Tag: sipapu

Skinwalker Ranch and Native American Legends

Article by Ryan Dube                                 October 2, 2020                                (topsecretwriters.com)

• The Sherman Ranch in Northeastern Utah, more infamously known as the ‘Skinwalker Ranch’, has a long history of paranormal phenomenon. It has been noted that the UFO “hotspots” that are located in the ‘four corners’ states of Utah, Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado – where the most intense number of UFO sightings and paranormal phenomenon occur – are typically close to US military installations. Another significant correlation is the fact that many of these hotspots are located near Native American reservations, namely the great Navajo Nation.

• Regarding the tribal history of Northeastern Utah in particular, the Ute Tribe’s ancestors occupied the area for over a thousand years. In the 19th century, the Utes (among other tribes hostile to the Navajo) allied with the United States Army to carry out some of the worst atrocities against the Navajo people. In 1863, part of the ‘Canyon Chelly Campaign’ included Kit Carson and General James Charlatan attempting to starve the Navajo by placing a bounty on Navajo livestock. Ultimately, military campaigns, starvation and bribery resulted in the Navajo surrender.

• Only a few Navajo surrendered, however. Adopting a scorched earth policy, Colonel Carson and his men scouted throughout Navajo-land, chasing, killing, capturing Navajo, confiscating and burning crops, and offering food, clothing and shelter to those who surrendered. Some Navajo were permitted to keep their flocks and drive them to Ft. Stanton, aka Bosque Redondo. The troops were aided by other Native American tribes with long-standing memory and enmity toward the Navajos, chiefly the Utes.

• The Navajo finally surrender en masse in the spring of 1864. This resulted in the “Long Walk”, when over 8,000 Navajo men, women and children were forced to march for two months, over 300 miles to Fort Sumner, New Mexico. Two hundred Navajo died in this forced march. Some, however, escaped to the mountains such as Navajo Mountain and the Bears Ears. Anger and hatred grew in the Navajo hearts against the whites and the Utes. This resentment was handed down from generation to generation. Even today, Navajo ‘witches’ will conjure extra-dimensional beasts to ward off white men and Utes.

• Navajo witchcraft is apparent in stories of the Navajo “Skinwalker”. Skinwalkers were considered “wer-animals” – native people who used an animal skin to transform themselves into a particular animal. Still, anyone could see that they were not the animal, but a human in disguise.

• James Donahue, a writer who lived with a practicing witch on a Navajo reservation, relates witnessing such a shape-shifter. One evening in July 1980, he and his wife were alone at their house. Their dogs began to bark, and his wife told Donahue that there was a wolf in their yard. They tracked the wolf to an old Navajo “Hogan” or primitive structure. But as they tracked the animal, the wolf’s paw prints turned to a petite human woman’s footprints. They ended at the wall of the Hogan. It was plain to the Donahues that the woman had taken on the appearance of a wolf, then reverted back to her human body and walked through the wall of the locked Hogan structure.

• Anthropologists believe that most Native American tribes of this region are descendants of the Anasazi, or “Ancient Ones”. The Anasazi suffered a mysterious and sudden decline, much like the Mayans. Ancient petroglyphs found near Hopi villages providing a “mythical” history. The ‘Emergence Myth’ depicts spirits, or ‘kachinas’, emerging to this world through a hole in the ground at a sacred site near the Little Colorado River close to the Grand Canyon known as the ‘sipapu’.

• Las Vegas newsman and co-author of the 2005 book: Hunt for the Skinwalker, George Knapp notes that UFO events don’t begin to describe the rich array of unusual phenomena in the Skinwalker Ranch area. While Native American tribal leaders are reluctant to speak to outsiders, a local who knows the Ute tribe well told Knapp that the Utes take the tribal lore of strange creatures and sightings very seriously. Said the local, Hicks: “They think the Skinwalkers are powerful spirits that are here because of a curse that was put on them generations ago by the Navajos. And the center of the whole legend is this ranch. The Utes say the ranch is ‘the path of the Skinwalker.’ Tribal members are strictly forbidden from setting foot on the property” as Navajo ‘witches’ still conjure reality-bending, multi-dimensional magic that goes back to the days of the Ancient Anasazi.

