View Full Version : Scariest Moment

09-05-2003, 23:12
For those that have thru-hiked, what was your scariest moment on the trail? Just curious...(was it related to weather, wild animals, a "bad ride," low on food, etc.)

09-06-2003, 00:16
My scariest moment while hiking the AT was along the BRP. I encountered wild dogs, 3, and ended up smacking one as hard as I could with a trekking pole. That was probably the worst experience I had...in about 3000 miles of hiking. I have never felt threatened by another person along the AT.

Moon Monster
09-06-2003, 20:02
My top three, all from my hike this year:

3. I spent an early July night on the little observation tower on Old Speck Mtn. in SW Maine. The winds were stiff at 25-30mph when I got there but I figured they'd die down overnight as a front moved further east. I was wrong and the winds only stiffened. By sunrise, they were upwards of 40mph. This tower had no support ties and it was swaying quite liberally all night. My cooking pot, stove, and fuel, which I had jammed into a corner of the tower with railing downwind blew off. I figured the tower would stay up since it has to have seen years of abusive winter storms, but I was scared the whole night I might loose some other gear. I was too cold to leave my bag though--the temps had dropped into the high 30s, so I stayed put.

2. I was fleeing a snowstorm and trying to hitch on 19E near the Tenn-NC border. This is the notorious area where Tennessee locals aren't too fond of the Trail and hikers. A little pickup with rear-wheel-drive went flying by us uphill on the icy road apparently trying to pelt us with slush from the plow banks. The driver slammed his brakes and spun out not far from us only to rev his engine and spin out twice more. He then came back towards us and spun around again and tried once more to gun it up the hill. He couldn't make it so he retreated back downhill into Tennessee and I made sure as he passed I was near the guardrail and ready to jump it in case of a close call.

1. The owner of a place where I was staying was driving me and another hiker to a market and he decided to drive his truck accross an earthen dam on his property. The dam had high embankments (about 40 feet on the right side) and several weeks of continuous rain had the ground there pretty soft. This guy's dog was running next to his truck and he over-steered to avoid hitting the dog. The truck tipped up on its right wheels and began to roll right. The guy pushed the emergency brake in time and the wheels dug enough into the soft ground to stop but I was the last to climb up and out the left side and I was envisioning the TV show scenes where a car is teetering on the edge of a mountain road guard rail. The truck's left wheels were both off the ground. (The scariest places aren't always on the Trail and often involve vehicles!)

09-07-2003, 19:34
You are not wrong about vechiles. My scarist moment (and the most funniest) was when I hitched from the Outdoor Centre into Byrson City. It took me about 2 hours to get to Bryson City and it was about 95 degrees. I was the only person walking the streets of the town. Anyway I walked up the hill to the local main higway. As I walked along the road with my thumb stuck out a truck drives past with some local good ol boys in it (I mean boys as I doubt they were old enough to have pubes yet). One thows an empty coke can at me as they drive past and shouts "get back in the zoo"!
Hmmmm anyway I arrive at the on ramp to the highway and start hitching back to the outdoor centre. After an hour and half this battered looking volvo picks me up. As I get in the guy says "Do ya wanna beer". I say thank you but it not my policy to drink before 2 in the afternoon. He then says "There is beer in that cooler, but I don't drink beer myself I drink this vodka and milk itis better for my stomach :eek:

Then I notice that thhe car is using 2 of the three lanes to drive on! Lets just say I couldn't arrive at th outdoorcentre soon enough. We almpost crashed into 3 parked cars as we arrived.

Once I was out of the car and stopped shaking I saw the funny side. Crazy crazy americans I said to myself!


B Thrash
09-07-2003, 19:59
Crossing Roan in Hurricane Opal in 1996. One step forward and about three steps backwad. Apple House Shelter was just like home that night.

09-08-2003, 07:18
Great thread!


09-08-2003, 10:41
Probably the scariest time for me was the night I spent in my first real storm. Now, I would sleep deeply through it. Then, I was terrified of the high winds, driving rain, and cold temps. Something about the tent poles being moved around so much.

