Campers Share Spooky Experiences They Had In The Wilderness

Campers Share Spooky Experiences They Had In The Wilderness

You're camping alone in the dark woods and come across a shadow or transparent figure off in the distance. These types of stories are common amongst many campers. Sometimes there's a logical explanation; sometimes there isn't; sometimes, these unhappy campers didn't want to stick around to find out.

These are the spookiest encounters campers had out in the wilderness. Time to huddle around the campfire!


50. I Don't Gnome

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 freaking 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 enough, he wakes me up one morning at like 3 am 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 mind but don't want to say anything because I know my dad will just tell me to suck it up. I stare at this thing for at least 4 hours until we get down from the stand and walk towards it to leave.

It's a freaking lawn gnome. Miles and miles into the deep woods. There's no roads for a looooong while and certainly no houses. How the heck 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.

gnome-on-swing-chair-1503441-300x200.jpgPhoto by Susanne Jutzeler from Pexels

49. The Feeling Of Flesh Is Unmistakable

Camping with 2 friends, middle of the night, all 3 of us inside a square dome tent, just chilling out, chatting, lights are on. One side of the wall begins to cave inward as if there's strong wind or something/one pushing on the side of the tent.

Everyone is freaking, but I assume it's the wind. "Just chill out, guys!" I say. I proceed to jump up and punch tent wall... and connect with something. Or someone. The feeling of punching flesh is unmistakable.

Now I start freaking out -- what/who did I just punch through the tent wall?! I convince friends it's smartest to have a look outside the tent, but it's 15 minutes later by the time they agree, and there's nothing and no one there.

patrick-hendry-ocaF1VFnzBM-unsplash-300x200.jpgPhoto by Patrick Hendry on Unsplash

48. Back The Way You Came

I was out walking around the bush hunting for upland birds. I walked through a bit of a valley to as a short cut to get to another area, when I came across a guy standing on the trail with an AR-15 at the ready position. Instantly the hairs on the back of my neck stood up instinctively knowing this wasn't a place I wanted to be... trying my best to stay calm...

"Hey, just out bird hunting, how are you doing?"

"Fine..." A long pause. "...I'm hunting deer."

Deer season wasn't open, AR-15's are not legal for deer, and he wasn't dressed for deer hunting. As a matter of fact, he looked like he hadn't changed his clothes or bathed or shaved in several days, and looked emancipated.

"Do you know the best way for me to go to find some birds?" I asked.

"Well... I imagine you might find some back the way you came."

His voice got noticeably sharper with the 'back the way you came' and I obviously took the hint. I don't know if there was something nefarious going on here, but I was certainly happy to leave. I reported the incident to the sheriff the next day but I don't know that anything ever came of it.

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47. Tornado Tragedy

I was camping out in an area near where we had a group of trees, and distinctly remember hearing other children laughing and talking. It sounded as though they were just across the road, through the trees. I remember calling to them that I would play with them and hearing the laughter kinda die out. So, being the lonely kid I was, I went into the house to tell my mom that "the other kids won't play with me." She asked who I meant, and I told her about the laughter from across the dirt road. My mother went pale as a sheet and promptly told me that I wouldn't be camping that weekend. She made up some story about the weather or something, and I just kinda forgot.

Many years later, I remember asking her about that particular incident, to which she explained. Apparently, before we moved there, sometime in the 1970's, there had been an elementary school near where we lived. One spring day, a tornado hit the school and levelled it, taking with it some fifteen or so children. Though searches were made for them, no one found anything. Where we lived was maybe 1000 feet from where it was always believed the bodies had landed.

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46. "When You Sleep Here You Disrespect Me"

Just a few weeks ago we were on a road trip from BC to San Diego and we came upon a campsite just outside of Crescent City, California. As we drove through, we noticed 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 9 pm 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 1 am 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.

japheth-mast-0RMXdIPuTWk-unsplash-300x200.jpgPhoto by Japheth Mast on Unsplash

45. What's With The Sniffing?

I went on a group camping trip in the middle of nowhere Arizona only to awake and hear something sniffing the outside of our tent. My immediate reaction was that it was likely a bear or some animal that came across our site, and just maybe my idiot friends didn’t tie up the garbage?