• Tom Gorman and his wife bought and lived on the Skinwalker Ranch during the 1990s. When they first moved there, they were unloading furniture when Mrs. Gorman spotted an extremely large wolf walking across their pasture. It came right up and sat next to the Gorman’s dog. The Gormans even petted the animal. Then the wolf strolled over to the corral and grabbed a calf by the snout through the bars. Gorman and his father began beating on the wolf’s back with sticks but it wouldn’t release the calf. So Gorman grabbed a .357 Magnum pistol from his truck and shot the wolf twice at point-blank range. It dropped the calf and calmly looked at the family. Gorman shot it two more times, but the animal showed no sign of distress – or even blood. Gorman got his hunting rifle and shot the wolf again, this time causing part of its flesh fly off. But the wolf wasn’t even fazed. After a sixth shot, the wolf casually trotted across the field into a muddy thicket. Gorman and his father tracked the beast for about a mile, following its paw prints through the mud. But the tracks suddenly ended as if the wolf had simply vanished into thin air.

• When Gorman examined the chunk of wolf flesh, he said it looked and smelled like rotten meat [EN: the reanimated corpse of a wolf?]. None of his neighbors knew anything about any tame, over-sized wolves in the area. But many other witness accounts of Skinwalker sightings speak of strange misshapen, odd wolf-like creatures. A few weeks later, Mrs. Gorman encountered another wolf that was so large, its back was parallel with the top of her window as it stood beside her car. The wolf was accompanied by a dog-like animal that she couldn’t identify. Keep in mind that the appearance of the shapeshifter depends on the appearance of the human “witch” who forms the beast.

• An excerpt from Knapp’s book recounts a local describing the occurrences at a particular location: “Some very strange things have happened at the precise spot where I’m sitting. It is here that a visitor was accosted by a roaring but nearly invisible creature, something akin to the Predator of movie fame. It is here that a Ph.D. physicist reported that his mind was invaded, literally taken over, by some sort of hostile intelligence that warned him that he was not welcome. It is here that an entire team of researchers watched in awe as a bright door or portal opened up in the darkness and a large humanoid creature crawled out before quickly vanishing. And it is here that several animals–cattle and dogs–were mutilated, obliterated or simply disappeared.”

• A couple of years later, Gorman and his wife were driving on the ranch and saw something “low to the ground, heavily muscled, weighing perhaps 200 pounds, with curly red hair and a bushy tail” attacking – and almost playing with – one of their horses. When Gorman got within 40 feet of the animal, it literally vanished before his eyes. There were claw marks on the horse’s legs. Others reported seeing this beast as well.

• On another occasion, a friend was visiting the Gormans at the ranch. This visitor was alone meditating when they saw something “large and blurry” moving through the trees – not quite invisible, but camouflaged like in the Predator movie. It swiftly moved across the pasture, covering 100 yards in seconds. When it reached the man, it let out a ferocious roar. The visitor was so scared, he grabbed on to Gorman and wouldn’t let go. He has never returned to the ranch.

• On the night of March 12, 1997, barking dogs alerted the team to something lurking in a tree near the ranch house. Tom Gorman grabbed a hunting rifle and they all took off in their trucks toward the tree. At a distance of forty yards, they could see huge set of yellowish, reptilian eyes on head that had to be three feet wide. At the foot of the tree was a massive dog creature. Gorman shot at both animals. The creature on the ground vanished. The thing in the tree fell, landing heavily in the patch of snow below. When the men ran up to the tree, they found neither the animal nor any blood. They had a professional tracker come out the next day to no avail. But at the bottom of the tree, they found and photographed claw prints which they later matched to that of a prehistoric velociraptor.

• The common denominator to all of these sightings is that these creatures can be recognized from their imperfect gait, appearance and movements. In addition, sometimes the pastures would unexplainably light up at night like a football stadium, with shafts of light emanating from the ground. Others have said they’ve heard what sounded like heavy machinery operating under the earth. Tom, his son and his nephew once heard loud, disembodied male voices emanating from 20 feet above their heads, talking in some unintelligible language.

