I was probably in Junior High or something when I first heard about skinwalkers. Some other kid told me about people down in the four-corner region who’d sew animal skins onto their bodies (that’s how the other kid described it anyway), run through the wilderness as a cougar or wolf, terrorizing the innocent. For some reason, that story really creep-ed me out and wedged itself into my imagination. I’ve thought about it a lot over the years, and even read a few books about it.
I’m a reader, and I listen to even more audiobooks, but I don’t often post about the books I read (other than comics :) ). Maybe that’s because even though I am not a scientist by any means, most of what I read is scientific. I love science and am very inspired by scientific thought. In my heart though, I am a complete mystic. I read a lot of religious, Gnostic, and occult texts as well. I am a-okay with that though. To tell you the truth, I see no conflict between science and mysticism at all. A lot of people do, and that is okie-dokie, but I don’t. I only bring that up because I think it relates to the book referenced below.
Anyway, the book that I found thoroughly entertaining and even thought provoking is called “Hunt for the Skinwalker: Science Confronts the Unexplained at a Remote Ranch in Utah“. I suppose there really isn’t a whole lot of science in this book, just scientist saying what they’re witnessing can’t be measured. But its still interesting. I first picked up and read it years ago. At one point I learned that there was a movie in the works that is based on the book, called Skinwalker Ranch. Earlier this week I found out that the movie was due to be released on October 30, so I decided to read the book again…
This book is supposedly true and based on actual events, even though so much happens that it can become hard to believe any of it. I am open to a lot of different ideas, but I do remain a skeptic. Still, it seems odd to me that the authors would try to link all of these strange phenomena together if it wasn’t something they believed happened, because if it is a complete fiction that’d just send up red flags right away, if that makes sense. But yeah, so much going on in this book. Giant wolves terrorizing a cattle rancher family, giant pterodactyl (thunderbird?), UFO, poltergeist, old man Sasquatch, hauntings, alternate dimensions, wormholes… it’s all here. One of the authors, physicist Colm Kelleher, set himself up on the ranch to study the phenomena. Even though he reports on the bizarre experiences he witnessed, he also admits that much of the data he came away with is unusable.
I do enjoy and recommend this book. I have no idea if its real, hallucination, or flat out fabrication. But who am I to judge someone else’s experience?
I will say this though… I’ve spent a huge chunk of time in the region and up in the Uinta mountains, especially in my teens and early 20s. I’ve had a few unexplainable experiences up there that raised the hair on my head, and probably turned a few of those hairs grey. There was one experience in particular that I am not going to go in to, but it scared the hell out of me and literally had me running for my life. And I know it was very real.
So, if you’re looking for a good book this Halloween, try the Hunt for the Skinwalker. Hopefully the movie will be a good one too!