Ilkley Moor Alien Photo (Yorkshire; December 1987)

Ronnie Jersey

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Nov 22, 2021
Messages
1,418
A comparison in size between the 'alien' and a human in the same place. The alien is small, and if it were a dummy composed of relatively light material, it would be fairly easy to carry up there. Ilkley town is quite nearby.
View attachment 48710
Or it could be a short person sitting on a bike - which would make him appear shorter.
Or a young person going hiking early in the morning.
Or a short older man carrying something in his left hand.
I have also wondered if there were any circuses appearing in the area at that time, reporting the escape of a primate?
Or perhaps someone's pet? I know that the photo has been examined by experts who claim this is not any known animal, but how can they be sure with such a lack of detail.
But of course, it could be just what Mr. Spencer said it was.
 

PeteS

Seeking refuge
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
2,607
I'm still of the view that it's too much of a coincidence that 2 police officers with the same name, living close to each other, both had reported ufo experiences and both get abducted. Sorry but not believable.
The other thing that doesn't gel with me is that this guy, apparently unfamiliar with the moor, could pinpoint the exact location for someone else to stand on the exact spot to be photographed. I lived close by for a couple of decades and visited the moor loads of times walking dogs, and I would suggest that this would have been very unlikely indeed.
Very early morning and in December, you wouldn't see your hand in front of your face on Ilkley Moor.
 

catseye

Old lady trouser-smell with yesterday's knickers
Joined
Feb 1, 2010
Messages
5,092
Location
York
I know that the photo has been examined by experts who claim this is not any known animal, but how can they be sure with such a lack of detail.
I think we had a similar conversation over on the 'Cumberland Spacemum' thread, where the conclusion was drawn that the 'experts' who examine such photographs are the work experience lads in the development lab. What sort of 'experts' would these otherwise be? Who becomes an 'expert' in looking at out of focus pictures of blobs and determining what they may, or may not, be?

Anyone with a hand lens?
 

Ronnie Jersey

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Nov 22, 2021
Messages
1,418
I haven't read the 'Cumberland Spacemum' thread here, but I recall when it was all over the internet that the spaceman was actually Jim Templeton's wife with her back turned to the camera, it all made perfect sense. And surely Templeton himself saw this?
And PeteS' comment about walking his dogs on the moor - could this photo actually be of a young person walking a small dog with his left hand?
Interesting thought.
 

BS3

Abominable Showman
Joined
Sep 20, 2021
Messages
833
Where did the bicycle idea come from? One thing I don't see any sign of in that photo is a bicycle.

The bicycle idea came about because a local insurance salesman (if I remember correctly) later contacted a newspaper saying "yeah that was a photograph of me on my bike, I ride across the moor at that time" or words to that effect.
 

Zeke Newbold

Carbon based biped.
Joined
Apr 18, 2015
Messages
1,091
RE: the man-on-a-bicycle image: I fear this may be another case of `Golden Retriever With a Stick in it's Mouth` interpretation of the Hugh Gray `Nessie` pic. Discussed here:

https://forums.forteana.org/index.p...-the-water-hugh-gray-nessie-photo-1933.65195/

It only takes someone to propose a way of viewing an ambiguous object and - voila! - pareidolia kicks in and that's suddenly all you can see. Thus the power of suggestion.

So with the Hugh Gray picture - which, let's face it could be pretty much anything - I can't help but see a dog with a stick in it's mouth - even though I have encountered many reasons why it might well not be that, as well as convincing alternative interpretations. Likewise, since the matter was raised, I now see a man on a bike when I look at the Ilkley photo. Likewise too, just as there are people who just can't see the dog in the water - there will be those who just can't see the bicycle.

I doubt it's a man on a bike. For the record.

Both pictures could be lots of things - but the possibility of Ikley picture as a picture of an alien is at the back of the queue, so I can't get excited about finding the real explanation.
 

Austin Popper

Emperor of Antarctica
Joined
Aug 13, 2017
Messages
1,363
Location
Colorado, where the gold is still elusive
The bicycle idea came about because a local insurance salesman (if I remember correctly) later contacted a newspaper saying "yeah that was a photograph of me on my bike, I ride across the moor at that time" or words to that effect.
We have people seeing neckties, buttons, goatees, grocery bags, etc. in that fuzzy blob. Now there is an invisible bike. Sorry, it's the equivalent of a blobsquatch. The photographer's story is all we have, other than a fuzzy photo of an apparent creature that's not as tall a standard human. It's an interesting story, but anyone trying to solve the "mystery" by parsing that photo is fooling his/her/itself.
 

Ronnie Jersey

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Nov 22, 2021
Messages
1,418
Wow, no one can even voice their thoughts or ideas here, this site is just another bullying bunch, sorry I wasted my time!
You can all get on with it, have fun picking on each other.
 

EnolaGaia

I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
Staff member
Joined
Jul 19, 2004
Messages
27,735
Location
Out of Bounds
The thing that's always bugged me about the Ilkley Moor photo is that the 'leg' to the left seems to be superimposed on the scene. The same can be said of the 'hand' above and to the left of the highlighted leg in the image below.

To a lesser degree the entire figure appears superimposed on those versions that have been modified for contrast or color.

ilkleymoor-X-Annot.jpg

Every time I've attempted to examine the photo more closely in a graphics program I've come away with the impression the famous figure is on, rather than in, the scene.
 

catseye

Old lady trouser-smell with yesterday's knickers
Joined
Feb 1, 2010
Messages
5,092
Location
York
RE: the man-on-a-bicycle image: I fear this may be another case of `Golden Retriever With a Stick in it's Mouth` interpretation of the Hugh Gray `Nessie` pic. Discussed here:

https://forums.forteana.org/index.p...-the-water-hugh-gray-nessie-photo-1933.65195/

It only takes someone to propose a way of viewing an ambiguous object and - voila! - pareidolia kicks in and that's suddenly all you can see. Thus the power of suggestion.