• According to Pueblo history, there are two kinds of sipapus (holes in the ground). One is the original sipapu mythology, from which the ‘First People’ emerged from the ‘Lower World’. This is the portal through which the dead pass to the spirit world. Legend has it that the dead would reemerge after a few days, their bodies revived. But today only the spirits (e.g.: ‘kachinas’) may pass through the sipapu. Secondly, Native Americans believe that the numerous small holes in the ground, or on ice/in water, are sipapus from which spirits can come up to communicate with the humans. Such holes have been found at the Skinwalker Ranch. One cold day, Gorman found many of the holes dotted around his pasture. They were perfect, concentric circles, as if scooped up by a large ‘cookie cutter’. Smaller ones were also found there.

• Special bodies of water or even special places in the landscape are often considered to be sipapus as well. A circular impression was once carved out of the ice on a pond near the ranch. It was six feet in diameter and about a quarter-inch deep into the half-inch thick ice. But there were no muddy footprints at the bank. The ice could not have supported much weight anyway.

• In 1995 and 1996, the Gormans and others reported 12 separate incidents of seeing large orange circles flying over the trees of the homestead. They would commonly see floating spheres of different sizes and colors. Gorman claims that holes would open up on the orange spheres for other smaller spheres to fly out. By early 1996, sightings of blue spheres the size of a softball, made of glass, and filled with bubbling blue liquids that seemed to rotate inside, became commonplace at the ranch. In April 1996, the Gormans watched a blue orb repeatedly circle the head of one of their horses. The horse was illuminated by an intense blue light, and there was a sound like static electricity in the air. The orb seemed to be intelligently controlled. When Gorman approached the horse with a flashlight, the orb darted off, maneuvering through tree branches with speed and dexterity.

• The Navajo refer to the use of “lightning” which they utilize through Navajo witchcraft as either positive protection or as a negative weapon. Witches can also conjure a form of magic called the “Frenzy Way” which magically influences the minds and emotions of others. The Gormans say the blue spheres seemed to generate severe psychological effects on the family. Family members felt waves of fear roll over them whenever the blue orbs appeared.

• One evening in May 1996, Gorman was outside with three of his dogs when he noticed a blue orb darting around in the field near the ranch house. Gorman urged his dogs to go after the orb. The three dogs chased and snapped at the orb, but it dodged and maneuvered just beyond their reach. The orb led the dogs out across the pasture and into the thick brush that borders the field. Gorman says he heard the dogs make three terrible yelps, then they were silent. The next morning, Gorman found there three round spots of dried and brittle vegetation. In the middle of each circle was a black, greasy lump. Gorman surmised that his dogs had been incinerated. After this encounter, the Gormans decided to sell the ranch and move.

• The famous scientist and Ufologist, Jacques Vallee, believes that UFOs are “windows” to other dimensions manipulated by intelligent, often mischievous, always enigmatic beings. Did the the Anasazi/ Ancient Ones learn to harness these “windows”? Navajo mythology speaks of a ‘trickster’ being who, through his foolish actions, reveals the limitations of the spiritual and material realities and the consequences of transgressing them for one’s own ego. According to Vallee, “The UFO phenomenon …represents a level of consciousness that we have not yet recognized, and which is able to manipulate dimensions beyond time and space as we understand them. It…generally behaves as a control system…that is subtly manipulating human consciousness.”

• With the creation of these extra-dimensional ‘windows’, a picture starts to form of a misleading and malevolent ‘trickster’ being or force that is able to pass through dimensional wormholes and enter our plane of reality at will. The Ancient Anasazi’s spiritual practices and rituals may have weakened the fabric of space and time between the spiritual worlds. The horrors and bloodshed brought by the white colonists may have created a consciousness of retaliation that gives malevolent spiritual forces free reign in this region of Northeastern Utah.


The Skinwalker Ranch in Northeastern Utah, otherwise known as the Sherman Ranch, has a long history of paranormal phenomenon. This phenomenon received the most media attention after the December 2005 publication of Hunt for the Skinwalker, a detailed book about the ranch and the NIDS investigation, co-written by Dr. Colm Kelleher and George Knapp.

