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The Hunt

 

It was about 5:30 in the morning when I left the house. The sun would not be up for at least an hour, which would give me plenty of time to get to my deer stand on my property, and settle in before legal hunting light would arrive. The first thing I realized on that late October morning was that the air was remarkably still. The leaves of the New England forest floor were heavily frosted from the overnight cold, and there was no wind to speak of. Although my tree stand was only 200 yards away, I knew my approach was going to require some forethought. My first step from the grass of my yard to the frozen leaf litter of the woods was about as subtle as jumping into a barrel full of potato chips with both feet during church. With no rustling from the wind to help conceal my movements, there was no way I was going to be effectively sneaking through the woods. So I decided to resort to an old trick I had learned in the past. Being very familiar with these woods and the path I needed to follow; I secured my twenty five pounds of gear, shouldered my compound bow and began jogging through the woods to my destination. Although my unconventional approach was about as stealthy as a runaway dump truck crashing into a nitro-glycerine factory; I was not going to provide the deer in the area with the tell-tale, rhythmic cadence of a walking human, and as loud as this method was, I was not going to be disruptive for nearly as long as if I had tried to be quiet.

The tree stand is a ladder stand; which for those of you who are unfamiliar with hunting, is basically shaped like the capital letter "L" standing on its head, with the short end of the "L" secured about twenty feet up on the side of a tree. The long leg of the "L" is a ladder, and the short leg is a platform with a seat. I stood at the bottom of the stand for several minutes allowing myself to catch my breath, and then quietly climbed the ladder, hauled up my gear, secured my safety harness, and settled in. Finally allowing the woods some quiet.

Within about ten minutes, the woods slowly began to come back to life. I could hear small, unknown, unseen animals rustling through the leaves below, and heard a couple of clucks and cuts of a group of roosted wild turkeys in some hardwood treetops a short distance away. Confident my ass-over-tea kettle assault had worked; I readied my gear and prepared for sunrise. After a few minutes of listening, I heard the crunch of a heavy but seemingly cautious footfall to my left; ten seconds later it was followed by another, then another, another... The cadence was immediately identifiable. "Great", I thought; I had taken the effort, albeit unconventionally, to try to mask my two-legged noises, just to have another hunter walk right up to my tree stand and notify the forest that the "Humans Are In the House!" Curiously, this person was approaching me from the east, the direction of my house. No one else in my family hunts, and if there was an emergency at home, my teenagers know where the tree stand is and would have shouted to get my attention. More than a little bit peeved about potentially having the opening moments of my hunt ruined and also having someone hunting so close to our house without permission; I stood up in my stand, contemplating my impending diatribe.

A very faint glow of colour had started to show as my part of the earth turned towards the sun; but beneath the canopy of the forest, the world remained pitch black. The hunter's approach was slow but seemingly deliberate and I began to think that this person was actually coming to use MY stand. Giving them the benefit of the doubt that they would just continue past me, I kept silent as the footfalls neared. At what I would guess to be approximately fifteen yards away, the hunter stopped. After a few moments, I presumed they must be checking a compass to get their bearings or something; but I saw no flashlight. Still completely surrounded by darkness, I waited for their next move. Five minutes passed and then ten. No sound, no movement. Increasingly agitated, I realized that it was decision time. I decided it was time to alert this bone-head that not only was he/she ruining my hunt on my land, but they were also in close proximity to an angry man with several pointy sticks!

Just as I opened my mouth to shout, I heard the crunching of frozen leaves and the crackling of breaking branches a short distance away from me to my right, in the opposite direction of the hunter. Having spent a large part of my life in the woods, it was obvious to me that this was a large, four-legged animal approaching rapidly; its approach somewhat half-hazard, as if it had been scared... By possibly, yet another hunter? I turned towards the noise and expected the deer to break into view. Just as it neared the break in the brush near my stand, it froze. Although I had the benefit of its approach to pinpoint its location, which now was probably only ten yards away, there was still too much cover between us for me to see the deer in the early morning darkness.

