Large, Winged Being 'Covered in Dark Fur' Reported in Woodstock, Illinois

A rough sketch of the creature’s silhouette drawn by the witness. "It is more of an outline," the witness' wife said in an email. "The yellow at the bottom represents his headlights. The yellow at top is the light at the DuField entrance. DuField conservation is a pond. Not sure if these things are attracted to water?"

A rough sketch of the creature’s silhouette drawn by the witness. "It is more of an outline," the witness' wife said in an email. "The yellow at the bottom represents his headlights. The yellow at top is the light at the DuField entrance. DuField conservation is a pond. Not sure if these things are attracted to water?"

This article was updated on 3/10/19

Lon Strickler of Phantoms and Monsters received an email recently from the wife of a man who she said had recently had an encounter with a strange being on the evening of February 22nd.

My husband was returning home last night (Feb. 22nd - approx. 8 p.m.) from a trip to Walgreens. While driving home, he saw something…coming across the road from the DuField Pond entrance on Country Club Road in Woodstock, Illinois. He said it was approximately 1/3 the width of the road, 8 - 9’ tall, and part of it looked leathery - but he wouldn’t call it leather exactly.

He is interested in speaking to you about it, but this afternoon he didn’t seem ready to talk to you. I’ve asked him if he could sketch what he saw before he forgets. He indicated he’s NOT going to forget this.

Just wanted to give you a heads up, and wondered if you have received any other reports in the Woodstock, IL vicinity.

That email was followed shortly with another that included a photograph of a footprint.

He said he will call you tomorrow if that’s okay. I was home when this happened, so didn’t see anything. All I know is I believe my husband. I did go out to DuField this morning because we’ve had snow/ice/slush to see if I could see any traces of whatever this was. There were a lot of tracks/prints near the entrance—mostly boot prints, but some did not look like boots. However. It was hard to tell. I took photos/videos of the area.

The photograph provided. The witness stated the middle impression is the one that did not look like a boot print. It does appear that there is a definite boot print to its left, and animal tracks around and within the impression.

The photograph provided. The witness stated the middle impression is the one that did not look like a boot print. It does appear that there is a definite boot print to its left, and animal tracks around and within the impression.

Strickler was able to speak over the telephone to the man who had the sighting.

"I then talked to [the witness], who stated that he was driving on Country Club Road near the entrance to the Dufield Pond Conservation Area in Woodstock, Illinois. Suddenly, a large biped ran out onto the road approximately 30 feet ahead of him and quickly crossed to the opposite side," said Strickler.

"He said that he thought that it may have been a Bigfoot initially, but then noticed that it had a large set of membrane wings attached to the back, extending over the top of its head," he continued. "He described the shape of the wings as that of a gargoyle. The body was eight to nine feet in height and covered in dark fur. The arms and legs were well defined. He didn't notice any facial features. [He] got an excellent look at the creature since his headlights illuminated it and the light from the conservation area backlit it as well."

The creature bears a striking resemblance to the one described by an Indiana man who claimed to have been abducted as a young child by a winged humanoid in 1969.

"He also stated that he had felt like it was a warning or harbinger of some kind," Strickler added. "He did mention 'Nephilim' when discussing the encounter. [He said] it had upset him and that he was unable to talk about it until the next day."

The Singular Fortean Society was able to contact the witness by telephone on February 25th.

The witness confirmed the story he had told Strickler, and said that he or his wife would visit the area to try and find better footprints in the mud. The Singular Fortean Society will share any photos of said prints if and when they are received.

The Singular Fortean Society visited the sighting area on March 9th and spoke to the witness. He reaffirmed his earlier testimony, emphasizing that he did not wish to embellish his story and would only recount the facts as he experienced them.

The entrance to Dufield Pond, from where the creature must have come prior to crossing the road.  (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

The entrance to Dufield Pond, from where the creature must have come prior to crossing the road. (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

Directly across the street from the entrance. The witness lost sight of the creature almost immediately after it left the illumination of his car’s headlights, but it may have crossed along the treeline to the reader’s right of this house and into the McHenry County Fairgrounds—which leads into fields and more natural areas.  (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

Directly across the street from the entrance. The witness lost sight of the creature almost immediately after it left the illumination of his car’s headlights, but it may have crossed along the treeline to the reader’s right of this house and into the McHenry County Fairgrounds—which leads into fields and more natural areas. (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

The view facing the street from the driveway leading into Dufield Pond. This area is closed to regular vehicle traffic during the winter months.  (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

The view facing the street from the driveway leading into Dufield Pond. This area is closed to regular vehicle traffic during the winter months. (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

A track found on the Dufield Pond driveway. It was elongated, and appeared to have articulated toes. There were many boot prints in this area, and it is difficult to tell if this is a mundane print misshapen by the melting of ice and snow. Investigator Tobias Wayland’s size 12 boot is in the lower right of the photograph for scale.  (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

A track found on the Dufield Pond driveway. It was elongated, and appeared to have articulated toes. There were many boot prints in this area, and it is difficult to tell if this is a mundane print misshapen by the melting of ice and snow. Investigator Tobias Wayland’s size 12 boot is in the lower right of the photograph for scale. (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

A rough outline of the track.  (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

A rough outline of the track. (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

The view from the end of the driveway.  (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

The view from the end of the driveway. (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

The Dufield Pond Conservation Area is approximately 78 acres in size.  (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

The Dufield Pond Conservation Area is approximately 78 acres in size. (Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

A witness-eye-video of the sighting location is available below. Note how quickly the investigators pass through the encounter area while driving the posted speed limit of 40 mph. Those who bemoan a lack of detail in this and similar sightings might consider how quickly they happen, and how difficult it may be for the witness to absorb and relate minute details without embellishing under these circumstances.

This sighting location is directly adjacent to the Dufield Pond Conservation Area, and is approximately 35 miles west of Lake Michigan. Several large, wooded parks and conservation areas exist within a few miles of the location; many more are within a several-dozen mile radius.

This is the latest in a string of flying creature sightings around Lake Michigan that ostensibly began in the spring of 2017, but more historical accounts are being reported as more people become aware of the phenomenon.  Most of the sightings have taken place near the lakefront in Chicago within a few miles of Lake Michigan, although increasingly reports are coming from within a few hundred mile radius surrounding the great lake—including every state bordering it.  The sightings generally take place in the evening or at night, often in or near a park, and around water.  Witnesses consistently describe a large, gray-or-black bat or bird-like creature—although in a small number of cases the creature was described as insect-like—sometimes with glowing or reflective red, yellow, or orange eyes; and humanoid features such as arms and legs are often reported.  Many of the sightings are also of something seen only briefly or are described only as a flying creature with few details, which leaves open the possibility that a large bird or bird-like being could explain some encounters. 

To report a sighting reach out to us directly at The Singular Fortean Society through our contact page.

You can view a timeline of the sightings so far here, and an interactive map here.

If you enjoyed this article and would like to support the Singular Fortean Society, please consider becoming an official member by signing up through our Patreon page—membership includes a ton of extra content and behind-the-scenes access to the Society’s inner workings.

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