Moo-ving mystery: “Cow” afloat off Alki Point

March 7, 2010 at 10:38 am | In Seen at sea, West Seattle news | 59 Comments

ORIGINAL 10:38 AM REPORT: Dean just shared that photo via Facebook – as we were about to run out to follow up on e-mail that Pat sent about the same thing: A “cow” afloat off Alki Point. As to who put it there and why – don’t know yet; do you? ADDED 12:24 PM: Just back from a reconnaissance mission for a closer look. You have to be near Alki Point Lighthouse to really see it – or near the “$1.3 million teardown,” where we zoomed in for some bobbing-bovine video:

It’s just west of the most famous Alki Point raft, the Joy D. Smith Wildlife Raft.

9:23 PM UPDATE: Just got word from former co-worker David Rose, anchor at Q13 FOX News, that they had a crew over here this afternoon who got to the bottom of it. He says this is the story they were told:

(A nearby resident) built the cow out of fiberglass and it was on his back deck for years. He and his neighbor, Jacqueline Garnett, decided the cow was lonely and needed a pasture to graze in. Since she had grass in her yard, she took it to her yard. After a while, she moved it up to her front fence, decided it didn’t belong there. Then, they decided it would be fun to have the cow drift over to West Point. But then, they decided the Coast Guard might not be happy so they decided to anchor the cow to a buoy. They put rainboots on the cow to keep its feet warm and dry and put a life-jacket on it to keep it compliant with boating regulations. She told our photog she’s never gotten any milk from the cow, but with the rough seas, all she would get is buttermilk :)

If you see this before 10 pm, we’re guessing you will catch some version of it on Q13′s newscast. We appreciate getting the info from David; they found out about the story by seeing it on WSB, so a nice return favor! (And thanks yet again to our morning tipsters, Pat and Dean!)


  1. look closely there is a shark fin circling it from the left side

    Comment by clark5080 — 10:40 am March 7, 2010 #

  2. this can’t be real…can it? someone with a very “weird” sense of humor, definitely…

    thanks for the heads up re:shark fin :)

    Comment by JanS — 10:42 am March 7, 2010 #

  3. Was just about to send you a photo of that myself. It does indeed look like a cow.

    Comment by Russ — 10:52 am March 7, 2010 #

  4. Next it will be the Groucho’s form the West seattle Freeway

    Comment by clark5080 — 10:57 am March 7, 2010 #

  5. Weird!!!

    Comment by ad — 11:09 am March 7, 2010 #

  6. Is it licensed? It better look out, the Seattle Animal Patrol has been very active in the Alki neighborhood.

    Comment by Rhonda Porter — 11:26 am March 7, 2010 #

  7. That be a Sea Cow by the looks of it, Maties.

    Comment by wseye — 11:49 am March 7, 2010 #

  8. If I had to wager a guess, Ivar’s will be introducing a new menu item soon….

    Comment by mark — 11:53 am March 7, 2010 #

  9. “Ray Kroc wil never get me, Ray Kroc will never get me…. How many miles to India??”

    Comment by JumboJim — 11:57 am March 7, 2010 #

  10. Is Ivar’s up so something again? Or maybe Dick’s is emulating Ivar’s.

    Comment by cjboffoli — 12:02 pm March 7, 2010 #

  11. Still don’t know who put it there but we did go zoom in with the video camera and will have that up shortly, for anyone who wants a closer look without making the trek – TR

    Comment by WSB — 12:17 pm March 7, 2010 #

  12. That’s damn funny!

    Comment by Laura — 12:34 pm March 7, 2010 #

  13. pretty funny.

    Comment by grr — 12:40 pm March 7, 2010 #

  14. while I think that’s pretty hilarious, I do hope it doesn’t just become more of the floating detritus along the beach at Alki. Let’s hope the jokester monitors it :)

    Comment by JanS — 12:45 pm March 7, 2010 #

  15. A life preserver, rain boots, and hat! Thanks for the video, that’s funny.

    Comment by ad — 12:51 pm March 7, 2010 #

  16. Just another reason why I love the West Seattle hood so much, “expect the unexpected.” This is LOL for sure. :) I was riding my bike early this morning, missed this but saw a huge sea lion, seal? I thought it was a whale at first!

