The Skin Walker Ranch: Before The Shermans.

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The Skinwalker Ranch Before the Shermans, did the Meyers Experience the Paranormal?

The Skinwalker Ranch story is so famous that lots of different sites and accounts have popped up all over the Internet. Some of these are pretty much ‘fan fiction’ but as with legends since the beginning of human history, what starts as fiction will soon have people swearing it is a fact.

The Sherman family’s alleged encounters in the middle of the 1990s made Skin Walker Ranch, a place of extreme strangeness in Utah’s Uintah Basin, renowned. But who owned the land before to the Shermans, and did they encounter any unusual circumstances?

The Evidence For

Kenneth Myers owned the ranch from 1934. There is a story that he saw a rangy man with a black coat whose face was in shadow. This was the dreadful winter of 1948.

This towering dark stranger knocked on Myer’s door at the Ranch out of the blue in a snowstorm. When Myers answered, this man claimed to be from the Sherrif’s Department. We see below that Kenneth Myers had friends in the Uintah Sherrif’s Department, but Myers had never seen this guy before.

This stranger insisted he had only called by on behalf of the Sherrif to check they were okay, what with the snowstorm and all. Apparently satisfied, the stranger turned and went out into the blizzard. Kenneth Myers watched him for a while, and then there was a bright flash and the man disappeared. A weird vortex of light swirled where he had stopped. His footsteps stood out in the snow to a certain point, and then vanished.

If you’ve read previous articles, you will know Myers died and that the ranch was empty for several years until it was sold to the Shermans in 1996 and that the Shermans sold it a couple of years later to a billionaire entrepreneur with an interest in the investigation of the paranormal, Robert Bigelow.

Bigelow installed his scientific team at the Homestead. Prominent members were Colm Kelleher and Eric W. Davis mentioned above. The team stayed at the Ranch until Bigelow closed down the investigation and sold the estate on in 2004.

After that, Adamantium Real Estate bought the place. They blocked off the roads to the ranch, slapped up no entry signs and field for licenses to sell multimedia content and merchandise.

There were two films about the story in 2013 and 2018. This led to the very successful series The Secret of Skinwalker Ranch on the History Channel. It’s this series that has made the ranch famous, if not notorious.

All this exposure has attracted critics. A writer named Robert Sheaffer has claimed nearly all the phenomena described over the years are ‘illusory’, which may be a polite way of saying it’s all made up. Sheaffer says during the decades that the Myers lived at the Ranch, there were no supernatural occurrences at all.

Supporters of the idea that something wicked lurks at the ranch say that Robert Bigelow still kept the scientific team’s key discoveries, including incontrovertible video evidence, under lock and key.

The Evidence Against

In 2009, author Frank B Salisbury interviewed Garth Myers, the brother of the then deceased Kenneth Myers who owned the ranch from 1933. Garth was much younger than his brother. During his youth, he worked at the ranch for three summers.

He said that his brother Kenneth and Kenneth’s wife Edith first bought 180 acres in 1933 and added to it over the years until it was 480 acres.

They lost a child who died in infancy and they had no further children. Kenneth Myers died in 1987, but his wife Edith lived at the Ranch for a further five years until she went to a rest home. When she passed in 1994, Garth Myers inherited the ranch but did not live in it. It stood empty for about three years until the Shermans acquired it.

Garth Myers told Frank Salisbury that he did not know of any paranormal or UFO activity at the Ranch. He said his sister-in-law Edith had lived there on her own after Kenneth’s death and she had no problems and that he was frequently in touch with her because he was worried about her living there alone and getting older.

Garth knew that Terry Sherman reported experiences at the farm after he bought it. He states he also knew that Terry was ‘scared to death’ and that he had lost cattle.

When they asked Garth Myers about the Shermans’ statement that there were many chains and locks in the homestead — as if they kept powerful dogs; and that all the locks on external and internal doors. Garth Myers denied there were any locks or chains in the ranch homestead building.

Garth said that Robert Bigelow rang him after Bigelow bought the place in 1997. He asked why the Myers had told no one what they knew about UFO activity.

Garth told Bigelow that the reason they hadn’t spoken about UFOs was because nobody saw any.

