; Phantoms and Monsters: Pulse of the Paranormal

Monday, February 18, 2019

Valkyrie of Voltana

I recently found the following account:

Nestled in the scenic Spanish Pyrenees Mountain Range, the tiny rural village of Boltaña (also apparently referred to as Voltana) would be the last place that one would expect to be plagued with supernatural happenings - and yet, in June of 1905 - the town apparently became home for an ostensibly-angelic flying humanoid. A newspaper called the Indianapolis Sunday Star reported on the miraculous events on the 25th of November that same year, and it is from this source that the bizarre story gained wider attention.

As of the article's time of writing, the entity had appeared to the villagers five times since the beginning of June - and was described as 'a woman, robed in white, with long clinging draperies'. There was apparently no clearly visible flying apparatus of any kind - the Star article specifically stated that there were no wings or 'any balloon'. It repeatedly flew over the town of Boltaña in Northern Spain, leaving the population of the Pyrenees district 'in a state of religious fervour and excitement' as the aerial anomaly slowly floated over the town. Three of the five times that it was sighted, it was moving against a strong wind - which was 'blowing either from the south or the southwest'.

On the fifth occasion that the airborne enigma manifested, there were said to be 'scores of persons standing on the mountainside, scores in the streets of the town, and men from their homes and their fields knelt where they were and watched the flight'. The angelic anomaly would come from the North each time, seemingly hailing from the direction of Mount Perdu - 'one of the highest peaks of the Pyrenees' - before disappearing among the peaks of the Sierra de Guara to the Southwest.

A British mining expert apparently investigated the bizarre series of incidents, and he confirmed that over 240 witnesses had reported seeing what he termed as a 'mystic figure'. At least one villager claimed to have also heard joyful singing (or a sound very much like it) as the feminine phantom flew above. Although one might expect such an entity to bring nothing but bliss and a sense of security to the people in its shadow, this was evidently not always the case. For example, a mule-driver by the name of Pedro Pobrado was said to have 'rushed into the church frightened almost out of his senses, and threw himself before the priest praying and imploring him to give absolution, declaring that the end of the world was coming and that the warning angel was flying through the sky'.

I am not quite sure what to make of this case from a skeptical point of view. It seems like there are two possible explanations for this event - either the witnesses are all outright lying, or they really did see something. What that something was is anyone's guess, but I would like to offer the following observation. Modern alien visitations often involve the unearthly intruders offering the witnesses visions or dire warnings of the coming apocalypse. This seems to be the same reaction that the entity in this case evoked in Mr. Pobrado, and whether this was just due to his personal religious devotion or something more is still up for debate.

I wrote this article but I found the information from 'Encounters with Flying Humanoids: Mothman, Manbirds, Gargoyles & Other Winged Beasts' by Ken Gerhard - Ningen04


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