Seconds later, I can hear the sniffing go to the tent next to ours and everyone in mine grabs one another quietly to acknowledge we all were awake and were aware of what’s happening outside.

Moments later, a friend in another tent popped out and started to scream and make noise (he had a gun too), hoping it would scare off whatever animal was on our site. Turns out, it wasn’t an animal. It was some guy who had gone through our coolers/food and also decided it’d be okay to sniff our tents.

Our friend chased him off and we immediately packed our stuff and left. No idea what his deal was and I didn't care to find out.

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44. A Figure In The Moonlight

My family went camping every summer when I was growing up. We usually bounced between Virginia Beach, Assateague, and this godawful place called Westmoreland. One trip we were in Assateague, near the beach, and we had two tents set up in different parts of the site.

Some time in the middle of the night my mom woke up, which woke me. She was sitting up straight but completely still, and I looked over at what she was staring at. In the moonlight, there was the silhouette of what looked like an old woman looking into our tent. Long wiry hair and everything.

I was young, so it terrified me, and I started asking my mom what that was, who was outside. Once I made a noise it spooked the "old woman" and she took off, and that's when we realized she was actually one of the feral ponies that live on the island. We had set up that particular tent on one of their trails, and they were going down to the beach.

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43. How Boaring

We like to hike 3-5 miles down a trailhead in deep Georgia. One night the temperature dropped into the low 20's, which is really rare for mid-fall. We got a solid fire going, and the heat mixed with full bellies put us all to sleep.

I woke up to my buddy tapping my foot with a stick. I looked up at him and he nodded toward the fire. There were 2 wild boars kicking up dirt around the dying fire.

We didn't have any sort of weaponry except a hand axe that was out of our reach. My friend and I laid there completely silent watching these two for about an hour till the fire died completely down and they moved on.

If you don't know, Wild Boars in Georgia are easily 150lbs, angry all the time, and prone to gore literally anything. We were reaaaally lucky we didn't spook them.

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42. The Raccoon King

My time in the Army meant I spent a ton of time in the woods of upstate New York. I remember many nights waking up to things reaching into my pockets, pulling things from my kit (body armor). I'd wake up to a raccoon pillaging my kit, literally unzipping pouches and such. I still swear to this day they were organized, rallied behind this giant raccoon king who would sit outside and keep guard and coordinate them.

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41. If A Tree Falls In The Night...

I went camping in Ginnie Springs in Florida about 10 years ago. At one point during the night, I heard that sound you hear in movies/TV of a huge tree falling. Didn't think anything of it. About 10 minutes later, I started hearing lots of people talking outside my tent so I got out and discovered the tree fell on someone's tent kind of close by and killed them. A helicopter had to come and airlift them out.

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40. Cry Of Bigfoot

My family was camping at a place called Rainbow Falls and was down there with about seven friends. We start hearing this noise in the distance. It sounds like a screeching, but more of a howl or scream. At first, we thought it was tires screeching, like from a burnout, maybe other high schoolers having fun also. We listen to this noise for about 15 mins then realize it sounds like multiple areas, not just one. We thought little of it at the time and went to bed. A few months later, I so happened to stumble upon the Bigfoot scream recorded in Puyallup WA. Listening to it makes the hairs stand up on my neck and my arms get goosebumps every time because it was the same noise we heard that night. Creeps me out thinking about it to this day.


39. "I Doubt He Had Any Ill Intentions. But..."

I live in a rural town surrounded by mountains and forests, so camping is almost a weekly event -- even in winter. The one I can’t shake is when a friend and I broke off from our group of other 16 to 19-year-olds to camp by a better fishing spot about a mile away. We only brought one tent for the group, so we built a lean-to against a large boulder in a clearing.

I couldn’t sleep because I had the feeling something was watching us. I assumed it was a mountain lion which isn’t that big of a deal considering their behavior, so I threw some more logs on the fire. I looked up from the fire, and under the light of a full moon, there was a man standing at the edge of the clearing about 80 yards away.

I was frozen and couldn’t take my eyes off him while he (presumably) stared back. He walked off in the opposite direction after about a minute or two. I doubt he had any ill intentions, but I sat there holding my friend’s 357 the whole night.

