Cryptid Wiki
Cryptid Wiki

In the Caucasus and Pamir Mountains of central Asia lives the Almas, Mongolian for “wild man”. This creature is not formally recognized by modern science.  There have been numerous sightings going as far back as the 15th century. In 1430, Hans Schilitberger recorded his actual sightings of these creatures in some of his personal journals while traveling through Mongolia. British anthropologist Myra Schackley describes in a book titled “Still Living” in 1963 a family of Almas living in the mountains. Perhaps the most interesting story about the Almas, is the story of Zana. Zana was a female Almas that was captured and tamed by a small community in or near the village of Tkhina in the Ochamachiri District of Abkhazia in the 1880s or 1890s.

Neanderthal woman

Reconstruction of a Homo neanderthalensis woman

Capture 1880s[]

How she was captured is vague. It is believed that some local hunters captured her, gagged her and bound her to a log. She was then traded or sold to a nobleman named Edgi Genaba. At first she was kept in a cage or small enclosure because of her wild tendencies. Interaction was only for feeding, which was usually thrown in. It is said that she dug a hole in the ground and slept in it for the first three years. Over time she became tamer. After three years she was moved to a wattle-fence enclosure under the awning near the house. She was tethered at first, but then was let loose to walk around and wander. Like a well trained dog, she never went far from where she received food. She did not like living indoors and preferred to sleep in a hole in the ground.


Her skin was dark and her whole body was covered with reddish-black hair. She was very tall, broad, with huge breasts and buttocks with very muscular arms and legs. Zana never learned to speak. She would instead make inarticulate sounds and mutterings. She knew her name and carried out many commands. It was said that she could outrun a horse, and swim across the wild Makva River even when it rose in a violent high tide. She was very strong and could lift incredible amounts. She took swims year round and preferred to walk naked even in the winter, tearing dresses that she was given into shreds. Because of her strength she was given many domestic tasks, such as grinding grain into flour, bringing home firewood, hauling water and even removing her masters’ boots.


Strangest of all, is that she bore many hybrid children. That’s right, several men in the village were actually having intercourse with the Almas. Which shows you that men really will screw anything as long as no-one knows. She would always wash the newborn child in the cold water spring. The half-breed infants could not take the cold water and several of them died. So after a few times the local women would take the newborns away from Zana and reared them themselves. Four times this happened, and the children, two males and two females, grew up as humans. These children grew up to be normal speaking men and women. Now they were not the brightest bunch or the best looking, but overall very simple. The oldest son was named Dzhanda, the oldest girl Kodzhanar, the second girl Gamsa and the youngest boy Khwit, who died in 1954.  They seemed more human than Almas. Khwit was known for being extremely strong and quick tempered. He died at the age of 65 – 70. In modern times many people have gone back to the village to try to exhume the body of Zana. No-one seems to know exactly where she was buried, but they do know where Khwit is. They dug up his body and shipped the bones to Moscow for scientific study. This revealed a combination of modern and ancient features. The facial section of the skull is significantly larger in comparison with a normal skull. Its mass seems thicker, more like a Neolithic skull. These features aroused great interest among anthropologists.


Here are the most common interpretations of the Zana sightings.

  1. Victimized woman suffering from a disability
  2. Runaway slave
  3. Surviving Neanderthal