If weird stuff had taken place at the ranch in the time of the Myers family’s long occupation, why would they not talk about it? Perhaps they didn’t want the notoriety, or perhaps, like Grant Myers says, nothing happened. Though Grant Myers didn’t live on the ranch himself, of course.

After The Evidence Against, Yet More Evidence For

But people have come forward to say that the Myers family were hiding something

Kris Porrett was Deputy Sherriff of Uintah County and had known the Myers in the years before the Shermans bought the ranch. They shared an interest in horses.

Porrett reported being called out to the ranch by the Myers because their cattle would get mutilated. There were many of these and, on one occasion, they found the dead cow within two hundred yards of the homestead. Porrett said he found two cows symmetrically arranged with their heads towards an irrigation ditch. Someone had removed all their reproductive organs and heaped them up behind the bodies.

The cows’ heads were still attached to their bodies, but someone had removed all the bones from the inside of the flesh of the heads.

The carcasses were exsanguinated. There was no blood at all in them or on the ground.

Porrett found a depression in the ground behind the cows that was twenty-three feet long. You recall that the Shermans also found depressions like this, usually round but, on one occasion, triangular.

One time, three heifers went missing. Porrett went out with Myers on horseback, but they couldn’t find them or any trace of them — no tracks, no nothing. Returning to the farm, Myers went to a shed and found he couldn’t get the door open. The strength of both men succeeded in pushing the doors ajar and inside, to their amazement, they found inside three cows piled one on top of the other.

Of course they assumed they were dead, but they weren’t They were in a trance. This is very like the incident when Terry Sherman found all his Angus bulls crowded in a trailer when the door had obviously not been opened and there was no way they would have gone into a small space themselves.

The cows came out of their trance and panicked, kicking their way out of the shed and rejoining the herd.

As well as Kris Porrett, other people who knew Skinwalker Ranch before the Shermans have come forward.

Jimmy Spears was a young man who arrived at the Ranch in 1975, looking for work. Though described as a drifter, Spears was diligent and punctual. He worked there for a while, then, one bright summer’s morning, Myers sent him to fix a fence.

Myers told Spears that he would come and check on him later when he’d finished his own jobs, or if Spears finished earlier, he should come back to the ranch.

Spears didn’t return, so just after lunchtime, Myers went looking for him. There was no sign of Jimmy Spears. Some of the fence was fixed and Jimmy’s tools were lying on the ground nearby, but of Spears, not a sight nor sound.

They assumed he’d just left as abruptly as he’d come. After all, this is how men like this live their lives. But it was odd that he’d left without collecting his pay and that he’d left his valuable tools behind. If Spears wanted to get another job, he’d need tools — so why leave them?

Then it got weirder.

Three days later, they found Spears stumbling up a mud road to the northwest of the 400 plus acre ranch. He was dazed, confused, and seriously dehydrated. He didn’t seem to know he’d been missing and became agitated when they told him.

Spears said that he’d been fixing the fence, just getting on with the job. The next minute he’s on the road. It seemed instant to him, but in fact, three days had passed.

Spears quit the ranch in the end. As long as he was there, he had the recurring, terrifying nightmare that someone had buried him beneath the homestead.

Jimmy Spears wasn’t the only person in those days associated with gaps in time, where something seems to have happened, but they have no memory of it, other than post-traumatic nightmares and half-flashbacks.

This phenomenon of ‘missing time’ is associated very often with alleged alien abductions.

This happened to a female relative of the Myers family. A friend of this girl reported it to journalist George Knapp. They do not name or identify the relative, but it can’t have been the Myers’ daughter because they didn’t have one. She was perhaps another close family member. In any case, she was a young woman.

The report is that this woman was out with a friend. The friend was the person who reported this story. They had been out in Roosevelt, which is a city about nine and a half miles away from the Ranch, and in those days had a population of less than six thousand people.

They got back to the Ranch about 11pm and were just at the main gates when they saw red and blue flashing lights behind them. They thought it was the police and pulled over. The neighbour was driving. They sat and waited for the police officer. The next moment, the sun was rising in the east. It was dawn. It had gone from 11pm to 5 am in an instant and neither woman was aware that time had passed.

Not only had time passed, but the car that had been just outside the gates of Skinwalker Ranch was now on the mesa to the north of the ranch building. There was no road up there. The car was just placed on the rocky top. They couldn’t drive it off and the car had to be retrieved.

