This took place shortly after I had turned 16. My dad was working up in Oregon and Washington but was based out of rainier. I went up to live with him I guess just to do something different. I was used to being around the city type of atmosphere and it wasn't to long before I grew bored. (Not that the Oregon country girls in that area didn't stir my blood, it's just that they mainly wanted to waste their time getting high, or drunk, tipping cows, or shooting the passing ships going down the Columbia river. Which I didn't mind at that time I just missed the city lights or something).
I'd been out partying with a friend and drove off the side of a mountain, (another story which would take a while to go through), and I thought my dad was probably going to kill me anyway, without benefit of blindfold and a last smoke, so I decided to hitchhike back to Oklahoma. Needless to say I lacked the understanding of just how far I was from Oklahoma. My new found compadre decided to go along because he had gotten in recent trouble with his folks and wanted out of town too so we took off.
Somewhere between Portland and The Dalles, on I-84, which was only a two lane at that spot, we were really tired and looking for a place to sleep. By this time I had found out that this hitch hiking thing wasn't for me, and it really should be called, hike hike hike hike hike hike,hitch, hike hike hike hike or something similar and what seemed weird was that out in the middle of nowhere the fences were really well kept, and I didn't want to get cut up climbing one. No houses, no anything, but nice fences. Who would have thought it?!
We found a rather peevish looking fence about 3/4 of a mile before a bend in the road. The moon was out and actually lit up the area pretty well. There was about 3/4 of a mile behind us from the last turn in the road and like I said about the same in front of us before the next one. We were in a valley or what ever they called that the road went through and it was really a beautiful site. Just as we were fixing to jump the fence a car came around the bend from in front. Of course it was to far off to see us when it rounded the bend but we didn't want it to see us climbing the fence when it came abreast of us, (like the owners of the land were out cruising in the middle of the night). The sides of the road in that area sloped down at a very sharp rate and was gravel, at least on our side of the road, so you didn't have to go far to be below the grade of the road and out of site of passing motorist. It went down probably 15 feet though, well below the road. Come to think of it I don't think I've ever seen anything quite like that since. Just as we were sliding down the slope out of site I caught site of something way down the road just this side of the curve, the lights of the oncoming car caught it just as it was making the curve. What ever it was went down the embankment on the opposite side of the road from us. I asked my friend if he saw it and he said he saw something.
After the car passed we peeked over the top of the road and right when we started to climb back on to the roadway, because we decided we didn't want to sleep in that area anyway, we saw what appeared to be two guys pushing a motorbike climb up where we saw it go off before. This was still about 3/4 of a mile at least off, down the hill near the curve. We slid back down the slope out of site. I really don't know why, and then we kind of looked at each other. A motorbike? We both looked at the incline behind us. If you pushed a motorbike off the side of the road down this embankment you'd have a heck of a time stopping it before it went all the way down, and the river was on their side, and even a harder time getting back up. I couldn't imagine trying to get it back up to the road, assuming it didn't go into the river. We both peeked over the top breathing really quiet and shallow watching for another couple of minutes when all of a sudden it stood up. It wasn't two guys pushing a motorbike, it was something that had been on all fours and stood up and it was huge. At least twice as tall as us, and by the way, we weren't midgets. I almost shat myself. I started looking around and the fence by this time was looking mighty small. Thinking really fast in that fight or flight mode, and the flight was definitely the way I was leaning toward, I realized that, thank god it had been his turn to carry the back pack which would slow him down and had the only food we had in it, and on top of that I thought I could out run him. Maybe it wouldn't want both of us.
I looked at him, saw the panic in his eyes and knew he was thinking along the same lines. I knew I couldn't run. I also knew that it had to sense us when it got directly across from us. I pulled out my little pocket knife, and I think he pulled out a fork. I knew then, we're going to die, and all I could think of was lord please let it be quick. I peeked over the top again and it was almost even with us. I might have whimpered, silently of course, but I also noticed that the wind was blowing in my face, from his direction. There might be hope.
We ducked back down and we could here it stop almost right across from us for a moment or two, and then start on up the road again. It was almost to the curve up the hill from us from the direction we had originally come from when another car came around the bend downhill. I thought about jumping out in front of it and yelling for help but if it didn't stop then what ever that was would know that we were there. We waited and it disappeared below the other side of the road like before when the other car came. This time it didn't come back up.
I don't know how long we waited but we finally climbed back up and continued down the hill and around the curve. We didn't say a word of breath anything about a whisper until we'd cleared that bend in the road and was a mile or two away. When we got the "the dalles" we called our parents to come and get us. We'd had enough of the open road in Oregon. I don't know what that was, but I still think about it sometimes. I've had a few other things happen to me in my life but that really scared me.