It was me who took the dare, but it was myself and my best friend who decided to tempt a night in an old haunted cabin outside Cascade, Idaho when we were teenagers. Here is what happened to us, and how we had come to know Bigfoot roam the state of Idaho.
It was the scariest night of my life, his too, and that includes my two tours of Afghanistan to boot. But, my best friend and I lasted longer than anyone else and lived to talk about it.
Here is my story, and if you don’t mind, keep my last name out of it, I like my privacy, and I am still serving in the military, even at my age and prefer not to be bothered by all this. I just wanted to share with you all of what happened that night in memory of my best friend.
It was a dare, a stupid, stupid dare.
I have been in four firefights, literally down range of machine guns and bullets whizzing around trying to find their mark, the middle of my chest or, yeah, my head. But, the night my best friend and I came across a Bigfoot that wanted us gone or, dead, well, that was scarier!
This all happened in 1979, the fall I remember. It was late October, still a bit warm for that time of the year in Idaho, but not unexpected.
My best friend and I were born and raised in Idaho; he also died there not 10 years later in a car accident upstate. While I headed off to a military career, he would end up getting into some trouble and mixing it up with some other bad behaviors that led to his death.
However, I miss my friend, even today, and I will check in with his mom from time to time who is now nearing the end of her life today.
I shared with her what happened that night a few years back; she thought we were nuts! And, said she would have spanked him had she known, even if he were around today. The thought makes me laugh even now.
But, what happened that night does not. Here is how it went down.
The classic ‘stand by me’ attitude.
Yeah, we thought ourselves that fearless, even courageous.
Back then, divorce was on the rise, but it was still not the epidemic it is today. My best friend and I were, however, raised by single moms. I guess that is what brought us together at first, we met when our mothers met in a group for divorcees, and we hung out that evening, and practically every day after that.
As we grew older, we were a little reckless to tell you to the truth, and sometimes ended up in some trouble with not just our own mother’s, but the police a few times. It was never too serious, but mischief is mischief.
By the time we were 15 though, things did calm down for us in the ‘being too reckless‘ department as our mothers started taking us to church on a regular basis, and we both were part of the local Boy Scouts organization.
But, we were still brave we believed, and when given the dare to not only visit the local haunted house, or cabin more like it, we were in, we took up that challenge!
It was a couple of days after Halloween I remember when we decided to hang out with some friends at a local arcade and do some skateboarding in the parking lot that had some great terrain for us.
It was during a short break in the mayhem of skating when myself, my buddy, and I think about 4-5 other friends were sitting on the sidewalk when the conversation of the old haunted cabin came up.
One of our friends, he was a pretty honest kid by the way, but he started talking about his Halloween with his family a couple of nights before. Eventually, the conversation found its way to the old cabin that I had seen twice up to that point in my life.
I never hung out long because it is a ways outside of town, and I was a kid when I did see it with my mother on a hike both times.
It was an old rustic thing that still stood at the time. It even had glass still in the windows, well, except one was busted out on the backside of the cabin I remember.
Anyways, he was talking about how it was the home of an old trapper back in the day his father had told him at one time or another. The story was pretty straightforward, thrilling I supposed, but I never believed it at first.
The story goes that the old trapper had built the cabin not knowing that there were, or was, some monster that lurked out there during the fall and winter months. He built it in the spring, lived and trapped all summer, then that was it, one day he was found torn apart and half eaten by a wild animal.
Now the story goes that he haunts the place during those particular times of the year warning people to leave, to not stay there as the supposed monster of the woods would, in fact, eat them.
I shrugged it off and even blurted out some passive comment that caught the attention of all sitting there sucking down Slurpees. That was a mistake I made that I would never forget.
At that moment, and to make this part of my story short, I was dared to go out there, spend the night, and not be eaten alive!
Personally, I was not scared of the dark, seriously, some kids were afraid of the dark, but not me, I was one of the few who could have cared less about it.
My best friend though, well, he believed the story and the last thing he wanted to see was me eaten alive by some creature of the woods or freaked out about seeing a ghost. So, not only did he say he would go with me, but we used the fact for the old “I’m going to sleep over at the friend’s house, and we are going elsewhere” trick with the parents.
Well, it worked, of course.
The weather was cold, but not cold enough to be worried about freezing at night, it would get cold, but the upper 40’s is not bad at all, especially for that area and during the first day or two of November.
I lived on the outskirts of town, the west side. Beyond me was forested area for the most part, and the cabin itself was only a few miles back at the most I remember.
I had never heard a thing around my own house; I had never seen a single thing out of the ordinary until that night either. We would not even last a single night out there so that you know.
Bigfoot was the last thing on my mind, I did not believe I guess, or more like I never really thought about it, period. As I said, ghosts, Bigfoot, and whatever else you could throw at me was of no worry up to that point, I was not afraid of the dark, or what some people might believe was in it.
Well, that was about to change.
We told the parents the classic story of staying at the others house so we could take off and head out on the dare. By the way, if I won, if I could stay out there all night I’d get my friends new skateboard from a new company at the time called Powell-Peralta!
It was going to be a total steal, or at least I thought it would be.
We took off early actually, about 3:30 in the afternoon I recall. It took us all of 25 minutes to trot, walk, and run a bit to the old cabin.
There it was, in the middle of a large clearing that was surrounded by trees. The old cabin was run down, one broken window like I said, but, for the most part, it was still livable surprisingly enough.
