The Winnipogo

To the north of Lake Manitoba lay Lake Winnipegosis and Lake Winnipeg. Both lakes are said to harbor serpentine creatures collectively known as the Winnipogo. Both lakes are large; Lake Winnipeg is Canada’s sixth largest lake covering 9,465 square miles, and Lake Winnipegosis is the eleventh largest lake in Canada with a surface area of 2,073 square miles. Lake Winnipegosis is a fairly shallow lake reaching a maximum depth of 39 feet. Contrast that to Lake Winnipeg; Winnipeg’s average depth is 39 feet, while its maximum depth reaches 118 feet.

Encounters from the Early to Mid-Twentieth Century

Though both lakes are said to be home to an unusual creature dubbed the Winnipogo, it seems that Lake Winnipegosis has the bulk of sightings. This sounds counterintuitive—it seems that the larger lake would have more sightings, but this is not the case.

A notable report comes from Oscar Frederickson who was duck hunting in Lake Winnipegosis in 1918. Frederickson noticed that something pushed up a large block of ice in about three feet of water.

In their book Cryptozoology A to Z: The Encyclopedia of Loch Monsters, Sasquatch, Chupacabras, and Other Authentic Mysteries of Nature, Jerome Clark and Loren Coleman tell of a strange bone that was found by Oscar Frederickson in the 1930s. Frederickson found what appeared to be a vertebrae on the banks of Lake Winnipegosis. Unfortunately, the bone was destroyed in a fire.

The story doesn’t end with the destroyed bone, however. A replica of the vertebrae was made of wood was shown to Dr. James McLeod of the University of Manitoba. According to McLeod, the replica resembled a vertebrae from an extinct whale-like species—an animal that had been extinct for nearly 4 million years.

A dinosaur-like creature said to have a single horn was spotted by C.F. Ross and Tom Spence in 1935. Although the single-horned animal sounds odd, there have been reports of creatures with one horn on top of their heads in other lakes.

Encounters in the Late Twentieth Century

There are two incidents, one in each lake, that occurred in the 1980s that are worthy of mention. In 1983, in Lake Winnipegosis, a serpent-like creature was hit by a boat near Pelican Rapids. The animal was said to be 15 feet in length. The following year in Lake Winnipeg, near Traverse Bay, another creature was hit by a boat.

Admittedly, it is head-scratching for two lake monsters to be hit by boats only a year apart. The thought of such a creature being hit by a boat at all sounds strange; though probably not outside the realm of possibility.

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