Some jobs aren’t for the faint of heart. While doctors and lawyers have to deal with grim diagnoses and scandalous cases, people who work in remote places might have it the worst. These forest rangers, oil riggers, and other workers head into the great unknown each and every day—and when they come back, they have some terrifying stories to tell.
1. For Whom The Bell Tolls
I used to work at a Boy Scout Summer Camp. Every week, I had to take a big group of campers to a “secluded” spot for their wilderness survival badge. Essentially, they had to build a shelter out of sticks and leaves, then sleep in it overnight. The spot was only about a half-mile from the main camp, but we took them in a circuitous route that made it seem really secluded.
Anyway, one night, after all the campers had made their shelters, we cooked dinner and sat around the campfire. It was getting late, so I sent all the campers to their shelters for the night and started cleaning up the fire. That’s when we heard it. It sounded like church bells in the distance. They were pretty faint, but my fellow staffers and I could definitely hear them.
They went on for about 30 minutes, ringing every 30 seconds or so. We were all a little creeped out, as there were no churches or towns within 20 miles of us. After the bells stopped, the singing started. It was too faint to hear the words, but it sounded like church choir music being sung by a lot of people. It was almost midnight at this point.
The singing went on for well over an hour. Sometimes it would quiet down until we almost couldn’t hear it, and sometimes it would get so loud we thought it was approaching us. All of the campers were super creeped out, but I lied to them, telling them there was a church service going on in camp, and that there was nothing to be scared of. Eventually, at almost 1 am, the singing stopped. When I found out the truth, it was even worse than I imagined.
I found out a few days later that there had been a large KKK rally only a few miles away that night, and that’s what we had heard.
2. The Ocean Blue
I used to work in the Gulf of Mexico on oil rigs for years, and I found this really unsettling. In the deep, open sea, the water is really clear, so everyone can plainly see all the tuna and barracudas hanging around the rig waiting for the onboard cook to throw off whatever food waste he needs to. Every once in a while, a huge great white shark would swim up from underneath and snatch a tuna, and it really took less than a second. They’re terrifying.
3. The Sound Of Silence
I’ve worked in Canada’s north for a few years now in oil and gas. It’s pretty creepy during the night shift, when you realize a moose has been standing at the tree line the entire time, just staring you down for an unknown duration. That, or finding bear tracks crossing the path you just made five minutes ago. When your only contact with the outside world is a radio channel that nobody’s listening to, you feel pretty alone.
4. Get Off My Lawn
Some friends and I were fishing in a small pond just after dark for catfish. We started to hear sounds coming off the water like someone throwing softball-sized rocks, but they were coming from all over the pond. We thought someone was messing with us and we called out a few times for them to stop, but we eventually got freaked out and left.
Cut to a few years later—I was fishing at a different pond and I suddenly got chills…It was the same sound. Turns out, it was a beaver slapping its tail on the water to drive me away from its territory. When beavers become problems in rivers, they relocate them to ponds in town.
5. Tooth And Claw
I was on a boat sitting on anchor in a secluded bay in the early hours of the morning. This was in southeast Alaska a few years ago. I stepped outside for some fresh air when all of a sudden, I heard the most horrific sounds of a wild animal being maimed by another wild animal. It went on for probably 10 minutes. I know it’s just nature but man, I can still hear that sound in my brain and it haunts me.
6. Now You See Me
I used to do agricultural work. I would be alone in a field for 10 hours a day, that kind of thing. The number of times I heard the sound of running and snapped up to see literally nothing was horrific. I was convinced it was animals moving in the trees for a while, but then the weirdest thing happened. I heard a loud sound from a row of trees next to me and immediately ducked under to see the feet of whatever animal was running by. There was absolutely nothing.
I remember trying to stay calm and walking really fast to the toilet block. I sat in there for a good long while before I came back. I never thought I’d be so freaked out in the daytime, but there wasn’t a soul nearby, so it really amped up my imagination.
7. Do You Want To Build A Snowman?
I work as a polar bear guard. As in, I escort people across tundra and mountains and protect them from polar bears. I once saw a snowman totem with reindeer antlers coming out of his head. It was deformed, full of bullet holes, and it was more than a little creepy.
8. I, The Creeper
I live on a ranch off of a quiet dirt road. Our distant neighbors about one mile away had issues with people taking things out of their outbuildings and storage sheds. It was also late in the year, so it would start to get dark around 6 pm. As a result, every time I would see headlights go down our road, I would watch to make sure they weren’t stopping on the property.
One evening, I saw a vehicle moving very slowly down the road. Eventually, it came to a stop at the end of our driveway, which was about 120 yards from our front porch. The vehicle was parked right in front of my ‘60s pickup, so I assumed whoever it was might have been looking to take it. Whatever the case, I decided to put on a black coat and grab my rifle to go investigate.
It was dark out, so I stayed out of the headlights of the person’s vehicle to get closer. I could tell it was a white van, but I didn’t see anything else particularly distinguishing about the vehicle. At about 50 yards away, the van backed up and turned into our driveway. I froze as the headlights illuminated me standing in the middle of my driveway…then I saw it—the reflective “FedEx” logo on the side of the van.