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38. Owl City

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 campground but not a lot of people were 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.

toan-phan-TY0wQIAdMQA-unsplash-300x200.jpgPhoto by toan phan on Unsplash

37. Thanks For The Heads Up, Lady

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. I 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 into her tent, it ended up raking its claws across her forehead as well. She decided to run for it, 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.

Anyway, pretty freaky thing to wake up to.

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36. A Shot In The Dark

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 around noon he ended up finding an old guy hunting illegally. Not sure if he was charged with anything.

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35. Sleepwalking Conversations

I was in a cabin with 4 other people. I woke up at about 5 am and they were all sleep talking to each other. They were grunting, mumbling, shaking, and everything else a person mid-sleep would do. All four of them were actively engaging in some kind of primitive sleep talk at the same time and towards each other. It scared me to no end. In the morning, I told them about what happened and they didn't remember a thing. What probably happened is one started sleep talking and it set off the rest of them.



34. Strange Noises In The Distance

Some buddies and I went camping at Devil's Lake Park in Wisconsin. Around 3am, we woke to the sounds of (most likely) a coyote or elk howling in the distance, a very eerie sound, but that's not the weird part. I'm a pretty hypochondriacal person, so I stayed up listening for those noises while everyone else went to sleep.

Then I heard it. A rhythmic, violent thumping sound, like a hammer nailing wood, seemingly miles away. It went on for a minute or two, then just...stopped. I thought Okay, that was weird. And then it started again. Closer to us. Coming from the opposite cardinal direction. The exact same sound was now behind us and was much louder. These two sound locations went back and forth for a while, but they weren't so rhythmic that an animal or something autonomously made it, like a woodpecker. It was a slightly imperfect amount of time between each one, happening at around 60 beats-per-minute. My friends thought I was crazy when I told them, but I don't think I'm gonna go back there.


33. Strange Marks

A friend of mine has huge farmland, we had set up a camp at his farm one summer night when we were teenagers. There were only two of us. The next morning, we both woke up with scratch marks on our foreheads. Mine was more in the middle and his on the side. Its been over 10 years but it still bothers me as to what could have possibly caused it, given there were no people or animals nearby.

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32. A Case Of Teleportation?

I went camping with my older brother and my mom. I was about 7 or 8 and I went to bed around 10 in a sleeping bag inside my tent with both my mom and brother. Sometime during the night, I don't know when, I woke up somewhere in the middle of the woods still in my sleeping bag. I had no idea where I was or where my tent was. I screamed for my mom and I heard her calling back for me in panic but she was easily 100 yards away or so. To this day I have no idea how I ended up in the middle of the woods still inside my sleeping bag. Gives me the chills...


31. Attack Of The Blob

When I was about 10 I went camping with my family. I just hung out and looked around when I saw a very large black blob on the side of the river (I was basically in the middle of the river on the rocks). I called for my dad but he was too far away to hear me. I started to get really scared because the blob looked over at me. I thought it was a black cougar or something. It definitely wasn't a bear because it had the shape of a large cat. It had these yellow eyes and just stared at me. I started screaming for my dad and it just kept staring at me. It felt like forever for my dad to return. When my dad finally did come back he said he didn't see anything over there. I have zero intentions of ever visiting that provincial park ever again. But I still like to camp.


30. We Had To Leave The Tacos Behind

I spend a lot of time camping, on the beach, in Yosemite, all over California really, but one particular Friday night, my friends and I decided to camp in the woods near Hicks road (if any of you are familiar with the South Bay, I'm sure you know where it is), a road notorious for fatal car accidents, squatters in abandoned homes, etc. This is about our third time camping up here, the last few times we heard some freaky noises, but nothing awful.

So we pitch a tent in a small clearing, and plow through a Taco Twelve Pack before we crash out. I fall asleep no problem, and wake up to the sound of what seems like people arguing outside my tent. It was around 4:30 in the morning, and I stand up slowly and peek out into the darkness and just see a massive black mass move. Looking through the other tent windows, I see there is probably close to 6 or 7 other giant black masses. Once my eyes adjust, I finally know exactly what they are. They were wild boars.

I sat down in complete and utter silence for around 45 minutes while I hear those 500 pound animals scramble around the tent, so close I could hear them brushing the fabric (they make the grossest snorting and wheezing noises). Eventually they all left, and when the sun came up, I knew why they were there.

We didn't eat the last taco.

