13. Not intending to mock any religion or beliefs and I really don’t know which group this would be credited to anyway. Wickens? Druids? Just a psycho?
Anyway, I was hiking through a park in central Florida about 3 years ago. Kind of dense scrub brush. You can only see the trail in front of you. Brush is chest high on both sides. I’m about 2 miles from the nearest trail head and it’s around 7pm. I had an hour of light left. I had intended on setting camp when I found the next clearing.
First clearing I get to has a gator head in the middle with a circle of stones around it. Maybe 2-3 weeks old. Just a dried skull with scales. Soft tissue was gone. I had seen gator skulls left by poachers before and I usually ignore it, but it gave me a weird vibe so I kept walking.
About 15 minutes later (and deeper in) I get to another nice sized clearing. This time, a few dead birds were strung up to some sticks and hanging in a circle, like a mobile over a baby crib. 7 or 8 small birds. Maybe 4 feet across. Had been there for a while. It didn’t smell any more at least. Still creepy enough to send me on my way. Third times the charm, right?
Wrong. 20 minutes later and after taking to side paths to get away from the main trail and hopefully avoid any other “displays”, I find a fresh one. A deer head on a stick. With sticks scattered around making 4 circles around the base of the stick. The blood was splattered all around the sticks. Fresh enough for the flies to still be on it. The head smelled rancid. Didn’t see the body, but I didn’t look for it either. I got out of there. I was dark before I got back to my truck.
Called fish and game the next morning, because the gator and deer would have been taken out of season. Told them what I found and apparently this wasn’t the first time somebody called about animal effigies in that park. Never went back but I am curious just how many other “shrines” were out there.
14. About a year ago I was talking a walk at a local nature park, it’s rather big, right alongside a big inlet river. I tend to cycle up there as there is plenty of drops and jumps for me to do on my mountain bike, but this one day/night was a bit weird, you know when you can just feel something in the air?
I was going about my business as usual and realized it was getting pretty late, like not dark but the light was beginning to fade, not many people were there that day but all day I just felt like I was being watched, I lined up a drop which runs next to a set of stairs, quite a long one, right as I hit the drop I hear this almighty fucking squark, really throaty, bit of a roar combined with like, a bird I guess, my handlebars wobbled a little bit but I managed to get to the bottom without falling.
I slam on my brakes and look up the drop behind me and there was this figure, human like just standing at the top, he was wearing denim jeans with this fucking weird, almost pagan-esque robe/garment which had like feathers on it, all tattered and stuff, and he just looked at me, dead pan, no expression and after about 10 seconds just let out this fucking noise again, really loud, eyes stretched out – I shit my fucking pants, and began to cycle out.
Now it’s about a 10 min ride of windy paths, going over little wooden bridges covering small rivers/runs – and I swear to fucking god this noise happens like 4 more times, each a little closer and to top it off, there was fucking nobody around, like normally you get couples walking through, or older folk with their dogs, but nobody, nothing. I’ve been back twice since, and each time I just cannot get comfortable enough to stick around and enjoy myself like I used too, one day I think I’ll grab a bunch of my pals from hockey and go exploring, see if we can figure that shit out.