Is it real or a myth?

Tara Rawlings, Copy Editor

All throughout the world, urban legends can be found such as Bloody Mary, the Chupacabra, and the New Jersey Devil. We’ve all heard those, but have we all heard the legend of our very own Pend Oreille Paddler?

The Pend Oreille Paddler is Sandpoint’s version of the Loch Ness Monster, only younger and not as popular. It was first seen in Lake Pend Oreille in the 1940s and since then has appeared sporadically with sightings years apart. It was officially seen in 1985 by a young woman on the lake who claimed to have seen a large grey thing break through the water and cause ripples. Eleven years later, it was spotted again by a family vacationing on the lake.

These sightings seem to suggest that the Pend Oreille Paddler is indeed a reality but how can one be sure that it’s legit and not just something made up to attract tourists or a really big fish that took on a monsterish shape in the glare of the light?

There’s a wide spectrum of opinions on this legend with people strongly agreeing and others vehemently disagreeing. Senior Tristan Authier is a believer of this wild legend.

“Hell yeah, I think it’s real. I believe that the Loch Ness monster is a Papo Plesiosaurus that survived the asteroid and through the Ice Age,” said Authier.

A Papo Plesiosaurus is a type of grey dinosaur that does indeed match the description of both the Loch Ness monster and the Pend Oreille Paddler. Is it even possible for such a creature to have survived past the stone age and be living in our lake though? Authier seems to think so but Junior Autumn Lauber finds herself in disagreement.

“No, I don’t believe in a kind of creature like that. A lot of people say that it hasn’t been proven that it doesn’t exist but what evidence is there to prove that it does and evidence can be faked,” said Lauber.

Lauber’s opinion is that of many; where is the proof that it does exist and how can one be sure that it wasn’t produced through forgery? These are questions that need to be asked in regards to legends but sometimes, it’s better to leave the mystery to lie as it is, a mystery.  

Is the Pend Oreille Paddler a reality? Is it a myth? That’s something that we all have to decide on our own as no official photographic evidence has ever been produced despite the eye witness testimonies. So next time you’re by the lake, take a closer look and see if you can prove this myth a reality.