By Madison Cheung
Have you ever met a Vampire? Maybe a Werewolf? No? Well, that’s probably because they originate from Europe. But here are some of Canada’s finest monsters to keep an eye out for…
Wendigo: Always hungry
In the East Coast forests of Canada belongs a resident evil; the Wendigo is derived from the folklore of many Algonquian-speaking peoples. Although descriptions may vary, they all share the concept of the Wendigo being this malicious, man-eating, supernatural entity. Known to be the embodiment of greed, gluttony, and excess. It can never be satisfied and is in constant search of new victims. Feelings of inappeasable greed and the desire for murder are prompted when this evil spirit has its hold on you. The creature is recounted to look emaciated, so much so, it's as though it was pulled from the grave, with an ashen complexion of death and distinct BO of decay. When possessed by this evil spirit, it is said to invoke feelings of insatiable greed or hunger, along with the desire for murder under its influence. In the presence of the Wendigo, you are supposedly hit with a sudden and extremely foul stench, followed by a chill, having nothing to do with the weather — signs you should take that as your hint to run!
Ogopogo: Not quite the Loch Ness monster
Deep in Lake Okanagan, Kelowna, British Columbia dwells with a so-called sea monster. Many are familiar with the Ogopogo, as it is somewhat of a celebrity in its hometown. Take its 15-foot-long statue that Kelowna proudly displays for example. But for those who don’t know of the fabled Ogopogo, it is described as a serpentine beast (green or black), with the head of a horse, only popping up to the surface every so often to keep people talking.
In the 1980s, craze for the creature was at an all-time high after a $1 million reward was put up for any photographic evidence of it, leading to all sorts of media attention for the Ogopogo and theories regarding the creature. The Syilx (Okanagan) people eventually spoke up about the misinformation; “It’s not really a monster, it's a spirit of the lake and it protects this valley from one end to the other, '' said Pat Raphael of the Westbank First Nation. Despite its mysterious impression, the Ogopogo means no harm.
Bigfoot: Following his footsteps (get it?)
Last but certainly not least; one of the most infamous mythical beasts is our ol’ pal Bigfoot. I’m sure we’ve all heard of him. An ape-like fellow rumoured to lurk in our very own Western woods, but also has made a fair share of visits in the US. The hairy humanoid gets its name ‘Sasquatch’ (aka Bigfoot) from the Salish word Sasq’ets meaning ‘wild men’. And like all tales, Bigfoot’s legend lives on through his sightings. Or rather in this primate’s case, his footprints. The first discovery of prints dates back all the way to 1811, by the British explorer, David Thompson. Since then, hundreds of alleged prints have been reported. Contrary to popular belief, no one has actually seen Bigfoot in the flesh, yet he’s been around for so long. For all we know, he could be a she. The majority of these sightings have been proven to be faulty; being the outcome of a ruse, staged prank, or possible delusion. Even so, those who are convinced they saw Bigfoot, could very well have seen something that could’ve imitated him. For example, a gorilla mimicking a person on its hind legs, someone in a suit, or pursuing the theory that the Sasquatch is a remnant of a Neanderthal and somehow inexplicably saw that.
Nonetheless, all of these creatures are big ‘what-ifs’ that we may never know the answers to.