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American and Russian TV to showcase Loch Ness

By Val Sweeney

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Loch Ness is attracting attention from TV channels across the world.
Loch Ness is attracting attention from TV channels across the world.

THE allure of Loch Ness and the mystery surrounding its most famous resident has captured the interest of American and Russian TV crews.

Independent television production company Lone Wolf Media, based in Maine, has carried out interviews with several local residents and experts.

Divers were also filmed exploring the loch near Urquhart Castle.

One Nessie spotter, meanwhile, revealed he had been contacted by a Russian company which is planning to visit the area.

Conor McKenna, who won the Inverness Courier’s Best Nessie Sighting contest for 2015, recalled his encounter for Lone Wolf Media which is making a programme for Animal Planet, an American cable and satellite television channel.

“I think the programme is about sea mysteries and creatures of the water,” said Mr McKenna, of Contin.

“It isn’t saying what I saw was a monster but it was something which couldn’t be explained away.”

The former lorry driver saw “something” inexplicable on Loch Ness on September 15 2015 as he was driving one of his regular routes north along the A82.

He was about a mile south of Urquhart Castle when he spotted a dark-coloured 15-20ft long object in the water which left a crest and then disappeared.

Mr McKenna was unable to take a photograph as he was driving at the time but he passed on his verbal account to be recorded on the official register of sightings of the Loch Ness Monster.

It was subsequently entered in the Courier’s Best Nessie Sighting competition sponsored by bookmaker William Hill.

One of four contenders including two verbal accounts, Mr McKenna’s encounter was reckoned to be the winner by voters taking part in an online poll.

The report won the former Gulf War veteran a £1000 cash prize plus a £100 bet on the outcome of the William Hill Scottish Cup.

Mr McKenna is now a stay-at-home father-of-two.

The day after being interviewed by Lone Wolf Media about his sighting, Mr McKenna was also contacted by a Russian television company wanting to arrange an interview with him.

It is keen to speak to people who have seen what could be Nessie.

“They are coming over here but I’m not sure when,” Mr McKenna said.

“It has all come out of the blue. I have no idea why the sudden interest.”

Gary Campbell, who keeps the official register of sightings of the Loch Ness Monster, has also been interviewed by the American crew.

“I was talking about the history of sightings of the Loch Ness Monster.” he said.

“Although it was courtesy of Inverness Courier the ‘monster’ became an international phenomenon, it is important to remember sightings of water kelpies and other creatures go back hundreds, if not thousands of years.”

Two divers, who went into the loch, were also filmed undertaking a search for underwater caverns near Urquhart Castle.

After completing filming at Loch Ness, it is understood the television crew headed off to Bangor in Northern Ireland to gather more material for the programme.

Lone Wolf Media, founded in 1997 by Kirk and Lisa Wolfinger, has built up a reputation for developing and producing award-winning programmes across a wide variety of genres from expedition specials to primetime docu-dramas.

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