Needless to say, the FedEx driver probably peed himself seeing my dark figure standing in the middle of a field and holding a weapon. After I gave a friendly wave and smile, he continued up the driveway to the house, and I explained the situation. We both had a laugh.
9. Watching And Waiting
I spent some time in the peat swamp forests of Borneo studying wild orangutans. We would go into the forest very early, around 4 am. One morning, there was a clouded leopard on the trail that we used to enter the forest. It was just crouched there, watching us. We shouted and tried to act big to scare it off, but it wouldn’t budge. One of the indigenous people we worked with even took out his slingshot and shot rocks at it, missing on purpose to just startle it, but it just stayed there, unbothered.
After a good five minutes of watching us, it slowly walked into the thick brush off the cleared trail. When we walked by, I pointed my light to where it had walked to and we could clearly see a pair of reflective eyes. It was crouched over and peering at us as we passed. It was creepy, but also incredibly cool to see one in person, considering how critically endangered they are.
10. Turn Out The Lights
I was on guard duty at Camp Phoenix on the outskirts of Kabul in 2011. It was a 12-hour shift that started at 7 pm, so I was in for a long, sleepless night. Around 2 am, I could hear what sounded like footsteps running all around the guard tower. It promptly set my hairs on end. I pulled out my night vision goggles and prayed that it was just some kid messing with me or something…but what I saw haunts me to this day. I kid you not, there must have been two or three pairs of dogs on top of each other in a huge pile.
11. The Wind That Shakes The Barley
I’ve been fishing out in the Gulf of Mexico where they have some oil rigs. This rig wasn’t being used (from what we knew) so we would get pretty close to it to fish for red snapper. While we were out there, we could have sworn we heard the screams of a woman over and over. It turned out, it was just the wind making the noises as it blew through the rig…at least, that’s what we were told. Still, it totally creeped us out.
12. Exotic Tastes
I once delivered some soda to a grocery store in the middle of nowhere, which was an hour from any freeway, and the manager had at least 50 pictures of Burt Reynolds pinned up in her office. Does that count?
13. Off The Beaten Path
I spent several seasons working at a remote field camp in Antarctica, over 1,000 km from the main station in McMurdo. Every once in a while, a Skua bird or Antarctic tern would accidentally end up following one of the small planes out to our camp. Once they arrived, though, they’d basically be stranded with no way to get back to the coast.
I’d get out of my tent some mornings and see a lonely Tern circling overhead, knowing it was a dead bird flying. It was quite creepy. When birds do perish down there, it’s so cold and dry that their bodies don’t decay. They essentially just mummify. Outside McMurdo at Scott’s Discovery Hut, there is still a perfectly preserved seal carcass from 1912 sitting by the entrance of the hut.
14. Speaking In Code
Merchant seaman here. Nothing particularly creepy to report—most of the time you’re too focused on not hitting anything, getting position fixes, or updating logbooks to really think about paranormal or spooky stuff. But the closest thing to “creepy” that I’ve experienced recently has been a strange transmission over the radio. It started with a series of Morse code beeps followed by a female voice listing off random letters and numbers.
I don’t know what the heck that was about.
15. The Northern Frights
While I was working on ships, there was one night I’ll never forget. I was on a ship sailing through Alaskan Waters, and it happened to be my first night ever seeing the Northern Lights. I couldn’t believe how awesome it was…They made the sky clear like it was dusk, and we were able to see clearly for miles.
A few buddies and I hit the roof at 1 am just to gaze at them. An hour or so in, there were six of us on top, nearly the entire crew now. Then, all of a sudden, a big white spotlight shone at us. We were near land, but the spotlight was above the water, and it wasn’t low enough to be on a ship. It was very high up.
It shone on us for about 20 seconds. Once the light turned off, we looked around to see what it was, but we saw nothing. There was no trace of an aircraft or anything. A couple of minutes went by and then the same light shone on us again. This time, it was on the other side of our vessel above some mountains. We all saw it, but we knew it couldn’t have been an aircraft since we never saw anything in the sky above these waters, especially at 2 am.
We think it might have been some sort of silenced government project that was doing secret drills or something. That was one of the weirder things to happen out on the ocean.
16. It Was A Dark And Stormy Night
I worked in a store once in a really small town that was always empty. There was a customer every hour or so, and we took our shifts all alone, too. Anyway, on one dark evening, I was browsing the Internet when I heard the door open. I looked up and saw the back of a man walking down the first aisle toward the tin foods.
He appeared to be talking to someone on the phone. I thought nothing of it and went back to browsing. Then, all of a sudden, the atmosphere shifted. I got this intense smell of soil and earth. I looked up, and the man was approaching the counter. He was wearing overalls that were just covered in dirt. That’s when I noticed he was never on the phone.
He was just talking to himself in an absolutely bizarre tone. He sounded like a cartoon elf or something. He kept murmuring and letting out this really weird “hee-hee” sort of laugh. At that point, I was just frozen solid as he stood at the counter in front of me. I thought I was about to be a goner, but then an officer stormed through the door. He asked me if I was OK, but I didn’t respond because I was just in a complete state of shock.