29. Music From Nowhere

My brothers I were camping. On the second night, I woke up in the middle of the night to take a leak. As I was walking to the bushes in the dark, I realized that I could faintly hear music. This didn't strike me as odd because I knew my brother had a radio in his camper. I finished up and went back to sleep with no further thought on the matter.

The next morning at breakfast, I mentioned the radio and music. Several other people recalled waking in the night and hearing music, but no two people heard the same music. Finally, the brother who brought the radio woke up. I asked him about the music and he seemed a bit freaked out. He woke up sometime during the night and went outside. He heard music as well and had assumed it was someone else. I should mention that he was the only one with a generator and a radio. It wasn't his radio we heard, it wasn't anyone else's either.



28. The Screaming Girl

When I was younger probably like 10 or 11, I went camping with my family. It was about 1 or 2 in the morning, and I couldn't really sleep. The tent that my brother and I were in was really hot and very uncomfortable. Anyway, while I was trying to go to bed I heard a very faint whimper. I tried to ignore it because I figured I was just tired. Our campsite was along a road with many other camps nearby. The whimper started to get louder and then turned into crying. I heard footsteps outside of our tent, and a girl crying her eyes out.

Now let me tell you, IT DIDN'T GO FAINT, IT GOT LOUDER AND LOUDER. IT REMAINED IN THE SAME SPOT THE ENTIRE TIME. That's so important because it indicates that she was looking at our tent site and crying. It gets worse, then it turned into a full-on scream for a few seconds, then cuts out. When she started screaming my brother woke up. I couldn't sleep at all that night. I'm just glad we left the next morning.

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27. Mysterious Object In The Sky

This happened maybe 20 years ago when 3 friends and I went camping at Kentucky Lake. Suddenly, above us, there was a meteor-like fireball that lasted maybe two seconds at most. It appeared to be very close, but there's no way to be certain. We saw it fall behind the opposite spit of land, and, presumably, land in the lake. Immediately afterward, the entire lake lit up, seemingly, from the bottom. Seriously, all the water was visible from where we were standing, including our little inlet and the portion of the lake proper, lit up the entire floor of the lake and made it look like spotlights. It flashed twice or three times and went out. There was no accompanying sound whatsoever. To this day, none of us have any idea what it was, but we all saw it.

yong-chuan-707972-unsplash-300x200.jpgPhoto by Yong Chuan on Unsplash

26. The Mysterious Bottle

Two years ago, we were camping at a place called Lake Glenbawn in Australia. Now to set the scene, two mates were sitting around a fire, one was getting something from his car, I was passed out in my tent and another mate was down at a tap rinsing his plate about 50 metres from the fire.

He got hit in the head with a bottle. At first, they thought it was me, thinking I'd clumsily stumbled out of my tent to pee and had thrown the bottle. They went and checked and I was still out cold in my tent. There was nobody else around the camping area. We hadn't seen a single person since we got there.

Talking about it the next day, we narrowed the options down to a ghost, a serial bottler or a bird dropping the bottle after trying to fly away with it. We decided to go with the serial bottler, and now every year we keep a vigilant lookout for the Glenbawn Bottler.

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25. The Man Who Wasn't There

I was camping one night with friends and heard someone rustling around our tent. This was an isolated area, so no one should be around. Filled with dread, I just lay as still as possible, breathing slowly and quietly, listening to this person and his dog walking back and forth outside the tent. I thought we were going to get shot or beaten by this dude. Then I saw this guy's shadow, which freaked me out a heck of a lot more than I already was. It was huge and looming over us every time he passed our tent, and I couldn't see the dog's shadow even though I heard it making increasingly erratic circulations of the tent.

This carried on for around five minutes, although it felt like much more time had passed. The shadows disappeared, and the sounds faded away. There was nobody there. We got out within the space of five seconds, and there was nobody anywhere. As I mentioned, we were atop a hill in the middle of a field, and so could see if anyone had decided to run, but there was nothing. Even though it was impossible for anyone to escape my seeing them, I am absolutely positive there were footsteps outside our tent that night.


24. The Final Goodbye

This story was told to me by my professor who I very much trust. While he was camping and hunting in Montana, he had a strange vision. He was sitting on a hill looking for deer. And out of the forest walks his elderly mother. He is taken aback because his mother lives in Slovakia and has never left her country. His mother says she loves him and walks away. At this point, my professor is freaking out. He packs up his stuff and goes back into town. He calls his mother overseas.