The scariest time for me when I was in actual danger was last summer, when I fell part way into a crevasse (a crack in the glacier) in northern BC. I was into my armpits, with my legs hanging in open space. I was on a rope, and then other two people were fully arrested. I got out on my own, but tore some rib cartlige in the process.

My scariest moment on the AT? Somewhere around Big Bald, when my shin splints were hurting to the point of my considering getting off the trail.

09-08-2003, 12:58
I was feeling ill walking into Gorham with my wife and just having one of those tough hiking days. It was raining and the rocks were really slick. My wife was walking in front of me descending on flat slabs of rock. There was little to hold onto for stability and trekking poles wouldn't even stick to these flat rocks. I watched my wife slip and slide down the rock face for about 20'. Even though it all happened in less than five seconds, my mind was moving in slow motion calculating all the terrible possibilities of what may happen. She skidded to a halt just before she reached a drop that could have seriously injured her. Got away with only a badly cut knee. Considering what was flashing through my mind, it all turned out OK.

09-08-2003, 13:04
I just kept hiking. It took about a week for them to go away. Luckily, one shin hurt, then was starting to get better when the second one kicked in. If both had seriously flamed up at the same time, I would have been in trouble. I didn't get shin splints this summer, despite putting in a lot more miles. Better shoes, better conditionning.

Sleepy the Arab
09-08-2003, 22:16
In no particular order:

1. Going down the mean(est) side of Mt. Moosilauke in the aftermath of hurricane Floyd in 1999. It had rained non-stop for the previous 24 hours, and every pore in the hillside was hemorraging water. If you know the Beaver Brook portion of the trail, you know this is not a good thing...

2. Getting an unsolicited ride in Erwin - which I accepted against all logic and despite screaming warning bells going off in my head - from a fellow who was less than the ideal driver. First it was the slurred words...then the admission that he shouldn't be driving considering he was on "pershrimption drugs." Would you believe that I paid $2 for this ride?

10-24-2003, 15:58
I had 3 scary moments (well actually more than moments) on this years thru. First was a hypothermic episode hiking north out of Kinsman Notch. I had upchucked breakfast and was feeling kinda queezy but hiked anyway. I got some pretty severe abdominal cramps and sat down to rest. I was covered with sweat and within minutes I fell into hypothermia. As a former paramedic I knew what was happening but it came on so fast that I couldn't react in time. Fortunately for me there were some other hikers close who got me out of my wet clothes and into my sleeping bag. After about an hour I was able to hike on under my own power. Second was when I took a big fall on some wet rocks up in NY. One minute I was hiking along and the next I was laying flat on my ass with my arm pinned between a tree and a rock. I cut my arm up pretty bad but luckily there were no broken bones. Lesson learned ...slow down on wet rocks, no matter how good you are on your feet and what kind of shoes/boots you are wearing. Third and final most scary moment was a surprize confrontation with a huge timber rattler in PA. Most snake encounters are "surprize" ones but when you start to get close they start to shake that rattle and you have time to react. This one involved a rattler that was coiled under a bush right along side the trail. That section of the trail was pretty badly grown over. By the time I brushed against the bushes I was practically on top of the snake and if it had decided to strike I would have been an unhappy hiker.

Jack Tarlin
10-24-2003, 16:11
This past summer, in Harriman Park, maybe 33 miles from Manhattan, I came inches away from stepping on the biggest, fattest timber rattle I've ever seen in my life.

Neither of us, as I recall, was particularly happy about this.

For those of you interested in such things, be advised that these creatures are not known as "crotalus horridus horridus" for nothing! Stepping on them is generally to be avoided.

In any case, a certain degree of caution is now in order when I hike in Harriman or near Bear Mountain; up til this July, I'd thought the scariest thing in New York State was their junior Senator.

I was evidently mistaken.

10-24-2003, 16:20

10-24-2003, 16:54
A few days before Trail Days in 1996 a convict escaped from a prison 30 miles south of Damascus. I got within 75 yards of him on the AT. A sheriffs deputy trained his assault rifle on me and charged me. I was ordered to get the F&%$ down and roll over to get a closer look at the rifle barrel that was pointed at my head. I was escorted off the the trail by a deputy, who couldn't stop laughing. He also explained how close to death I just came. I was in Damascus within two hours. You got to love a good ending.....

