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  • Writer's pictureS. N. Linn

Mysterious Alaska Triangle

Updated: Jan 1



Eerie Alaska's wilderness with snow-covered mountains, dark forests and winding river

This week, I am writing about the “Alaska Triangle”. I admit I didn’t know about this place until recently, but I had an interesting time reading about it, and I hope you will too.


This place is a vast stretch of land found in the southern part of the Alaska state, and is notorious for high numbers of missing people and aircraft. Many unofficial sources claimed that as many as 16000 to 20000 people vanished in the area. Many have also claimed (again, I can’t verify the sources)that the rate of disappearances in the region is twice the national average.


Of course, this leads to people coming up with all sorts of theories about the disappearances, ranging from UFO, energy vortexes to cryptid.


But given that the region is extremely remote with rough terrain and severe weather, I personally think most vanishing cases may have rational explanations. I mean, it’s a fact the place is dangerous to travel through. But I still find the eerie legends surrounding this region interesting.


Here is the list of reasons why the Alaska Triangle is considered mysterious.


Disappearances of aircraft and people

Many aircraft, including civilian and military planes, had vanished without a trace in the region. In most cases, there was a complete lack of wreckage despite an extensive search, even for big planes like B-29 Superfortress and Douglas C-47 that vanished in the 1950s.


Another pattern is that the planes carried experienced pilots, those who either had logged several hours of flying in the region or who had been making routine flights over the area. Moreover, in most cases, pilots didn’t make emergency signals or distress calls before they vanished.


One prominent case is the disappearance of a small plane carrying notable US politicians, including Hale Boggs and Nick Begich, in 1972. When the plane failed to arrive at its destination, the state launched an extensive search and rescue effort, using both military and civilian aircraft. However, there was a complete absence of wreckage, no debris from the plane, and no remains of its passengers.

There were various speculations, ranging from the effects of weather to government foul play, but to this day, the circumstances of Hale Bogg’s disappearance remain a mystery.


In addition to the aircraft, many people had also gone missing in the area. While each missing person's case may have its own quirks, there is a notable pattern where experienced hikers would just up and disappear. They would abandon their campsites or vehicles, leaving behind personal belongings, and just vanished.


Some cases, like the disappearance of Tom Young in 1973 and that of the Jamison family in 2009, involved individuals leaving cryptic messages. Tom Young’s diary entries were found in the wreckage of his crashed plane, and although the specific content of his diary has not been disclosed, it is believed that the entries hinted at personal struggles and distress. In the case of Jamison family, they had left behind strange messages on their property including phrases like “This Place Is Evil” and “No Need in Running”.


Now, I know this all sounds like some spooky mystery stuff, but let's not forget that some of these folks might not have been in the best mental shape, given that they were lost and anxious. So while it's eerie as heck, there could potentially be reasonable explanations for all of this.


Unexplained Lights

People have also reported some pretty strange lights in the sky in the area. Some say there's something called the "Alaska Vortex" causing bright orbs and weird glows. In '96, people in Fort Yukon saw a massive V-shaped formation of lights moving silently above them. Then, in Sitka in '95, residents spotted bright lights doing some erratic moves over Sitka Sound. Tin City's military radar picked up fast-moving, maneuverable objects in the '50s, and Bethel had sightings in '73 with hovering, color-changing lights. While these stories are intriguing, they're still mostly unexplained and keep the UFO talk going in the region.


Cryptid

Naturally, people also come up with paranormal rumors and speculations. Whether you are a skeptic or not, it's still intriguing to read about these stuffs. So, apparently, Alaska triangle is also home to something called the “Hairy Man”. Basically, it’s the regional variation of Bigfoot. Like Bigfoot, the Alaska hairy man is described as a large ape-like creature. There are theories that some of these missing person cases may be the doing of this elusive hairy monster.


There is also a mythical “Kushtaka” or “Otter Man”, a shape-shifting creature from local folklore. Khushtaka can assume various forms, including those of humans! It is said to mimic the cries of humans or animals to lure individuals near water so they’d drown. The creature also allegedly tricks people into straying off course and getting lost in the Alaska wilderness where they freeze to death. I find this local legend of Khushtaka particularly interesting as it shares similarities with entities from Asian folklores. To name a few, there's the "Forest Mimic" from Myanmar, the "Crocotta" from India, the "Gui da qiang" phenomenon from China (See Ghosts, Spirits, Monsters and Paranormal Entities from Asian Folktales and Mythology (Book 1)). It's intriguing to discover that many cultures across the globe have their own versions of malevolent spirits, shape-shifters and cryptid with a penchant for leading travelers and hikers off course in the wilderness or coaxing them into danger.


So there you have it—the Alaska Triangle. Pretty mysterious place, right? Do you know any places in your local hometown that’s considered strange or mysterious? Share with me!

 

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About the writer:

S. N. Linn is a blogger and author of books on folklore, legends, and heart-pounding ghost stories and paranormal adventures. You can find more of her work on her website: www.snlinn.com


Copyrighted by Su Nandar Linn

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