One of the things that draws me so much to Oregon is the natural beauty that can be found through out the state. There are so many places to go hiking, canoeing, and camping. One of the places that I have been wanting to go check out is an ominously named lake called Devil’s Lake. While it’s stunningly beautiful is all the beauty actually hiding a monster?
Devil’s Lake is located near the coast in Lincoln City, Oregon. The lake was carved out of the mountains by glaciers as they melted hundreds of years ago. Originally the lake was called M’de Wakan by the local Siletz tribe. M’de Wakan roughly translate to mystery or bad spirit. According to local legend, a chief the tribe decided to a take a group of young warriors across the lake to go hunting one night. It happened to be the night of a full moon. The warriors and the chief were in one canoe as they went across the lake. While they were going across, large tentacles came out of the water and wrapped themselves around the canoe. The tentacles caused the canoe to tip over and spilled the chief and warriors out into the water. As the men tried to swim away, the tentacles grabbed them and pulled them under the water to their deaths. Their screams alerted the tribe that something was happening. The tribe members came running and witnessed the horrific sight of the warriors’ and chief’s deaths. After this happened, the tribe started a yearly tradition of bringing gifts and sacrificing animals to the lake creature to try appease it.
In the 1800s, white settlers would make their way to the area. Upon hearing about the lake creature and their own dealings with it, the settlers named the lake Devil’s Lake. The people living in the area would take up the local tribe’s yearly tradition of leaving gifts and offerings to the beast and turned it into a festival. The festival continues to happen to this day. But the tentacle monster may not be the only creature living in the lake.
In March 1950, a local resident by the name of Marybell Allum was walking along the banks of the lake when she happened across an unusual carcass. The carcass was said to be at least 22 feet long (for size reference a giraffe usually range in size from 14 to 19 feet tall) and weighed over 1,000 pounds. The creature was described as having the body of a cow and completely covered in hair. It was also said to have nine tail. The townfolk named the creature Old Hairy.
If giant kraken or a potential Plesiosaurus sighting is not your cup of tea, there is a spooky spot you can go check out instead. Not far from Devil’s Lake is another large body of water called Siletz Bay. It’s located on the south end of Lincoln City. Sometime during the 1850s, a ship came sailing into the bay. It was completely stocked with supplies but there was no one on the ship. No one knows what happened to the crew members or why it was abandoned. The ship became stranded on the beach and slowly was swallowed in the sand over the decades. It’s been over 50 years since the last remnants of the boat have been seen on the beach but that doesn’t mean the ship isn’t still seen. It is said that when its foggy out, people have reported seeing a ghostly ship appearing out the fog suddenly before vanishing from sight again. Some say the ship looks completely solid but from the wrong time period, while other people say that the schooner is more transparent and blends easily into the surrounding fog. Most reports say the boat is eerily quiet for a ship of that size in the water.
What do you think hunts under the water in Devil’s Lake? Do you think a large freshwater octopus lives there? Or something else? What do you think happened to the crew of the ship that showed up in Siletz Bay? Which would you go see- the ghost ship or the lake monster? Let me know in the comments below.