I believe in the Lake Storsjon Monster

June 3rd 1989 

It all began on a chilly yet sunlit morning in my hometown of Jamatland, the place I’ve called home since birth. This is where I embarked on my educational journey, from elementary school to college. It was during my college years that I pursued my passion, aviation, with the goal of becoming a pilot. While my primary aim was personal flying, I also felt a sense of duty to occasionally offer lifts to others in the aircraft I would eventually pilot.

Nonetheless, I was well aware that the path to becoming a professional pilot was a lengthy one. Time seemed to race by so swiftly that I scarcely noticed that I had consistently excelled in all my classes, culminating in a major in aviation upon graduation. I explored various piloting opportunities, although, as previously mentioned, my work did not involve transporting passengers across countries. Ultimately, I made the decision to establish my main base of operations in Jämtland, and one particular location that captivated me and became central to my work was Lake Storsjon.

This lake has gained popularity as a hub for boating and fishing, even though these activities pale in comparison to its primary claim to fame: the presence of an enormous creature lurking in its depths, not unlike the legendary Loch Ness Monster. Reports of sightings date back to 1635, coincidentally, the same year that French cartographer Samuel De Champlain, who discovered the Lake Champlain monster, passed away. Personally, I held reservations about the existence of such a creature, but I decided to take to the skies and circle the lake to see for myself.

As I piloted my plane around the lake, I found myself splitting my attention between peering down at the serene waters and maintaining steady control of the aircraft. I kept my altitude relatively low to ensure a decent view of the lake. As I glanced at the tranquil surface below, I could not help but ponder the plausibility of a creature reportedly spotted by numerous individuals in these waters. My scepticism stemmed from the lake’s cold temperatures and its modest depth of only 90 feet, which, in my estimation, did not seem conducive to supporting such a large animal. However, the lake boasted robust fish populations, potentially sustaining the appetite of any apex predator residing within its depths. Despite these considerations, I remained uncertain.

Suddenly, the tranquil waters began to stir, and from their depths emerged an inexplicable spectacle. A colossal mass, adorned with five peculiar humps trailing behind, materialized and gracefully traversed the serene lake. At first, I speculated that it might be an immense submarine, its sheer size giving the illusion of segmented sections as it surfaced, possibly to extend its periscope.

However, my assumptions swiftly shifted as I discerned a curious detail – fine hairs adorning the foremost hump. As it ascended further, it unveiled itself not as a mechanical behemoth but as a whiskered serpent, bearing an uncanny resemblance to the mythical dragons of lore. The following three humps elongated into imposing arcs, unmistakably constituting the creature’s sinuous body. The last hump ascended akin to the creature’s head, and it began to exhibit signs of agitation, manifesting in rapid, rhythmic breaths.

In a heart-pounding moment, our gazes met, and the creature emitted a deafening hiss. Fear coursed through me like an electric shock, an unprecedented sensation during my airborne journeys. The prospect of losing control of my aircraft and the subsequent peril of a potential crash into the lake loomed large. However, instinct propelled me to tear my gaze from the mysterious serpent and fixate firmly on the plane’s controls.

Determined, I maintained an unwavering forward course, steering the aircraft toward the shoreline from whence I had taken flight. I dared not divert my attention downward, for the very thought of the creature beneath filled me with an overwhelming dread, one that could have led to a catastrophic accident had I yielded to it. The true extent of the creature’s capabilities remained a haunting mystery, and I had no intention of discovering them firsthand.

Returning to the airstrip where I had taken off, I began to ponder deeply on my recent encounter. I emphasize that I was in full possession of my faculties, even having consumed no alcohol. The astonishing sight I had witnessed remained vividly real in my mind. It left me with a firm conviction that indeed a mysterious creature dwelled in the lake, a creature observed by numerous locals in the vicinity.

As I contemplated the situation further, I attempted to view it from the creature’s perspective. I considered that it might face challenges holding its breath underwater for extended periods, clearly being an air-breathing entity. This might explain its apparent hyperventilation when it surfaced to take in air. While it could be accustomed to the presence of boats and ferries, the sight of an aircraft, such as mine, might have been entirely unsettling for the creature.

In contrast to a boat or ferry, the aircraft could have appeared as a potential threat to the creature, which might have triggered its defensive response. This reaction likely stemmed from fear rather than aggression, perhaps compounded by the frustration of resurfacing after a prolonged underwater stay, as evidenced by its apprehensive behaviour towards my plane.

But be that as it may, my perspective has evolved significantly regarding the allure of this lake. I have transitioned from a sceptic to a staunch believer in the existence of lake monsters, such as those reported in Loch Ness, Scotland; Lake Champlain, spanning Vermont and New York and Lake Ikeda in Japan, among others. It has become evident to me that this elusive creature simply seeks solitude and shuns the limelight, whether it is in the heart of the lake or anywhere else within it. If people are to catch a glimpse of it, then it should be from a respectful distance, avoiding any intrusive or overwhelming encounters.

My personal encounters have not deterred me from occasionally taking to the skies above the lake. Even when I am not flying, I find myself peering through telescopes or binoculars at its vast expanse. If the mysterious creature still calls this place home, I earnestly hope it’s granted the serenity it deserves, so it can continue to relish the tranquillity of its pristine aquatic habitat.

– Don Maxwell

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