Reader Information

Friday, December 28, 2018

A Strange Day in Northwest Pennsylvania

I recently came across the following strange account:

I am a big outdoorsman from Pittsburgh, PA. So of course when I decided to go to college I had to keep in mind that having some decent woods nearby was a must. Upon checking a couple of places out I decided on going to Edinboro University of Pennsylvania...or just "The Boro". The biggest plus about going to that university is that my Uncle Fred lived up there and was a well-known name in the community. He owns to this day a framing shop right in the middle of the small town area. This was a huge plus since knowing people like that ALWAYS equals more land to put spots in. That's all I really needed to pick the college I would be going to.

Edinboro is really cool because there are a lot of old buildings and strange, flat landscapes as compared to the hilly land around Pittsburgh. So it was cool to have to figure out how to scout the game I'd be going after once the season started. My main hunting area was directly behind my uncle's house. He has a beautiful log cabin that sits back off the road with woods on all sides of was a true thing of beauty. When he had the house built, he actually had the gigantic chimney made of flat stones that were found in the woods behind the house. More on that later.

As I was scouting the area for the first time, I came up on a few different circles of boulders in the middle of the woods. They were definitely very old. The boulders were quite big. Much too big to just be moved there for some reason like a group of guys camping out. They must have taken 10 men to move them, and only if they had some kind of pulley system or something of the sort. There were also smaller rocks (and when I say smaller I'm talking like somewhere around 300 pounds or more) making inner circles inside of the large boulders. Pretty crazy. I found a total of 7 of these stands throughout the property. Some of the rocks that were now part of the chimney. They simply HAD to be with the amount of rocks he used on it. Oh, also these rock circles also made a much larger circle around the woods.

After a few more days of scouting with my buddy Brandon, we were sure we had our spots picked out for first day of archery. We couldn't wait to get out there. PERFECT day too! It was great! The thing about Edinboro, PA is that it gets more snow per year than most of Alaska due to the lake effect snow coming across Lake Erie. What happens is before the lake freezes completely over, the water which is warmer than the air pushes the clouds way high up into the atmosphere. Too high for them to actually snow due to the low temperature all the way up there. The clouds then come inland and fall back toward Earth. It takes them about 20 miles to do this. Edinboro is about 20 miles from the lake. You see what I'm saying! Anyway, on the first day of archery, which is in the first week of October in Pennsylvania, there was a thin layer of snow. This is perfect for archery because you can see the deer in the woods much more easily and you can also see if any animals left any tracks. If they did, they were fresh since the snow didn't happen too long before that.

In our trees for about two hours or so neither of us had seen anything yet. I had just got off the radio with Brandon, who was on the other side of the property, when I seen some movement over to my right in the pine thicket. I then seen a branch move a little bit and seen four deer legs under. I readied my bow and my stance so as to make a good clean shot at the deer. Around 15 feet up in a tree I did this very carefully. About a minute later as I was looking for any movement, I lost the 4 logs inside of the thicket. This was expected due to the fact that where that deer would have been is a common feeding area for them. So I waited.

Maybe another minute later I caught movement again. It looked as if the deer would break through the thicket into more open woods. The moment I've been waiting for. As a brought the bow up a into a full draw stance, I was stunned by what I was seeing! Where the deer should have been, there was a man! A strange looking man at that! This absolutely should not have been. If there was a man anywhere near where that deer had been, the deer would have been long gone, spooked back into the thicket. I put my bow back down onto the hook I had screwed into the tree and lifted my binoculars to my eyes. At only around 35 yards away I could now see great detail of his physical appearance. He was rather rotund, with his belly leading the way. A white, long sleeve shirt on with ruffles down the middle of it. Just like the "pirate shirt" in that one episode of Seinfeld if any of you so indulged. It was tucked in to thick, canvas brown pants, with pants being tucked into white socks directly below his knees. Further down, where his shoes should be, was absolutely NOTHING! He had no feet whatsoever! No calves, no shins, no shoes. With my eyes wide open I mouthed to myself "what the f**k!?".

Instead of walking, he seemed to float through the woods, going from right to left. This is when I started noticing other extremely strange things about him. I looked through the binoculars at his head. It was cocked back with his chin resting down on his lower neck. His very large, red, bulbous nose up in the air a bit in a sort of snobby overall look. The hair though...the was covered by a wig that judges in England wear. A white wig with 3 curls on the side of it where his ear would have been. I noticed that he didn't just SEEM to float through the woods...he WAS floating through the woods! His arms stayed stuck at his sides unmoving as he traveled. He also never looked down. The way his head was cocked he could have only been looking upward. This is not any person or animal walks in the woods, constantly looking down, and around, for obstacles that you may trip over.