"Well, this is interesting", I thought. The other hunter had to have heard the deer's approach just as clearly as I had. So I did not expect him/her to move. Had the deer stopped because it had smelled or otherwise sensed the humans it had stumbled into? I did not know, but I did know now, as the sun actually broke over the horizon, that it was too close for me not to get a look at it before it departed. The seconds ticked by as the sun slowly made its entrance, illuminating the woods, making unrecognizable shapes into the familiar trees, boulders, and terrain features I knew intimately. I strained in the direction of the deer, sensing it, but not quite hearing it or seeing it; the underbrush too dense to penetrate with my eyes. I caught a faint sliver of what appeared to be white fur through the branches and craned my neck to try and get a better look, but it disappeared as quickly as it appeared. Just as I shifted, the "deer" growled at me... A very low, guttural growl... This my friends was a true WTF moment! THAT is NOT a DEER! My mind quickly began processing what this animal could be...fox?...way too big...coyote?...still too big...bear?...too quick. I pulled an arrow from my quiver and readied my bow.

Seconds felt like hours; knees knocked, bladders weakened, bowels loosened... All I knew was, whatever it was, it was not something I was hunting for, but it knew where I was and was waiting for either its chance to escape or attack. The sun broke its full spherical shape, I have to presume... I did not see it because it was behind me and I was not turning away from the animal lurking somewhere in front of me. As the sun rose, I began to be able to see portions of the forest floor as the light reached it. The woods in front of me took shape, and then colour, as I motionlessly waited. The thicket where the animal stood was now completely visible, I could see every branch, twig, leaf... But I could not see IT. I stood this way for about thirty minutes, straining to see this beast, occasionally glancing over my shoulder to try to make out the hunter and what he/she was doing.

A few minutes later I heard a few leaves rustle and a squirrel hopped into view. Not moving, I tracked it with my eyes as it made its way through the thicket right in front of me, right where the animal was standing, and out the other side. I relaxed a bit, quite confused. There was no way the squirrel would have gone through that thicket with a predator within. As seconds ticked by, I relaxed incrementally. OK... So it is gone, but where and how did it go? I turned in the direction of the hunter, "Hello?" I timidly called out. No response. For a few minutes, I scanned the area thinking maybe he/she can see the animal and was afraid to give away their position. I sat down in my stand hoping to get a better view through the canopy in the direction of the hunter. I could not see anything. I knew the hunter was close enough to hear me call out. I waited, and waited, an hour passed. No hunter emerged, nor did one walk away. There was no hunter. I was beside myself. I have the utmost respect for the cunning and elusiveness of wild animals; and could give the beast the benefit of the doubt on being able to sneak away without being detected... Even though I did not believe it had. But there is no way some clumsy human could have gotten past me or away from me from such a short distance away in those frozen, noisy conditions, without me knowing it.

The next couple hours were a blur. I thankfully did not see any deer that day. My mind was so wrapped around the events that had happened, that I do not think my brain would have been able to direct my body through the motions of making a shot. Still expecting to hear or see someone or something as I began climbing from the stand, I lowered my gear and made the dissent. As my feet touched the ground I noticed a movement almost immediately in front of my face. Stuck in one of the bolt holes of my ladder stand was a large feather... An eagle feather. Someone must have found it and stuck it in my stand as a joke?... And I guess I did not see it earlier when I climbed the ladder in the dark? Knowing this was not the case, and knowing it is illegal for anyone to possess an eagle feather that is not Native American; I left it and walked home.

About ten months later, which was about nine months into my initiation into the field of paranormal investigation, I met a woman who was a clairvoyant. We met through a mutual friend at a get together. I learned later that she is what I call a "Gotcha Psychic". She says things to people that either floor them, or leave them thinking she is a nut job... Not much in between. About an hour after meeting her, I was standing next to her at an appetizer table. Without even looking up from the table or the plate she was preparing, she said to me, "You know it is up to you to take care of her now, right?" When I asked her what she was talking about, she looked me in the eye and said, "The Indian girl that is buried on your property. The wolf cannot protect her from everything; you and your family are her caretakers now." And she walked away.

(sigh)

...gotcha.

