A couple of days after my birthday in September of 2012, my friends and I went camping to celebrate in Arizona. We lived in Utah, so it wasn’t that far of a drive to northern Arizona. We wanted to go to a campsite that my friend said his brother had taken him to on a camping trip a couple of years prior, so we set off to find it though he was a little hazy on how to get there. We searched for it and asked around with the locals for a couple of hours, but we were burning precious daylight so in our search we decided to just get some fishing in, and then when it was getting later we would find any old camping spot to crash at.
After a pretty uneventful couple of hours fishing, it got dark fast so we hopped in my friend’s truck and headed into the hills that were riddled with campgrounds. In our search for a campsite, we took a wrong turn which led us down a really desolate dirt road. With no lights in sight, and just a sliver of a moon, it was extremely dark. After about twenty minutes on this road, we were convinced that we needed to turn back. But just as we had made that decision, we saw someone in the distance.
“Hey, we could stop and ask him for directions,” I said. But literally as soon as the words left my lips, we all realized how strange it was that this person was standing on the side of the road way out here. As we passed the person, his gaze stayed on us and followed us as we passed, and without any reason I got spooked and the hair stood up on the back of my neck. The person was pretty tall, and was wearing a brown jacket that had a collar which was pulled up over his face, and, along with his hat, made it so that the only features we could see were his eyes. But regardless of how strange that was, we decided that this was in fact the wrong way, and so we flipped a U-turn and headed back.
About fifteen minutes down the road, when we had almost forgotten about the brown coat person, he appeared again in our headlights, this time on the other side of the road and again, staring right at us. Now, we were only driving about 25 or 30 miles per hour, but still, there was no way that this person could have gotten this far back up the road before we did. We were all a little spooked after that.
When we finally found a campsite, we started to talk about the guy, and one of my friends said that it could have been a Skinwalker, a sort of Indian shaman that could change shape and had other powers. Having never heard of these creatures, I was intrigued. I was surprised to hear that the person we saw was a textbook example of what a Skinwalker was supposed to look like. We were spooked enough that we decided to pack up and just head home at 2 in the morning, hoping to make it home by about 7 or 8. While we were packing up, I was just chatting with one of the other guys. Our other two friends had gone to relieve themselves some ways off from us, and while I was rolling up our tent, I was just sort of shooting the breeze. My friend was standing behind me, and he was responding to all of my questions and comments.
After about two minutes of chatting, I turned around to see him sitting in the front of the truck, about twenty or so feet away. I didn’t hear the car door open or anything, but there he was in the truck, when a mere ten seconds earlier I could have sworn he was right behind me, talking with me. I had heard him. I went to the truck and asked him how he had gotten in so fast. He said he didn’t hurry, he was just the first one. “What were we just talking about?” I asked him. He said he didn’t know what I meant. I told him I was just talking with someone I thought was him, and he was answering back; but he said it wasn’t him, he had been in the truck for nearly twenty minutes.
Now completely scared, once all of us were back in the truck we raced out of the hills and tried frantically to find the freeway. Once we got back into town, we knew how to get to it, so we were feeling a little better. On this particular on-ramp, it was a sharp turn to get on from the road we were driving, almost a U-turn, so you can’t really see what’s on the on-ramp until you turn completely. When we turned onto the on-ramp, there in our headlights maybe 30 feet in front of our truck were four coyotes, just standing and blocking our way. They just sat there staring at us, and my friend driving had to slam on the brakes. We sat there, humans and wolves staring at each other for what felt like an eternity, but was most likely only ten seconds, and we started to smell something like offal, a stench so terrible I have yet to smell anything else so bad. We were all screaming about what to do.
As the coyotes stood there staring at us, we could swear that we saw red in their eyes, so I told my friend to step on it. The truck roared toward the demon coyotes and we braced for impact, but just when we thought we had reached them with our tires, we felt nothing, and saw nothing in the rear view mirror. We made it home in record time, and saw nothing more of Skinwalkers. To this day, I have not seen another Skinwalker, but I later found that talking and thinking about them is supposed to attract them to you. Maybe reading about them does too.