When people think about the great outdoors, most people imagine images from the National Geographic—majestic mountains, scenic hills, swooped landscapes, and all the amazing wildlife that inhabit these environments. Whether it’s people rafting the exciting waters of a winding river or climbing the rocky side of a mountain, the outdoors have always been an exhilarating adventure for many individuals.
The most common outdoor activity that most people participate in, which doesn’t require much experience (depending on where you go), is of course, camping. Grilling some s’mores by the fire, drinking some beer, and having a nice time with close friends and family seems to be a nice way to relax and take things slow. Away from the hustle and bustle of the city, camping provides an easy option for those who want to experience the great outdoors.
Unfortunately, what might seem like a nice relaxing time can sometimes turn into something horrific. After all, no matter who you’re with, you’re still stuck in the middle of nowhere. If you decide to camp in a heavily dense forest, just be sure to be prepared for anything creepy to happen. Horror stories of seeing monsters, ghosts, demons, and even the devil himself, have all been reported by some people who expected nothing but to have a good time while camping. Creepy clowns, witches, ghouls, voices, and chanting have also been reported to happen while camping in the great outdoors. Below is a list of 15 Creepiest Things People Have Seen While Camping.
15. The Real Blair Witch
A family, on their way to a camping trip, headed down a heavily-wooded road when a dense fog suddenly moved its way in. The car began to have some engine troubles. The child’s father decided to pull over on the road and the couple got out of their car, popped the hood, and began inspecting their car. While doing so, their child began giggling and talking to someone. They imagined she was playing pretend. They suddenly heard the back door of the car open. When the mother looked away from the car’s engine, she saw that her child was not in the vehicle and was instead skipping into the woods. When the child was brought back to the car, they asked why the child went into the woods. The child replied that a witch wanted to show the child her house built from candy. The couple scoffed. The car was fine, and when they continued to drive down the road, the mother saw what looked like a run-down shack tucked in the woods.
14. Walking With The Devil
A man and a few of his mates went camping deep in the woods of Maine. The man knew the area very well and wasn’t fearful about getting lost. However, he wasn’t expecting to see another human being with him that early. As the man hiked across the forest, he came across an odd-looking mask. It had two holes for eyes and an eerie grin for a mouth. It was roughly made. Finding the item interesting, he decided to take it back to camp. Suddenly, a man dressed in black began walking next to him. Shocked, but unable to turn for some reason, he look at the man who continued to walk with him. Finally, after a few paces, the man turned to face the stranger, but the figure in black was gone. The man decided, right then and there, to leave the mask in the woods. The man then walked briskly back to his camp alone.
13. The Jersey Devil Sleepover
The Pine Barrens, or the Pinelands (Pines), is a heavily forested area located on the coastal plain in the state of New Jersey. It’s the home of the Jersey Devil folklore. Until this day, many are skeptical of this mythical creature, but some swear that it exists. One evening, a family hosted their son’s sleepover camping party in their backyard. The family lived exactly where this legend resides. As the boys went to sleep, some kept hearing strange noises. Some of the boys claimed it was the Jersey Devil. Since none of them could go to sleep, the boys decided to keep a watchful eye. As the night went on, shadows of a horned goat-like figure with wings were seen by some of the boys. Terrified that it was the real Jersey Devil, the boys ran inside the home. They stayed there for the remainder of the night. The next morning, the boys found their tent ripped apart.
12. The Ritual Circle
A group of college students decided to have a small camping adventure during their spring break vacation in 2005. One of the students had to use the bathroom, so he wandered off the camping trail to find some privacy away from the rest of the group. As the student walked, he found what looked like a strange black hole in the middle of the forest ground. As he walked closer, it soon looked more like a recently put-out fire. The student said that smoke could still be seen rising from the charred soil. The student assumed the fire was from another camper. He thought it was strange for the campsite to be so far away, but he didn’t think much of it until he saw tiny little rocks intricately placed inside the center of the ground, pieces of candle wax, and feathers. Feeling freaked-out, the student decided to head back to his friends.
