San Clemente Sea Monster


The San Clemente Sea Monster sighting from Aliso Beach is an incredible story as told by Karen Wilson Turnbull and husband Steve Turnbull.  I have read much of the stories and documentation online and what you can find on this mysterious animal is compelling.  What you choose to believe is completely up to you but there were sightings, encounters, news articles and stories in the history books that all point to the existence of a hold over from the Jurassic Period living in local waters off of the Channel Islands and as far south as Aliso Beach.  I know,there has been three recent serpent like oarfish that have washed up in recent times in California.  This creature does not have the ability to lift it’s head up and out over the water 20 feet in the air as described by Howard Wilson.  The Channel Island sardine fishermen of the 1920’s talked about regularly encountering this amazing creature but were guarded with the attention they brought to themselves when speaking of what they saw.  There seemed to be this underlying fear of the men in white suits taking them away and their not seeing the light of day from outside an institution ever again.  In 1925 the carcass of a creature washed up at Moore’s Beach in Monterrey, California.  The head of a British Columbia Natural History Museum was brought in to examine the creature.  Reaching into its mouth, he discovered that the animal that had washed ashore had teeth that lent themselves to a vegetarian diet of a plankton feeder, and not a carnivorous beast that posed danger to man.  It had a long, long neck and fins built like paddles to negotiate and move through water.  It was an aquatic dinosaur that may have been a sea vegetarian!  This expert called it a Plesiosaur. Creatures similar to this  have been referred to as The San Clemente Sea Monster.

One of the early influencing families in the Aliso Beach area of South Laguna, California was the Wilson Family.  Howard Wilson, with his mother Grace, was looking out the window of their home on the hill where the Montage Hotel is now, when they saw a presence in the water they would never forget.  A large creature, nothing like they had ever seen before, swam south with a neck said to be 20 feet in the air above the water.  They described an eye so big that they could clearly see it from the distance.  Howard Wilson made a drawing of what he saw and was ridiculed when he told others.  Kids can be so mean and he would never mention it again.  Whatever you believe, there is evidence of this creature and it is documented in the early history of South Laguna Beach.  You can read more about the early days of this area and details related to the sighting of the San Clemente Sea Monster by Howard and Grace Wilson by clicking the link.


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