10-26-2003, 12:41
I had two:

One was hitching back to the trail from Hiawassee. My friend and I were picked up by this guy who was an energency worker i.e. someone who made housecalls like an informal EMT i suppose. He was swerving all over the road and almost killed us numerous times. He had a radio for his work and would curse at it a couple times a minute. He said "I ain't gone kill yew guys today, don't worrry!" which wasn't reassuring at all. When he dropped us at the trailhead he told us Deliverance had been filmed at the top of the hill and told us to have a good hike.

The second was hiking over Mt. Moriah in a freezing downpour with 50 mph winds. The rocks are all exposed and I was getting pushed by the wind. The rocks were incredibly slick. My pack cover got sent off a cliff and I almost followed trying to save it. I was soaked to the bone and starting to shiver. I felt so alone and almost just gave myself to the mountain. I hiked down to Gorham slipping with a face plant in the mud. I stood at US2 for close to 45 minutes shivering while no one picked me up. Finally got a ride from, ironically enough an AMC worker....proof that they do help thru-hikers, maybe just in different ways.

Saluki Dave
10-26-2003, 14:38
Okay, it's like this...

I was out on a section from Newfound Gap to Davenport Gap in August. Rain, fog etc. Totally soaked, huge blisters etc. Day two my glasses fall apart, so I bail out down Snake Den Ridge Trail. I throw my tent down in an RV campground in Cosby, just on the edge of the park.

"What the hell," says I, "I'm in a right civilized camprgound, with showers and everything. No need to bear bag."

So I toss my food bag down like three feet from my tent (the stupidity of this will become obvious in a moment). I'm tired, hungry and hurting so I decide to crash.

'long 'bout 1 AM I awake to chuffing and snorting, REAL close. I'm paralyzed. Eventually I work up the nerve to turn on my headlamp, except you can't see squat though noseeum netting with a headlamp. D**n. I lay there for a minute, and decide to get out before I become a nylon burrito. I look around, and the lamp falls on a pair of eyes maybe thirty yards away looking right at me and moving my way. Uh oh. This has got BAAAAD written allover it.

Long story short the toy poodle or whatever in the Winnebago next door starts barking and the bear trots off into the woods. Lesson learned...

johnny quest
06-23-2004, 16:51
in 84 my then fiance and i were hiking thru the jungle to sacred falls on the north shore of oahu when we were stopped, robbed, tied up and beat up by three ne'er do well locals who hated hauliis (whites)

Flash Hand
07-24-2004, 03:18
Scary Moment on my first attempt thru hike up to 523 miles

1) black dog! I thought black bear on the trail until I saw a fast wagging tail, relieved cuz no bears have a long tail lol

2) snakes. jumped up on the side of the trail, and my got my attention and I jumped ahead. It was black rat snake.

3) thought I lost the head lamp and it was getting dark, but my mind pop up and next time I will have to remember where I put them.. I found the lamp in my coat pocket instead of inside the pack. Indeed, I prayed so hard for this and say why me why me.

that all for the 523 miles... see ya guys again next year!

Flash Hand :jump

Bear Magnet
07-26-2004, 15:49
Let me set the scene:

There I was, there I was, there I was-in the Smokies:

I had spent most of the afternoon at Fontana Village and set out late to do
the 5 miles or so to the first campsite.

The trail curved around a knoll to my left about .1-.2 miles from Birch Spring campsite for those of you in the know. It was about 7:50 or so-I had 40 minutes of daylight left.

As I turned the curve, I see a bear down the trail, just moseying around
looking for food. The bear does not see me. I back down the trail, wait 15
minutes, and proceed ahead, only to see that the bear has not left and is in
fact moving down the trail toward me.

So I decide to go down the hill to my left, cut over to the knoll,
ascend the knoll, and get behind the bear and get to the campsite. Well, the
bear hears me go down the hill and decides to come and investigate.