    Comment by Babs — 1:30 pm March 7, 2010 #

  17. What the…. what?

    Comment by Free Lunch — 1:37 pm March 7, 2010 #

  18. *CHUCKLE* :o Only in West Seattle… living here is so very entertaining!

    Comment by sun*e — 2:17 pm March 7, 2010 #

  19. I love the Sea Cow!!

    Comment by Sarazy — 2:49 pm March 7, 2010 #

  20. There really was a Sea Cow, now sadly extinct:
    Still seeking clues in this sighting :)

    Comment by WSB — 2:59 pm March 7, 2010 #

  21. Board goes in the water .. Cow goes in the water .. Sharks in the water

    Comment by feefeelarue — 3:06 pm March 7, 2010 #

  22. Might it be the cow from the “Cow Store”, on 35th in the Olympic Heights area, out wakeboarding? ;)



    Comment by miws — 3:19 pm March 7, 2010 #

  23. “Sea cow” is also a colloquial term used to describe manatees, akin to Orcas being called “killer whales.” :-)

    Comment by SarahScoot — 3:23 pm March 7, 2010 #

  24. MIWS – We verified that cow was still in its rooftop “pasture” atop John’s Corner Deli on our way back from Alki Point …

    Comment by WSB — 3:23 pm March 7, 2010 #

  25. Very interesting….. but I was hoping it would be the Oregon Ducks guy’s cow that went missing from his yard on Beach Drive.

    Comment by david — 3:43 pm March 7, 2010 #

  26. Performance art.

    Comment by cathyw — 3:44 pm March 7, 2010 #

  27. I was mooo-ved to go check this out for myself…what a crack up!

    Comment by Rhonda Porter — 3:58 pm March 7, 2010 #

  28. My husband sees this video and says “My guess is it came from Fremont.”

    Comment by Shannon — 3:59 pm March 7, 2010 #

  29. Maybe a hint. When I first saw the Cow about 7AM
    there were two ladies in a red wooden row boat
    out right next to it taking pictures. By the time
    I poured a cup of coffee and returned to the window they were gone. Hmmmmmmmmmmm???

    PS: I don’t have the answer.

    Comment by Pat — 4:09 pm March 7, 2010 #

  30. Clues are good! Red rowboat! Photos! Ladies! Narrows it down a bit, perhaps :) …

    Comment by WSB — 4:15 pm March 7, 2010 #

  31. I don’t know about the cow, but the raft looks very much like a classic Garnett. My thought is that a new organization of cow sitters will now form to protect the calves.

    Comment by GS — 4:41 pm March 7, 2010 #

  32. LOL WSB @ 4:15 !

    Dare I say it? It’s an udder mystery.

    Couldn’t help myself.

    Comment by westseattledood — 4:42 pm March 7, 2010 #

  33. Y’know dood, I was thinking of suggesting a contest for the best cow pun … maybe we give the winner a $20 gift certificate to Zippy’s …

    Comment by WSB — 4:56 pm March 7, 2010 #

  34. They both had white hair…………..
    And life jackets. Safety…responsiblity!

    Comment by Pat — 4:56 pm March 7, 2010 #

  35. Cud ya go for a milk shake?

    Comment by Pat — 5:00 pm March 7, 2010 #

  36. I’m all for that, WSB! I am sitting here in my Zippy’s hoody. I swear, that is true! :)

    Comment by westseattledood — 5:08 pm March 7, 2010 #

  37. And, no thanks, Pat. I got milk.

    Ok – I’ll give it a rest. ;)

    Comment by westseattledood — 5:12 pm March 7, 2010 #

  38. It’s a scam. I went down there and there was NO cow!

    When I came home, all the milk was gone from the fridge.