She answers and laughs at his story. He still feels unsettled so he gets a flight to fly back to see his mother. He spends a few lovely days with her. Then the morning before he's about to go home he wakes up to find his mother passed away in her sleep. My professor grew up in war-torn Europe, escaped the Iron Curtain, lived as a street artist in Paris, and then became a ten-gallon hat wearin' gent in Texas. But somehow this story sticks out a lot when I think of him.

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23. Ghost Sniper

This happened when I was a boat scout during a weekend of Civil War reenactments, education, etc. I walked up to the bridge and started to walk across it when I felt an excruciating sharp pain in my chest. I almost doubled over in pain and clenched my chest. I thought maybe I was having a heart attack, but both of my arms were fine and free to move.

I put both hands on the part of my chest that hurt and felt another sharp pain right below the top of my right shoulder (in the meaty part above your pecs, underneath your shoulder and just in from your underarm). That pain came and knocked me down where I almost cracked my head open on the side of the stone bridge. I laid there, freaking out, and scrambled to my feet and booked it back to camp.

I got back to camp and had the other scoutmaster take a look at my chest and I have two raised, red lumps that under the skin you could see where turning into blisters. He asked me what I was doing and I told him that it just happened when I was walking around the battlefield. Not once had I thought about any haunting or anything. I called it an evening and turned in. The next morning I found out that Confederate sharpshooters took up positions on the other side of the creek and on the side where we were all at was the Union. It's possible I was struck by ghost bullets.

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22. Monster In The Woods

Me and 3 other buddies were camping on my property near the Suwannee River. The second night in, we were sitting around the campfire and heard this really loud growling. We were all a bit freaked out, but I wasn't too worried. I wasn't aware of any extremely dangerous animals in Northern Florida. I took a flashlight and walked toward the growling. I followed it to the bottom of a hill and my flashlight just died.

I was in the middle of the woods, at 11  PM, with no natural light. I just stood where I was trying not to move a muscle, and the growling got really close to me. I kept shaking the flashlight until it finally turned on. The growling completely stopped and there was absolutely nothing there. I heard it about two feet from me, and it just disappears without a trace. The next day my friends and I went to that exact area where I heard the growling, and there wasn't even paw prints, ruffled leaves, or anything. It was pretty creepy.


21. A Talking Rock

We were camping one night, just hanging out and having a few drinks away from civilization. It was pretty dark where we were and you couldn't see very far past the fire. There was a large boulder not too far from our shelter. One of my friends went out to collect firewood when he heard voices near the rock, low like a whisper. When he came back and told us we didn't believe him so we went over and listened. It sounded like it was coming from inside the rock. Just a series of numbers being repeated. We were spooked but we all went to sleep eventually. It wasn't until later when we discovered a numbers station and we all lost our cool again.


20. Ghost Terror

During my high school annual camping/rafting trip, some people who worked at the grounds told us the story of a ghost who haunted the grounds. Apparently, the campground used to belong to a rich family back in the early 1900s and the daughter of the owner drowned in the river or something while sneaking around after dark with her lover. They said that if you were in bed, and you heard the sound of rushing water, like a river, she was outside waiting to guide you to the river. If you saw her light, you'd be entranced and she'd walk you to your watery death.

I woke up what seemed like minutes later to one of my cabin mates screaming and pointing at the door. I looked over and saw really long, dark, wet hair dangling in front of the window. The teachers came running in, and a few minutes later, so did the campground people. A girl classmate was sobbing and it woke everyone up. We told them what we saw, but the campground people said nobody else was staying in the campground, and the teachers confirmed that everyone was accounted for and nobody had wet hair. Nobody slept that night and for the last night, we all just camped out in the main hall because we were too scared to sleep in the cabins.


19. Something Lurking In A Canyon

I was camping by a lake with my boyfriend. I woke up in the tent in the middle of the night and heard footsteps and heavy breathing around my tent, so I woke up my boyfriend and he went outside to check it out. As soon as he went out, all the noises stopped. He said he saw nothing and came back in, but as soon as he laid down it started up again. It was terrifying. We never figured it out. There were no trees, it was all sand and dirt for miles, in a canyon. Nothing for anything to hide behind. And it sounded as if it was right outside. Super scary. I won't camp there anymore.