Following proper technique, I turn and face the bear while slowly backing
away. The bear continues to come toward me. When the bear gets to within 10 yards of me or so, I stop backing away and start shouting. I gave out Tarzan yells, spoke gibberish, barked like a dog, and chanted ďGo Away Bear, Go Away Bear.Ē

This worked in preventing the bear from coming any closer, but the bear did
not back away. After a 15 minute standoff, I finally backed away, still
facing the bear, and the bear let me go. I backed down the trail for a
while. In the meantime it had gotten dark and after I judged I was far
enough away from the bear, I got out my headlamp and put it on.

But the trail to the campsite was blocked, and the previous shelter was back
at the entrance to the Great Smokey National Park at Fontana Dam-5 miles
away. My only choice was the fire tower, on a side trail about 1.5 miles
back. In the dark, with a possible man eating bear behind me and/or in front
of me. This was actually more nerve-wracking than the actual confrontation, where once I started shouting, the adrenaline took over.

I go to the fire tower and then have to decide whether to camp under the
tower or go up and sleep in the enclosed cabin on top of the tower. I
decide to go up the tower-it was a crystal clear night, so I was not worried
about lightning.

Up in the tower I have some cheese, a bar of some sort, and momís homemade oatmeal-cranberry cookies (Mmmm Mmmm Good). I am out of water, so I canít have a hot meal. Plus I am on an adrenaline high. So I only get a few hours of fitful sleep in the tower, wondering if every sound I hear is a bear, and thinking that maybe the bear escaped from the circus, where he learned how to climb stairs.

I wake the next morning with the dawn, pack up my stuff, and go down to the trail. At least until I get halfway down the stair and realize that there is
a bear moseying around the trail from the tower to the main App. Trail. The
bear does not see me, but I decide to wait for it to leave. That takes an

I still have to walk 1.5 miles to get some water. I put in an 11 mile day,
but it was a tough 11 as I was exhausted after coming down from my
adventures the previous night and not getting enough sleep.

Thus I became Bear Magnet.

Aside from this confrontation, though, none of the other 11 bears I saw during my trip caused me any difficulty.

Whenever non-hikers bring up the dangers of the trail, I always say I was more concerned with slipping and falling in the rain far from a road than I was from bears, snakes, or people. Having a bear come down a hill after you is makes one nervous, but most of the time they just run away. :)

Bear Magnet
Jonathan Amato

Pencil Pusher
07-26-2004, 16:31
Maybe the bear was just looking for a friend. You should've gone up and pet him. It must get awful lonely out there with nobody to hang around with. Alll the passerbys just run away and yell at him whenever he approaches. These are just lonely times for the bears...

Tin Man
07-26-2004, 22:15
I was hiking up Glastenbury Mountain in VT about 18 years ago when I ran into 2 locals, one with a pistol and one with a sawed-off shotgun and a Rambo knife. After a quick hello, an attempt at a smile, and avoiding eye contact, we just moved through as quickly as possible, without looking like we were moving through as quickly as possible, mind you. My heart was beating rapidly for quite some time and I told myself it was because I was going uphill.

While it was the fall, and possibly hunting season, what do you shoot with those guns? Never mind - I don't want to know.

Jersey Bob
07-27-2004, 10:20
at least 10 characters

Rain Man
07-27-2004, 16:25
... Thus I became Bear Magnet....

Whenever non-hikers bring up the dangers of the trail, I always say I was more concerned with slipping and falling in the rain far from a road than I was from bears, snakes, or people. ...

GREAT story, Jonathan!!! And great trail name!
Rain Man


07-27-2004, 16:48
Dragons Tooth, lightning.....one one thousand two one thouBOOMCARCKBOOM! Holy crap that lightning was close!


steve hiker
07-27-2004, 18:43
That is real real scary Bear Magnet, that b-b-b-bear was STALKING you and was going to ATTACK and EAT you alive (CRUNCH). I don't know what saved you cause it sure looks like you were a goner there that bear was lookin at you like PREY!

steve hiker
07-27-2004, 18:57
You were fixing to be like this guy here. You sure are lucky maybe you stank so bad the bear turned away in disgust.

