In 1914, a group of Canadian Indians stumbled upon the decomposing carcass of an unidentified animal near Nicolas Valley, on the banks of Rattlesnake Island in Lake Okanagan, the purported home of legendary LAKE-MONSTER known as OGOPOGO.
The carcass was estimated to be between 5 and 6-feet long, and appeared to weigh in the order of 400 pounds. The creature’s epidermis was described as bluish-grey in color and it bore a tail as well as four distinct flippers. There was no sign of a head. The natives brought the corpse to the attention of an un-named naturalist who lived nearby. The amateur scientist wasted no time in investigating the find.
The naturalist, having only his wits and a severely decayed corpse upon which to base his hypothesis, came to the conclusion that the carcass was that of a rogue manatee. Neither the Native Americans who discovered the corpse, nor the part-time naturalist, could explain how the animal might have come to live — much less die — on the shores of Okanagan.
In the years which have elapsed since the incident, a small (yet ever growing) contingent of cryptozoological researchers have entertained the notion that the carcass which was discovered in Nicolas Valley may be none other than that of a juvenile Ogopogo.
Whether or not the self taught scientist who examined the corpse even thought to preserve some bone or tissues samples is a query that is lost to the historical records of the area.
As recently as 2008, the National Post and Canada.com reported that a History Channel documentary crew found an unknown biological specimen in the depths of Okanagan Lake. Bill Steciuk, who helped organize the shooting locations, had this to say about the discovery:
“It was all curled up. The features were really hard to see. You could see a little head tucked in and a straight tail with no fins… I couldn’t recognize it. Nor could anyone else. Maybe a new species has been found… It’s a huge mystery. We have no idea what it is.”
Arlene Gaal, who has written three books on Ogopogo, was shown a photograph of the alleged baby monster. Her opinion regarding this evidence was decidedly more skeptical:
The specimen was shipped to the University of Guelph in Ontario for DNA testing and, as Gaal had predicted, the results of the tests revealed that the carcass was actually that of a severely decomposed salmon.