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Comments about this paranormal experience

The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by yourghoststories.com. Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, LouSlips, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

Maniacmedic (1 stories) (10 posts)
 
5 years ago (2012-12-08)
Wow! Your account was really good. You have a gift for writing! Thx for sharing. This is going to my favorites
Fergie (36 stories) (1094 posts)
 
5 years ago (2012-05-29)
Gee Lou! My opinion respected? 😲 Aaw shucks, you have me blushing now! 😳 Thank you for that.
A new experience? I am sure you will have another 'hit'!
I will keep my eyes peeled, thank you.

Umm...I also posted a story, yesterday. Not a personal experience, but that of my youngest Uncle.

Thanks again, Cindy
LouSlips (10 stories) (979 posts)
+2
5 years ago (2012-05-29)
Thank you, Fergie. Your compliment is much appreciated and your opinion much respected, as well. The book thing... That would really let crazy out of the bag now wouldn't it?
Right now I think I'll stick with keeping things somewhat quiet... I have too many kids to let the world know what their dad is going through...
FYI, new story submitted today.;)

Thanks again, Rob
Fergie (36 stories) (1094 posts)
+1
5 years ago (2012-05-27)
Lou, I have just read this account for the 3rd time, I even got my husband to read it (as he is interested in hunting)! We both agree, this is one of the most compelling accounts that we have ever read! Extremely well written! 😁
How can I say "I worship at your feet" without sounding soppy? 😕
Have you ever thought about writing a book? I am sure it will sell like hot-cakes!
Thank you SO much for sharing.
anneke8 (10 stories) (274 posts)
+1
6 years ago (2012-01-31)
Wow! I immediately thought about a wolf when you explained your experience in the woods!
Kuhlmad (3 stories) (57 posts)
+1
6 years ago (2011-12-17)
I never guessed or even made a connection until the very end. Very suspenseful and exciting story. I really enjoyed the psychic at the end. Gotcha is right, she got me too! Thanks for sharing!
hippiechick83 (5 stories) (112 posts)
+1
7 years ago (2011-03-17)
WOW! That was seriously amazing... I really don't know what else to say! Great story, as usual. Wow again. Lol This one is going in my favorites for sure. 😁
troyarn (5 stories) (479 posts)
+2
7 years ago (2011-03-17)
Excellent story, LouSlips (love the name). Very well written and freaky. Now time to read more of what you have to offer here. Thanks so much for sharing.
markj7 (3 stories) (19 posts)
+3
7 years ago (2011-03-17)
Wow! As a hunter, I put myself in your shoes while reading the story. It gets wierd out in the woods sometimes. I enjoyed the story and am glad they chose someone with your assumed qualites and integrity. Obvious you are the keeper of the land and that is a honor these days. If you find any buriel spots, please repect and preserve them. I too would love the hear more. Thanks for sharing and I appreciate the passing of the honor to you of watching over our history.
SmokeyKnight (3 stories) (193 posts)
+1
7 years ago (2011-03-16)
Wonderful, you're a guardian in a Native American spirit war. At least your bow is better than what they had:P
LouSlips (10 stories) (979 posts)
-1
7 years ago (2011-03-16)
SmokeyKnight,
Very difficult to decipher with the limited info I have. If I stick with the obvious, I would guess she is likely of the subdivision Sokiki of the Abnaki. Properly Wabanaki tribe, "those living at the sunrise," "those living at the east," "easterners."
Geographically, that would make the most sense.

From personal experience...she's not the only Native spirit on my property. Since the message I was given by the clairvoyant was that we are to protect her... I actually believe she is/was a prisoner when she died and was possibly of another tribe from another area.

Lou
HazMan_III (4 stories) (91 posts)
+2
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
Ah, I commented on your page without exercising the courtesy of actually reading your story. How rude of me.

I looked down at my mobile a little after I commented and realized that the page was still open, so I read your story. You've got a way with words. I loved the detail, the words and their placement was absolutely perfect; the story progressed very fluidly. The structure alone was beautiful, the story stood well on its own.

