The Windego of Algonquin Park

This is not my story, but rather my Popa’s. A couple of years ago, he and I were talking about going hiking in Algonquin Provincial Park, somewhere that he had been many times and had grown up near. Unfortunately, his health was failing and our trip was cancelled. He told me that it was likely for the best, since he wouldn’t be able to protect me from the windego if we saw it.

My Popa is half First Nations, with his mother being Cree and Herron and his father Scottish. Because his mother was removed from her home as a child and placed into the Schools, she lost her status as First Nations and wasn’t allowed to live on the Rez, but she lived just outside of it near Algonquin Povoncial Park. Popa has many friends who lived on the Rez and would often go with them into the park to hike and hunt when he was a young man. They saw many strange things in the deepest parts of the forest; however, this is the story he shared with me that day.

Popa was hiking with a friend, let’s call him Ben, when they were in there late 20s. They had already been out in the park for several days, camping at nightfall and continuing in the morning, and were rather deep in the woods. It was late October, and getting colder as the days went on, but they were prepared for that and often camped in the dead of winter. One night, as the temperature dropped below freezing, they decided it was time to set up camp and start a fire. They were starting to gather wood when Popa heard something. It was the crying of a baby or small child. Popa had grown up during the Great Depression and had heard stories of people abandoning unwanted babies and children in the forest. He started to follow the crying when Ben grabbed his arm.

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Man tree – Duplicate

Trees, we all know them. We all dislike yet silently respect their hard barks and stoic branches. But I encountered a tree I can neither respect nor love.

It was around 3am in the evening. I was driving my fiat car down a wooded street, I technically wasn’t allowed to drive my car as my drivers license wasn’t valid anymore. But hey, a man’s gotta drive am I right. Some solicitors had called me up to inform me of a seminar which would be highly beneficial for me to attend. Now normally I would have been pissed off to be called at such a late hour at the night, but luckily I was awake. I had spotted several suspicious looking humanoids, suspected goblins,on my porch that afternoon and wasn’t able to catch sleep. Anyway the people on the phone told me to go to Gaithersburg Maryland, since that was where the great business opportunity awaited me. I was so excited that I slammed my phone down without getting an exact address. I ran to my car figuring I would be able to divine where the seminar was from context clues.

So there I was driving, surrounded on all sides by trees (except for my front and back which were surrounded by road). I turned on my headlights to illuminate the road which I had forgotten to do up to this point. I kept driving for a very long time only stopping at random increments to close the passenger side door which had been damaged in a previous late night drive. I was making good time before I had to stop because a large tree had fallen and was blocking the road. Shockingly, this would only be the second worst tree I would encounter that day. Normally I would have just driven through any obstacle but the tree was big enough to make me reconsider. Being very annoyed at the fact I couldn’t continue, and perhaps being too bullheaded to go back home. I made a decision i would regret deeply to this day. I turned the steering column of the wheel and pointed the tip of my car straight into the dark oblivion of the forest and started driving.

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Man tree

Trees, we all know them. We all dislike yet silently respect their hard barks and stoic branches. But I encountered a tree I can neither respect nor love.

It was around 3am in the evening. I was driving my fiat car down a wooded street, I technically wasn’t allowed to drive my car as my drivers license wasn’t valid anymore. But hey, a man’s gotta drive am I right. Some solicitors had called me up to inform me of a seminar which would be highly beneficial for me to attend. Now normally I would have been pissed off to be called at such a late hour at the night, but luckily I was awake. I had spotted several suspicious looking humanoids, suspected goblins,on my porch that afternoon and wasn’t able to catch sleep. Anyway the people on the phone told me to go to Gaithersburg Maryland, since that was where the great business opportunity awaited me. I was so excited that I slammed my phone down without getting an exact address. I ran to my car figuring I would be able to divine where the seminar was from context clues.

