A TERRIFIED camper recorded a growling sound which he now reckons was the Peak District ‘panther’ after other reported sightings.
YouTuber Michael described the noise as “a weird, guttural sound” at the time and has since insisted: “There’s been too many sightings to rule panthers out for sure.”
Michael, who calls himself Novice Wild Camper aanlyn, was alone in his tent at night in December when two unidentified noises came from the distance.
He said after watching Josh’s video: “I believe it was a big cat of some kind. A black leopard was spotted not far from there last week.
“I told myself there’s nothing out there that could harm me, but it was only when I listened to it back and researched the noises that the nearest I could find was a big cat.
“I’ve researched every natural noise made by UK animals and nothing sounds like this.”
He said in his original video: “God knows what it is. It’s quite a weird, guttural sound.”
And he captioned it: “Some very eerie sounds in the night that I have never heard before!”
Tracy-Jane Fielding also reckons she saw a big cat when she was camping in the Peak District last October.
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Sy het die Derbyshire Times: “It was terrifying when I heard it. I looked quickly out of my caravan and, because we have lights outside, I could see that it was a big, black wild cat.”
Josh said they were walking from Mermaid’s Pool on Kinder Scout towards Edale when they spotted what they first thought was a wild cat in a nearby field.
But on closer inspection they knew what they were seeing was out of the ordinary – and that the creature sounded as if it was feasting on the carcass of another animal.
Josh said he was convinced the creature was a big cat and resembled a panther but could not be entirely sure what it was they saw.
Hy het gesê: “We were both confused when we first saw it.
“We stood staring at it and questioning what it could be for around five minutes before I decided to start recording so that I could zoom in and get a better look.
“We tried attracting its attention so that it would turn and face us, so that we could get a better understanding of what we were looking at.
“We honestly had no idea what it could be if not a big cat.
“It was in a field of sheep with no different animals around, and it appeared to have a long black tail, so it definitely wasn’t a sheep.
“We didn’t hear much noise coming from the wild cat, just the occasional crunch, which made me think it was feeding on something like a dead animal – most likely a sheep.
Josh said he and his pal Ben immediately knew something was strange about the encounter with the beast.
Hy het gesê: “I could tell we were both thinking the same thing as the day before, we were actually discussing the possibility of us running into a wild cat whilst on our trip.
“The animals around it were seemingly unbothered, but they were certainly keeping their distance, as if they were used to this happening. It was eerie.”
Josh and his friend Ben Burns continued to try and catch the wild cat’s attention, but were reluctant to enter the field the animal was in for their own safety.
Josh said: “We were standing looking at the animal for around 10 minutes trying to get its attention, but it didn’t budge – it just kept doing the exact same thing it was doing in the video.
“We didn’t go closer as we were behind a fence and didn’t want to run the risk of becoming cat food.
“The reason we didn’t stay for longer was that we had a train to catch and were running a bit behind on time after watching this animal for so long.”
Josh said he was honoured to have captured footage of his potential wild cat encounter – with everyone he has shared the video with left shocked at their discovery.
Hy het bygevoeg: “We didn’t shut up about what we saw the entire way home, telling each other it can’t possibly be a wild cat.
“But then that also begs the question, what the hell is it?
“I showed the video to my college tutor and friends to make sure I wasn’t going crazy and they were all in disbelief.
“I was glad I managed to capture it on video after the event unfolded as I knew that nobody would believe me if I told them I had seen a panther in the Peak District the first time I went camping.”