Near the town of Elkhorn, Wisconsin, not far from the Illinois border, Bray Road runs through miles of flat, lonely farmland. It is near this location where a werewolf-like cryptid, called the Beast of Bray Road, has been seen since at least the early 1990s.
Tonight I watched a documentary on the Travel Channel about this cryptid. Similar upright “dog men” have been seen in Michigan, Indiana, and even Ohio. (I live in Ohio, as some of you may know.)
According to the documentary I watched, there are a number of theories surrounding the dog men. One is that the creatures are manifestations of the Native American wolf spirit. (The dog men seem to be associated with sacred Native American sites.)
There is a long tradition of spectral dogs and werewolf-like animals guarding portals to the underworld. Greek mythology has Cerberus, or the Hound of Hades. There are similar “hell hounds” in Irish lore.
The hellhound is a concept that has found its way into at least one of my horror novels: Eleven Miles of Night.
The Travel Channel documentary (which was focused on the Beast of Bray Road) contained some rather convincing eyewitness testimonies. Among the witnesses interviewed was a former math teacher. A Roman Catholic Bishop speculated on the possibility that the Bray Road Beast has a supernatural aspect. Maybe you believe, and maybe you don’t; but these folks weren’t conspiracy theory whackos.
Linda S. Godfrey, the newspaper reporter who broke the story of the Bray Road Beast back in 1991, has written a book on the topic. I haven’t read Ms. Godfrey’s book, but she was interviewed for the Travel Channel documentary. If you are interested in the Bray Road creature (or cryptids in general), her book would probably be worth checking out.