So there I was driving, surrounded on all sides by trees (except for my front and back which were surrounded by road). I turned on my headlights to illuminate the road which I had forgotten to do up to this point. I kept driving for a very long time only stopping at random increments to close the passenger side door which had been damaged in a previous late night drive. I was making good time before I had to stop because a large tree had fallen and was blocking the road. Shockingly, this would only be the second worst tree I would encounter that day. Normally I would have just driven through any obstacle but the tree was big enough to make me reconsider. Being very annoyed at the fact I couldn’t continue, and perhaps being too bullheaded to go back home. I made a decision i would regret deeply to this day. I turned the steering column of the wheel and pointed the tip of my car straight into the dark oblivion of the forest and started driving.

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I stepped foot in hell

It was a boring day like any other, and i had the week off. I should note that im a 22 year old man living on my own with a lizard and a dog. But i have my friends. One whom i met in elementary which loved Pokemon like me, and he had the same birthday as me. Elijah was his name. I sure do miss him. The second was Logan. I met him later on in Highshcool. But anyway, it was going to be a boring week so i had the thought of going camping in an unfamiliar location with nothing but stuff to lasts us a week. Yes, a week out in an unfamiliar location with nothing but trees. My hand reaches for my phone, and opens our group chat to call. I wait there a few seconds in silents with the ringer of the phone. Logans the first to pick up. “Hello?”

“Hey whats up! Wanna go camping?” I say. I think i rushed the conversation because he didn’t reapond for a few seconds.

“Sure!” He forcibly said. I then hear a pop in my ear. Its a notification telling me someone has joined the call. Seconds later i hear Elijahs voice. “Why hello my friends ” He says stupidly. I’ll save you some details of our conversation and fasts forward to us getting in the car.

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Garage door

This is the story from when my younger sister and I were home alone one day. For some quick background information, we lived in a rural area in New Mexico, just outside a certain small mining town that was named for its silver. Our house sat in the middle of the forest and it wasn’t uncommon to see wildlife there, which will explain my thoughts later on in the story.
At the time I was a 14 year old boy who didn’t like leaving home much, I was, and still am, very much an introvert after all. So, on the day my parents were eager to spend the night at a cabin and enjoy the hotsprings that were about an hour out of town for their anniversary, I made it clear that I’d be staying home instead with my then 12 year old sister. Let me just say that it wasn’t the first time we’d been left alone, after all, we did know how to take care of ourselves by then. Our parents trusted that we wouldn’t do anything stupid and so they packed up and loaded the car happily. We watched them drive away from the front at about 1:00 pm and then continued our day as usual.
It was pretty normal at first, we just confined ourselves to our rooms as usual and entertained ourselves until night came around. I made nice dinner for the two of us then, steak, bread, broccoli, that kind of meal. We were in a great mood, having the house and getting the huge t.v. all to ourselves, it had us excited. We are both massive fans of anime, so we popped in a new dvd that I’d bought to watch on the big screen while we ate dinner. It seemed like the perfect night and we were satisfied.
We sat there for several hours watching our show, it was about 11:00 pm when my sister began to feel uneasy. I told her that she was probably just uncomfortable being home alone without our parents and urged her to just keep watching, but the uneasiness only grew, in her and in myself. It wasn’t long before we heard clicking, not very loud clicking but we did hear it over the t.v. nonetheless. I turned the sound up in response to the annoying sound and we both tried to forget about it. We didn’t last more than half an episode when the sound grew even louder, it was more frantic now and I was irritated. My sister jabbed me in the side and stared at the garage door.
” Someone is trying to break in”
she hissed at me, but I just told her that she was being paranoid, that it was probably just an animal that trapped itself in there and turned the sound up even more. At this point the t.v. was so loud that it would easily be heard from outside, yet the frantic clicking still got louder. Only when the last episode finished and the menu appeared on screen, playing it’s loud title screen music, did I look towards the garage door. The clicking had now become a banging sound and I could see that the handle was turning rapidly. My heart dropped into the pit of my stomach and I gazed in absolute horror at the door. I turned the sound down and the noise was incredibly loud, much louder than I initially thought. My sister remarked a quick “told you so” and began to check the other doors to ensure that they were also locked.
I got off the couch and I instantly felt the harsh vibrations on the floor. I was in utter disbelief, the door was moving back and forth and I could hear the metal of the lock clashing against the door frame. The vibrations were so strong they travled several feet in my direction. I remember thinking that whatever was in the garage had to be massive and maybe not even human because there was no way that that door could be so close to breaking like that. It was quite a few inches thick and there were two steel locks on it. I was so scared of what was on the other side. I made the decision to retreat to my bedroom with all four of our cats and my sister in tow.
I locked my door and called my father immediately. He instructed me to do three things,
1.) Get his revolver from his room
2.)Scream that we were calling police
3.) Let the dog outside and lock the door.

