It’s only a small fishing village in a modest Canadian province. It’s not a place you would expect to host one of the most well-documented UFO incidents of all time. Yet, in October of 1967, Shag Harbor became the Canadian equivalent of the historically omnipresent Roswell incident.
On this 53rd anniversary of this Canadian incident, let’s take a look back at just exactly what happened in the waters of Shag Harbor, its relevance and eerie similarities to the Navy UFO encounters in recent years, and where the case lay in the annals of UFO history.
It was October 4th, 1967 —
In the Air
At approximately 7:15pm, Air Canada Flight 305 pilots Captain Pierre Charbonneau and First Officer Robert Ralph were flying above Quebec, about 180 miles west of Nova Scotia. Everything was perfectly routine until they noticed something trailing their plane. They witnessed a massive, rectangular-shaped object, orange in color, gliding through the skies. Trailing the rectangle were small, orange orbs that seemed almost like a tail to this main object.
The pilots watched with growing concern for several minutes when, suddenly, there was some sort of explosion near the rectangle. A large white cloud was left behind, sporadically changing colors from red to blue. Two minutes later, another explosion occurred leaving behind a similar cloud of colors. The pilots watched in amazement as the small orbs swarmed around the rectangle and, along with it, descended in to a thick cloud cover and disappeared out of sight. Both pilots, visibly shaken, reported the incident when they finally landed.
On the Ground
Meanwhile, back on the ground, residents of Shag Harbor would report seeing four orange lights in tight formation flashing in rapid sequence across the night sky. A group of teens that were out fishing noticed that the lights were making a brisk descent towards the water. But instead of disappearing into the murky depths, the lights seemed to float effortlessly on the surface before disappearing into the water. Because of this, the teens believed it to be an airplane that had crashed a half mile from the shore. Another young man who had been fishing quickly phoned the RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) to report the crash of an aircraft. The police dispatcher brushed off the young man, believing him to have been inebriated, but soon, over a dozen other calls flooded the station. Police immediately went out to investigate.
Unbeknownst to the RCMP, Constable Ron Pound was patrolling an area near the alleged incident. He witnessed the four orange lights moving at tremendous speed. As he sped up his vehicle, he believed the four lights to all be connected to a single aircraft and estimated it to be about sixty feet in length. He reached the shoreline where he was soon joined by fellow officers, Police Corporal Victor Werbieki, and Constable Ron O’Brien. Along with over thirty other witnesses, they all watched as the orange lights slowly changed to a yellowish tint, and it moved eerily slow across the surface of the water, leaving a similar yellowish colored foam in its wake. Some witnesses claimed to have seen the actual structure of the object, reporting it as “dome-shaped.”
Due to the exhaustive dedication by MUFON (Mutual UFO Network) investigators, Chris Styles and Don Ledger were able to compile a list of first-hand witnesses, and individuals involved with the search and recovery efforts. It soon became clear that this case wasn’t as cut and dry as first thought.
RCMP was told that no aircraft had been reported missing, which may have been true. But the object itself was indeed tracked. And where it submerged into the water, the radars were able to follow the object another twenty-five miles to an area known as Government Point.
In the early 1960s, the United States maintained a small military base there and were using a highly technical tracking radar known as a MAD (Magnetic Anomaly Detection) grid, for the sole purpose of tracking submarines in the North Atlantic sea. It was with this grid that the U.S. tracked the Shag Harbor object and dispatched Navy vessels to surround it. For three days, the object showed no signs of function or activity. And then another object appeared under the water to accompany the first.
The Navy stood by for nearly a week, holding position over the two objects. They weren’t sure how to proceed in terms of a possible threat or the possibility that more objects would appear. It was in this highly tense week that a Russian submarine had breached Canadian waters, and several Navy vessels from the UFO incident were sent to investigate. This is when the UFOs made their move towards the Gulf of Maine. The Navy vessels pursued the objects, but simply could not keep up with the tremendous speed.
In complete shock and awe, the objects ascending to the surface, and shot skyward, disappearing completely out of sight.
The object then began to sink into the ice-cold waters, a loud “whooshing” sound being heard by several witnesses. The Canadian Coast Guard was called to the scene, but before they could arrive, two RCMP officers had already secured local fishermen’s boats and headed towards the area for a possible search and rescue mission.
The lights were no longer visible, but the yellow foam remained. The officers and fisherman who assisted, all said that the foam was like no sea foam they had ever seen, much thicker than anything that could be caused naturally. They had to cut their way through it just to look for survivors of the supposed crash.
After several hours of searching, nothing could be found. The RCMP, along with The Coast Guard, contacted their local NORAD station and the Rescue Coordination Center, asking if there had been any reports that evening of a missing aircraft either civilian or military. They had nothing.
The following morning of October 5th, the Canadian Forces Headquarters sent out specially trained divers from the Navy and RCMP to systematically search the seabed in the alleged area where the crash had occurred. They searched for several days and found absolutely nothing.
Local newspapers began to circulate speculative theories of a Russian spacecraft, submarine, or spy satellite being the enigmatic culprit. There were also rumors that the United States had launched their own investigation into the incident. Slowly, the headlines made their way to the back of the newspapers and soon faded into obscurity as most UFO cases often do. But this certainly wouldn’t be the end of the Shag Harbour UFO story.
