About those “7 Mysterious Photos That Have Never Been Explained”… Apparently Google Has Never Been Explained to Some People

This was posted two days ago and is rapidly spreading across the Net.

These 7 Mysterious Photos Have Never Been Explained… And Probably Never Will Be

Sometimes an image is captured that just cannot be explained.  The bizarre, and often ambiguous, photographs in this article have remained unexplained for over half a century in some cases…

You’d think Google would have made it harder for these writers to post these lists with a straight face, but nah.

1. Babushka Lady

‘Babushka Lady’ is a woman who appeared in numerous films that depict the final moments of the beloved American president’s life, but she has never been formally identified…

Yawn, what needs to be explained?  There’s an unidentified woman  holding a camera that appears in photos.  There were a lot of people around that day with cameras.  It was a parade with the President.  Lack  of an identity isn’t lack of an explanation.  Surely the remaining six mysteries will be more exciting…

2. Hessdalen Lights

The Hessdalen lights are a bizarre phenomenon that only occur in the Hessdalen valley in Norway…. but to this day nobody knows why they occur…

Brian Dunning in 2011 wrote:

As previously discussed on other Skeptoid episodes dealing with so-called ghost lights — the Marfa Lights in Texas, the Min Min Light in Australia, and the Brown Mountain Lights in North Carolina — there are known physical phenomena that can account for such reports. A better way to investigate the Hessdalen phenomenon would be to at least consider the causes found for these other lights. The Min Min light was proven to be a sort of thermal lensing effect, where warm air collected in ground topography underlaid cooler night air, and reflected lights from over the horizon; an effect we call a superior mirage. However the Marfa and Brown Mountain lights turned out to be misidentifications of conventional lights in a direct line of sight, probably distorted by similar lensing effects. Such thermal irregularities were found in both places. In the case of Marfa, they were car headlights along two prominent highways. At Brown Mountain, it was the headlight of a regularly scheduled locomotive on the plain far away, as well as some other lights.

The majority of the images captured by the Hessdalen automated measurement station look exactly like the high-powered landing lights of aircraft following the corridor north from the Tolga VOR.  Trondheim Airport (TRD) is due north of Oslo, Norway. This route passes almost directly over Hessdalen…

The Marfa Lights:
The Brown Mountain Light:


Remind you of anything?

3. Hook Island Sea Monster

The Hook Island Sea Monster was photographed by the Le Serrec family in 1964, and it has been one of the most mysterious cases in cryptozoology ever since.  The gigantic tadpole like creature was reported to be 80 feet long… While there are theories that the Hook Island Sea Monster is in fact a giant piece of plastic, it has never been proven that this beast is definitely a hoax.

Except the title of the story isn’t “Photos Which Have Been Explained, Though Definite Proof Is Still Needed,” it’s “Photos That Have Never Been Explained.” And this one has an explanation.  A good one.  Paleozoologist Darren Nash writes  in Scientific American:

[I]n at least four spots it looks  like someone has placed handfuls of sand on top of the edge of the creature: exactly what you would do if trying to weight down a monster-shaped sheet of plastic.


The final piece of evidence demonstrating that the whole episode was a hoax comes from the fact that, in 1959, Le Serrec had tried to get a group together on an expedition that would prove “financially fruitful”, and that he had “another thing in reserve which will bring in a lot of money… it’s to do with the sea-serpent” (Heuvelmans 1968, p. 534)… [T]he Hook Island case is undoubtedly a hoax..

4. Solway Firth Space Man

Elizabeth Templeton

Back in 1964, a father took an ordinary family snap of his daughter on Burgh Marsh, but when it was developed somebody very strange appeared in the background. An astronaut… Journalism professor David Clarke theorizes that the ‘space man’ could in fact be the overexposed shape of Tempelton’s wife from behind.

Why, you might even say, Clarke explained it:

[T]he spaceman, Dr Clarke says, is almost certainly not anything of the sort.  “One of the other stills [taken that day] shows Jim’s wife who, according to him, was standing behind him when he took the photo of Elizabeth,” he said.

Elizabeth Templeton and mother Annie

“I think for some reason his wife walked into the shot and he didn’t see her because with that particular make of camera you could only see 70% of what was in the shot through the viewfinder.”  Annie, he argues, was standing with her back to the camera and the photograph was over-exposed – causing her blue dress to look white.

5. The Cooper Family Photo

The photo above is one of the most chilling of its kind on the internet, but it’s origins are incredibly unclear… While the swinging ‘corpse’ is probably the result of an accidental double exposure (taking two photos on one piece of film), that still doesn’t explain how such an eerie image of a hanging man was taken in the first place…

The wonderful website House of Hoaxes investigated the photo thoroughly and concluded, with good evidence to back up their reasoning, that the photo most likely

… was created around 2009 as a piece of horror art. But it soon was mistaken for an actual vintage photo, and eventually a fake story involving the “Cooper family of Texas” was invented to provide some creepy contextual details.

6. Geophone Rock Anomaly

Photo AS17-135-20680 was taken by Apollo 17… if you alter the saturation and contrast of the image, the photo appears to be hiding some sort of pyramid structure on the moon’s surface… some people are adamant that there is a lot more on the moon that has been hidden from the general public.

And some people are adamant that moon conspiracists are nuts.  It’s just the seat of the lunar rover:


 7. The Disappearance of Elisa Lam

The mysterious death of Elisa Lam is the most modern, and most strange unexplained event on this list… there is still not an adequate explanation as to how the petite young woman could have put herself in the the water tank.

The persons who actually investigated don’t sound as baffled:

Asked how Ms. Lam might have made it up to the tank, Lt. Corral replied: “I guess she climbed up there.”…One reason the findings took so long, according to the officer, was the effort investigators made to delve into Ms. Lam’s medical history, which revealed her bipolar malady.

Proving that a successful method to make a list of unexplained photographs is by not searching the Net to learn about their explanations.


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