Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Lights in the Woods
Author’s note: This is the first part of a two-part series on Missouri deer hunter Chris Black's encounter with an unseen force.
Dead leaves covered the forest floor. Young firs fought for sunlight among the tall, straight trees of Southeast Missouri. A small camper sat beside wood stacked for a campfire. Chris Black, of Park Hills, Mo., rustled through the leaves on his property setting up a digital camera to capture photographs of deer; the next day was deer season.
Chris usually slept in the camper during deer and turkey season, and did again on Nov. 19, 2006. But the eve of this deer season was different.
“Something kind of weird happened on my property,” Chris said.
Chris set up the motion-activated camera at 2 p.m. – according to the time-stamped photo with Chris’s head in the foreground – and spent the rest of the afternoon getting ready for the first day of hunting season.
“I was down there by myself,” he said. “I’d sit by the fire and drink and one particular night, I got fairly (drunk), but I was sure of what was going on. I had a pretty big rip-roaring fire. As I sat there by the fire, I felt there was something else there. I remember feeling something there.”
As Chris sat before the fire drinking beer, he said into the night, “If anyone wants to come join me by the fire, you’re more than welcome.” He thinks something took him up on his offer.
“Maybe that night at the property, I wonder if I didn’t invite something,” he said. “I just kinda got mesmerized by the fire. That’s when I felt something there.”
After a time, Chris put out the fire and went to bed. But the feeling of his visitor grew unnerving.
“The door to the camper can only be locked on the inside,” Chris said. “I woke up at 3 or 4 in the morning and the door wouldn’t open like it was locked. It was stuck hard. I kicked on it, I beat on it, I couldn’t get it open. I started to panic.”
Chris thought the door had been barred from the outside.
“It was a camper door and I should have been able to kick right through it,” he said.
Thinking someone was outside, he grabbed his shotgun and yelled a warning that he was going to shoot at the door.
“It would not budge,” Chris said. “I shot a hole completely through where the lock is and the door still wouldn’t open. After I shot about half a dozen holes in the door I kicked the handle through the door and then I hit it with my shoulder and it came open. There was absolutely no way it would have been locked.”
No one was outside the camper, nor was there evidence the camper door had been barred. The rest of the night was quiet, but this wasn’t the last strange encounter he’d have relating to that property or that deer season. The trail camera had captured something anomalous.
The motion-activated camera had shot a picture of a deer, but it also captured two lights that should not have been in the woods, far away from roads.
“One of them, the round one, you can tell it’s moving straight up from the ground,” he said. “It’s round and I swear it almost looks like you can make out a face in it. The other one in the upper right hand corner is moving from right to left in an upward angle. It looks like a star shape. You can see edges on it.”
These strange lights corresponded with his visitor … and his panic in the camper.
“I’ve seen stuff I haven’t been able to explain and I know there’s not an explanation. I know there’s things out there.”
Next week: something follows Chris home.
Copyright 2008 by Jason Offutt
Got a scary story? Ever played with a Ouija board, heard voices, seen a ghost, UFO or a creature you couldn’t identify? Let Jason know about it: Jason Offutt c/o The Examiner, 410 S. Liberty, Independence, Mo. 64050, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Include your name, address and telephone number. Your story might make an upcoming installment of “From the Shadows.”
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