I thoroughly enjoyed this tale, and I'll definitely take a look at your other stories as I'm certain that they'll be a joy to read. I look forward to seeing a follow-up on this story soon.
dreamergal72 (6 stories) (793 posts)
+1
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
You should be a story teller cause like Bjj and Radish54 say you really are good at write and Also I myself Indian too I love feather plus Indian love feather and Like zzgranny say that she may have leave the feather on your stand to let you know thank you for be with her and the wolf this is beautiful story and I too wonder who is after her maybe Murder or something that why I'm curious about it. Again Love your story. Thanks alots! ❤
SmokeyKnight (3 stories) (193 posts)
-1
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
Man, I don't think I'd have kept my composure either. I'd have at least tried shooting off an arrow or whatever I had in my quiver. Any idea (I keep trying to see in the story and comments, maybe I'm just missing it) what tribe the girl was from?
Sporky (1 stories) (17 posts)
+1
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
Excellent story. My dear aunt, who passed away 3 years ago (though she came back briefly to visit once) was one of those clairvoyants... She would see a vision after holding something you kept on your person all the time (like a watch or a ring) and then tell you what she saw... But she didn't know what any of it meant, only YOU (or the person she was doing the reading for) did. She changed a lot of skeptic minds with her visions.

Can't wait to read the next installment, Lou!
jjinca (7 posts)
+1
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
Dear Lou,

I loved your story. If you ever find out more information about Running Waters, please keep us in the loop.

I have to say that I would have been scared s**tless if it had happened to me.

-JJ in CA
msroxiie (3 posts)
+2
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
Love this story:')
By the way, I'm not vegetarian:' (... I love meat! Sorry can't help it<3
😐
LouSlips (10 stories) (979 posts)
+1
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
For now, Hazman... Just kidding.

Well put. Mankind is the second most destructive force this world will ever know. The only things we do that are worse than what we do to the environment, are what we do to each other.

Lou
HazMan_III (4 stories) (91 posts)
+8
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
I recently went vegetarian, and quite frankly, I saw the word and decided to give my two cents. The main reason most people become vegetarians is because they view the consumption of meat as immoral. I personally decided to convert because I felt that I couldn't kill an animal to consume, so it wouldn't be fair for me to eat meat. I do, however, realize that even if I choose not to consume animals, I do contribute to the killing of animals, if only indirectly.

If you drive a car, the sites where petroleum is drilled for were probably rent with wildlife who were either killed or had their homes destroyed. Then there are oil spills. If you live in a home, the land upon which it was built was cleared of wildlife, plants and animals alike. The same goes for farms. There are many ways in which we contribute to harming not only animals, but all life.

Even if one decides to become a vegetarian or a vegan, it's impossible for them to keep from harming living creatures completely. Being truly eco-friendly takes much more than choosing not to eat meat. It's just a step. A very small step.

I hope that keeps me out of the ignorant lot.
DeviousAngel (11 stories) (1910 posts)
+5
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
I suppose I have to agree in a way that I think hunting for SPORT is a barbaric just as sport fishing is since the fish effectively suffer and drown after being thrown back. However, I can see your point of view too, Lou. If you DO eat the animals that you kill then I don't see a problem with it. I would imagine that hunting and killing to eat is more humane than slaughterhouses and meat processing facilities, and it doesn't matter if you use a bow or a bullet to do it, as long as you know what you're doing. I guess the intention makes all the difference.
Pjod (3 stories) (978 posts)
+2
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
huen,
do not judge. Do you think it is easier if the deer starve to death? How about we just let them multiply, until one comes crashing through a loved ones windshield. Strange, that it takes life experience, trajic or otherwise, for one to see all sides.
LouSlips (10 stories) (979 posts)
+5
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
Huendchen,
Glad I was able to provide you a platform to display your ignorance. You want to see barbaric, take a tour of a slaughterhouse or meat packing facility. Watch entire herds of deer die of disease or starvation... The way nature intended... That is pure brutality.
The deer I have killed with my compound bow, which by the way, is not a "crossbow", were on the ground and not breathing in ten seconds... Completely surprised; and the only actions that resembled suffering were the motions made by a body that didn't know what their brain already stopped feeling.
If you buy meat, it is obtained from either caged or herded animals, who get to watch members of their species butchered before their eyes, knowing that their turn is next... Just love that taste of terror in every bite?
And if you are a true vegetarian, well, look at those shoes you are wearing or those car seats your sitting on... Butchered and bludgeoned for your comfort. Enjoy the reality you've created for yourself... The rest of us will stick with the truth... Whether we like it or not.

