Longtime ago, we asked our regular contributors through e-mail, What is the creepiest thing that has happened to you? We got many interesting responses. Here are some of them. We have just copied and pasted their responses, not editing them in any way and most of the respondents have requested to stay anonymous, so no names will be published.
1-5 Creepiest Thing that has Happened to You
01. This ended up being funny but at the time freaked me out at first. My wife and I were camping in one of the National Forests in the mountains in NC. We were in a camp ground but not a lot of people there and the spots were semi private because of trees and foliage. So we had just settled down in the tent and I was just falling asleep when through my eyelids, the whole tent lights up. I jump up and go out of the tent thinking someone is messing around. Not a soul or any noise, nothing.
I go back in lay down, and just falling asleep again, when it happens a second time. Same routine jump up check and nothing.
So this time, I lay down but stay awake and have the tent unzipped ready to jump out and catch whoever is shining a light on the tent when it all lights up again. And I saw what was doing it right away. Fireflies were landing in mass on the tent and then they would all light up at once. I guess when I would jump up, they would fly off, then settle down again after I got quiet.
I had a good chuckle over that one in the end.
02. I was on a road trip with a friend, and we hiked into a trail in Colorado one evening to camp so we wouldn’t have to pay for a campsite. Found a little clearing by a stream, my friend set up a tent while I decided to sleep under the stars. Right as we were getting ready to go to sleep, another woman showed up and pitched her tent in the clearing as well.
I hadn’t been feeling well that day plus we had the hike in with all our stuff so when I slept I slept hard. Woke up to a ranger shaking me and asking if I saw where the bear went. Bear? What bear? Then I look up and see the woman’s tent just shredded. Turns out she had left her food in her tent that night (we hung ours from a tree), and a curious bear came by at like 4 in the morning to have a snack. In tearing in to her tent, it ended up raking its claws across her forehead as well. She decided to gtfo, though why she didn’t bother waking either me or my friend up to let us know about this very hungry bear nearby, I don’t know.
03. Buddy and I were hiking at dawn during a camping trip. Walking along a path and I hear a zing like a bird chirp by my ear. A second or so later a tree kind of pops next to my buddy. It’s at this point we realized there was an accompanying crack and we’d been shot at. We informed the park ranger and around noon he ended up finding an old guy hunting illegally. Not sure if he was charged with anything.
04. When I was a kid, about 12 or so, my dad would always wake me up in the middle of the night to go hunting. I fu*king hate hunting. A few weeks prior to this night I saw an episode of “are you afraid of the dark” about the jersey devil. I was on edge because I knew my dad would make me go hunting soon and we sometimes hunt in Jersey.
Sure as sh*t, he wakes me up one morning at like 3am and we are off to the woods in Jersey in pitch black so that he could be there and all set up before the deer come out. I’m up in the stand, starting to calm down, when I see a little figure on the ground. It’s human, with a face I can barely make out since it’s a bit far in the distance, but I know it’s human, and it’s like 2-3 feet tall.
I’m losing my sh*t but don’t want to say anything because I know my dad will just tell me to suck it up. I stare at this fu*ker for at least 4 hours until we get down from the stand and walk towards it to leave. It’s a fu*king lawn gnome. Miles and miles into the deep woods. There’s no roads for a long while and certainly no houses. How the fu*k did a gnome get there? The stand we were in wasn’t even a permanent stand. It was one we out up when we got there.
05. Just a few weeks ago we were on a roadtrip from BC to San Diego and we came upon a campsite just outside of crescent city California. We drove through. One side of the campground was relatively empty. I noticed a few scattered tents but nobody close to the location we ended up picking. We had tons of space.
We wanted an early night so I started a fire while my girlfriend started cooking. We ate, had a few beers, and climbed up to our rooftop tent (tepui) with our dog by 9pm or so. I had a rough time sleeping and woke up a few times but finally fell into a decent sleep.
In the pitch dark with all of our tent windows and canvasses closed i was awoken at 1am by someone whistling outside of our tent the tune of “when the saints come marching in”. After a few minutes of this repetitive whistling I nudged my girlfriend who awoke and was obviously freaked out as well. The whistling then turned to chanting things like “when you sleep here you disrespect me, and when you disrespect me you disrespect the US Marines!” The person would then start spelling out words like “F.L.E.E”. The verbiage and tone kept getting more aggressive so we decided we had to make a move. I slowly unzipped the tent while our guard dog was snoring and got my head out if the tent. I took a few seconds to let my eyes adjust and figure out where the person was. I felt more confident once I could somewhat see and hear so I climbed down and the girlfriend passed me the dog and she climbed down too. We flipped the tent up without securing it and we jumped into a truck (while the person was still whistling) to a motel in crescent city.