So with the Hugh Gray picture - which, let's face it could be pretty much anything - I can't help but see a dog with a stick in it's mouth - even though I have encountered many reasons why it might well not be that, as well as convincing alternative interpretations. Likewise, since the matter was raised, I now see a man on a bike when I look at the Ilkley photo. Likewise too, just as there are people who just can't see the dog in the water - there will be those who just can't see the bicycle.

I doubt it's a man on a bike. For the record.

Both pictures could be lots of things - but the possibility of Ikley picture as a picture of an alien is at the back of the queue, so I can't get excited about finding the real explanation.
I think this is where Occam's Razor kicks in.

People looking at the picture once the bike has been mentioned think 'what is more likely to be up on Ilkley Moor, an alien, or a man pushing a bike?' And their brain just thinks 'yep, bike'.

I can't see the bike either, by the way. But I don't think it's an alien either.
 

PeteS

Seeking refuge
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
2,607
I haven't read the 'Cumberland Spacemum' thread here, but I recall when it was all over the internet that the spaceman was actually Jim Templeton's wife with her back turned to the camera, it all made perfect sense. And surely Templeton himself saw this?
And PeteS' comment about walking his dogs on the moor - could this photo actually be of a young person walking a small dog with his left hand?
Interesting thought.
Could be anything Ronnie, that's the problem. My issue with it is that the back story just does not add up.
(Incidentally don't take posts the wrong way, this forum is one of the friendliest out there. There is a dry sense of humour sometimes, and the occasional troll and trouble maker get dealt with pretty promptly. Stick with it Ronnie.)
 

Krepostnoi

Increasingly disenchanted
Joined
Jul 9, 2012
Messages
4,243
I think this is where Occam's Razor kicks in.

People looking at the picture once the bike has been mentioned think 'what is more likely to be up on Ilkley Moor, an alien, or a man pushing a bike?' And their brain just thinks 'yep, bike'.

I can't see the bike either, by the way. But I don't think it's an alien either.
I can't see the bike at all. And I'd question why anyone would want to take a bicycle over any of the footpaths on Ilkley Moor, especially since commuting on a mountain bike is a more recent development, and a road bike/sit-up-and-beg town bike would be more hindrance than help. See the comment upthread about the navigability of the sole road leading from Keighley over the moor.
 

eburacum

Papo-furado
Joined
Aug 26, 2005
Messages
4,495
And I'd question why anyone would want to take a bicycle over any of the footpaths on Ilkley Moor, especially since commuting on a mountain bike is a more recent development, and a road bike/sit-up-and-beg town bike would be more hindrance than help.
There were already mountain bikes by 1987, and even before that people like Beryl Burton used to participate in cross-country races that included carrying the bike over some pretty rough uplands. But I think the figure is too small to be an adult on an adult's bike, and too misshapen to be a child.
 

BS3

Abominable Showman
Joined
Sep 20, 2021
Messages
833
So many things about this photo and story are absurd. The 'creature' thoughtfully keeping to the path, despite having the ability to levitate the witness behind him in the air like a helium balloon (a comical image). The huge effort to wipe the witnesses memory, foiled by him then turning round and taking a photograph at the very end. The incomprehensible experience in the UFO, followed by the aliens showing the witness an apparent selection from News at Ten reports (unless we are supposed to think the aliens also had their own camera crew there to record earthly pollution, hunger, etc). There is clearly a lot of interest here as an 'unusual' human experience, if it's not a huge leg-pull, but just goes to underline that nothing about these kind of stories makes logical sense on close analysis.
 

BS3

Abominable Showman
Joined
Sep 20, 2021
Messages
833
Having re-read the hypnotic "regression", I was interested to note that the 'creature' had large pointed ears a la Hopkinsville Goblins (or Spock, or Yoda, to look for inspiration outside ufology). That's not something you see in too many reports in recent years.
 

Bigphoot2

Not sprouts! I hate sprouts.
Joined
Jul 30, 2005
Messages
10,776
I haven't read the 'Cumberland Spacemum' thread here, but I recall when it was all over the internet that the spaceman was actually Jim Templeton's wife with her back turned to the camera, it all made perfect sense. And surely Templeton himself saw this?
I've been doing photography for over 40 years and it never ceases to amaze me how little some people actually see in the viewfinder. They concentrate on the subject blissfully unaware of what's in the background or foreground.
 

catseye

Old lady trouser-smell with yesterday's knickers
Joined
Feb 1, 2010
Messages
5,092
Location
York
I've been doing photography for over 40 years and it never ceases to amaze me how little some people actually see in the viewfinder. They concentrate on the subject blissfully unaware of what's in the background or foreground.
Is this where I mention my knickers again?
 

catseye

Old lady trouser-smell with yesterday's knickers
Joined
Feb 1, 2010
Messages
5,092
Location
York
Oh go on then :)
It's also very very common to only focus on the thing you are taking the photograph of and somehow 'tune out' whatever is going on in the background. Never taken a photo of your new couch only to realise that it also features several pairs of your pants which are drying on the radiator behind it?

...just me, then.

(
from the Cumberland Spacemum thread....)
 
Top