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Hunt for the Skinwalker: Science Confronts the Unexplained at a Remote Ranch in Utah [Paperback]

Ph.D. Colm A. Kelleher Ph.D. , George Knapp
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Dec 6 2005
The author of the controversial bestseller Brain Trust brings his scientific expertise to the chilling true story of unexplained phenomena on Utah's Skinwalker Ranch -- and challenges us with a new vision of reality.

For more than fifty years, the bizarre events at a remote Utah ranch have ranged from the perplexing to the wholly terrifying. Vanishing and mutilated cattle. Unidentified Flying Objects. The appearance of huge, otherworldly creatures. Invisible objects emitting magnetic fields with the power to spark a cattle stampede. Flying orbs of light with dazzling maneuverability and lethal consequences. For one family, life on the Skinwalker Ranch had become a life under siege by an unknown enemy or enemies. Nothing else could explain the horrors that surrounded them -- perhaps science could.

Leading a first-class team of research scientists on a disturbing odyssey into the unknown, Colm Kelleher spent hundreds of days and nights on the Skinwalker property and experienced firsthand many of its haunting mysteries. With investigative reporter George Knapp -- the only journalist allowed to witness and document the team's work -- Kelleher chronicles in superb detail the spectacular happenings the team observed personally, and the theories of modern physics behind the phenomena. Far from the coldly detached findings one might expect, their conclusions are utterly hair-raising in their implications. Opening a door to the unseen world around us, Hunt for the Skinwalker is a clarion call to expand our vision far beyond what we know.

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Rarely do scientists have the opportunity to study and measure a recurring series of mysterious and inexplicable events in the field. So, in 1996 a team of open-minded researchers from the National Institute for Discovery Science, founded and funded by Las Vegas businessman Robert Bigelow, jumped at the chance to investigate weird phenomena still occurring on a cattle ranch in Uintah County, Utah. Its owner had been plagued for the past two years by odd disappearances, manifestations of a shape-shifting entity the Ute Indians called a "skinwalker," floating blue orbs of light, cattle mutilations, a giant wolf that seemed unaffected by bullets, and a sinister, hyena-like creature. Biochemist Kelleher tells the story of the team's experiences on the ranch as "an ambitious if unconventional example of what science is supposed to do--explore the unknown." Unfortunately, after a few intriguing observations, the phenomena ceased and the scientists were left to speculate about shamanic and interdimensional realities intersecting with our own. An interesting and sometimes frightening narrative of events, though ultimately short on final answers. George Eberhart
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

About the Author

Colm A. Kelleher, Ph.D., is a biochemist with a fifteen-year research career in cell and molecular biology. Following his Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Dublin, Trinity College in 1983, Kelleher worked at the Ontario Cancer Institute, the Terry Fox Cancer Research Laboratory, and the National Jewish Center for Immunology and Respiratory Medicine. For the past eight years he has worked as project manager and team leader at a private research institute, using forensic science methodology to unravel scientific anomalies.

George Knapp is Nevada's best-known journalist. For 20-plus years, he has served as anchor, chief investigative reporter, and commentator for KLAS TV, the CBS affiliate in Las Vegas. He is a six-time Emmy winner, has earned the AP's Mark Twain award for news writing seven times, and twice was given the Edward R. Murrow award for Investigative Reporting. His reporting on Nevada's infamous Area 51 military base was selected by UPI as Best Individual Achievement by a Reporter in 1989. He also writes an award-winning weekly column for a Las Vegas newspaper.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but some problems Jan. 4 2009
By Mulder
I enjoyed the book and found the possibilities it presented very interesting but there were a few things that bothered me.

1)The book is very short on the actual experiences on the ranch, now i know thats not their fault if there wasnt enough activity to make an already small 287approx page book, but there was alot of filler added it seemed every little possibility had to have a chapter definition even if it didnt really relate to what was going on in the book....definition chapters on bigfoot and skinwalkers (which despite the name of the book isnt really the focus of whats going on its much more broad then that)rather then briefly educate/summarize for the reader (as a definition chapter should) dragged on way too long... when as a reader I wanted to hear more about what had happened at the ranch. And they seemed to add cases in Dulce and other surrounding areas to fill out the already small book.

2) The way they conducted the investigation; ok so you have a previous owner who tells the next owner who buys the property "do not dig anywhere on the property", the next owner hears all sorts of metallic banging and noise coming from under the property like mining or something is happening beneath the property.

Now im not a Nasa scientist but if your conclusions are that there is interdimensional beings or the military causing the phenomona and that there is portals that appear on this property that seem to lead to other dimensions and you hear stuff going on underneath the ranch isnt it possible that these beings or the military have a base underneath the property?.........why wouldnt you dig and see if you find anything?
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4.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Story, Some Questions Sept. 6 2014
After first hearing about the Skinwalker ranch on Coast to Coast AM I could not wait to get my hands on this book. The story has all the trappings of a fascinating modern mystery. A haunted ranch, cursed by the local indians as a home to the Skinwalker. A shape changing inter-dimensional witch that is made of pure evil. Throw in cattle mutilations, poltergeists and UFO's and you have one heck of a good bed time read. The ranch is bought by an equally mysterious aero-space billionaire, is shut off from the outside world and is now guarded 24/7 by a private, armed security force. This book is made up of first and second hand experiences at the ranch by National Institute for Discovery Science (NIDS) researchers and the former residents and some of the stories and concepts are truly terrifying. As far as super natural books go this one is very good. That being said I do have a few post read observations and questions that are worth mentioning to others who have read the book.


In the story the ranchers highly valuable registered breed of cattle are regularly mutilated. Why then does the rancher leave behind unattended his prized breeding bulls worth tens of thousands of dollars to be used as "bait" by NIDS when NIDS brought in their own bait cattle? Doesn't make any sense. Especially when the rancher was plunged into financial ruin due to his loss of cattle and they even said in the book that they "would not know what to do if we ever lost one of those bulls". No reasonable explanation is given anywhere by the authors for this head scratcher.

Secondly, I really don't think NIDS is giving us the whole story.
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this story is about s team of scientists who try to make sense of the Unexplained at a remote ranch in Utah.The writers are Kelleher and George Knapp. All the incidents are written is a straightforward manner. I WAS impressed by all the possible theories and explanations given at the end. The "incidents" did not fit into any of the neat boxes like they were supposed to. The scariest thing to me was that the supernatural"force" was malevelant, mind controlling, and evil and played games with your mind. There was no benevolent, safe, angels around to help. Super book, wonderful, wonderful!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great starting book Aug. 23 2010
By Mary
I was recommended to read this book and absolutely loved it.

It is a good starter book when looking for answers or for an understanding of activities witnessed by people recently.

There are lots of unanswered questions but the recorded information is good.

The final conclusions were excellent and well thought out.
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