The next morning we drove back to get the few belongings that weren’t in the truck and a family who had been camping a few sites over said it went on for another 2-3 hours and it was the scariest thing their family had ever experienced.
6-10 Creepiest Thing that has Happened to You
06. I used to spend a lot of time solo camping in and around the Indian Peaks wilderness in CO and experienced some weird stuff. Nothing that was outright supernatural, but just unsettling. I love those woods but they give me the creeps. Here are some notable examples from 4-5 trips up there in all seasons.
1 – After thinking that a particular area under a tree and against a rock looked like a great place to set up for the night, I found a shredded sleeping bag and old (must’ve been 20 years or more) camp supplies. Found a lot of bones around the site too, ribs and vertebrae — probably elk, but maybe not. I camped elsewhere.
2 – Found a deer skull out in the middle of a (recently) frozen over lake/pond. Major snow the night before, and the skull was sitting on top of the fresh powder with no tracks anywhere I could see and no other bones. Odd.
3 – Woke up to a squirrel literally nailed to a tree outside my shelter. I had made camp late and tired and in dying light, so I might not have noticed it the night before, but I think I would have, which means it happened sometime while I was asleep.
I love it up there, especially into the national park off-season and the remoteness of the area is why I go, but it means that when weird things happen they’re that much weirder.
07. I was solo backpacking and decided to stop for the night as it was right around sunset. Got everything set up and I heard a car on a road about 1500 ft. from my position. Honestly, I didn’t even realize there was a road there because it was up a steep embankment and I couldn’t see it. So I hear this car, then it slows, then it stops, then the doors open and close and the car drives off. I hear a group of men talking, but they were too far away to make out what they were saying. By now the sun has set and the men begin using flashlights. They appear to be descending the steep embankment towards me. I’m a little concerned as nothing about this is adding up. I figure if they get any closer I’ll try to quietly escape and leave my gear. They stop about half way down and then. They start fu*king digging, with shovels. Now I’m sh*tting my pants, they dig for about an hour, then stop, then I hear the car return. They begin to ascend up the embankment but before they do, they shine their flashlights down on to my position. I don’t move a muscle and they didn’t seem to notice me. I just sat there, didn’t move a muscle for at least an hour after they had gone. I packed up and moved about a 1/4 mile away, deeper into the woods and well of the trail, just in case they had seen me and were going to come back for me. The next day I hiked out, found a park ranger and gave him a map that I had drawn of the area and where the digging had taken place. He asked me to accompany him to the spot, but I refused.
08. Two tents, next to each other about 5 feet apart, in the middle of the mountains. I had my 3 little brothers in one tent and me and my girlfriend in the other. It’s night time and we have just put the fire out, so it’s dark. Everyone is in their respective tents snoozing off into dreamland. About an hour later I’m the only one awake just day dreaming.
Suddenly I hear soft human-like foots steps circling our tents over and over. Confused, I ask who is there with no response but continued footsteps so I stepped outside.
No one, footsteps stop. I go back into my tent. Footsteps start again. I make my presence known and go back out. No one, footsteps stop. Of course I check on my brothers but they are asleep and sound. I repeat this same process about 4-5 more times. Footsteps always stopped. I ended up just going to sleep to the footsteps and not giving a fu*k.
When morning came I asked my brothers how they slept and they responded with: “Fine, except for you walking, loudly, all around the g*ddamn campsite all night!”
09. My dad was up camping in Canada. He was sleeping naked in his tent in a patch of woods near some train tracks. A bear cub came rustling up and messing with the tent. My dad who had long hair and a beard at the time grabs a long bowie knife and runs outside the tent, notices the bear cub. Where bear cub is, mama bear is nearby. He backs up near the train tracks just as an early morning freight train comes by. He could see the engineer looking at him in horror thinking this long haired bearded hippy with a big knife was gonna try to hijack the train. He got a visit from the mounties later that day inquiring on if he had seen any angry hippies with weapons around.
10. I have had lions, leopards, and elephants outside my camping tent. Lions seem to think of tents as solid objects so they’re not much of a worry, which is small comfort when one is coughing two feet from your head. Elephants are a real worry and dangerous as fu*k, but they had no reason to do anything but saunter by. I never saw nor heard the leopards, they’re like ghosts, but they leave tracks. Apparently they gave my supply tent some attention but thought the better of it. We mostly stay in the tent at night, and if you have to take a piss, you don’t go far from the fire.