The water at the Babinda Boulders has earned the nickname “Devil’s Pool” thanks to a disproportionately large amount of strange drownings. The unease around the otherwise beautiful area near the town of Babinda, Australia, is so extreme that it is mostly avoided by locals, though tourists still flock to the area.
A potential explanation comes in the form of a legend about a young woman of the Yidinji people, who was married to a respected elder but fell in love with a younger man. When caught, she threw herself into the water and drowned rather than face life without her true love, and is said to remain there to this day, luring young men to their death. It seems that she just might be doing that: all but one of the victims have been young men, and in instances where men and women have both been in the water during an incident, the man has drowned while the woman has escaped unharmed.
The most unusual case has to be that of James Bennett, who drowned while his friends helplessly watched. According to his friends he had been swimming in a calm and shallow area when he was suddenly and violently pulled backwards into deeper water, as if “by an invisible hand”. James tried to grab a branch to save himself but it snapped, causing him to be pulled underwater where he apparently struggled to get to the surface despite nothing visible holding him in place. His friends described him as struggling while suspended helplessly in the water, with just the tips of his fingers above the surface.
[Photo credit: Babinda Information Centre]