18. An Unknown Stranger

While camping with my dad and two buddies, I saw a flash of light on the top of the mountain slope facing away from us. Another friend saw it too, but eventually, we started talking about other things again when both of us saw a second flash of light, maybe 1/3 of the way down the slope.

Other flashes appeared, and then we heard footsteps through the brush around the flat area of the site. Faint at first, but soon it was obvious that somebody was walking around the shelter/area. We listened for another 15 minutes that seemed like hours, as this person slowly walked around our shelter, a couple of times coming within feet of the rock plateau we were on. Eventually, the steps stopped, and even though we were freaked out, we fell asleep after a bit more listening.

We woke up early from the sunlight and informed friend 3 of the night's events while checking out our shelter for evidence of somebody messing with it (none found). We packed up quickly and hiked back to my dad and his friends by midday. We were spooked.


17. Shadow Figure Lurking

A group of us were camping in a forested area a few years ago, and as is tradition, we would take our bathroom breaks a safe distance from the camp. The only light we had was from a fire in the centre of the camp, and our phone torches. One of the girls went off into the forest and ran back screaming, saying that she'd seen a shady figure watching her as she went. A group of us then set off into the darkness with torches to try and find whoever it was. There was no sign of anything, but it spooked us all to hell and put a real damper on the night. Nobody likes the feeling of being watched.


16. Strange Customs

Back in the 80's, I was a camper at this place in the Adirondacks, a 6-million-acre state park in upstate NY.  That first night some of us campers were partying with the counsellors. All camps have their own customs, and not sure if this occurred elsewhere, but if sitting around a campfire and the smoke was blowing in your face, we would utter the phrase "I hate white rabbits." When the smoke blew in someone's face, they said the phrase "I hate white rabbits". The smoke moved.

The next recipient of the smoke said the words, and the smoke moved again. The words began to be uttered more quickly as the smoke moved faster around from person to person. At the height of this frenzied chanting, the smoke was starting to almost look like a vortex. The next morning, I opened our tent to see lying on the ground - spanning the width of the running trail - the biggest rabbit I have ever seen in my life to date. It was dead. It had eyes that were glazed over blue, and it was white.


15. I Feel Like I'm Being Watched

I was a kid in the 70s, and I was camping in Europe with my family. There were always interesting things happening at campgrounds. Later that night, probably after 1 a.m., I had to pee really bad. On my way back, I passed by the house and someone else was walking diagonally from me, and their flashlight reflected on one of the windows.

I glanced over at the light, and there was a giant figure in the window, just behind the curtains that the light illuminated. It was thick and dark and had white eyes that blinked at me for a second. The person's flashlight moved over pretty fast, and within seconds, the figure was gone with the light. I never ran back to the tent so fast in my life. My mom said she heard me coming when she heard my flip-flops flapping like crazy back to the tent. I would only talk about it in the morning when it was light again.

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14. What's That In The Distance?

It was 1984-85 and we were on a break from college. A group of us decided to go on a week-long raft trip. The river went through a Native American reservation. The nights were clear and beautiful, the river was slow and manageable. Everything was going pretty well, until the second to last night. We had finished dinner, put everything away, and my travel mates had snuggled into the tents. I saw a huge white light at the edge of the horizon that was bigger than the moon and flashed across the sky. It was faster than an airplane and disappeared below the horizon. It took maybe 60-90 seconds to traverse the sky. I started yelling for my mates about five seconds after I saw it and realized that it wasn't going away.


13. Ghost Plane

The campground we go to is on a river and on the other bank is a small mountain/ridge/hill. One year, we were sitting in the river relaxing. We looked up and saw an airliner fly extremely low and disappear behind the peak. Keep in mind, this is 200 miles from civilization or the nearest large airport. There was no crash, no noise, and no report of a missing plane. Everyone swears they saw it, as well. To date, the Ghost Plane is a part of our camping tales.