The officer told the man to go outside, and the guy started mumbling gibberish. After a few minutes of this, the officer and his back-up finally grabbed the man and put him in the back of a squad car. That was the last I ever heard of him. I have no idea who he was or what was going on, but I have never been so afraid of another person before. You just know when you sense a bad situation. I’m so grateful the officers showed up when they did.
17. Things That Go Bump In The Night
I worked the night shift at a correctional facility for years. The one thing that really crept me is that prisoners often put a hit on someone in the middle of the night. The unwritten inmate’s code, however, says the plan is kept as quiet as possible. No one is to say a darn word, and the only thing you’ll end up hearing are the grunts and moans from the victims. Then, everything goes silent.
If you hear it happening, it would already be too late to stop it. It would be over before you can pull your keys out. Occasionally, if someone needs medical attention, the first sign we get is an inmate approaching the bars saying they need to go to medical. They are usually bleeding all over, completely nonchalant. On the contrary, you know it’s bad when no one shows up at all. All you get are grunts of pain and that’s it.
18. Sleep With One Eye Open
When I was 15 years old, I was doing my 4 am newspaper delivery route on my bicycle. I was driving into the garden of this one subscriber when I saw two guys with flashlights looking through the windows of the house. I was a little bit shocked and just said, “Good morning, guys.” They were in just as much of a shock as me, and an awkward silence followed.
I tried to break the silence by asking if I could pass them the newspaper. Immediately, the guy switched the topic and said something about the person living in that house doing something to his family…Then they both quickly ran into their car that was still running. When they were gone, I rang the doorbell at the house to tell them what happened and that they should keep an eye out.
19. Black Magic
I was serving as a fireman for my nation’s compulsory national service. Once, we were called into the forest to retrieve a body that was found hanging on a noose, deep along with one of the running trails. He had apparently hung himself off a tree and was found by a few morning joggers. But that’s not the creepiest part.
What’s creepy was that we found a straw doll at the foot of the tree. It was punctured with a few red bobby pins in the head and facial area. There was also an unknown talisman that was half burnt where the doll was sitting. When we took the body down, we had to carry him out of the forest, and halfway along the journey, a previously unnoticed wound on his face started bleeding.
One of my men swore that he was bleeding from the same spot as where the bobby pin was stuck on the doll, but we could not confirm it as we had left the doll where his body was found, for the authorities to retrieve. We passed the body to the paramedics and booked it the heck out of the area.
20. An Unknown Grave
Near our house, we have a pump spot that comes out of a canal for our rice fields. When I was like 12 years old, my uncle found two bodies dumped in the little area where our pump sat. Both of the ladies that were dumped there had the same tattoos, so they think it was gang-related. Still, it was 45 minutes away from where that “gang” operated. I still look in the hole every time I go by there.
21. Keep On Trucking
I spent a summer in Wyoming going to remote locations collecting data on bats and herpetofauna. I heard a lot of weird noises like mountain lions screaming, deer snorting, and owls fighting. I also woke up one morning to find two bull moose sleeping 20 yards behind my tent. All of this was “part of the job,” but one night, things took an incredibly creepy turn.
A truck was driving towards us when we were in the southwestern part of the state. The truck was going overland as there was no road or paved pathway. It stopped about 100 yards away, then its lights were turned and we could see a person get out. The stranger walked a full circle around us at 100 yards away, then got back in the truck and turned around. This all happened after dark, which made everything scarier.
You could hear them walking through the sagebrush and I’m sure they could hear us talking. We packed up after that and drove to a hotel an hour away. I then called the office and told them I was taking a weapon when we went back out. I didn’t like having bear mace as our only defense.
22. Midnight Visitor
I spent a summer doing conservation work out in the middle of nowhere in Wyoming. I was part of a crew that would spend two weeks camping in remote places to do manual labor in places machines couldn’t get to. We were building new hiking and biking trails in the back portion of a designated wilderness area in a high-altitude desert.
The nearest civilization was a two-hour car ride away, to a town of 41 people in a sandy soil area where the tracks lasted forever. In the middle of our stint during the early part of the night, everyone else had gone to bed, but I stayed up to read. It was pitch black outside and clouds had covered the stars, so my headlamp was probably the only light on in a 40-mile radius.
Suddenly, I heard footsteps walking around our camp. Something was heading towards the tents from where I was. It immediately put me on edge. I felt the hair on my arms rise and my adrenaline spike. Two things were very wrong at that moment—not only was the person walking around without any light, but his or her footsteps were not coming toward me from the tents, which was peculiar.
Within the four seconds, it took me to drop my book, get up, and turn the corner to cast my light on the sleeping tents, the sound had stopped. Nonetheless, I saw tracks in the dirt before me. It seemed like they came from one end of camp to look into my tent, then they walked through the sleeping tents to ultimately get out of the camp again.
I don’t know if I was making too much noise, but the rest of my crew ended up waking from their sleep. They all asked me what was going on from inside their tents, and after explaining what I found, they all got up to look at the boot prints in the dirt. They were darn near perfect copies of my own boots except for one small thing: I had a rock stuck in my treads that messed up the symmetry.
I was wearing fairly common work boots, except they were also size 15 and double-wide, so there was no way in heck this was one of the other crew members. I don’t think any of us slept much that night. I never saw or heard anything more after that. A light rain removed the tracks a couple of days later, but I do remember none of us were willing to step on the prints themselves. We treated them like cracks on the sidewalk.