11. Face In The Dark
A Reddit user posted an account about something creepy she saw while camping. A lone adventurer and an experienced outdoors woman, she decided to go on a mini-camping trip in the woods of her Tennessee backyard. As the sun was setting, she prepared her fire. She kept hearing strange scratching noises. When she looked behind her, nothing was there. She kept thinking it was a chipmunk or a squirrel. The scratching sounds eventually stopped. Later, as she was relaxing by the fire, the scratching sounds began again. This time, she began to feel scared. When she called out to see if anyone was there, the sounds stopped. As she looked into the dark woods, a face suddenly appeared. It looked mangy and seemed to be wrapped-up. Scared, the woman grabbed her camping knife and threatened the blurry face. The face then disappeared. She left at dawn exhausted from staying up all night, but otherwise fine.
10. It’s Watching You
Every fall, local middle-school sixth graders in a small suburban township in Pennsylvania, hold an annual camping trip at their local park. There, the students learn about the environment and play activities throughout the day. At night, they hold a campfire and have a delightful pizza party. Tents are pitched to house the students for the night. One tent is always pitched farther away from the rest. Some of the kids don’t like to sleep in that tent because they feel like something is watching them from deep inside the woods. One child, who was coming back from a late-night bathroom break, reported seeing a figure with glowing eyes peer out towards the tents as the children slept. Nothing could be verified, of course, and many of the other kids were quick to shut the witness down. In the morning, some counselors found three scratch marks on a tree near the tents.
9. The Clown
About a year ago, a creepy clown phenomena was happening all over the world. From the UK to the US, it seemed like there were creepy clowns everywhere. There are many YouTube videos that have recorded individuals dressing up as clowns on display for the public to view. From clowns that chase you down the road to clowns swinging on swing sets, it seems as though the ‘clowns’ are here to stay. In several cases, witnesses have reported seeing clowns in their nearby parks, especially near camping sites. As one witness reported, a clown was spotted hiding behind trees. Several campers have also reported the same clown to local authorities. One witness account goes as far as to say that the creepy clown-man attacked a campsite but was run-off when one member scared it with a paintball gun. Allegedly, the clown was dressed in a worn jumper and the facial paint is cracked and runny.
UFOs are one common source of freaky encounters many witnesses claim to have seen. It’s always around the creepiest time of the night and ends with a bright flash of light. Some claim to even have been abducted. In 1976, the most famous UFO encounter and abduction during a camping trip, happened in Allagash, Maine. On August 20th, two brothers and some close friends claim to have been abducted by UFOs. According to these men, with the help of hypnosis, it allowed them to recount being taken aboard a flying UFO, where they remember the feeling of being probed and examined by odd beings. The beings had four fingers and had almond-shaped eyes with relaxed limbs. This famous incident was even written into a book, “The Allagash Abductions,” and dramatized in one of the episodes of “Unsolved Mysteries.” The men’s experience was also featured in many other television shows.
7. Little Girl
Being lost in the woods is a common fear among many campers. Thus, many camp with large numbers of people not only because it’s more fun, but also to have a buddy-system in-place just in case something goes wrong. Allegedly, there’s a story about a girl who went missing while camping in up-state New York by Adirondack Park. She was never seen again. Years after, witnesses claim to see a little girl in the forest from time-to-time. When campers call out for the little girl, she simply disappears. One camper allegedly spoke to the girl. The girl looked human and spoke clear as day to the witness. The girl told the camper that she was lost and needed help finding her way back home. As the camper guided the girl back to the camper’s main site to get help and some identification, the camper realized that the girl disappeared. She wasn’t found nor seen again.
