THE truth is out there and West Wallsend’s Jack Tessier is determined to discover it.
Mr Tessier, of The Australian Cryptozoology Research Organisation, has been searching the bushland of the Watagans for four years. His target is the so-called mythical yowie.
So far he has found no definitive proof, but he has come close, very close.
On a hot summer day in 2015, Mr Tessier had a somewhat close encounter with a mysterious, tall and hairy creature on the Cessnock side the Watagans National Park.
“I can’t say for sure, it was quite far away, but it could possibly have been [a yowie],” Mr Tessier said.
“It was in scrub land, about 50m away.
“At first it was facing the opposite way, but before I knew it it was facing directly at me.”
The creature then disappeared into the bush.
Since then Mr Tessier has returned to the national park armed with plaster of Paris, used to set molds of footprints; a camera, a drone and torches.
The best time to go yowie hunting was after rain, when the footprints of creatures are more likely to be preserved in mud, according to Mr Tessier.
However, the yowie is not the only mystical creature to be spotted at the Watagans.
Others claim to have seen panthers, and megafauna, including the megalania prisca – a 30 foot lizard which became extinct after the Ice Age.
Mr Tessier is the convener of the Australian Cryptozoology Conference, now in its third year. It will be held in September this year at Charlestown.
Some of the biggest names in the cryptozoology field will present at the conference, including Gary Opit, Bruce Champagne, Simon Young, Murray Byfield, Bill Flowers and Rex Gilroy.
Subjects to be covered are: Black Panthers of the Aussie Bush Fact or Fiction, The Hairy Man Relict Hominid or Dreamtime Legend, Sea Serpent Types, The possibility of Thylacine still being alive, Mysterious Australia - Creatures that don’t belong, and History of Cryptozoology.
The two day convention has in previous years attracted about 50 people. However, this year is set to be bigger, Mr Tessier said.
Tickets available at stickytickets.com.au
Day One- Date: Saturday, September, 8, doors open 10am and close 3pm.
Speaker: Murray Byfield
Time: 10. 30am
Title: Black Panthers of the Aussie Bush Fact or Fiction?
About: Murray from Unexplained Australia is returning but this time discuss the elusive Australian Panther with a balanced point of views.
Speaker: Simon Young
Title: The Hairy Man Relict Hominid or Dreamtime Legend?
About: Simon Young is a Yowie Researcher who will be talking to people about the well known myth of the Australian Yowie.
Lunch Break: 12.15pm to 1pm
Day 1 Keynote Speaker- Bruce Champagne
Title: Sea Serpent Types- TBC
About: Bruce Champagne is coming down under to talk to you about the well known myth of the Sea Serpent.
Day Two- Date: Sunday, September, 9(Doors open 10am)(Doors close 3pm)
Speaker: Bill Flowers
Title: The possibility of Thylacine still being alive.
About: Bill Flowers is a respected Thylacine Researcher for the Thylacine Research Unit and co-host of the Hunt for the Tasmanian Tiger on Animal Planet he is also a wildlife artist and a wildlife expert, he will be coming from Tasmania to give a presentation on what evidence science needs, what evidence he needs and what evidence the law needs.
Speaker: Rex Gilroy
Title: Mysterious Australia- Creatures that don’t belong.
About: Rex Gilroy will give a presentation about the unusual Cryptozoological creatures of Australia.
Lunch Break: 12.15pm to 1pm
Day 2 keynote speaker- Gary Opit
Title: History of Cryptozoology
About: Gary Opit will be doing a presentation about the history of Cryptozoology before the internet and the years of Rex & Heather Gilroy’s Research.