23. Lost At Sea
I work on North Sea oil rigs on an ad-hoc basis off the coast of Scotland. It can be a very unsettling and weird place. The fog can come rolling in out of nowhere, and other rigs that are off to the sides can disappear in front of your eyes. Sometimes you can’t see the walkways six feet in front of you, or if you’re walking over the grating, you can’t see the sea below your feet.
The fog can roll in over the course of a few minutes too, so a perfectly clear day becomes pea soup in seconds. You can also feel the rig moving and swaying with the high winds and rough seas, even though it’s on a fixed leg platform. It’s very unnerving to feel your office swaying when it shouldn’t be.
My last trip was my first ever night shift and I found it particularly unsettling. You’ve got the background noise of the plant, but there’s also not another living soul around for the whole shift. During the day, there are about 130 people on board, at night time, I was hit by this awareness that I was just very isolated and in the middle of nowhere. Most rigs I’ve worked on are an hour’s chopper ride from land, so if things go wrong, it can escalate very quickly.
24. The Moss Walker
I lived up north for some time while working a three-year job. A local guy took me way out into the woods one night because he swore he could see a ghostly carriage where some people froze and met their tragic ends. I obviously expected to see nothing, but I was so, so wrong. We were sitting in basically pitch-black darkness—the sky was slightly grey from the thin cloud cover reflecting distant lights, but that was it. We couldn’t even really make out the tree line.
After some looking around, we never did end up seeing a carriage, or anything of the sort. But at about 12:20 am or so, we started to hear the unmistakable sounds of someone walking through the underbrush. The sound of sticks and branches breaking was very loud as if something was nearing us. It kept getting closer and louder, but we still couldn’t see anyone coming. There was nothing. All we could think about was how it would basically be suicide to trudge through the woods at that time of night. It was a good way to get a stick in the eye, at the very least.
But someone was definitely coming toward us. It just kept going crack, snap, pop…in the pitch-black. Nope. We decided to drive the heck out of there. We weren’t afraid it was a ghost, either—we were afraid of something much worse. A person must be completely insane to march through those woods without a light, and we did not want to meet that guy.
Later on, the local guy and I thought it might have been a bear, but a bear wandering around at night is not normal. Could it have been a moose? Possibly, but those things are even scarier than bears. No joke. They’re the size of a truck, and they use their antlers to charge at anything that gets too close before disappearing into the woods like ghosts…but we didn’t hear hooves…
25. Gone In A Flash
My parents live pretty far back in the country and they have one neighboring house. Their neighbors would let their basset hound outside for about 10 minutes to use the bathroom every morning. One morning, they let him out, but he didn’t come back inside. After a couple of minutes, they walked out to his favorite bathroom spot and found…his head.
Judging from the tracks, a mountain lion had ambushed him and apparently tore his head off before carrying the body away. The creepiest part was that the family hadn’t heard a sound.
26. Double Trouble
I used to teach outdoor education, which was essentially just summer camp during the school year. School groups would come up to our location and spend a few days at the camp. On their last night, we would always tell them a scary story around the campfire, and it was the same scary story every time. We worked with partners so there were always two staff members for every school group.
One staff member would tell the story while the other staff member would go hide in the forest and make scary noises. One time, I was the one telling the story, and every few minutes, there was the snap of a twig or some rustling in the bushes. Of course, as always, the kids would all freak out. It was very fun. Well, as I was telling the story, I started walking around the campfire looking at all the kids’ faces…and I noticed a familiar one.
It was my partner, Eric. He was just sitting there; smiling at me and wondering why I was staring at him. My heart had never started beating so fast in my life. Eventually, I sped through the story and all the kids left. I then explained to Eric that I thought it was him in the woods, and his eyes got very wide. He said, “Are you telling me that that wasn’t one of the staff members?” We both RAN back to the main road.
27. Spiritus Sancti
I’d been locked inside a vast Gothic cathedral at night, practicing the pipe organ for a forthcoming recital. During thunder and lightning storms, while I was high up in the gallery at the console, there were intense flashes that would cause the saints and other departed souls in the stained glass windows to light up. It happened with such dramatic energy that it seemed as though they were about to step right out of the window and start roaming the cathedral nave.
Even their stained-glass jeweled eyes glowed with a “fiery spirit” of reality as if they had resurrected at that very moment.
28. Listen To Your Gut
My mom used to live in a small town in the Cascade Mountains where she worked as a forest ranger. The creepiest thing that happened was when the oldest male ranger kept trying to get her to come home with him. Not very out of the ordinary, but many years later after she’d left the town, she found out he had been convicted of manslaughter and had slain a young female ranger right before she got hired.
She would have probably been his next target.
29. Intruder Alert
I used to be a supervisor for a janitorial company, and a couple of times a week I had to go to a middle school and clean their floors with a Zamboni-type vehicle that mopped and scrubbed them. When I was there, I had the whole school to myself. I used to finish quickly, so I’d go to the library and read while eating my dinner.
Well, one morning after being there, I got a call from school security asking me to come in. When I got there, I saw a police car too. I immediately knew something is very wrong. They asked me a few questions like, “Did you notice anything out of the ordinary or strange while you were here last night?” No, I hadn’t. Security then showed me camera footage of someone breaking into one of the classrooms WHILE I WAS RIDING THE ZAMBONI not far away.
