5 Cryptid Sightings That May Actually Be Alien Encounters
The human race has always had a next frontier; whether that be the alien terrain of a new continent, the mysterious depths of the ocean, the twinkling void of outer space, or the intangible metaphysical realm. Historically, we’ve populated our frontiers with strange beasts and monsters perhaps as colorful reminders of our own mortality. These days, the grimoires have been replaced by the internet and the monsters go by the term “cryptid.” A cryptid is the subject of a pseudoscience that searches for animal life still requiring concrete proof of existence. Often a cryptid has a straightforward relation to the familiarity of the animal kingdom, like the ape-like Sasquatch or serpentine Loch Ness Monster. Other cryptids bear more similarity to our preconceived notions of alien life, lacking the bestial cryptid primitivism of say the chupacabra. The following are 5 accounts often considered cryptid sightings that may be better described as alien encounters.
The Kelly-Hopkinsville Encounter is one of the most well-known accounts of alleged alien encounters. It’s difficult to imagine the hysteria that gripped the two families holed up in a small rural farmhouse desperately fending off a small scale alien invasion. It all began when a member of one of the families noticed a rainbow disc-shaped craft that sent him dashing back to the farmhouse. The sighting was dismissed by his gathered family and friends as nothing more than a shooting star. But a mere hour later, the farmhouse was besieged by what would come to be known as the Kelly-Hopkinsville goblins.
A Kelly-Hopkinsville goblin defies classic cryptid descriptions in its advanced appearance. The presumption of arrival in a flying saucer along with each creature’s metallic silver garb are much more indicative of classic alien encounters. The goblins were described by witnesses as approximately 3-feet tall, antennae-like ears protruding from bulbous heads, and emaciated extremities with lanky arms ending in clawed talons. Each Hopkinsville goblin moved with a distinctive swaying gyration, foregoing the use of its frail legs for an eerie wobbling hover.
Their otherworldly faces peered through windows and doors, sending the residents of the farmhouse into a state of panic. Eventually, the witnesses retaliated against the potential alien life, shooting at the hovering and swaying goblins to no avail. On the rare occasion that a bullet would meet its mark, the horrified shooter would be met with a sound similar to “bullets being rattled in a metal drum” as a Hopkinsville goblin tumbled briefly, then righted itself into an apparently unharmed retreat. Hours later, when the family fled to the local police station, officers admitted that men, women, and children alike seemed visibly shaken by the alleged alien invasion.
Again, the Flatwoods Monster is probably most often lumped in as a cryptid based on name alone. Though it lacked the stereotypical flying saucer, the Flatwoods Monster (named for its visit to the Flatwoods, West Virginia area) appeared along with a red throbbing orb that was reported to hover above it or on the ground beside it. Witnesses theorize this was the creature’s transportation, further linking it to stereotypical alien encounters over animalistic cryptid observations.
When a motley crew of locals (including some teenagers, children, one of the kids’ mothers, and a family dog) trekked to a nearby farmhouse to investigate a UFO landing reported by one of the children, they were first encountered by a noxious gas that sent the dog running back with tail tucked between its legs. A visible mist was irritating the groups’ collective eyes and noses.
Upon one of the group shining his flashlight beam in the direction of an oak tree, they were confronted by the strange image of the Flatwoods Monster in all of its glory. Witnesses describe the creature as looming at 7-foot tall with a dark body ensconced in black chitin, an oblong head similar to a horizontally stretched diamond, “inhuman eyes”, and crowned in a metallic hood. Reports conflict on whether it was devoid of arms or had lanky arms at the front of its body, tapering off into thin claws. The Flatwoods Monster reportedly hissed while charging its terrified spectators at high speed before abruptly shifting direction back toward the glowing red orb. Multiple witnesses suffered an illness similar to the effects of inhaling mustard gas shortly after the strange run-in with the supposed cryptid, often attributed to contact with the violent burning metallic scent of the mist. While some consider the Flatwoods Monster to be a cryptid and others argue it as proof that aliens exist, some have deduced the “monster” was actually a robot. A little over a decade later and a couple of hours away, an even more infamous event would challenge theorists to choose between cryptid and alien life form.