12. UFO Sighting

It was almost 7 years ago. I was 8 years old and was in the Cub Scouts with my three friends. Us four (and our dads) had gone up to one of my friends grandfather's house in upstate NY for the weekend. It was pretty late at night (for a couple of 8-year-olds that is), and we were all sitting around a campfire in the backyard. We were just sitting there making s'mores and had run out of marshmallows. I went into the house to get some more when all of a sudden I hear from one of the dads "Whoa, what is that?"

I rushed outside, marshmallows in hand, screaming "WHAT?". The dad points up in the sky where I see what I can only describe as a green shooting star, but standing absolutely still. It sat there for a solid 30 seconds before it suddenly took off for no reason I could see. We were all convinced it was a UFO, and still, believe it was a UFO to this day. It also got me really interested in the paranormal of all kinds, specifically extra-terrestrials.


11. Who Took That Picture?

My teacher back in high school usually goes on an annual camping trip with his family or buddies. However, no one joined him, so he ended up just going alone. He was only out in the woods for a couple nights taking pictures of the scenery and such. When he got back home he was looking through the pictures and found some of himself....sleeping...along with his tent and other things he knows he could not have taken. He showed us the pictures. This is the scariest thing I've ever heard of happening paranormal wise.


10. The Lonely Old Man

I went camping with some guys in our college club and as the sun was setting a middle-aged man approached our campsite and asked if he could hang out with us, since his friends bailed on him at the last minute, and he had already paid for the spot. Being nice guys, we said ok, and let him hang out with us. He kept to himself, but every so often would offer us a drink, and even offered us "other stuff" (which we gratefully accepted). We were shooting the breeze, and just talking about stories that we had throughout our college experience, and he would interject and talk about his stories in his fraternity that he "wasn't allowed to name".

In addition, he would talk about his past, but never about anything recent, and didn't reference any events past 2001. This seems oddly specific, but when someone made a 9/11 joke in bad taste, I remember him looking really confused. Anyways, around 4 in the morning, it was getting a bit chilly, but kept the campfire high so it wasn't too bad. We offered him a seat since he was in the outskirts of the campsite and it must have been cold, but he declined to stay within the limits of the light.

He kept on saying he was going fishing as soon as dawn broke, and offered multiple times to take my friend with him. Only this specific friend though. It was a bit weird, but I didn't really question it at the time. Once the dawn broke, he just disappeared. I don't know if he was a ghost that died prior to 2001, or some lonely dude that wanted to hang out with my friend a little too much, but it all felt a little bit too unsettling for me.

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9. Footprints From Nobody

On a middle school camping trip, we were staying at Mesa Verde National Park. Mesa Verde is where the ancient Native American cliff dwellings are. Our tents were in clusters around the campground. I was with three friends in a tent on the outer edge of the group near a trailhead leading into the desert.

I drew the short straw and had to sleep right next to the tent door. During the night I was awoken by what sounded like boots trying to walk silently on gravel/dirt. I lay awake for what felt like hours hearing it circle the tent. Every fiber of me wanted to try and find out what it was but I felt safer staying silent. Near midnight it began to rain and pour, I finally fell asleep because the rain drowned out the sound. The next morning my friends said they hadn't heard anything but when we left the tent we found the rain had washed away all footprints except for a pair of boot prints circling the tent multiple times and walking back into the desert.

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8. Child Ghost

This happened when I was a kid. It was like a summer camp retreat out in the middle of nowhere. My friends and I were walking towards the building where we are supposed to sleep until I saw this kid sitting with his back turned towards us. He was near the perimeter fence and just looking out there into the forest. I thought the kid was another classmate of ours so I began calling him, and when he wasn't responding. I slowly walked towards him (I broke my leg previously and was on crutches) and all the while calling him by name but the kid wouldn't budge. For some reason, two of my classmates stopped walking and I was the only one moving towards him.

As I grew closer I felt something strange, and while I was staring at him, he seemed to be kind of transparent. I know it's weird, and when I was pretty close and practically behind him, I was seeing the fence through him. At first, I couldn't make sense of what I'm looking at, and when it finally dawned on me, I felt like I was punched in the gut.


7. Encounter With Slender Man?

I'm native, grew up traveling to different powwows and always camped away from family. (pow-wow= native gathering hundreds of tents). I always heard footsteps, phantom drums, but it was almost normal. Lots of spirituality going on, who knows what was being called forward. One night someone was rustling around my tent. I always kinda stayed a few meters further from my family when I was young. Someone opened my zipper and it woke me, I sat up and asked who was there, but I only heard shuffling and footsteps.