The Skinwalker and Other Dimensions

The purpose of this article is not meant to outline the activities at the ranch – the NIDS investigation and Knapp’s visit to the ranch was described in great detail in Hunt for the Skinwalker.

The purpose of this article is to compare many of the phenomenon observed by the researchers at the ranch, with the long and fascinating Native American history in the area. The parallels that are uncovered when the two are placed side by side are very interesting, as well as somewhat disconcerting.

To place the phenomenon into a historical context, it’s important to explore the history of Northeastern Utah – in particular the history of the land before Europeans ever arrived and during their arrival.

Many people recognize the significance that most of the UFO “hotspots” which are located from Utah down through Arizona and New Mexico, are also located near military installations. But another significant correlation is the fact that many of these hotspots are located bordering or at least neighboring Native American reservations.

Many people don’t realize that the area of the country where most of the intense number of UFO sightings and paranormal phenomenon occur – New Mexico, Arizona and Utah – is also the location of a country within a country – the great Navajo Nation.

    the ‘Long Walk’ of the Navajo nation

THE NAVAJO NATION — A third world country

September 2002
I had not realized that there is a third world country in the USA, but there is. It is the Navajo Nation. This country is a huge area in New Mexico, Arizona and Utah that is mostly desert and mountains. I recently spent nine days in the area doing a pastors’ conference, preaching and lecturing. The country is awe inspiring for the stark beauty of the landscape.

Not only is the land beautiful – but it is rich in Native American history, culture, as well as an entire host of strange phenomenon, including UFO’s.

A Wicked Past

Anyone familiar with the infiltration of this area of the country by white settlers will recall the horrors, the slaughter, and the unimaginable actions by both the United States military and the Natives of the area.

The tribal history of Utah in particular, including the Ute Tribe, who’s ancestors occupied the area for over a thousand years, includes a great deal of tragedy and horror. It’s important to make note of the fact that the Utes allied with the United States army in attacks against the Navajo people.

The mid 1800’s saw some of the worst atrocities by the United States Army against the Navajo people of this region. In 1863, part of the Canyon Chelly Campaign included Kit Carson and General James Charlatan attempting to starve the Navajo by placing a bounty on Navajo livestock.

This is an important footnote for our following observations – that this was an important target of the whites to obtain submission from the Navajo – the reduction of Navajo livestock. Livestock are often a target of the strange UFO phenomenon – such as the cattle mutilations.

After numerous military campaigns, the conflicts with their Utes neighbors, and pressure from New Mexican allies – the resulting starvation of the Navajo, followed by the use of bribery, resulted in a massive Navajo surrender: Few Navajo surrendered and with a scorched earth policy, he [Colonel Kit Carson] and his men scouted throughout Navajoland, chasing, killing, capturing some Navajo, confiscating and burning crops, and offering food, clothing and shelter to those who surrendered. Some Navajo were permitted to keep their flocks and drive them to Ft. Stanton, aka Bosque Redondo. The troops were aided by other Native American tribes with long-standing memory and enmity toward the Navajos, chiefly the Utes.

This massive Navajo surrender resulted in an 8,000 Navajo march, called the “Long Walk”, before being incarcerated at Fort Sumner, New Mexico.

In the spring of 1864, over 8,000 Navajo men, women and children were forced to march over 300 miles to Fort Sumner, New Mexico. Approximately 200 Navajo died during the two month long march, known as the Long Walk of the Navajo.

This is an important second item to note – that those who didn’t surrender escaped to the mountains, in particular Navajo Mountain and the Bears Ears.

There they waited for the release of their relatives. It isn’t hard to imagine the anger and hatred that grew in the hearts of those who escaped the fate of the Long Walk toward the whites, and possibly toward the Ute as well.

The tradition of the Navajo to maintain an oral history means that only the Navajo truly understand the magnitude of the effect this event had on the hearts and minds of the Navajo people. The generational memory of the Navajo run deep…we can be certain that any resentment from this event has been handed down from generation to generation.



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