I was there for another two hours. Nothing was taken, but the worst part was they didn’t have footage of the person leaving, they didn’t go out the way they came in, and officers had to sweep the entire school. I never did find out what happened with that one.
30. Night Moves
I work for a medical examiner and I used to be on the graveyard shift alone. The first night I was on, at midnight on the dot, our air system shut off which caused the vents to warp. It sounded like somebody running through the vents in the ceiling on all fours. Thankfully, I got used to it but it was definitely creepy at first. Another night, we lost power and I almost peed my pants. EVERYTHING went dark and I knew that a room with around 30 bodies in it was just a walking distance away.
That one I stayed in my car for. Not to mention the constant long, dark red-lit hallways. I’m glad I’m not on overnight now.
31. Beast Of Prey
We were wrapping up for the day in northern Canada. I was all by myself at this point because I was tired of listening to the laborers whine about the cold, so I told them I would take care of the rest. It was February, so it got pitch black really early. While I was finishing up, I kept hearing some weird sounds, but I couldn’t quite hear them because my pump was too loud.
I searched around and saw nothing. Eventually, I got into the truck and took off…only to be started by a completely expected sight. There was a cougar sitting on top of a dirt pile just 15 feet away. from me, The darned thing was just watching me there and probably could have ended me if it wanted to. I’d never seen a cougar in the wild before and it’s hard to understand just how big they are until you see one up close.
It leaped off the six-foot pile and probably didn’t touch the ground for another 15 to 20 feet. It’s terrifying to think something so big and powerful could just be sitting there, deciding if they want to make you their dinner.
32. Monster Mash
I used to work as an alligator hunting guide for trophy hunters during my summers in the south of New Orleans. I was spending sun up to sundown deep in the heart of Cajun swamp territory, and it definitely left me seeing some weird and creepy things. The first one that comes to mind is when I saw what my hunting partner at the time called “the Loup-Garoux.”
I personally would have called it a chupacabra, but that’s because I’m a native of the southwest, not the south. We were riding through an area deep in the swamp looking for signs of a big gator. The banks were close on both sides of the boat and there was barely enough water for us to push ahead. But those mud boats are impressive and can practically run on dry land, so onwards we pressed.
Suddenly, I saw a grey flash in the trees out of the corner of my eye. It made me nervous. Swamp deer are small and shy, and there aren’t many mammals that want to hang out in thick undergrowth and knee-deep mud with hidden gators. I tapped my partner’s shoulder to catch his attention over the sound of the motor and pointed in the direction where I saw the flash.
He cut the motor and asked if it was a gator slide. I shook my head and said I had no idea what it was, but I saw something. As we were looking around us, the creature I saw stepped out from the trees. It was big, on all fours, with mottled grey skin. Its movements were janky and jerky. It had a canine-like face, and it locked eyes with me. I felt sick to my stomach.
My partner immediately struck the motor back up and we reversed out of there as quickly as we could. My rational brain said, “Poor creature with mange, either a massive coyote or maybe a wild dog,” but my primal monkey brain was screeching “MONSTER! RUN!” It was definitely a freaky experience, even knowing what it probably was in the end.
33. The Wanderers
My college was located away from major cities, and the woods were all around us. That being said, there was a highly rated trail, the Loyalsock Trail, which was about an hour’s drive from the university. One day, I invited a friend to come with me as he had never been on an extended backpacking trip. It was a 50+ mile trail that we intended to backpack over the four-day weekend.
I am an Eagle Scout who has spent countless hours in the woods, usually on backpacking trips throughout my college experience. As many have said before me, you get used to the minor “spooky” things happening: coyote howls, raccoons in the middle of the night, even the occasional unknown noise. The scariest thing to find in the woods, however, are people.
We were about 20 miles into the trail and, being that we were in Pennsylvania where the underbrush and trees line the trails pretty densely, I always walk about 100 meters off of the trail to reduce the chances of me disturbing other people who may be around. Following that same strategy, my friend and I went out of our way to get to this amazing spot that was off the trail on a peninsula. It was where a creek met a river, meaning there was only one way in and out of our camp. We started a fire, cooked our food, and drank a little.
We put the fire out at about midnight and headed into our individual tents. All was quiet. It was the fall semester, so there were leaves on the ground and the air was cool. The only noise I could hear was my friend when he would occasionally turn over in his sleep. But then, at one point, I heard these voices…They sounded very close to us, which was peculiar since the main trail was 100+ meters away.
I checked my watch and it was 3 am. Who hikes at 3 am? We were 20 miles in when I slowly got out of my sleeping bag and unzipped my tent. I saw my friend peeking out of his tent in the exact same fashion. He quickly moved his finger over his mouth to make an exaggerated “hush” signal, then used the same hand to frantically motion towards the way of the trail. That’s when we saw them.
Four adults – three men and a woman – were walking directly towards our camp. There were no lights illuminating their path, and they were walking silently at this point. Only one of them had a backpack, which didn’t make sense for the long hike they were on. Out of panic, I suddenly remember that I had brought wood cutting supplies to chop branches into smaller branches to burn. I grabbed the knife, thinking I would soon need to defend myself, and I had never been more disheveled than at that moment. I knew that a knife was barely a defense at all.
