View Full Version : Scariest Trail Experience

06-12-2003, 13:42
Describe one or more times that you have been truly frightened while on the Trail?

For me, it occurred on my first AT section hike of New Jersey as a 15-year old. It was the last night of the trip and someone had trashed the High Point Shelter and flies were everywhere. Since it was late and didn't look like rain, we decided to sleep under the trees down the trail.

In the middle of the night we heard sounds and movement from a number of very large animals close by. Although we were Boy Scouts experienced with camping, we were raised in suburbia. No one had ever told us that deer could make such sounds when bedding down for the night. Needless to say, I didn't really get back to sleep until dawn.

06-12-2003, 20:55
Campsite just outside Boiling Springs PA. I don't know if this campsite is still being used but it was an open patch cut in a field of grasses about waist to chest high. Got to the site at about dusk and quickly set up my tent, cooked dinner and went to sleep as I had a long day. Failed to realize that an active set of train tracks laid about 30ft or so from my tent. I realized it later that night as I awoke to a train roaring past. Scared the you know what out of me. I actually heard it coming in my dream and though it I was dreaming it until the ground vibrated and I awoke to hear its full fury. It wasn't as bad a couple of hours later when the second one rolled through.

06-16-2003, 09:30
this occurred during my hike in 2000:

...i was about six or seven miles into the day, hiking through a pretty thick fog. whenever iím hiking through fog i often think it would be a great time for a bear to get me. i had just finished running this thought through my head for the 4th or 5th time when i looked down at the ground and saw a few drops of blood on the trail. was i bleeding? not that i knew of. then i saw a few more drops. and a few more drops. leading right in the direction that i was going.

i began to follow this trail of blood right down the trail. there was more and more blood the further i went. not just drops of blood. splattered blood. small pools of blood collected in leaves on the ground. whatever it came from was bleeding profusely. whatever it came from was either dying or already dead. the blood went on for a couple hundred yards. then it turned off the trail and went into the woods. i could see blood all over the ground and on the bushes. i thought about following the blood into the brush, but then i thought that might not be a good idea.

all that was going through my head was that something had gotten either lightway or basketball jones.

my adrenaline started pumping. my heart was pounding. and i was hyperventilating. i began to hike very fast. i wanted to get away from there as quickly as possible. for the next hour and fifteen minutes i hiked on pure adrenaline. i desperately wanted to come across somebody heading south and ask if they had seen my fellow northbounders. in a little over an hour and seven miles down the trail (i usually average somewhere between 2.5 to 3.5 miles an hour when i am hiking) i finally ran into two southbounders. they brought me great relief when they said they had seen my two friends less than an hour earlier. i donít know what made all that blood. i guess i donít really want to know either....