Blogs headlights, Exploring Europe 2016
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The courage of the (monster) hunter

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In 1970, when he was seven years old, Steve’s parents took him on holiday to Loch Ness. There, he learnt about the legend of Nessie, and became obsessed. He would often go back on holiday or on an expedition, but never saw anything.

© Bertrand Lawal

© Bertrand Lanneau

His responsibilities eventually caught up with him and he became manager of the family business, then the owner… But in 1991 he decided to pursue his dream. He left his wife and his job, sold his house, bought and repaired an old van (previously used as a mobile library), and set off for Loch Ness, in search of Nessie.

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© Bertrand Lawal

© Bertrand Lanneau

Slightly mad, you might say. But to us, he is courageous. Courageous enough to leave everything behind and follow his instincts, rely on hope and end up with no regrets. And so, for the past 25 years, Steve has been a full-time Nessie hunter. For the first 10 of those years he drove his van around the loch, exploring every nook and cranny. He even made a film for the BBC, “Desperately Seeking Nessie”.

© Bertrand Lawal

© Bertrand Lanneau

Then, thanks to the kindness of the locals, Steve parked his van and his solar panels on the beach at Dores. This spot offers the best view of the surroundings, “absolutely perfect”, according to Steve. Outside his van he has set up a stall where he sells models of Nessie that he makes and paints himself. That is how he earns his living.

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© Bertrand Lawal

© Bertrand Lanneau

And? Has he seen the monster? One day, a long time ago, Steve saw something “really unusual”. That’s how he describes it to us. He knows he has to film it, for proof. We can’t speculate on whether or not Nessie is real. Who are we to question his investigations and his purpose in life?

© Bertrand Lawal

© Bertrand Lanneau

Outside the van is an article telling his story. The last line of the article goes like this: “if you have a dream, no matter how harebrained others think it is, then it is worth trying to make it come true”.

© Bertrand Lawal

© Bertrand Lanneau


[On the road, at the 57°22’56.4″N and 4°20’00.8″W]

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