All of this happened within a time period of maybe 20 seconds or so. He had came out of the thicket behind a medium-sized oak tree, then when he hit the next oak, he never came out from behind it. I watched in absolute astonishment for another 5 minutes waiting for him to break his cover so I could see him again. This never happened. I told Brandon what had just happened and was immediately made fun of. I expected that was what would be coming through the radio after I got done talking. He was saying I should have taken a picture of the only deer/human minotaur remaining in the world. I told him he won't be laughing when the 'deerataur' came over to his tree stand and smacked his ass right out of it.

Even though it was the middle of the hunt, I had to get down to see what the hell just happened. I knew where he would have walked not only would I see footprints in the snow, but it would have also been very easy to see even better tracks due to the fact that the area where he was, was full of muddy ground. A freaking hummingbird would have left tracks in this muddy mess. As you probably guessed, when I got over to the spot where he had been, I seen not one track from him, or a deer, or anything else that lives on planet Earth. I was utterly amazed. What happened later that night was just as creepy. The scary stuff didn't even begin yet at this point on that fateful night.


After I got done checking out the muddy/snowy ground where the man should have left some kind of sign or footprints, I went back to my tree stand and climbed back up to the height that I'd been hunting from earlier. I radioed Brandon and told him I was back up the tree and secure. We always did this as a precaution in case something happened while we were climbing the tree or securing the platforms of the portable tree stand.

We hunted the rest of the day, but not without periodic ragging from Brandon making fun of me about the deerataur throughout the rest of the hunt. I knew I'd be hearing about it for AT LEAST a week or so, maybe longer. That is, of course, if the rest of the night would have been a normal one. Which, it turns out, was not.

As twilight approached, I radioed Brandon and told him I was going to start getting out of the tree. Brandon was actually in a built stand that we found while scouting in the months prior. So I had him meet me at my spot due to the fact that it was going to take me much longer to get my stand down and off the tree.

Just as I thought, Brandon was walking up to my spot right as I was getting to the bottom of the tree. Once I got all the way to the bottom, I unhooked the straps that were around my feet, jumped down to the ground, and started feverishly explaining to him again everything that happened. I took him over to the muddy area to show him that there were absolutely no tracks in the snow OR the mud. I definitely could sense that he didn't completely believe everything I was telling him. I was able to sense this so easily because he looked right at me with his mouth agape and his eyebrows pushing up towards the middle of his forward and said "Are you f**kin' with me brother!?" He also was able to tell that I wasn't messing with him when I looked at him with what I'm sure are some of the craziest eyes he's ever seen and said "HELL NO I AIN'T F**KIN' WITH YOU!". When he realized that I was 100% serious, he started taking inventory of all of the things that I had previously told him and we went back and forth trying to make any kind of sense of what I had seen at all.

While we were talking to each other back and forth, we had failed to notice that nighttime was already upon us. It was that Stephen King "Full Dark, No Stars" kind of nights too. Due to the fact that we were looking for signs left behind from the ghost guy, we were in a patch of woods that we weren't very familiar with. We may have been pretty close to where my stand was, but once night falls in the woods, it's a whole new ballgame. Still, the patch of woods we were in was enclosed by a triangle of roads. All we had to do was walk in a straight line and we would come out somewhere on one of the roads then just walk that road back to my uncle's house. So we started walking.

Walking in a straight line in the woods is almost impossible to do without a compass, which I didn't have. So we were both figuratively and literally in the dark when it came to where we were. A couple minutes into the walk we heard a loud scream, as if someone was being murdered. Now I know what every animal in the woods around here sounds like both normally, or in panic mode making death cries. I see videos often on YouTube of people recording a sound in their backyard that they think is a person who needs help, only to be a rabbit screaming from being attacked by some predator like a coyote or fox. This was not that. At all.

After waiting a couple minutes to see if the screaming would continue, we started walking again in the direction we thought we should be going. We didn't talk much about what we had just heard, probably because of the anxiety we were both feeling. We couldn't ignore it for long though because we heard another long, blood curdling scream. It was closer this time...and sounded different. At first we thought it sounded like a woman being attacked. This new scream sounded threatening. Ironically, we felt like we were the ones being stalked and hunted at this point. Still we pushed forward.

After walking about another 100 yards we came across something very strange. Directly in our path were these weird, clear, gelatinous masses on top of the leaf litter. Now I am 32 which isn't an age that necessarily screams wisdom from experience, but I've been in the woods since as far back as I can even remember. My old man taught me everything there is to know about the wilderness around us. So take it from me, these clear globs should not have been there. The only thing I could think of that could even SLIGHTLY look like it was tree sap...and this was absolutely not sap. I poked one of the masses with a stick fearing what they were made of. I had read a story about a town that had clear, gelatinous globs rain down on them. A lot of these people got very sick, and if I'm not mistaken I think a couple of them even died from it. So needless to say, I was taking precautions. Their consistency was that of a thick gelatin. Like if you made Jell-O with only one cup of water instead of two.

