A Dark and Stormy Encounter

Story and Photos by Ross V. Walker

I’ve been hearing about the Bear Lake Monster for decades, as long as I’ve lived in Montpelier. People supposedly have spotted the mysterious creature in the lake since at least 1868, when an article about it was published in the Deseret News. The author, Joseph C. Rich, eventually admitted it was a “wonderful first-class lie,” but that hasn’t stopped monster sightings nearly up to the present day.

Some people were so convinced there was a monster that Brigham Young sent a rope to the nearby town of Paris to try to catch it, and one local resident tied a long cable with a baited hook to a tree. But the monster wasn’t biting that day.

Despite Rich’s admission that he made up the whole story, the imaginary monster supposedly killed some horses in 1907, and people reported seeing it in 1937, 1946, and 2002.

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