Tourists Keep Coming
While it remains a mystery, the The Shag Harbor incident lives on permanently at the Shag Harbor Interpretive Center.
This welcoming center chronicles the sighting in great detail, allowing visitors to view television documentaries, newspaper articles, and an impressive exhibit on outer space.
What it says by its existence is that Canadians are not done with this case. Every year many thousands of them trek to this town, grab some lunch and take in the Interpretative Center.
The Cousteaus Take a Look
In 2018, it was announced that Celine Cousteau and Fabian Cousteau, grandchildren of Jacques Cousteau, were heading to Nova Scotia to investigate the incident. As part of their visit, their investigative team would carry out an underwater search to try to locate the craft that could possibly still sit at the bottom of water.
While their deep sea investigation did not yield a craft or materials, anomalous activity was recorded between their radio transmissions while underwater when in proximity to where the craft was said to have submerged.
It’s in keeping with the Cousteau mission. If there is another intelligence transiting our oceans, that is knowledge their grandfather would want them to go after.
Our mission is to uncover the secrets held within our Water Planet, use our knowledge to influence world policy that will help us protect our planet, and educate people so that they will care about our Water Planet and work to keep it alive and healthy for future generations.
Even though this new generation of Cousteaus couldn’t crack the case, the fact that their investigation revealed other anomalous activity is yet another layer of unexplained phenomena that could be attributed to whatever happened in 1967.
The Fourth Observable — Trans-Medium Travel
Perhaps the most compelling developments in the Shag Harbor incident are its striking resemblance to the now famous “Tic Tac UFO” incident. During a routine training mission in 2004 off the coast of California, Cmdr. David Fravor, a Navy squadron leader, was ordered to intercept an unidentified object caught on radar. While trying to visually investigate this object, which he described as being shaped like a “Tic Tac,” he watched in amazement as the object performed extremely unconventional maneuvers. Reacting to Fravor’s pursuit, the object descended from 80,000 feet to 20,000 feet near the surface of the ocean, and then shot back up to to 65,000 feet within seven seconds, disappearing completely out of sight.
While the “Tic Tac UFO” and its incredible maneuvers were compelling enough, what Fravor described next was what moved this to not just a UFO, but a possible USO (Unidentified Submerged Object) as well. In an exclusive interview with investigative reporter, George Knapp, Fravor explained that, “It created a disturbance on the water uncharacteristic of a helicopter or a plane, and moved rapidly.” He would go on to also state: “It was a perfectly calm blue ocean day, no white caps, and there was whitewater… and the Tic Tac was moving around that whitewater. So we didn’t see if there was something below the surface…. we just know there was something causing that water to break over the top of it.”
When Knapp pressed Fravor on if the disturbance was a natural occurrence or connected to the “Tic Tac,” Fravor admitted that,“ I don’t know. Was it interacting? When we turned around, we couldn’t find the disturbance in the water anymore. It was gone. So you know, normally if it’s a real seamount, it’s going to be there until God removes it. So in this case, was it communicating? I don’t know. I really don’t know. But it could have been.”
So the real question remains: Was there a submerged object either connected to the Tic Tac UFO, or literally controlling it? We may never truly know the answer to this question. But we can find similarities with actions taken by the Tic Tac UFO and the object witnessed in Shag Harbor in 1967.
In fact, the event in Nova Scotia meets at least one of the traits laid out by the former director of the once secret Pentagon UFO program, Luis Elizondo. Under AATIP (Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program), Elizondo compiled a list of incredible capabilities commonly associated with UFO sightings. He called these traits the “Five Observable’ s.” As stated on the TTSA website, they include:
- Sudden and instantaneous acceleration
- Hypersonic velocities without signatures
- Low observability
- Trans-medium travel
- Positive lift
If we are to observe the actions of the Shag Harbor object(s), it most certainly hits #4, Trans-Medium Travel. According to the AATIP criteria, this involves:
Objects that have the ability to travel easily in various environments and conditions seemingly without any change in performance capabilities. Our current understanding of physics requires vehicles to be designed specifically according to their application. For this reason, there are stark differences between those vehicles that orbit in space, fly in the atmosphere, and travel in the sea. Objects that can travel in all three mediums using the same design and without compromising performance or degrading lift remains an enigma.
This, and several other observable’s, make the Shag Harbor object most certainly an enigma. And while its performance may have in fact been compromised that day in the skies and eventually, in the waters of Nova Scotia, it begs for continued investigation both by the United States and it’s northern neighbor.
What Can Be Said?
The extraordinary testimonies given to Styles and Ledger, were said to be highly credible individuals. However, their names remained confidential to protect them from possible threat or security oaths.
Therefore, the aforementioned information, just like most witness testimony by military and authority figures, was given “off the record.”
No matter the case, something extremely strange occurred in Shag Harbor on that dark, cold night, and even stretched southward towards the United States.
It remains one of the most compelling UFO cases of all-time, only bringing forth more questions than answers. It’s left even the most skeptical minds scratching their heads.
It could be best summarized with a quote from an October 14th editorial from The Chronicle-Herald :
“Imagination and/or natural phenomena seem to be the weakest of explanations. It has been a tough week for skeptics.”
Please remember we all have different opinions, Think Before You Speak or Write Something that is cruel to Others. After all, We are only Humans. Wishing you clear skies and wide eyes. To share your experiences or just leave a comment there is a area below. Read or listen.
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