Once we started walking again, we started to come across a good amount of this stuff. It wasn't all over the woods, instead it was directly in front of us as we walked. Almost like someone or something knew which route we would try to take and marked it with these globs.

Another scream...

This time even closer, and with a little something added in. This time, not too far away from us, we heard leaves rustling and a couple of twigs snap. Something was definitely there. It could have been a deer, but this was unlikely. Whatever it was wasn't spooked at all. Not from us or the threatening scream. It's easy to tell when you've spooked an animal and they start running. On top of that, most of the leaves were still very moist, therefore not making as much noise as they normally would.

This sent our anxiety level through the roof. At that point, the only thing that was on our mind was getting the hell out of there. We were no longer curious about floating men, screams, or alien jelly. We just wanted out. Which should have been very soon. The distance we walked should have come across a road by now, but it hadn't yet. Stranger still we couldn't even see any house or street lights at all. Still we just kept walking, thinking we'd find our way out very, very soon. This was not to least not yet.

Our flashlights were now beginning to die so we were definitely in a hurry...which by the way, is not what you should do if you were ever even maybe lost in the woods. Cool heads always prevail in that situation. Anyway, as we were walking we started to see a couple of pine trees. This was very strange because we had thoroughly scouted this land. The only pine trees were over near my stand where we started. After seeing a couple more, we started to get a foreboding feeling...almost like a sick, anxious, panic feeling. We stopped for a minute to check our surroundings and found that at the exact spot that we stopped was the same spot we started. We were standing right next to a pine tree with a dead pine next to it that had a branch broken off and dangling still from the severed limb.

How could this be!? We had been sure that we were walking in a somewhat straight shot out, but that must have been an impossibility since we must have made a circle. We had no idea whatsoever how this had happened. Especially since we were in the EXACT spot we started at. Also very strange, we seen my tree stand that was still hanging on the tree. It was very close to us, but when we started to walk out it was nowhere to be found. We walked over to it, and immediately found the trail that we had to take to get out of the woods. It led directly back to my uncle's backyard. The trail actually went right past the live pine tree we had just been standing under. There is NO WAY we had missed that in the beginning. To add more to the strangeness, as we walked only about 20 yards down the trail we could plainly see my uncle's light that he had above his garage to illuminate his driveway.

Our minds were blown, but at least we were able to get out. On the last 100 yards on the trail, we found more clear gelatin globs directly down the middle of the pass. This was definitely crazy because they absolutely were not there when we walked in. We had both been on that trail when we entered the woods. We would have seen them for sure. We heard no more screams after the time we heard the rustling of the leaves and the twigs break, but we had a strong feeling of being watched when we were still in the woods, and an even stronger version of that same feeling as we stepped into my uncle's backyard.

This is at the top of my lists for scariest experiences in the woods. I have no explanation for any one part of it. Not the floating ghost guy, not the screams or the globs, not the getting lost in the woods, and not the circles of boulders. I would love to hear from anyone who had anything like this happen to them. There has to be some kind of answer, but at this point all I have is my story about what had happened that night, and thankfully one other person who went through it with me. At least he has been able to validate what had happened to people that don't believe this actually happened to us. Whether you guys believe it or not is up to you, but I promise that this all happened exactly how I wrote it. I know it sounds pretty crazy and out there, but this stuff actually happened...and that's a scary thing to think about next time you guys find yourselves in the woods. Something incredible had happened back there, I'm thankful that we were able to get out of the woods without having anything bad happen to us. What it did do was made my wanting to understand the paranormal even stronger. One day I'm going to go back there by myself and camp for a night or two in the hopes that something might happen again and that I have the wherewithal to seek whatever it was out and get some answers that I desperately need. - PP

NOTE: The globs may have been a fungus, especially because of all the damp leaf litter. As far as the 'deerataur,' I get the sense that this was a spiritual energy from a long deceased individual. But then again, with all the strange anomalies that have been popping up in recent years, maybe it was something more than an apparition. Lon

Don't Look Behind You: Following Ghost Roads Into the Unknown

Eerie Erie: Tales of the Unexplained from Northwest Pennsylvania

Silent Invasion: The Pennsylvania UFO-Bigfoot Casebook

Astonishing Encounters: Pennsylvania's Unknown Creatures, Casebook 3

Phantoms & Monsters: Unexplained Encounters

Lon's Suggested Reading List - Books & Films / DVDs

Subscribe to the Phantoms & Monsters / Arcane Radio YouTube channel