CONWAY, Ark – An alligator was seen roaming through the waters of Lake Conway last week, and now the photos captured by a local wildlife expert are gaining traction on social media.

Cole Harken is a wildlife expert living in Conway. He says he was headed out on the lake last week searching for fish when he came across the alligator.

“I was like no way, I had to double-take like 2 or 3 times, like oh my gosh this is that moment,” said Harken.

Harken has lived in Conway most of his life and says he has waited nearly 20 years to see the infamous Lake Conway alligator in person.

“For the longest time it was just kind of like a rumor,” said Harken.

Harken says there was always talk about a possible alligator roaming the waters of Lake Conway, but without proof, in Central Arkansas, it’s hard to believe.

“Pictures or it didn’t happen,” said Harken.

Harken says he noticed the gator while searching for fish on his kayak.

He says he waited and slowly got closer to the animal, following it along its path until it was right beside him.

“He’s like perpendicular to my boat and he submerges,” said Harken.  “he’s underneath my boat in less than 2 feet of water so I could almost feel him.”

Harken says it was a once-in-a-lifetime experience, an old wives’ tale come true.