Joe had the sow grizzly's lip clenched in his fist, shoving and squeezing as hard as he could. The bear had knocked him flat on his back in the deep, sticky snow, and she was straddling on his mauled legs, trying to shake his hand loose and sink her jagged jaw into his vital organs.

Pushing on that b-b-b-bear's face was like trying a one-armed bench press with a 300-pound barbell, one that fought back with TEETH and CLAWS, on that wouldn't hold still.

He held her with his right hand -- he could feel the side of a fang pressed hard against his palm -- and with his left kept punching and punching, swinging his fist as hard as he could and trying to keep her away from his organs. So far, it was a draw.

"I was holding her," Joe says. "I think I kept her from BITING me as many times as she wanted. I had my mind set that she was not going to get me. I thought about MY GUTS LYING OUT IN THE SNOWBANK." :eek: (Yikes!)

Then, suddenly, the bear took off.

Blue Jay
07-28-2004, 09:10
You sure are lucky maybe you stank so bad the bear turned away in disgust.

Every time I'm stupid enough to read your entries I turn away in disgust. I know you are just trying to be funny but it's just not working.

07-28-2004, 22:50
A minimum-length shotgun is the most effective inexpensive weapon for bears, if it is loaded with a rifled slug. It is also relatively lightweight/portable (compared with a .300 magnum rifle, etc.), and thus was a highly rational choice for anyone concerned about bear encounters. Many Alaskans look like Special Forces WRT firearms whenever they step off pavement. I found that out reading about bears in Alaska. I plan to take such a weapon with me on my two planned Alaska hikes (post-AT, of course).

steve hiker
07-29-2004, 01:18
I'm so soory Boo Jay I'll try to be funnier I wasn't trying to make you mad now I'm really scared and worried Boo Jay's gonna to be waiting for me in NY and gonna open a BIG OL CAN O WUUPASS on me or hose me with bearscared spray now I'm scared to go anywhere that ol Boo Jay may be I'm scarda getting pecked on the head too what should I do?

johnny quest
07-29-2004, 11:25
you could try a better more developed sense of humor :jump

08-20-2004, 04:25
Well developed sense of humor? Like laughing at the day hiker who brings a six-pack to the peak?

08-20-2004, 11:24
(July 2003)

My scariest moment on the trail would have been, awakening in my tent to what sounded like bloodcurdling shrieks and screams coming from a nearby stream. It was early morning, sun not even over the nearby ridge. Could it perhaps have been an animal of some sort, a bird? I know for a fact it was not a human who was making that noise, it sounded like a hyperbolized and grossly exaggerated scream of pain and torment. It continued for a good 5 minutes after I awoke. Any thoughts people?

08-20-2004, 12:12
Rabbits make a real nasty screaming sound when they are being killed. Sort of like two cats fighting, but a bit higher pitched. At home I wake to the sound from time to time in the early morning hours. We have a meadow/wooded area in our backyard that is home to a herd of rabbits. Local cats(?) get them one in a while.

08-20-2004, 12:15
It was low pitched and drawn out, not like a cat yowl or screech, just a drawn out scream from what sounded like a human male. Although the fact remains, it was not human. Starting to bug me again, what the heck could it have been? In addition this was the summer of 2003, southern maine.

08-20-2004, 12:18
Lynx? Sick Moose? Bear sex? Lumberjack circle-jerk?

08-20-2004, 13:05
Hiking alone in the woods can get preteh lonely, squeal like a piggie!:bse

08-20-2004, 13:20
(July 2003)

My scariest moment on the trail would have been, awakening in my tent to what sounded like bloodcurdling shrieks and screams coming from a nearby stream. It was early morning, sun not even over the nearby ridge. Could it perhaps have been an animal of some sort, a bird? I know for a fact it was not a human who was making that noise, it sounded like a hyperbolized and grossly exaggerated scream of pain and torment. It continued for a good 5 minutes after I awoke. Any thoughts people?

Might have been a Peacock. Freinds of mine own a few and they wander off into the woods at night and make the craziest screaming sound you ever heard!! Streamweaver

08-25-2004, 14:59
I think my scariest moment was during a hitch hike from Troutdale to Marion.

