; Phantoms and Monsters: Pulse of the Paranormal

Friday, February 19, 2021

'El Duende' Encountered by Couple in Apache County, Arizona

A couple, living in southern Apache County, Arizona encounter a 18-inch humanoid (El Duende) with clothes and a red pointed cap that ran across the road in front of their vehicle.

I recently received the following inquiry:

"My wife and I are both college-educated professionals. Other than this one time that I'm about to describe, we've never experienced anything that would qualify as paranormal. We've never seen ghosts, UFOs, Bigfoot, etc. The reason why I'm sending this is because I am genuinely looking for any information on what we saw.

At the time, about 12 years ago, we lived in northeastern AZ in southern Apache County, close to the Navajo Nation. We had no kids at the time and would typically go out to dinner after work on Friday nights. We would drive about an hour to a neighboring town as our very small town had few good restaurants. As we were driving back (my wife was behind the wheel), around 9 or10 pm, and were both watching out for animals. It wasn't uncommon to see deer, antelope and jackrabbits which could damage our truck if hit. We'd also often see rats, mice and prairie dogs too.

So, as we're going along, all of a sudden this small, about 18 inches tall, bipedal creature goes running out in front of us. It ran from one side of the road to the other and disappeared in the cedar trees that are typical along the main highway we were traveling. The most messed up part was that the thing was wearing clothes! It was dressed in a robe and had a pointy hat. We can't really remember the colors of the clothes but we both agree that the hat was red. It did not look cute or friendly, more like the stuff of nightmares. Its skin was a dark brown or dark grey. Its face looked monstrous and was grimacing. I had the impression that it was very distressed and seemed to be running away from something or someone. It seemed oblivious to us and our truck. I looked over at my wife who neither hit the breaks nor swerved whatsoever and she's just looking straight ahead at the road. I seriously thought I had just had a hallucination. Not because I've had one before but I can't believe what I just saw.

So I said, "Did you see that?" To which she quietly replied, "Yeah." In order to confirm my own sanity, I needed to hear her say what she saw first. I then said, "What did you see?" She then said, "Like a little person with a wizard hat on?" Then I said, "Yeah! What the f*ck?!" I honestly wouldn't believe my own eyes and memory if she hadn't seen it too. She's also said that if I hadn't seen it too, she would have completely shut it out of her mind and would have long forgotten it by now. In fact, I would have serious doubts if I had said what it was first and then she agreed with me.

We've talked about it several times since then and are still dumbfounded on what it was. I've done some research and it's hard to glean any information because people all around the world have claimed to see small humanoid creatures for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. The variations are all over the place. This thing wasn't like the friendly looking garden gnomes that people have in their yards. I hope to never see one again and sure as shit wouldn't go looking for one. My wife once described it as a "little demon". Do have any experience with such a thing or can point me to some information about this type of creature? I chose to call it el Duende as that seemed appropriate for our region. Thanks!" OC

NOTE: I am in contact with the witness. What do you believe they saw? Lon

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