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Valley Of The Headless Men And The Waheela

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The Nahanni Valley (Canada) covers 250 square miles in the southern end of the Mackenzie Mountains of Canada. Modern legends say there is an entrance to an alien base there. Older legends says it is home to the Waheela is a wolf-like cryptid reported in the Northwest Territories of Canada. 


Ancient Bear dogs attacking Chalicothere, a possible incarnation of the Waheela 

The Waheela has also been reported in areas of Michigan and Alaska. Cryptozoologist Ivan Sanderson thought that the waheela might represent a relic population of Amphicyonids, prehistoric bear-dogs. 

The waheela is similar to the Shunka Warakin, but inhabits a far more northern habitat. It is also similar to Amarok, a giant wolf from Inuit mythology. It is reported to travel in groups of two or three, and not in large packs as modern wolves do. 

Skeleton of the Amphicyon (“ambiguous dog”) is an extinct genus of large carnivorous bone-crushing mammals, known as bear-dogs, of the family

Credit: Wikipedia

The Nahanni Valley lies almost 550 miles due west of Fort Simpson on the Mackenzie River of northwest Canada. Hot springs and sulfur geysers keep the valley warmer than the surrounding areas by about 30 degrees year -round (the valley is above 60 degrees latitude), making it perpetually mist-covered. This valley is inhabited only by animals as people entering the valley are usually found headless and quite dead. The Indian tribes of the area avoid this valley. (These tribes include the Ojibways, the Slave, the Dogribs, the Stoney, the Beavers and the Chipweyans.) This valley is often referred to as “the Valley of the Headless Men. 

Headless Valley is a specific region of the South Nahanni River valley (Canada) said to encompass a lost world complete with tropical forests, murderously savage natives, and a myriad of mysterious creatures ranging from ‘Bear Dogs’ to Sasquatch. 




The legend of Headless Valley is unusual in that it is fairly modern, having originated in 1908, following the discovery of two decapitated miners in the region of the South Nahanni River. Since that time, several other disappearances and murders have been documented in the region. 

The Gate in the Nahanni River Valley 

Local oral history also tells of a mountain-dwelling tribe known as the Naha. The Naha were feared by the region’s Dene people, as they often descended to raid nearby villages. These tales end with the rapid, mysterious disappearance of the Naha. No trace of this tribe has ever been found. 

The eerie nickname attached to 200 Mile Gorge is the Valley Of The Headless Men. This name comes from a series of unexplained incidents in the Gorge during the Gold Rush of the early 20th century. Two brothers, Willie and Frank McLeod left in 1906 in an attempt to reach the Klondike through Nahanni. Nothing was heard from them for the next two years. 

Rumors surfaced that the two found the “mother lode” of gold. Despite this, no efforts were made to find them. In 1908, another prospecting expedition discovered two bodies, later identified as the McLeod brothers. Both were headless. 

The incident would likely have been marked up as just another macabre tale of the North had they been the only headless bodies. In 1917, the body of a Swiss prospector by the name of Martin Jorgenson was found decapitated next to his burned cabin. In 1945, the body of a nameless miner from Ontario was found in his sleeping bag, without a head. Trapper John O’Brien was found frozen next to his campfire, matches still clutched in his hand. 

As many as 44 people are said to have disappeared in the Valley Of The Headless Men. Some put these attacks down to grizzly bears, some feuding prospectors, others natives. Some say the area is naturally heated by hot springs, and is practically a tropical paradise, a Shangri-La with the valley floor covered in gold nuggets. These theories often speak of the valley being a haven for the Sasquatch. Some even claim the valley is an entrance to the “Hollow Earth

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    • KE Mayfield

      If you want the true story of the Nahanni, read Patterson’s book “Dangerous River”. This is an excellent story of living free in the great Northwest Territories.
      The only mystery is where have men like Patterson have gone. Daring, brave men that settled this country.
      I especially appreciate his woodcraft and the story of wolverine stew is priceless.

    • llort

      “(These tribes include the Ojibways, the Slave, the Dogribs, the Stoney, the Beavers and the Chipweyans.)” There are no Ojibways, Stoney or Beaver tribes in this area!

      There are however North Slavey, Gwich’in, and Hair Skin that live in that area.

      Don’t know where you got your information from.

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