I arrived on a Sunday, when the only store in Troutdale was closed. Not having any food, I decided to go into Marion to find a grocery store.

After about an hour of almost no cars driving by, a car pulls up and offers a ride to Marion. In this car were two local guys, one with a shirt off, and both sporting mullets. When I get into the car (red flag #1: 2 door vehicle where I don't have an escape option), they offer me a beer.

As we head along down to Marion at speeds in excess of 80 mph on the curving roads, passing up cars along the way, I learn that the driver, a 26 year old, is the passengers, a 32 year old, uncle. I tried to figure out the math, but could not.

As we pull up into a grocery store in Marion, they offer to wait for me so I get a ride back into town. I figure I have nothing to lose at this point, being as how nobody is going back into Troutdale. So, I get back from shopping and jump in the car.

As soon as I'm seated, the driver takes off from the parking space, fishtailing around the parking lot, while screaming "THAT B#*@$ OWES ME MONEY!" Apparently, some girl that owed him some money drove by, and we proceeded to go on a high speed chase through downtown Marion, almost hitting a couple of cars along the way. He's driving maniacally enough to even scare his 32 year old nephew. When we finally catch up to the car and run it off the road, he looks over and says, "damn, that's not her!" So, we leave the scene and head back toward Troutdale.

At this point, I have resorted to survival mode...

While driving back toward Marion, the driver notices a friend of his parked outside of an abandoned strip mall. So, he cuts the wheel, we do a complete 180 in the middle of the road, ignorant to any oncoming traffic, and he heads back over to talk to his friend. While in conversation, his friend mentions that they have a bunch of crystal meth, are headed down to a local lake, and wants to know if we want to join him. Both the guys look at me, but I just say "I actually really need to get back to the Church hostel to take care of some things."

So, they continue on back to the hostel, while telling me that this guy they were talking to was crazy, and has killed people for drugs when he was a dealer. Nice.

Suddenly, the driver veers off this dirt road, and at this point I think I am going to die. We stop at one of their friend's houses, and the passenger gets out to speak with her a few minutes. It was at this time that the driver confesses that he's "not right," and has recently spent some time in the Marion Mental Hospital, only to be let out because he ran out of money.

Once the passenger gets back into the car, he asks if I want to go hang out with them for a while somewhere else, but I mention that I have ice cream and have to get back to keep it from melting. To this he replies "well, ****, why didn't you say so in the first place? We'll go drop you off now!"

So, after all the excitement, they drop me off at the front door of the Church Hostel, thank me for accepting their ride and not judging them, then leave me with a warning to watch out for who I trust out here, because there are some crazy people in the world.

The end.

08-25-2004, 18:02
That was so amazingly vivid, and terrifying.

08-25-2004, 22:03
I heard some coyotes howling on my section hike last november. They sounded almost human, at first I thought it was. Sounded in pain too. Maybe that's what you heard. They howled at sunset and at sunrise.

The Hog
08-26-2004, 06:35
I was filling up my water bottle at Sand Spring in PA when I heard some leaves rustling behind me. Thinking it was just a squirrel, I ignored the sound and continued filling my bottle. Then, the hairs on the back of my neck stood up. I wheeled around, and there was a black bear, at close quarters, who immediately reared up on his hind legs. My heart went into overdrive, beating so hard and fast it felt like it was going to explode. The bear quickly went down on all fours, turned around, and ran at high speed directly away from me. Sure, I'd read all the stuff about black bears not being much of a threat, but when you're out in the middle of nowhere and there's no one else for miles, how do you convince yourself that the bear has read the same stuff? Later, I read a few accounts of black bear attacks on humans. Bottom line: they are unpredictable.