The group of strangers sat down by our extinguished fire pit and just sit there for what felt like an eternity. My friend eventually spoke up and asked them what they were doing at our campsite. Without answering the question, they asked if we had any food. Having packed as lightly as possible for the long trip, we had only a few extra light meals. I grabbed one out of my bag and tossed it to one of the men.
I then asked them if they needed help finding the trail. They responded with the following: “We don’t use lights. We know where the trail is. It’s just better to hike late at night.” Unnerved at this point, my friend asked them to leave. They responded by asking if we wanted to light the fire and hang out for a bit.
We told them no. They then grabbed their bag, got up, and left without speaking another word. We watched them leave and took shifts throughout the night to make sure that they didn’t come back. Needless to say, we both got very little sleep that night. When the sun rose the next morning, we finally got “real” sleep. By the afternoon, when we woke up, it all felt like a weird dream of sorts.
The only evidence of the incident was a fuzzy cap that one of them must have dropped. I still have it to this day. In the eight years since that trip, I haven’t been back to the Loyalsock Trail.
34. Sound The Alarm
I’m a teacher at an urban public school. One evening, I was at work late, grading and getting ready for the next day. Time had kind of flown by and before I knew it, it was 7 pm. I started packing up to leave the building that was probably locked and empty, when all of a sudden, our ALICE alarm went off. That meant that there was an armed intruder in the building. I was alone at that point, so I freaked out. I was absolutely not ready to fight a man over my lesson plans.
I booked it out of the school and dove into my car, hearing the alarm blaring the entire time. I peeled out of the parking lot and could see in my rearview mirror that the alarm lights were still flashing. I debated never going back, because screw that, honestly. It turned out they were doing “routine maintenance” and didn’t send out an email to the teachers. Jesus.
35. Loss Of Innocence
In middle school, I worked during the summer doing general painting tasks and helping the maintenance guys. We had to drive out to the middle of a Floridian forest to pick up some pine lumber for the gym’s new bleachers, and when we got to the mill at like 7 am, the whole place was locked down with officers all around it.
They had found gasoline cans and pill bottles out in one of the tree farm groves, which are telltale signs of kids using substances, but supposedly, the officers were there because they found human remains. I was pretty young and I don’t remember many details, but I do remember seeing streaks of dark blood running up the trunks of several pines.
I’ve since learned from the guys I was with that a teenager was killed by a bear after attacking it, and the blood was either from the wounded bear climbing the tree or from the person who was dragged up…Though, I’m sure many of you can agree with me that bears don’t do that. Also, I personally can’t see an injured bear making it up several pines in a row while bleeding that much.
36. Where’s The Beef?
I used to work in a public forest. One day, we had someone report an animal carcass on the side of one of our trails. A few of us from the front desk hiked out to see what it was. When we got there, our hearts jumped. It looked like a giant piece of…liver. Just a pile of smooth, red meat with no blood around. It was also wrapped up in a T-shirt with some coins scattered around it.
We called our rangers to check it out, and one of them was pretty sure it was a placenta. The weird part is, you have to check-in through a front desk to get to that area, so someone either snuck a placenta or liver in… or gave birth and removed the organ on our trails. We never got an answer on what the pile of meat was, how it got there, or why.
37. Talk Like Animals
When my father was sent to Alwar, Rajasthan for archaeological study, I encountered a very strange thing. Our house was near a small forest. One morning, I saw a group of blue bulls. There were five of them, and they were running in circles around a skull for like 30 minutes until one of them took it into the forest and they all followed him silently.
It was such a weird sight…It still gives me creeps.
38. Friendly Fire?
I’m a machinist and I was working by myself in this old warehouse one night. I would see stuff moving around and I would get creeped out. This is when the show Ghost Hunters became popular, so I started to ask questions. Stuff like, “What’s your name?” or “Can you show me that I’m not alone?” Seconds later, a 3/8 Allen wrench came bouncing across the shop and landed at my feet.
There was no way it just fell off a machine. I said thank you to the ghost, shut down, and left. I never went back.
39. The White Walkers
Once, my dad and I were hunting in the Poconos. We were sitting in a hunting tower and it was cold as balls out. Suddenly, we started hearing what sounded like people chanting and singing together some religious phrases in Latin. It kept getting closer and closer to us. At one point, we started to see movement about 20 meters ahead.
There was a group of about 10 to 30 people wearing all white and holding candles, and about five more with guns standing in the front, the back, and on the sides. We let them pass. They were staring at us as they walked by, and it was scary as heck. About 10 minutes after they walked by, we went over to where they were standing. I couldn’t believe what I saw.
It had been snowing out, but there were absolutely no prints in the snow. To this day, we still don’t know what the heck we saw that day.
40. An Imprint Of Life
I’m in the Navy and I work mainly on aircraft carriers. A girl sadly hung herself in one of the spaces right near where I slept. One person swore he saw her sitting in the chair as he was getting undressed one day, and he said he ran screaming out of the berthing. I waited about a week to go into the spot where she hung herself, and when I did, I heard the loudest screeching noise I had ever heard in my life.
