I recently received the following account:
My name is Sky, and I'm not even sure where to begin, but after stumbling onto your articles about the Conewago Phantom, I had to get in contact with you. The experience that my mom and I had was terrifying and I'm getting goosebumps just thinking of the possibility that what we saw was actually real. We've had a lot of experiences with the paranomal, but this one takes the cake.
I've since moved away from York, but we're planning to move back to Pennsylvania, which led me to research hauntings and cryptid sightings in the area. When I googled Conewago Phantom, the pictures alone almost made my stomach drop, but when I read your descriptions - down to the almost humanoid crying... I'm still kind of in shock.
The Conewago Phantom Screams
It's hard to pinpoint an exact date, but I believe it was summertime in 2010. There were two separate instances that neither of us had thought were tied together. We were living in Mt. Wolf at the time, right by the Codorus Furnace (which, there's a whole other story about the woman in white for another time?). Behind our house were woods and it wasn't uncommon for us to hear foxes or owls or any other animal making noise out there. But there was one night that my mom had called me outside to listen to, what she described as, a sad, lonely wailing? We researched endlessly about what could have possibly made that sound, but we always fell short. Just as you described it, it would fade in and out, and eventually lingered away.
(I'm getting chills, whoops.)
I hadn't thought much on it considering that the actual sighting was the forefront of my memories there, but reading that description, it makes so much sense.
It was a little bit after this, when my mom and I were coming home from running errands, when we slowed to a stop right around here (below). It was nighttime and we always liked to watch for deer on the horizon of the fields.
I was in the passenger seat, trying to see out my mom's window, and that's when I saw this black form by the back window. I don't even remember what I said or did to get her to look back, but she did.
She then turned forward, slammed on the gas, and wouldn't even talk to me about it until we got home and in the house. She said that when she turned to look at it, it "stood up" and wing-like appendages spanned out from it's back. We both agreed it was massive. I'd say 9-10 ft. I don't recall seeing any red eyes, but it all happened so fast.
Personally, I'm more apt to be spooked out by the paranormal, whereas my mom is more curious. But whatever this thing was was enough to terrify her. She wanted to go back out to investigate, but I was too afraid to go and she didn't want to go alone.
The next day when we returned in the daylight to see if maybe there was a tree or mailbox or... anything that could've been what we saw, but... there wasn't.
Up until now, I jokingly referred to it as my 'Mothman experience', despite the uneasy undertones. I had no idea this... creature even existed. I've told the story to so many, but I think it's hard for them to really grasp what actually happened. To them, I'm sure it just sounds like a spooky ghost story. I've been dying to find an actual explanation to this and I think I finally did.
My grandmother had a similar experience, but she was living in Edgewood, Maryland at the time. She described it exactly the same though - a massive, black, winged figure lingering near her car. She told us that she thought it was a fallen angel.
It's all been very surreal. I didn't think I would ever get answers to what we saw, and it's haunted me to this day. I'm still unsure whether or not this discovery has eased my mind or frightened me even more, but I'd love to talk with you some time.
All the best,
NOTE: Was this a Mothman or something similar to the Conewago Phantom? There was another similar occurrence near Littlestown, PA in September 2015. Timothy Renner, who will be our guest on Arcane Radio this coming Wednesday, told me that he recently had an unexplained encounter in Codorus Furnace. The map below marks the locations of reports I have received pertaining to flying humanoids (including my residence in Hanover, PA) in this area. There have also been a few other general reports, including an encounter near Lancaster and possible sightings along the Conewago Creek. I have not marked those reports on the map. What are people encountering here in south central Pennsylvania? Lon
Encounters with Flying Humanoids: Mothman, Manbirds, Gargoyles & Other Winged Beasts
Beyond the Seventh Gate: Exploring Toad Road, The Seven Gates of Hell, and Other Strangeness in York, Lancaster, and Adams Counties
Flying Ships, Humanoids, and Creatures of the Subterranean World
Strange Pennsylvania Monsters
Phantoms & Monsters: Unexplained Encounters