08-26-2004, 07:04
While hiking the AT in SNP, my husband and I had been following bear scat for quite a while along the trail and keeping our eyes and ears peeled for the bear. We were walking along and 2 beautiful deer crossed the trail if front of us and stood off to the left of the trail posing for pictures. We stood there quietly taking pics and whispering. I mentioned that the bear must not be about since they were so calm. At that moment there was a horrific crashing sound about 2 feet behind us and out of the woods popped... another deer! We were so sure it was the bear! I think we both aged 20 years at that moment! We never did see that darn bear!:bse

Uncle Wayne
08-26-2004, 08:56
A thru hiker told me and my wife a scary story that happened to him during his first thru hike. He said it was a true story. I can't remember his name but he was in his late 50's and was on his second thru hike when we met him. He worked in the medical field and was very friendly and easy to talk too. We were staying at the old Mollies Ridge Shelter that still had the fencing across the front. As we bedded down he cautioned us to be sure and shut the fence door if we left the shelter during the night.
He said on his first trip thru the Smokies another guy in the shelter went out after dark and left the door open. While he was gone a bear took advantage of the open door and came inside the shelter. It woke him up when it licked his hair. He said he screamed and jumped out of the sleeping bag and started running for the door. The bear was as scared as he was and started for the door also. He said they both missed the door and started running in circles inside the shelter. About that time the outside guy came back and while still on the outside, shut the door. He said he yelled as he passed the door the second time, "Open that door you S-O-B and let one of us out!" It was so funny as he was telling the story that we laughed till tears came to our eyes.
He said the bear was yelping like a dog that had been whipped and finally the "S-O-B" opened the door and the bear hit it first. He said he didn't sleep any the rest of that night.
I wish I could remember his name as I'm sure some of you would know him.

08-28-2004, 14:14
Scariest moment for me was coming over Nesuntabunt Mountain, just south of Abol Bridge in the 'hundred-mile, in a lightening storm. We left Wadleigh Stream Shelter in mist and by the summit a real boomer had blown in. The lightening was flashing all around us and the thunder was instantaneous. I was making promises to whatever power that might be to stop various sorts of questionable behavior if I just made it off that hill without being electrocuted. I was thinking how bad it would be to die two days from the summit of Katahdin. Well, I didn't die but I sure got an adrenaline (and endorphin) rush. It rained hard the rest of that day but we made it to Abol just the same.

08-28-2004, 14:26
Wow, some great stories, and some great short story authors!

I just don't comprehend the idea of getting in a car for a hitch. I mean you are WALKING every day as it is. I'll only get in PU's. Nothing else. Beggars can be choosers, sometimes;)

09-03-2004, 06:49
Icewater Springs Shelter was where I nearly soiled myself last year! Kodiak and I had tented out since there was a HUGE crowd. In the middle of the night, the most horrible screams arupted from inside the shelter. It sounded as though someone was being eaten alive! I was paralyzed with fear like never before until I heard everyone in the shelter telling the poor teenage kid that "Everything was OK. It was just a dream." Turns out the kid suffered from night terrors! Pretty funny the next morning, but scared the s&*t out of all of us!

09-03-2004, 07:21
section-hiking with "the Model T crew" in 2003...when, just south of Fontana (we were SOBO to N.O.C.), it started raining....raining HARD...then hail....then hailing hard...&, if this wasnt enuff....it started lightning...lightning a ****-load of it! Then...i'm hikin' alone...i'm hearing limbs cracking...then a LOUD BOOM just feet from me! I hit the ground....lost one of my hikin' poles......(i found it later)...

i think my heart stopped for a few seconds...
my scariest moment...compliments of Ma Nature! :o

Lion King
09-04-2004, 10:37
Dang old rain made everything a little crazy, but the Wilson ford about 22 miles North of Monson was horrendous last year.

It had rained the for about four days in a row, and a boomer the day we entered the wilderness.

Camped and got ready to cross a lot of fords the next day...but Wilson was damn scary.

A note was left saying if you bushwack about 200 yards there was a log you could cross over on...I go to it, and the water is rushing so hard sticks and larger logs are crammed under the fallen tree, and water is smashing into and over it where I would be walking...downstream maybe fifty feet was tangled fallen trees and rocks and boulders...all not to friendly if you fell in and hit them....

so I returned to the trail crossing and begain going across...water was up to my sternum...whitewater rushing, thunder in the air, boulders rolling below my feet under the water...my lekis were shaking and actually humming from the force of the water...I continued and got the halfway point in the water and thought.."Well **** this sucks"...I froze up.