41. Trapped In Amber
I worked in a salt mine under Lake Erie a couple of years ago. Generally speaking, when things are brought down, they’re never brought back up again. It takes a lot of time to disassemble everything up top, secure and cover the parts, then put it back together down below, so there are a lot of old trucks, tractors, and countless other things lined up on the far side of the mine.
Anyway, in the ’80s, the University of Michigan and Cal Irvine were studying proton decay, trying to capture measurements. Conducting this experiment top-side is problematic because of cosmic rays and other forms of interference, so they chose mine to conduct the study since 2,000 feet of the earth absorbs pretty much everything. They dug out a pool, about 80’ by 70’, filled it with 2,6400,00 gallons of purified water, and put fancy cameras and other equipment along the side.
They had a whole shop, lab, and dive center down there. I don’t think they ever “captured” a proton decay, and eventually, the grant money ran out after a few years, so the mine staff threw up some caution tape on the main steel door leading to the study. Fast forward 20 years, when I started working there as an electrician. I got a job to fix some big conveyor motor drive, so I set off and tried to cannibalize some parts of the old equipment.
I remember one of the old-timers telling me there was a bunch of abandoned equipment in an area by the main elevator. I went over there and found a big steel door falling off its hinges with some very old caution tape laying on the ground. The whole study had to be accessed through this one door, which was dug into the wall. After a while, the earth slowly crushed and bent the ground upward.
After several tries, I yanked the door open and stepped inside. What I saw gave me chills. It was a full scuba outfit – wet suit, mask, belt, and gloves – hanging three feet inside. I collected myself and walked past the suit. Everything inside was left exactly how it was 20 years ago. There were coffee cups left out, day planners, job schedules, along with tons of scuba gear, oxygen fill tanks, and computers. I made it about 10-ish feet to the edge of the pool, and it was hard to see if the water was still in it because there was no wind to move it. Eventually, I saw that all of it was still there—60+ feet of pure water in an absolutely dark pool.
The sight of a huge black pool in a hole in the ground made me really uncomfortable, so I left in a hurry. All that stuff sitting down there nearly perfectly preserved in such an unexpected place was always just creepy to me.
42. When The Sun Goes Down
While I was living in rural Australia, I went to a swimming hole with some friends. You have to walk down a rainforest trail from the road for about 20 minutes to get to it. There were no other cars parked near the trail when we got there, and we didn’t see anyone else the entire time we were swimming. Anyway, we were there in the late afternoon and the sun was starting to go down, so we made our way back to where we parked our car.
It got dark by the time we made it to the road and we had our phones out as flashlights. Parked right next to our car was an old camper van. Its lights were off and its side door is wide open with no one inside. There was no one around, so we were kind of spooked. We quickly get in our car and started driving. A few minutes later, we saw headlights behind us.
The road ended near the swimming hole, so we thought it must have been the camper van following us. Thankfully, whatever was following us turned into another road before we got to the highway and we didn’t see them again. We still wanted to check the trunk when we got home.
43. Everybody Needs A Hobby
My oldest brother used to operate the overnight sprinklers on a golf course. He took me out one time just for fun and as we were driving uphill on a fairway, I witnessed an eerie sight. A figure of a lady appeared in the headlights at the top of the hill. My brother steered a little to the left of her and kept driving right on by. I stared right into her eyes as we drove by and she stared back.
Her eyes glowed like a cat in the night. As soon as we were out of audible range, I asked my brother, “What the heck was that?!” He calmly responded, “Yeah, she lives on the golf course and likes to terrorize the workers from time to time. I usually see her out here once a week.” Alright. Cool.
44. It’s Coming From Inside The House
I was at a large cottage in the middle of the Peak District, UK, with a friend whose parents lived there but were away for the weekend. For anyone who doesn’t know, it’s a very barren place full of hills and heather, and it rains a lot. You don’t see many people around. We’d spent the evening outside on her patio until it got dark and quite cold.
As we were packing up to head indoors, her dog suddenly jumped up started running as fast as I’d ever seen it run. It went straight to the field next door and into the darkness. No barking, no whining; it just vanished. We called for her and she eventually came back, but she kept turning around and standing her ground, staring into the dark. A few minutes later, we saw these flashes coming from a patch of woods beyond the field.
They looked like camera flashes, but it was too far away to tell. 20 minutes later, we were inside and we locked the doors, a little unnerved by whatever the dog had spotted. By that time, it was too late for what happened next. The house phone rang, and at that kind of time of night, you know it’s never good. My friend just froze and looked at me. I asked her if she was going to answer it, as the incessant sound of it was already creeping me out.
She said, “It only makes that noise when you’ve lost one of the handsets.” I asked her what she meant, and she said, “We have two house phones, one here and one upstairs. It makes that noise when you phone the other phone if you’ve lost it. It’s an internal call.” Nothing came of it, but I didn’t sleep much that night.
I went to summer camp in a rural part of New Jersey back in the mid-1990s. The camp was situated on a long, narrow, man-made lake. One end of the lake was reserved for swimming, which we’d do as a group activity every other day or so. The swimming area had one long dock stretching straight out into the water, and two square floating docks further out.