I did as told and retrieved the gun from his room. I then faced the door and yelled; this seemed to do worse, the attempt to get in was only made stronger by my announcement. I backed up and ran to grab the dog. We had a very intimidating dog, a large male dogue debordeaux, weighing well over one hundred pounds, If you’ve seen Turner and Hooch, that’s the dog. I let him out and waited for him to do something, anything; but nothing came from it, he stuck to the other side of the front door, shaking and whining in fear. If the enormous dog was scared then so was I!
I let him in and returned to my room. Our parents had called the police but they would be a while. So we sat in silence on the carpet, waiting for our parents or the police. The noises did eventually halt around 1:00 am and our parents arrived home. I passed out after that and when morning came, I felt sick when I learned something. My father had checked the garage over that day, it was empty of anyone, leaving only a wonky lock as evidence; but that’s not the part that terrified me. The thing that made me petrified was that everything was there. There was no missing items, despite the large quantity of expensive tools and foreign artifacts, the culprit took nothing.
Which means, the thing outside was here for us, and that is something I’ll never forget. I’m not sure if it was a massive person or some kind of monster but whatever it was, it wanted to harm us and I have always checked my doors ever since.

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The Count’s Bird-cage

I worked a small time park maintenance and upkeep job a few years back for a local park. It’s no Yellowstone, but I grew up there, hiking the hills and exploring the forests. When I got offered a job working there I took it without a second thought, even though it didn’t pay well – just my way of giving back to the park.

I have more than a few stories from my time there, trekking about with a shovel and saw for whole days at a time, but my favorite tale comes from a co-worker of mine, who I knew as Mikhael. Mikhael had a particular nickname among my fellow crewman – The Count. This was, as far as I could tell, in reference to his angular European face and dark black hair. The Count was around 50 or so when I met him, and yet he had such a love for the forest that he stayed in his part time volunteer job.

The Count was a very kind and gentle man – he would help out with anything you asked, was always kind and compassionate. Of all the things I remember about the Count, one thing that’s always stuck was his love of telling tales of adventures in his home county of Poland. His passion for said stories are part of why I log and spread them as much as I do today. The Count told, no pun intended, countless stories, and many of them I can recall somewhat. Only one of them has really stuck with me all these years later, and it was the last one he ever told me.

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Skinwalker in the Pines

(Hey everyone, Spades here – It was really awesome to see one of my stories end up in a video, and I’m hoping to maybe even do that again if I can write that well! Thank you for all the support. )

(This story was told to me by JakobLmao on Reddit, and will be told from his point of view from here forth.)

I’ve had a draft of this story set up for a while before I gained the courage to share it. It made me question… everything. My faith, my eyes, my friends, and worst of all, my sanity. I’ve decided it’s time to let someone else know about this, maybe that will help me move on… at least, that’s what I hope. For my sake, and maybe even yours.

