A mom claims to have photographic proof that a centuries-old sailor’s myth about men who haunt the waves looking for ships to sink is true.
Stephanie Cranston, 38, was enjoying a day on the beach on the Isle of Lewis, the largest island in the Outer Hebrides,UK, with her two sons and their father when she had a premonition.
Nothing came of it at the time but, when she was looking back at pictures taken on the day, she noticed something strange in one snap.
Stephanie says was startled to see a face in the waves, which she thinks could be proof of the blue men of the Minch.
The mythological creatures – also known as storm kelpies – are thought to inhabit the stretch of water between the northern Outer Hebrides and mainland Scotland.
They look for sailors to drown and stricken boats to sink, according to lore.
Stephanie, a mom-of-three, snapped the picture on the evening of June 28 at Eoropie Beach, on the northern tip of the island.
She said: “I was at the beach with my family and they were jumping in and out of the water – I’ve never felt uneasy and am in the water a lot, but I kept telling them to get out.
“I felt uneasy about them being in there. I was taking loads of pictures but it wasn’t until I got home and looked through them that one picture stood out.
“The way the sea is in that picture, you can see what looks like a figure coming out of the water.
“My hair stood on end, it was pretty creepy – I’ve never seen anything like it before.
“I don’t really believe in any stuff like that but I caught that in the picture and thought this is absolutely crazy.
“The Hebrides has got myths about the blue men of the Munch – looking back at the picture it’s quite creepy.
“I think if it is what I think it is, it’s the only one that’s ever been caught on camera.”
The origin story of the blue men of the Minch is unclear.
It is said by some that they originate from the Vikings, around the 9th century.
However, others speculate that it is derived from the Tuareg people of Saharan Africa, who were known as the blue men of the desert.
The Minch men have also been linked to the Picts, which means “painted people” in Latin.
Legends say that, when the weather is clear on the strait, the men are sleeping.
But, when they’re awake, stormy seas happen – wreaking havoc on sailors.
Produced in association with SWNS Talker
Edited by Saba Fatima and Asad Ali