If it were up to appearance alone, the Mothman could easily be considered a cryptid with its description as a red-eyed humanoid with a 10-foot wingspan. However, some theories indicate the Mothman as an example of alien life because of events unfolding around its appearance. Sightings of the Mothman stretched across the late ‘60s in the town of Point Pleasant, West Virginia. The sightings themselves hardly deviate from animalistic cryptid behavior with the Mothman pursuing a car of witnesses from a TNT plant at the outskirts of the city.
Yet, the appearance of the Mothman syncs up with common lore of alien encounters. One witness, who faults the Mothman with the disappearance of his hunting dog, claims that TV static and strange whining generator noises accompanied his confrontation with the odd cryptid. Another incident involved a family investigating eerie red lights in the sky above the TNT plant, only to be confronted by the Mothman upon stepping out of their car outside of the plant. Unlike a primitive cryptid, the Mothman was purported to visit this family’s home, peering in from the porch.
Noted author John Keel was drawn to the Point Pleasant area to investigate the Mothman, though he considered the events surrounding the run-ins with the cryptid more indicative of paranormal activities than alien encounters. Several families living in close proximity to the TNT plant reported poltergeist activity in their homes around the time of the sightings.
However, disturbances to technology, such as televisions, phones, and cars, paralleled details often cited in alien encounters. Around this time, people reported meetings with men-in-black, popularized by their common appearance in the mythology of alien encounters and UFO sightings. One supposed man-in-black went by the name Indrid Cole. His proximity to those affected by the Mothman has linked him to the cryptid in its mythology.
Another incident divorcing the Mothman from the typical cryptid was the tragic collapse of the Silver Bridge in which 46 people died. Over 12 lights were witnessed dancing above the TNT plant on the night of the tragedy and sightings of the Mothman dramatically decreased following the event.
In a forested area in the late-‘70s near Dover, Massachusetts, a series of unrelated teenage witnesses recorded separate yet eerily similar encounters with a cryptid soon melodramatically dubbed the Dover Demon. A name steeped in such religious sentiment draws to mind something much more supernatural than a cryptid or alien life form. Yet the Dover Demon bears a striking resemblance to the Grey aliens often reported in alien encounters, albeit a mouthless, quadrupedal Grey.
Local police dismissed the Dover Demon sighting as a hoax, though admitted one of the teenagers was a credible, trusted witness. The diminutive, pasty, rough-skinned Dover Demon was observed scaling a stone wall and peering about with large orange, reflective eyes from an otherwise featureless face. Some have offered that the teenagers may have witnessed a newly born moose calf while others have theorized the Dover Demon as a lost and disoriented individual from a race of interdimensional beings or an escaped army experiment. While the Dover Demon’s brief appearance can hardly be credited as proof of alien life, its similarity to Grey aliens has opened speculation into the origins of the popular cryptid.
Musconetcong Mantis Man
Potentially the most obscure of the cryptids on the list, the Musconetcong Mantis Man is a bizarre cryptid, alien or potential interdimensional being observed at the banks of the Musconetcong River in New Jersey in the early 2000s. While wading in the river, a man reported seeing a 6-foot tall humanoid praying mantis materializing and dematerializing quickly. The witness claims that the mantis man seemed astonished, possibly at having been seen.
Theories speculate on whether the cryptid uses natural bio-camouflage or more sophisticated cloaking technology. While any form of technology seems more at home in lore of alien encounters, some theorists believe that the witness may have seen the Mantis Man in a state of dimensional transition.
Other witnesses have reported a large praying mantis-like creature in the Musconetcong River area. Extraterrestrial enthusiasts have pointed out similarities to widely publicized accounts and literature about a race of mantis aliens, drawing a strange connecting line to theories of alien encounters in the matter of the Musconetcong Mantis Man.
Whether the creatures on this list classify as a cryptid or instead as evidence of alien encounters relies primarily on the advances in each creature’s intelligence. It’s as simple (and complex) as questioning what separates a human from an animal. Of course, we’d need more information to accurately measure the advancement of each cryptid or alien life form cited here. But if the reports were to be taken without skepticism, it stands to reason that most of the examples on this list evoke more similarity to alien encounters than cryptid sightings. Then again, there is that theory that Bigfoot is an extraterrestrial so who’s to say?