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Weatherman & The Cuyahago Valley Buzzer (National Park)

This story was not told to me by a hiker like most of my others, but rather was witnessed by myself firsthand. This encounter occurred very close to my home woods of Ohio, way up North in Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Cuyahoga Valley is a smaller park, one of the few parks in the East Coast area (comparatively), and doesn’t get near as much love as it should. This being said, it’s somewhat of a private heaven for those of us who take the trip into the valley, escaping the more populous of parks.

To lay some basis for this tale, I will describe its characters. Due to the nature of the sites at the Valley, having two to three people per group can be optimal. I had ached for a return to the forest, as it had been a fair amount of time since my last excursion. So, after some convincing, I managed to call up an old friend of the area and convince him to take the hike with me. He wasn’t a camper at all; 90% of what he carried that weekend was gear borrowed from me.

I was excited to take him on the trip with me. For those less experienced in the world of the outdoors, a big tradition and rite of passage for any novice outdoorsman to earn a “trail name,” a unique nickname given by other, more experienced hikers, usually in reference to an event at a camp out or something like that. My trail name is Spades, due to some card game fun on one of my first long hikes. The reason I am explaining all of this is because I had decided to take it upon myself to find an appropriate trailname for my friend. I had assumed it would be something silly, like a friend of mine who’s name was Ramen-bomben, following his creation of an instant ramen – potato – spam creation.

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What was in that House?

This happened at the start of January of 2018, when I was in 6th grade and 11 years old. I was a pretty average kid, I got A’s and B’s, and I had a few friends, one of which was my best friend, we’ll call him Collin. Collin lived about half an hour away from me, so I didn’t go to his house that often. When I did go to his house, we would always play in his woods. He had a good 3 acres of just forest and trees and creeks. There was also a good sized pond that we would go fishing in during the summer months. However, there was an abandoned house by the end of the property. It was a normal house, two floors. It had been abandoned in the 1960s, according to Collin. Since the 1970s teenagers had been partying in it and had trashed it. Collin’s eldest sister, Anna, who was 26 at the time of writing, used to party in it as well, but she stopped sometime before Collin was born for reasons she would not say. The one time we told her we were going, she FREAKED OUT. She told us that we should stay away from that place at all costs and NEVER go inside, especially not in the basement. We just thought she was talking about drugs or alcohol, but we were wrong. So wrong.

I had taken the bus over to Collin’s house on Friday, and I stayed the night, with plans to explore the abandoned house the next morning. When we woke up, we put our orange vests and paintball masks on, so that we would be easy to find. We took a Gator (that kind of pickup truck ATV you see at farms) to the end of the trail, that I noticed eventually began to get paved.