Lou
Javelina (4 stories) (3749 posts)
+1
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
Lou,
That's very interesting, about the trees being fairly new growth for their location. If the stream relocated because of flooding, then the 'cave like' structure of the original burial area may have been filled in by debris.
I'd still keep my feelers out for that breeze though, you never know what you'll find. There was a discovery here in Arizona some years back of some caves that turned out to be quite a find. They've been open to the public for few years but when first discovered, it was the very slightest of breezes that gave them away. Two friends, weekend spelunkers, had heard about a small cave just outside of Tucson. Upon inspection of the area, they came across said breeze and began to follow it to the source. What they found was truly amazing! The cave system turned out to be massive. And completely untouched by man. You can google Kartchner Caverns or follow this link to read the history of them:
Http://www.pr.state.az.us/parks/KACA/history.html
So you really never know what you'll find.
Just saying.
😊

This comment from huendchen is hidden due to low rating. Show comment

LouSlips (10 stories) (979 posts)
+1
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
Thanks again, All.
I'm glad my experience was as entertaining to you all, as it was compelling to me.
Granny: To cold up here for me to be Runnin' Bare (or is it Bear?)
Lisa, Redphx, and Taz; thanks for the understanding... It is all in how your raised. The folks I call hunters aren't the drunk rowdies who shoot everything that moves. I actually donate to PETA once in a while at the market. Their pockets make great venison sandwiches.;)
Brier: Did not close the deal that year, and unfortunately had an accident that resulted in an injury that kept me out of the woods for the following three years. But this past November: 7pt, 187 pounds, 25 yards... Tracked him for 30 inches...that's how far he fell, I believe.
DA: No under garments were harmed in the making of this paranormal episode!;)
Javelina: I will follow your advice on this matter. I think the rock outcropping I mentioned in the comments is the place... I do not think I will ever find an opening though. The tree growth around it is all 50 years or less, with no signs of past timber cutting. Which leads me to believe the trees are growing in that area in deposits from the stream which occurred due to some flooding event or natural evolution of the streambed's relocation. I will look though!

Lou
Lilady4 (7 stories) (425 posts)
+1
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
i loved this story, absolutely could not stop reading 😁 Interesting as well. I guessed that the "spirit" was a Native American with the Eagle Feather.
Love & Light, Rachel ❤
Javelina (4 stories) (3749 posts)
 
7 years ago (2011-03-15)
LouSlips, This is probably one of the best stories I've read here in a long time. This whole thing would have me in knots if I were you. I read it twice just to get the whole feel of it locked in. It's going to drive the rest of us crazy if you don't work this through to the end you know. No way am I going to guess on a name, not a chance. As far as finding where she's buried? What I do know about cave like structures is that if it still has any cave to it there will be cool air expelled from it. Feel around, that's how you'll find it. If it no loger is a cave like structure, good luck man. This is going to my favorites, big time. Thanks Lou, I hope you find it.
Brier (2 stories) (54 posts)
-1
7 years ago (2011-03-14)
awesome story! This one's all too familiar. When I'm out hunting, it feels like something in the forest is watching me. I don't feel comfortable unless I hear the forest sounds. One time I was sitting by a creek and everything just went silent. Then a crow started cawing. Crows, imo, are basically the town criers of the woods. If they see something they don't like, they let everyone know.
I thought it might be a turkey, but I didn't see any. I suddenly got this huge feeling of dread so I got out of there quick and ran as fast as I could XD

Btw did you get a deer that season? The last one I shot at was a buck that was running flat out through a field. I missed him by an inch. I literally shot off his belly fur. You can bet my hunting party laughed at that.
DeviousAngel (11 stories) (1910 posts)
+1
7 years ago (2011-03-14)
This one went straight into my favorites, Lou. Great read, excellently told, and I'm pretty sure I would have been scared to the point of something involuntary and messy if I'd been in your situation too!
taz890 (12 stories) (1380 posts)
+3
7 years ago (2011-03-14)
great story liked this one (glad no deer were seen not cussing hunting your choice) enjoyed the read will look out for next bit expectantly

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