    Comment by I. Ponder — 5:17 pm March 7, 2010 #

  39. A contest would be simply bo-vine. Perhaps the prize should be a coupon for an ungulatte.

    Comment by MAS — 5:21 pm March 7, 2010 #

  40. So, apparently we’re going to milk this for all it’s worth?


    “MIWS – We verified that cow was still in its rooftop “pasture” atop John’s Corner Deli on our way back from Alki Point …”


    Oh good! Glad to hear she’s safe and sound! (And not on the Sound!) :P



    Comment by miws — 6:12 pm March 7, 2010 #

  41. Seriously, it was still there at 5:38 – we made a run over just to verify it was still there before nightfall. Perhaps the aliens will come back for it by morning.

    Comment by WSB — 6:34 pm March 7, 2010 #

  42. I’ll have to ruminate on these goings on. I would hoof down there to see if she’s still floating around, but it’s as black as a bull’s insides now… I may meat up with you all to check in tomorrow morning.
    Okay. I’m done. :)

    Comment by Ffej — 7:55 pm March 7, 2010 #

  43. I’ll admit it, I did it!! I have formed a new group called “CowWatchers” and we are lobbying for a $15,000 grant from Seattle.

    Comment by marty — 8:41 pm March 7, 2010 #

  44. Marty, explain more?!

    Comment by ad — 8:46 pm March 7, 2010 #

  45. Love it! Very whimsical and creative!
    Thanks John and Jacqueline!

    Comment by k — 9:46 pm March 7, 2010 #

  46. I took my children to see the cow and they thought it was hysterical.

    Comment by BB — 9:50 pm March 7, 2010 #

  47. You are the best newsource. You always get to the bottom of everything–quickly. Don’t know how you do it. Thanks for posting about this. Its hysterically funny. I love it!

    Comment by Sarel Rowe — 11:03 pm March 7, 2010 #


    Comment by JanS — 3:01 am March 8, 2010 #

  49. Thank you citizens of West Seattle. My wife and I moved to your community (from Texas) two years ago. Cattle in seemingly strange places is a common sight in the Lone Star State. This, however, takes the cake. Home, home on the strange. Y’all made us smile!

    Comment by AugustWest — 7:13 am March 8, 2010 #

  50. as in the movie Twister, “…we got cows.”

    Comment by Dale — 8:30 am March 8, 2010 #

  51. Just one more reason why I miss Alki so much. Thanks so much for sharing this.
    Carl Ingalls

    Comment by Carl Ingalls — 9:39 am March 8, 2010 #

  52. Beware! I understand that this video was reported to PETC (People for the Ethical Treatment of Cows)! No doubt they will dispatch a rescue vessel and expose the evil-doer posthaste!

    Comment by Grant — 9:46 am March 8, 2010 #

  53. I’ve never seen a floating cow.
    I’d really like to see one.
    And I can tell you this right now:
    I’d rather see than be one…

    Comment by Kathy — 10:13 am March 8, 2010 #

  54. Is it still there????

    Comment by Eli — 10:34 am March 8, 2010 #

  55. It was as of just before sunset last night. Haven’t been over to the beach yet today.

    Comment by WSB — 10:36 am March 8, 2010 #

  56. I tried my best to come up with a better cow pun, but to no avail. Perhaps the cow can migrate to other local bodies of water, like Green Lake, Portage Bay or tied to a houseboat on Lake Union? Like the obelisk, there is no need for it to be tied to a specific place (though I do like the fact it is/was? here)

    Comment by JayDee — 5:51 pm March 8, 2010 #

  57. Don’t stew over it, JayDee!


    Give it some time, and you should be able to rustle a good pun or two!



    Comment by miws — 10:27 pm March 8, 2010 #

  58. MOOOOOOOOOOOving on up…….toooooooo the eastside….

    What a crack up seeing this cow on the water…!!!

    Comment by KITTY — 1:35 am March 9, 2010 #

  59. Wow, a shark fin? What are you thinking, the water is too cold for that. I grew up on ALki and never ONCE saw a shark. Maybe a small dogfish. LOL!!!!

    Comment by Maire — 4:56 pm March 24, 2010 #

Sorry, comment time is over.

All contents copyright 2005-2015, A Drink of Water and a Story Interactive. Here's how to contact us.
Entries and comments feeds. ^Top^