“Hey, Collin?” I asked

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The People of the Forest

The natural world that lives around us is one that we all exist within, yet the amount of which some are connected to it are far beyond others. Some of us walk paths made of pavement; and some of us choose ones of dirt and debris. When man evolved away from his home in the forest, he unknowingly opened the domain to the world of the unknown, the impossible, and the terrifying.
These days, most of us no longer dwell within the forest. However, the same majority of us find a brief return to the wild, in the form of camping or perhaps a backpacking trip, and may even regularly do so. The modern outdoor recreation community is a vibrant, welcoming one, and is by far one of the more upbeat groups on the internet. But, for those of us who live or spend a larger amount of time in the world of the wild know the dark, hidden away parts of the woods that exist within the scary stories told by experienced hikers and seasoned campers around the campfires – not the ones that may make you giggle, or the ones that seem to be fabricated on the spot, but the ones that shake you so deep that you feel rattled to the core as you desperately try to sleep in your tent that night, terrified of any shadow or twig snap you may hear.
This story was told to me at a small, backwoods public campsite in Kentucky, by a tall, handsome man by the trail name of Blackhorn. Blackhorn shared a laugh with us nearly the entire time I was in his presence at the campsite. He had a prowess for the backpacker’s classic card game, B.S., and gave genuine kind-hearted advice on anything he could. This made his story all the more shocking.
When I, Blackhorn and the few other hikers at the site gathered around the fire as the shadows grew longer, the tradition of the scary stories commenced. I retrieved my notebook that I use to mark down any truly horrifying stories, and sat back, not expecting much. I, unbeknownst to myself at the time, was wrong.
As another woman finished up her story of being chased around the trail by some sleezy guy, Blackhorn stretched his legs and yawned. He soon chipped in with his story, laying a log on the fire that sent a splash of sparks into the pure black night.
“Ok, so, this one happened a couple years ago… and… I honestly don’t think I’ve ever been the same since. I was hiking a relatively easy trail, maybe a 2-3 day length. The whole trail ran along the steep upper banks of a wide river, with the trails cut into the side of the incline and the campsites either cut the same or on a rare flat area. It was day three of my hike, the last leg for me. I hiked much faster than many of my group counterparts on the trail, and had spent one day day-hiking and relaxing at a particularly beautiful area in the park. One group of about three had camped with me and left earlier than I, meaning I would probably pass them again on the last bit of trail. They were nice, real nice people, and…” Blackhorn trailed off here, and his demeanor of a bright, fun-loving joker began to shatter. All of us noticed, but didn’t want to stop him. “Ach. Sorry, I just…” He continued, obviously a little upset. “When I started trekking again the next afternoon, I had a great day. I’ve been on plenty of trips, and I’m pretty good at navigation and pacing… I’d never gotten stuck out at night. It didn’t make any damn sense that I did that day, either, because everything was going to easy. On way bigger trails, I could knock out 20 or more miles a day, so the last 4 miles in six hours was a literal cakewalk. It’s like the trail just keep going and going, way longer than it should have. It wasn’t like I took a wrong trail either. It seemed like it just kept looping, the same landmarks kept passing by. It got dark fast. I had started panicking, I guess, because I found my self walking very, very fast. I started noticing this one tree that was on a small section overlooking the river,
and every time I passed it, a thought maybe I heard a small, faint splash. When I had passed it, and walked for a while, I heard a huge splash – like someone had driven a car right into the river. For some reason, this just made me snap. I ran, pack bouncing around, until I reached the tree again. But this time… Oh, god…” He choked up. We all knew that this story really meant something to Blackhorn. “…There were… packs. On the shore, the were all messed up and… the beach… scuffed… I recognized the bags. They were from… the people, the group I stayed with before.” He seemed like he was about to explode, and the memories tormented him. We reassured Blackhorn, told him he didn’t have to go on if he didn’t want, but he insisted he get it out. When he recooperated, he started talking again, quickly as if he wanted to get it over with. “I looked over into the river. That was my worst mistake. The thing was… roundish. It had long, protruding… things. It almost looked like one of things from Halo, yknow…” He laughed to himself in a sad, upset way. “And it had all of them just kinda attached to them. The things on its back were dragging these three…shapes in the water. I knew what they were… and it just took off up the river. I don’t know if I could have helped them, or if they were already dead. I don’t like to think about it. I just started walking again, crying a little. For some dumb reason… about half an hour later if slow walking, maybe only a mile, I reached the trail end. It was pitch black. I didn’t have a car there, and was shaking way too hard to try and set up a tent, not to mention exhausted. I just kind of balled up with my sleeping bag on a bench and blacked out.” He stopped there. I had a desire to know more, but Blackhorn didn’t seem interested in finishing. He said thanks to us for sitting with him, and said he’d head back to his tent.
When I awoke the next morning around five AM, I had found Blackhorn’s tent gone, nearly packed up and his campsite vacant. It seemed he packed it real early that day. I didn’t run into Blackhorn on the rest of the trail and haven’t since, but campers ahead of me said they had, and he seemed shaken and out of it.
The rest of my hike out was uneventful, without too many more stories. The trail was very nice, and I enjoyed myself for most of the hike – but you can bet your boots I sure as hell kept away from any water the rest of my trek.

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