Posted by: John Kirk on May 4th, 2007
The struggle to document the Loch Ness phenomenon goes on. For a Loch that has been searched with an army of investigators over the years, yielding little in the way of results, we now find yet another group who are highly optimistic (judging by the article below) that they might find the creature by next week.
EVIDENCE that the Loch Ness Monster exists could be produced next week — even if the mysterious creature decides to eat the camera technology which could discover it.
Up to 15 shoebox-sized metallic submarines — called “VideoRays” — will enter the loch as part of a “Monster Gathering” arranged by Aberdeen company Buccaneer, which sells the equipment for £3500 to £20,000.
A diver with one of Buccaneer’s unmanned submarine cameras.
The remote-controlled boxes have cables leading to a control box on the surface, with at least one able to drop to 300 metres — close to the bottom of the loch.
The firm’s managing director Ian MacDonald explained the boxes would beam images to monitors which would record everything seen underwater on Wednesday and Thursday next week.
“I’m fairly confident that we will be left with a question mark, as these things always do,” said Mr MacDonald, when asked about Nessie, the recently heralded Highland 2007 icon.
He explained that even if The Loch Ness Monster was feeling peckish and ate the equipment there would still be a chance to see something.
“Until the cable was broken we would be able to get pictures,” said Mr MacDonald.
“We have a colleague in the United States who had one half way down the throat of an alligator and he had an excellent view of the alligator’s teeth right up until the bite closed.”
Around 20 of the company’s workers and customers will be joined by colleagues from the US and stay next to the Loch Ness Exhibition Centre and Drumnadrochit Hotel.
Mr MacDonald, who opened the business almost five years ago, has a history in electronics.
“We’ve played up the monster side of it a bit perhaps, but there is some serious science we want to go and look at,” he added.
The group aims to investigate a 50-metre patch on the bed of the loch known as the “Monster’s footprint” — and try to discover if there are any remaining parts of the Second World War Wellington bomber which was raised from the loch in the 1980s.
“You’re always hopeful to find something new and interesting and if you can do some proper investigative work while you’re at it, it’s a bonus,” he said. “But you’re never quite sure until the vehicle is in the water what you’re going to find.
“In almost any body of water you’re going to find something that’s fairly unexpected.”
Nessie hunter Steve Feltham, who has been based on Dores beach recording his view of the surface of Loch Ness for 16 years, is still “mildly” confident of seeing the elusive creature, but he said this group might not have much luck.
“The odds are so stacked against anybody actually finding anything here.
“If they didn’t have such a fanfare at the beginning there wouldn’t be such an anticlimax a week later when they pack up and go home,” he commented.
“I’m glad that these people come here and try something.
“I would think that if I had the money to do it, I would be out there playing about with a submarine, because it sounds great.”
Robbie Bremner, managing director at the Loch Ness Exhibition Centre, said the magic of the area would always attract tourists.
“People don’t come for the Loch Ness Monster,” he said. “They come for the scenery, they come for the friendliness and hospitality of the people, and they come for the romance of Loch Ness.
“They are always happy when they arrive here and are always happy when they leave.”Andy Dixon
The Inverness Courier
I am in agreement with Steve Feltham that all this hullabaloo at the beginning of this enterprise needs to be avoided as there is no feeling worse than making huge public proclamations about success then having to return home with your tail between your legs.
Optical equipment really isn’t suited to Loch Ness as the waters there are heavily peat-stained and it is incredibly murky down there. If I were to attempt another expedition there, I would definitely use sonar as the results would be an improvement on shadowy photos that usually result from underwater photography.
Again, like Steve Feltham, I am glad to see people with a spirit of enterprise trying to solve a mystery that just does not seem to want to go away until it is determined one way or another that there is or isn’t a Loch Ness cryptid.