Could it be a cousin playing tricks? I peeked outside and saw a tall skinny man duck behind a teepee. Teepees are generally pretty tall, but this man was about 11 feet tall with extremely long legs and arms. He was walking and as soon as I focused on him he swiftly ducked behind the teepee. In the morning, my grandfather just laughed, and my grandmother said to ignore it. They told me not to follow it and don't call out to it. It was normal I guess.


6. Why Are They Digging?

I was solo backpacking and decided to stop for the night as it was right around sunset. I had just got everything set up when I heard a car on a road about 1500 ft. from my position. Honestly, I hadn't even realized 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 halfway down and then... they start digging with shovels.

Now I'm crapping 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 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.

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5. The False Alarm

A few years back, I hiked the Timberline Trail around Mt. Hood in Oregon. On the second night, I camped out in this section of the woods that had been devastated by a forest fire the year before. That evening, as I was drifting off to sleep, this deep, guttural growl started to echo out from somewhere out in the woods. You know that sound a dog makes when you try to take a tennis ball from him? Kind of like that but very low and very loud. I timidly poked my head out of the tent, feebly trying to root out the source with my headlamp but all I could see was the charred ruins of the forest in all directions. I crawled back into my sleeping bag, suppressed any desire to get up and pee in the middle of the night, and drifted off into a fitful night's sleep.

It would be sometime later that I would learn that that deep, reverberating growl was actually the glacier on Mt Hood, cracking under the summer heat.


4. A Furry Friend On The Savannah

Safari guide here. Woke up one morning, with "something" very warm, rather soft and comfy on my back. Realized my back was against the canvas of the tent. Realized it was an animal. It was a really cold winter night, temperatures drop close to zero here in the Lowveld. What in the world could it be?

As I moved a bit, I heard the voice from my buddy, from his tent. He spoke a bit hushed, and with a definite tremble in his voice; "Hey man, are you awake?"

Stupid me replied with a strong voice: "Yes."

"Um," my buddy said, "you need to stay very still and quiet."

The animal next to me got up, and (luckily) ran away.

It was a big male lion.

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3. A Heart-Stopping Roar

A few years ago, I was camping in the Everglades in Florida with a few friends. We all had gone into our separate tents and were starting to fall asleep. The area was pretty noisy with bugs, crickets, birds, etc. I heard this very low vibration, sounding almost like a low roar. It was powerful enough to vibrate in my chest. Suddenly everything in the forest shut up, including bugs, birds, etc. About thirty seconds later, my phone vibrates and it's my friend in the other tent texting me asking if I heard the same thing. The four of us kept texting each other, wondering what it was. About ten minutes later, all the animals slowly started making noise again. I slept that night with my weapon at arms reach.


2. Disembodied Eyes

I was camping with some friends and family when I was younger, about 15. It started raining and the tents filled with water, so about five of us migrated to my parent's car. We were hanging out, being goofy teenagers, when my one friend noticed what appeared to be the reflection of a pair of eyes staring out at us from the darkness, kind of like cat eyes when you shine a light on them. We watched it for a while, debating what it was (fireflies? glow bugs? an interested cat?) when one of us worked up the courage to walk out and point a flashlight on the disembodied eyes and figure out what it was. He left the car, walked over to the spot, pointed his light at them and...nothing was there.

He quickly scampered back into the car, and we huddled and laughed for a while longer. Then, it was around 2:30 in the morning when someone else noticed another pair, floating not too far away from the original sighting. Then another. And another. Until the whole field and a good portion of the woods was covered in glowing green eyes. Now, what really made it weird was they were all spaced evenly apart as eyes would be, and also they blinked, which was very scary. We didn't get much sleep that night and we've been trying to figure out what they were ever since.


1. Eerie Eye Reflections

I spent three days deep in the hills of Nevada. We built a campfire and cooked. After a few minutes, I turned on a smaller LED lamp I had clipped on to my chest. As I turn around, I noticed about seven-dozen glowing eye reflections about 50 feet away. My heart raced. I told my friend to look, but there was nothing. We used our torches, hand on our sidearms. We didn't see it again. I know I saw it, but never saw it again. I did not sleep that night.

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