is a seasoned cryptid researcher. He has numerous crypto-focused books, all of which are highly, highly recommended.
Ken Gerhard... Ken is an awesome researcher who always brings something new to the table with each of his books. He is a great guy who is really cool to hang out with.
Ron Morehead... Ron is a seasoned Bigfoot researcher. He is best known for his astonishing recording of supposed Bigfoot vocalizations, known as the Sierra Sounds.

The Center for Cryptozoological Studies will also be there, Brian Seech is always fun to talk to.

Needless to say, this will be an awesome weekend.
I cannot wait. I will write a short post about the event when I get back.
You can find information on the event here.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Tips on Finding a Bigfoot from a Seasoned Hunter

Edward Ovian is a seasoned hunter and a good friend of my family's. He was kind enough to write a short list of tips for finding Bigfoot for my blog. Here is the list in Ed's own words;

  • Stealth, keep your clothes, body, and equipment (as much as possible) scent free
  • Set up with wind in your face or crosswind with a natural barrier behind you. Don't get winded or snuck up on.
  • You're in ambush mode, not 'tromping-and-making-noise' mode 
  • Moving around constantly with a video crew will lead to failure
  • If the creature exists, they must have acute smell, hearing, and vision. Set up down wind or crosswind as stated above
  • Although you are not killing, you are hunting
  • Wear camouflage from head to toe and stay still
  • Tree knocking will give your position away, in my opinion. No one knows their vocabulary, just a hunch, but that one is answering back is them busting you
    • I have learned to call deer/turkey into close range
    • Call wrong or too often and game over
  • Remember they live out there 24/7, we don't. Think about terrain and movement points like they would. Set up and be patient. 
  • Call very sparingly

So what do you think? Is this an accurate list? I think it is. If you have anymore tips, let me know in the comments!