Lake Champlain "Monster" Sighting Report by Scott Mardis (12-10-13)
The date I believe was July 9, 1994 and I was at the waterfront park called Battery Park in Burlington, Vermont on Lake Champlain, purposely watching the water for something with my binoculars (I did not own a camera at the time and could not afford one, as I had recently spent most of my money relocating to Burlington to investigate the "monster"). I had been watching the lake for weeks on a regular basis from this park as it was easy to access and had a wide view of one of the deepest parts of the lake. The park was sparsely occupied at the time and I was sitting on one of the benches facing the water. Around 11 a.m., a large object bobbed to the surface and remained stationary for a few seconds. It was very far out into the water but I had a good view of it with my binoculars. I later estimated it’s size by comparing it with a boat I saw afterward. I believe it was about 15 feet long and about 4 feet high.
It was a large mound-like object with a smaller mound-like object rising up out of the middle of it. It kept this configuration for a few seconds, then turned to the right, with the smaller mound-like object taking on a different profile and then oriented on the right side of the larger mound (as pictured below).
The full object began to swim or move to the right, with the smaller object making a rocking motion as this was happening. The smaller object could be interpreted as an appendage of some sort, possibly a head on a short neck or a flipper. The whole thing briefly swam a few yards to the right, then promptly sank vertically and I did not see it again. The entire incident may have lasted something like 30 seconds, if that. I did have a very good view of it through the binoculars.
The object was a greenish-black, "garbage bag" color, reminiscent of a leatherback turtle.
The final configuration taken by the object that I saw was reminiscent of the shapes seen of the object in the Eric Olsen Lake Champlain video from May 2009. As far as the incident I witnessed, I am not aware of anyone else noticing it at the time and I did not immediately discuss it with anyone at the scene, as I did not know anyone there.
I did shortly thereafter walk to a payphone and inform the local Channel 3 T.V. newsroom what had happened. They interviewed me the following day at the park for a news feature on "Champ", in which they interviewed several other recent eyewitnesses including Dennis Hall. After calling the newsroom, I immediately went home and made drawings of what I had seen while it was still fresh in my mind. The original drawings are in my archives in Vermont. The sighting is listed in Gary Mangiacopra’s book, "Does Champ Exist?"
[Dale's opinion is that this is an important sighting. The body is of a typical size and shape stated for the "Loch Ness Monster" but the object sticking off to one side makes it difference. This seems to be an elevated foreflipper on the far side making an allowance for perspective and it makes a "rowing" motion which moves it forward. Owing to the ambiguity and poor resolution of the Olsen video, I consider that any apparent similarity to this object are spurious. The projection in the sighting is in a clearly different anatomical position than the head of the creature in the Olsen video
The object is at least 2 1/2 feet wide and 5 feet long by Mardis' scale. It reminded me of the photo taken by F.C, Adams at Loch Ness in 1934, which Mackal believed was a rear flipper:
Photo scan of FC Adams photo taken from In Search of Lake Monsters, which Mackal also reprinted. The general outline could be similar to Mardis' sketch if it were tilted at a lower angle with more foreshortening. And either one of these objects have the same overall outline as the Rines flipper photo but with a more rounded and blunted terminal end.
And it also seems that the body in this case was turning on its axis before making off in a different direction. Hence the object was not on the midline axis of the body but was indeed on one of the sides. -DD]