Another incident happened in 1981 when two boys were hunting rabbits up on the mesa. It was winter, and the snow started coming down. They realised they would be in trouble if they didn’t get down from the mesa and seek shelter. The nearest building was the abandoned homestead known in Skinwalker Ranch lore as ‘Homestead 2″. This building has a lot of uncanny stories associated with it.

Homestead 2 was where the Myers had originally lived, but they abandoned it and built Homestead 1, which is where the Shermans lived.

One boy, Roland, didn’t want to enter the building. There was something about the place that unnerved him. But the snow was really coming down and so both the boys went in. The snow effectively trapped them in there.

As they stood there by the window, they heard noises from the building behind them. They turned and looked at each other, but neither was brave enough to check. It sounded like scurrying. Most likely a rat, they thought. Or perhaps it’s more accurate to say they hoped.

The scurrying continued, not getting louder, but not getting softer. The boys were getting freaked out. They didn’t want to stay in the building, but they knew that if they tried to cross that landscape covered in snow with the snow getting thicker and thicker around them, they might come to a terrible end.

So they stayed.

A loud crash rang out.

They boys jumped out of their skin. It sounded like there was someone in the abandoned building with them.

After the crash, there was silence. They knew they’d just get scareder and scareder if they didn’t look and reassure themselves something totally normal had caused the crash — something totally safe.

So they looked

Some old tools had fallen to the ground. But what would make them suddenly fall? They must have been there for years in that spot. What could have disturbed them?

And while they were checking the tools, there was a louder crash from outside the door. Out there in the snow, a discarded pile of old clay pots had toppled over.

Weirdly, this made them less, not more scared. They became convinced it was an animal. It must be pretty big. It was bigger than a rabbit and that’s what they’d been originally hunting. This maybe was turning out all right. Maybe they would get something bigger for the pot than a rabbit.

Excitedly, they went out into the snow, the cold forgotten. They searched for tracks in the snow. And they found them, but they weren’t the sort of tracks they’d been expecting.

Instead of rabbit or raccoon, they saw the marks of human feet. But the feet were not wearing shoes. Whoever it was had been walking barefoot in the freezing snow.

They saw the prints going on ahead, and gripped by morbid curiosity, they followed them. They walked cautiously into the blizzard, eyes down, wondering who on earth made these tracks and as they walked, they saw the tracks change until they weren’t the footprints of a man anymore. The tracks had become those of a gigantic dog — a gigantic dog, or maybe an enormous wolf.

Movement by the building caught Roland’s eye. A huge eight foot tall wolf stepped out from behind the wall and growled. It stood on two legs and it growled.

Roland and his friend both fired their hunting rifles. Whether they hit the wolf thing was hard to say. Their hands were shaking with terror, but something chased it off and it turned and ran.

The two boys turned and ran in the opposite direction.

For years afterward, Roland heard a beast growling outside his window. Whenever he was alone, he felt its presence. Whether it was all in his mind, it’s hard to say. But this tormented him for years and years.

And In The End?

We have to come to our own conclusion. Is that ranch in the Uintah Basin really the path of the skin walker? Or is it just another site where longing for the paranormal has created some tall stories and barely believable tales?

After the Shermans left properly educated, normative scientists such as Eric W. Davis, a physicist and Colm Kellerher, a biochemist, agree that something outside the normal was still going on at the Ranch. They did not appear to profit from the story, and in fact they lost the place they lived, many of their cattle and had to move into another state to start again.

For the record, I do believe that Terry Sherman and his wife Gwen did experience some pretty strange things when they were living on the Ranch. I don’t really believe that a cattle rancher who would operate in a reserved close-knit community (Gwen worked at the local bank for twenty years) would in the middle years of their life concoct stories about werewolves and UFOs when they had never previously been known for anything of this kind.

* The third-hand accounts (such as mine!) of what Kellerher and Davis experienced tend to be more lurid than their own accounts. With a bit of searching, you can find their own words on what they saw. It is not as sensational, but it is still pretty odd, and they both are convinced that Skinwalker Ranch is the scene of extraordinary happenings.

I believe therefore, that they believe that something weird happened to the Shermans at the ranch. People say that Terry had the idea that these happenings were all because of secret projects run by the US Military rather than ancient Indian shapeshifters or grey-faced aliens from other dimensions.

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