I tried to lift one of my legs and the water shoved it quickly backwards...I said allowed.."F&*% this I aint falling!!!!"
And carefully made it across.

When I got to the shelter, Tank and Willow told me that they and about 4 other hikers and bushwhacked about 1 mile into a snowmoblie bridge and crossed and returned to the trail through the woods...

Second greatest scary time was a lightening storm right before NOC...I hate lightening.


Morning Glory
09-07-2004, 13:30
My scariest and most frustrating hike was a 5 day trip I had planned in NH around Mt. Washington in early June 2003. I don't remember the name of the trails, and I really don't care to remember. Anyway, we started out at Pinkham Notch, and went up this trail. About 2 miles into it, we got above the tree line, and immediately felt the force of 60-85 mph winds. At one point, we were right on the edge of Tuckerman's ravine, and I could swear that the wind felt like it was blowing out of the ravine at 100 mph. After fighting these winds and climbing no more than 300-400 yards in 1 1/2 hours, we knew that this trip was not going to happen. The temperature was down around 45F, plus the wind was just howling. We wisely descended the crazy mountain, and turned our 5 day trip into a 1 day dayhike. How disappointing.:confused: We found out the next morning that we were spared a an ice storm that resulted in 7 inches of ice.

Mr. Clean
09-08-2004, 07:29
Are you the Mr. Clean that hiked with Gather down south this spring?
Nice to meet you.

09-13-2004, 13:33
My scariest moment was when I started feeling acute pain in my achilles tendon within the frst few days. I could not hike without taking pain killers, otherwise I would have been walking at 0.5 miles an hour! Luckily, I realized that when I was walking barefoot my achilles was OK, so I hiked up to Franklin and got some Merrells. After that, I took 2 days off in Fontana Dam icing my swollen achilles, which didn't do much. I hiked out of there and never looked back. It must have taken a week and a half for all the swelling to go down, but it eventually did.

Second scariest was when I slipped in CT and busted my head open falling head first on a rock. At least in that case I was immediately able to see that I was OK. It bled a lot and I did go to the doctor the next day, but I knew it wouldn't be a long-term problem. The achilles, on the other hand, scared me a lot more.

09-13-2004, 14:45
Probably in '99 when I was working in Greenbrier State Forest when I "treed" a pair of black bear cubs. Nonetheless momma wasn't happy that I was there and chased me back up the mountainside. Who says bear can run faster uphill than humans?

Flash Hand
09-14-2004, 03:24
My scariest moment was when I started feeling acute pain in my achilles tendon within the frst few days. I could not hike without taking pain killers, otherwise I would have been walking at 0.5 miles an hour! Luckily, I realized that when I was walking barefoot my achilles was OK, so I hiked up to Franklin and got some Merrells. After that, I took 2 days off in Fontana Dam icing my swollen achilles, which didn't do much. I hiked out of there and never looked back. It must have taken a week and a half for all the swelling to go down, but it eventually did.

Yeah, you passed us FAST, probably because you were trying big miles each and every day... giving ur achilles no room to rest. Hence to your trail name :D

Flash Hand :jump

09-14-2004, 09:40
Yeah, you passed us FAST, probably because you were trying big miles each and every day... giving ur achilles no room to rest. Hence to your trail name :D

Flash Hand :jump
LOL. I could have sworn I had passed y'all after I was done with that problem because I talked to one of the guys at the shelter about it (can't remember his name, I remember you and Swan). Regardless, you would have been proud of me when I reached Maine. I was doing 11-13 mile days in the Wilderness, the easy part!

01-19-2005, 00:23
Reviving the thread. Mine was in Mexico. We were attacked by what were later described to me as kissing beetles. :bse

01-19-2005, 16:00
Mine was while section-hiking the Smokies from Davenport to Fontana. We got to enjoy nasty thunderstorms nearly continuously all day from Tricorner Knob to Icewater Springs, the worst being a terrible lightning storm on the very high and exposed section around Charlie's Bunion. Seeing the flash and hearing the thunder instantaneously is never a good thing....