One of the two floating docks was a bit far away, and although I had spent a few summers at this camp, I had never seen anyone use the second dock. One day, our group of about a dozen 11-year-olds got the bright idea that we were going to swim out to the far-away dock. I would consider this to be a moderate challenge for a casual swimmer. When we reached it, I noticed a strange-looking spider on the ladder that you had to use to climb up.
It was quite large in terms of overall “footprint,” probably about two inches from end-to-end, with long skinny legs. Spiders, of course, are normal critters to encounter in nature, but this one stood out to me because of its unusual appearance. After the long swim, we took a few minutes to lie on the dock and rest in the sun. We were all having a good time.
We started messing around and decided to play one of our regular games where we would all shuffle toward the corner of the dock, causing it to get unbalanced. As the corner of the dock started to sink and fill with water, suddenly hundreds of giant spiders came frantically pouring out from between the boards, swarming over and around us.
This dock was theirs, apparently. We all immediately began to scream and jump into the water to try to get away, but the spiders were in the water too and stuck to us as we swam. I vividly remember the feeling of them clinging to my wet hair; their fleshy bodies hopelessly intertwined with my own strands. Adrenaline propelled us back to the main part of the swimming area, and by the time we got there, we were thankfully spider-free…but this is a childhood trauma that lingers with me.
I had not really been afraid of spiders before, but I would say this was a major turning point. The thought of us lying on the dock in the sun, completely oblivious to the horde that was lurking just inches beneath us, creeps me out to this day.
46. Seeing Things
I do a lot of stream work, so I spend time out in pretty rural areas walking streams and rivers. Once my co-worker and I were working in a more urban environment and came across what we initially thought was a body, which of course triggered an “Oh God!” response from us, but it ended up being a firefighter’s dummy that had fallen down a hill. We felt pretty dumb.
47. The House Ghost
My co-worker used to work at a piggery. She said she would always see someone in the corner of her eyes. The boards would be written up like someone was checking on her sows for her and things would randomly be cleaned up. It was like someone was helping her. Apparently, she thought she was going mad and even described seeing a dude a couple of times. Then, the others would say, “Oh yeah, we think that’s Carl; he died a while back at home.”
All the staff had seen him but just sort of ignored it.
48. The Middle Of Nowhere
I used to be a delivery driver for a supermarket in the UK. A lot of our customers were in the middle of nowhere, and one shift, my last delivery of the night was a new customer whose house I’d never been to before. I was already running late from all my previous deliveries and I was still trying to find this house at 10:30 pm, even though my shift was supposed to finish at 10 pm.
I was driving around the narrowest of country roads with nothing surrounding me but dark fields and hedgerows, looking for anything that might be a driveway. I hadn’t seen another car or person for miles. Then, all of a sudden, I heard a loud thud on the side of my van as if something was thrown at it. There were no trees or anything else around for something to fall from, and I remember it specifically hitting the side.
I looked in my mirrors and out the window, but there was nothing around me. Then it happened again…another thud on the side of my van. I drove back to the supermarket so fast and told my manager that I couldn’t find the place—I had spent 30 minutes looking, to be fair. As it happened, there was no house where the listed address or postcode took me.
49. Hide And Seek
I grew up on a farm. In high school, I used to mess with my friends by hiding and making them find me. One night, my friend came over and we were waiting on our other friend. We saw him pull up, so we took off running to hide. It was funny because we’d often hide in obscure places so that he’d have to look in dark, creepy spots to find us. It was like forced hide and seek.
Anyway, that night, I saw my friend hide in one building while I ran for the trees. I was hiding under some bushes and heard breathing. Like, human breathing. There were no animals around, so I knew it was someone else. It creeped me out so bad that I ran out of hiding to meet up with my friend. I felt so uncomfortable for the rest of the night…and it wasn’t over.
Sometime during the night, my dad heard something and went out to investigate. In the morning, he discovered that one of our cows was butchered.
50. More Than He Bargained For
I was a field geologist in the Australian Outback about 12 hours north of Adelaide. One day, I was driving my truck and saw what looked like a flagpole sticking up in the middle of nowhere. I wasn’t near a farm or anywhere that people would be, so I decided to drive over and check it out. I ended up regretting that choice in an instant.
It was a dog fully impaled on a spike. Like, from butt to mouth. I took some pictures and had my boss call the authorities, but for the rest of the assignment, I was scared that some maniac was out there with me. I don’t know if it was a domestic dog or a dingo or something, but it was pretty well decayed when I found it. Also, I deleted the pictures right after.
51. It’s Quittin’ Time
I used to be a pizza delivery driver, which doesn’t sound very remote because it isn’t. However, I did have to deliver to some pretty remote places. One time, I delivered to a trailer park just barely inside our designated “delivery zone,” and it was very poorly lit. I left my car running and kept the headlights on to deliver the pizza.
Upon returning to my car, I sat down in the driver’s seat and looked up to see a horrific sight. It was a creepy old man standing less than three feet from my side of the car. He was just staring. It was a total jump-scare. I just started driving forward, to make a U-turn and get out of the park. When I turned around, the man was standing in the middle of the road. I freaked out for a second before speeding around him, only to watch him attempt to chase my car out of the trailer park. I put in my two weeks after that.