6. North Pond Hermit
In this day and age, it’s hard to imagine hermits still existing. When you imagine a hermit, you might not think of Brad Pitt in the lonely hills of Tibet. Instead, what you typically might imagine is a creepy old man. A creepy old man living in the woods by himself is a tell-tale sign to keep away. The hermit could be helpful, but he can also be a criminal. The latter is what authorities have found deep in the wooded heart of Maine. The elusive ‘North Pond Hermit’, was never seen by anyone, but he made his presence known among camp grounds and cabins. He would break into camps and cabins in the surrounding area, stealing food, and other non-valuable supplies. He was also well-known to be meticulous in how he broke in and out of places. Local children were afraid of him, in the fear of being terrorized. In 2011, the last (we think) hermit was captured.
5. Forest Of The Dolls
Some are familiar with Isla de las Munecas (Island of the Dolls) in Mexico, a creepy Island which is basically full of rotted-out dolls. There’s something about toy dolls that are just creepy to begin with, but what happens when you find them randomly strewn about or in places you wouldn’t think to find them? That’s what allegedly happened to one camper who decided to take a little day hike away from the camp. Something white caught the camper’s eye as the object lay glistening on the forest’s green backdrop. When the camper approached the object, it became clear that it was just a doll’s head. One of its [blue] eyes were missing and the doll had no hair. The camper found it really weird that a single doll head would be found at this exact location. The camper blogged about the incident saying that the placement of the doll seemed to be on purpose.
4. Monks And Witches
From finding weird objects to seeing aliens and other weird things while camping, some campers have been witnesses to real people doing odd stuff in the woods that’s just as petrifying. Starting a few years back, several video clips have emerged showing people doing “magic” in the woods. In some instances, campers have recorded these clips themselves. Most have come out to be fake, but the fact of the matter is that some questions still remain about the recordings. Many people have encountered people, real human beings, doing witchcraft in the woods. Claims of hooded monks chanting to real ‘Blair Witch’ make-shift camps have been recorded and have gone viral. One camper, in particular, recorded a figure running away from such a camp in the middle of the woods. The recording shows objects that look like they came straight out of a horror movie. In a brief moment, you see someone running away.
3. Grave Digger
The woods have been used for many reasons. Whether the woods are symbolic, secretive, mystical, or used to bury treasure and other things, forests hold many uses. One thing the forest may be used for, that most people find frightening, is burying things. This can be as innocent as a treasure or something more sinister. In the Montana wilderness, a small group of amateur ‘Bigfoot’ investigators decided to go camping and look for the illusive beast. Throughout their nights in the forest, the alleged group kept hearing a strange sound over the course of their trip. The group speculated that the sound was probably an animal, so they just ignored it for the most part, until they heard what sounded like metal hitting a rock. When they went to investigate, they found nothing but a shovel over what looked like a grave. The next morning, they uncovered a sack that had a mutilated bird inside.
2. The Backpack
Another Reddit user, Estrad7, claimed that one time, while he was out in the wilderness, he came across a backpack. The backpack was there for a while and the contents have already deteriorated. A notebook, binder, and a book infested with bugs were the only things in the backpack. There was no identification, but obviously, the user commented that the items have been left for a long period of time. The Reddit user decided to inform about the discovery, only to be disappointed with the fact that by the time he returned, the items were gone. Perhaps another individual made the discovery as well, and took the items to the authorities. However, the user found it strange that not a single piece of evidence was found that showed the items were there. The insect infestation was no longer present and neither was any indentation of a backpack left in one position for a very long time.
From weird artifacts to the simply out-of-place and strange, all these common sightings have revolved around sound first. What’s it about the forest and its creepy sounds that seem to emanate from the endless depth of its wooded core? From faint rustling, to clicking, to scratching noises, noises play a huge part in most of these weird camping experiences. A few people claim to hear whooping noises that are connected to the elusive ‘Bigfoot’ creature. Sometimes, they hear actual voices. One camper commented under a paranormal video, that while he and his girlfriend were camping in the woods, they heard laughing noises. Allegedly, they would hear the laughing during the day and during the night. They didn’t see nor hear anything except for a few birds and wildlife. When the birds stopped chirping and the squirrels stopped rustling, the laughing would start up. It crept them out regardless. Instead of spending a full week camping, they cut it short.