Biggest search of Loch Ness to take place in more than 50 years in quest to find Nessie
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The biggest surface watch of Loch Ness in more than 50 years will take place this month in a bid to uncover its mysteries.
Surveying equipment such as thermal drones and a hydrophone, which have never used before on the loch, will be deployed in the weekend event which will involve volunteers and members of the public.
It is being led by the newly-revamped Loch Ness Centre at Drumnadrochit which has linked up with Loch Ness Exploration (LNE), an independent and voluntary research team.
They are inviting a new generation of volunteer monster hunters to join in the activities on August 26 and 27 to help uncover the truth 90 years after the famous sighting by hotel manageress Aldie Mackay and her husband.
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Thermal drones will also be deployed to produce thermal images of the water from the air using infra-red cameras as observing heat from above could provide a crucial component for identifying any mysterious anomalies.
Other technology includes a hydrophone which will be used to detect acoustic signals under the water, listening for any Nessie-like calls.
The surface watch is set to be the biggest of its kind since the Loch Ness Investigation Bureau (LNIB) studied the waters in 1972.
Volunteers are being invited to keep a look out for breaks in the water and any inexplicable movements.
Each morning, Alan McKenna, of LNE, will brief volunteers live from the Loch Ness Centre on what to look out for and how to record findings.
There will also be a debrief each day from the reimagined centre to go through the day’s findings.
During the weekend, special tours can be booked on the water with Deepscan captain, Alistair Matheson, the skipper for the Loch Ness Project.
There will also be four premium Deepscan cruises over the weekend with a member of the original Loch Ness Investigation Bureau and Mr McKenna, offering an extended trip using a 60 foot hydrophone to listen for noises in the depths of the loch.
In addition, there will be special tours available at the Loch Ness Centre over the weekend when visitors will be invited to watch a talk including Mr Mckenna and well-known Nessie hunter Steve Feltham, with further guest speakers to be confirmed, discussing the possible existence of a monster.
The recently-renovated Loch Ness Centre is located at the old Drumnadrochit Hotel where manageress Aldie Mackay reported seeing a 'water beast' in Loch Ness in 1933.
Continuum Attractions, which operates award-winning attractions all over the UK, has invested £1.5m in creating a immersive exhibition with interactive elements.
Mr McKenna said: "Since starting LNE, it’s always been our goal to record, study and analyse all manner of natural behaviour and phenomena that may be more challenging to explain.
"It’s our hope to inspire a new generation of Loch Ness enthusiasts and by joining this large scale surface watch, you’ll have a real opportunity to personally contribute towards this fascinating mystery that has captivated so many people from around the world."
Paul Nixon, general manager of the Loch Ness Centre, said the weekend activities offered the chance to search the waters in a way that had never been done before.
"We are guardians of this unique story, and as well as investing in creating an unforgettable experience for visitors, we are committed to helping continue the search and unveil the mysteries that lie underneath the waters of the famous loch," he said.
Go to The Big Watch sign-up to get involved in the search.
To book your trip to The Loch Ness Centre or a cruise tour, please visit: lochness.com.