Call of the Cryptid lake monster trifecta: Pt. 3 — Pressie (Lake Superior)


An alleged, freakish inhabitant of Lake Superior, Pressie has vague origins and connotations…but it lives close to me! Will I ever see it?

I’ve been writing about cryptids for a little while, and I’ve eagerly been waiting to address something close by. Maybe in the future I’ll address Bigfoot sightings near my area, but Pressie will do the trick for now!

What is Pressie exactly? Well, no one’s quite nailed that down, as descriptions can vary significantly. However, we do know the name “Pressie” comes from the Presque Isle River itself, located in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

What Are Its Alleged Features?

Like other underwater beasts, Pressie is said to be blackish-green, or something like that. It’s described as very large (up to 75 feet long). Also, like Bessie, Nessie and other water monsters, it’s considered snakelike with a “horse-like head.”

Pressie is also said to have a grotesque 15 foot neck. This, of course, means you shouldn’t get on its bad side. It could probably take your head off just by shifting its neck! It’s also rumored to be potentially aggressive, but you could say the same thing about people (seriously, just look at the news).

Anyway, it turns out this monster story may have some old school origins, too. Some people link it to the Mishipishu, or the Ojibwe “Underwater panther.”  They are a fascinating conglomeration of different animals, but are sometimes given serpentine traits, and are considered underwater creatures.

There’s a chance you’ve heard that name somewhere, too.  Although I’ve never seen it, I’ve read that the Grimm episode “Mishipeshu” addresses this particular creature (at least vaguely, in a pop culture/X-Files kind of way).

Is It Also a Minnesota Monster?

According to my research, a lot of these lake creatures get around. Most Pressie accounts also mention an incident in 1897, near Duluth, Minnesota, where a guy fell overboard on his vessel and the creature attempted to constrict him! The problem is, Duluth is actually not that close to a place like, say, Ontonogan, Michigan. So, even if the Duluth incident happened, it may technically not be “Pressie” anyway. Still, why not mention it here, just for good measure (Duluth is also a nice, medium-sized city).

Who Has Seen Pressie?

Picture it: Memorial Day weekend, 1977. Some dude named Randy Braun had his camera out near Presque Isle campground, north of Ironwood. He happened to see a large creature in the water that “resembled an anaconda with the girth of a Volkswagen.” He snapped a photo, which kind of shows something, but just barely.

If you want to see the photo, you can check it out here. Just keep in mind, it’s not a cryptid photo if it’s not blurry and vague.

The accounts don’t end there, though!  In the mid-1990s, during the summer, “fishermen [supposedly] watched in horror as a large aquatic animal pulled a wading buck deer under (leaving only it’s severed head) near Point Iroquois, Michigan.”

More from Horror News

Now we’re getting into horror territory!  One wonders if Pressie immediately gave the fishermen the “Come at me, bro!” move, or at least flipped them off. Seriously, what a scene!

A tourist-y article by Heather Bot offers a bunch of additional information on “The Lake Superior Dragon,” mentioning it along with names like Bishop Baraga and the SS Edmund Fitzgerald tragedy. I am a little familiar with these things, actually.

I’ve seen the Bishop Baraga shrine in L’anse, Michigan many times, and Gordon Lightfoot immortalized the SS Edmund Fitzgerald in song (though I don’t recall him mentioning Pressie). In fact, many have heard the song.  It was number 2 for two weeks in the Billboard Hot 100!

I Should Try to See This Creature!

Baiscally, this creature is practically calling out to me, “Try to find me this summer!” There are so many locations I’ve been, or could easily get to. It’s name is tied to the Porcupine Mountains near Ontonogon, for example.

A September 1894 account has it spotted “undulating in the twilight” about halfway between Whitefish Point and Copper Harbor. Well, I have been to Copper Harbor before!

In fact, it’s a nice, scenic drive in the summer, even if one’s not out monster hunting. The “hideous creature” was also spotted in the 1930s at the Pictured Rocks, in Munising, Michigan. Well, that place is about as scenic as it gets.

Also, if you live in Wisconsin, I should mention a similar creature named “Bozho,” supposedly seen in Lake Mendota, Wisconsin. After tickling a woman’s feet, she claimed “It had a friendly, humorous look in its big eyes.” Still, she and some others fled the scene as fast as they could.  Now, I wanted to make a “Bozho the clown” joke, but I’ve floundered.

Now, I could go on about other lake monsters, too. In fact, Crescent Lake, Canada has a creature called “Cressie,” and California’s Lake Tahoe has one called “Tahoe Tessie.” Still, I’m leaving this as a trilogy for now, with Bessie, Nessie and Pressie.

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I’m not completely done with lake monsters, though. In fact, if I have my way this summer, I’ll get to see Pressie up close!…that is, if there’s truly anything to see.

What are your thoughts on “Pressie” and other lake monsters? Let us know in the comments!