Inside was half an old wood stove, one long flat bed-like piece of furniture, and that was it, four walls, nothing more.
It was dirty inside, but the front door still worked so all that was in there was some raccoon droppings here and there and a lot of dust and cobwebs. We did try to clean up a bit, and my buddy lost the flip of a coin for the flat bed-like thing that was still sturdy enough to hold one of us.
It was getting dark faster being almost mid-fall by that point, and so we gathered some wood for a fire in the bottom half of the old stove.
Its cool at first, and I was daydreaming about that new board here and there for a bit.
By the time dusk rolled around, however, things had become a little, well, queer, even spooky.
Crunch, crunch, crunch…
We had a pan and a ton of Ramen Noodles to eat, plus a huge bag of candy from Halloween leftover for afterward. We got the fire started and were eating when I heard crunching, as in something walking in the forest.
It was too dark to see anything, even as it came closer and closer. It was walking fast as it approached until all of a sudden when it seemed to be just beyond the trees, it stopped.
I remember looking over at my buddy, and he said it was probably a bear, or mountain lion and realized we were here.
I wish that were the case.
Seconds later we heard lighter footsteps, and that is what was weird about it all of a sudden, it sounded like footsteps.
“Go home buttheads!” I heard my friend yell out into the dark.
Funny thing, we listened as the footsteps seem to disappear after a few moments east of the cabin. He told me it was most likely our friends trying to scare us. That made sense all of a sudden and my heart seemed to stop beating so hard as we headed back inside for the night.
At the window.
I do not remember what time it was exactly my buddy woke me up, but he did. He was accusing me of farting and stinking up the place to high heaven.
As I came to from a deep and surprisingly comfortable sleep, I smelled it too. Some have said it smells like rotten flesh and whatnot. Personally, it smelled like wet dog and garbage. But, but actual rotten flesh? Maybe, but it was overwhelming either way.
We both held our arms over our noses for a few moments when I looked at my buddy and noticed just behind him through the window movement.
I freaking screamed!
My buddy was as fast as lightening moving from where he was at and diving over towards me and looking back at the nastiest thing we’d ever seen up to that point in our lives.
It was like a really scary monkey-like face with the nose of a human, however. Hairy, except around the eyes and forehead. Its eyes were dark, beady, and it had a look like it was, well, pissed off we were even there.
The haunted stories of this place came flooding into my head, and I realized this place was haunted alright, haunted by BIGFOOT!
My buddy started whispering what we knew this thing to be, a Bigfoot. However, as he whispered, I could tell he was freaking out as much as I was, and even near the point of peeing ourselves. You have no idea what it is like, the fear that is when you are standing in front of one of these monsters.
It was looking at us, breathing heavily and eventually, making matters worse for our fear at that point, it reached in through the broken window and made a swipe at us with its large hairy, stinky arm!
I swear that arm was long, like really, really long. We were on the opposite side of the cabin and that things arm reached nearly to the halfway point of it. We were extremely frightened by then.
It was bent over too. You could tell this things head was as high or a bit higher than the eve of the roof. Yes, it was a small cabin, one roomer, but the roof was still at least, if I remember correctly, nearly 7-feet or so off the ground.
It turned and started walking around the backside of the cabin, and before we knew it, it was already at the front door. My heart stopped as it seems to either slap or punch it so hard it felt at first it was going to fall off.
We were not sure what we were going to do except one thing, get the heck out of there! Quick thinking by my buddy I swear saved us. He dove through the window the second that thing started whaling on the front door, and I followed him.
It was cold, the ground was wet, and before I could even look back, that monster had crashed through the front door of that cabin. It did not enter it but stood there screaming which was such an awful sound I froze in fear until my buddy grabbed my arm and pulled me off into the treeline.
I did not look back, neither did he I noticed, even when we heard that thing stomping through the forest behind us.
For almost 2 miles of the nearly 3-mile leg back to my house we heard that thing crashing through the undergrowth and tearing through limbs of trees as it closed in on us.
Before the nightmare ended, we would see this thing clearly as it would give us a scare that had me wet myself.
We came to an opening in the trees, the only one we’d see from that point on until we reached my back acre of property. Before we made it to the other side, we could feel this thing right behind us.
It screamed so loud I tripped and fell scraping my knee real bad. My buddy gasped as he looked back and there it stood, a giant of the forest, a scary, ugly, smelly monster of a creature screaming at us as if it wanted to eat us or something.
It was covered in dark hair, however, with what light available, there seemed to be white streaks on its chest and shoulders. It screamed again, that sent us into panic mode, and we started running through the forest without care, we just wanted to be home!
It did not follow us any further than that clearing, at least we did not hear it anymore by the time we hit my property.
Out of breath, and in hot water.
I think the scream must have woke my mother as we entered the backyard I saw her standing there, and with a frantic look on her face.
She said she heard something scream several times.
We were in hot water though, the both of us.
She took us inside, and we told her our story, my mom, well, she was a true comforter. She believed every word we said and even mentioned an old story of her own about how she and her grandpa and grandma had seen something like that cross the highway once up in northern Idaho.
She calmed us down and let us stay up until we could no longer keep our eyes open. And, to our relief, she never said a word to my buddies mom either, it all kept between us.
Today my mom and I still share the story from time to time about that night and what she had seen as a little girl. It ended up being one of those nights you never forget, and one that helps you grow that mother and son relationship that lasts a lifetime and beyond.
Well, that’s my story, and we’ll let you know if we ever see or hear anything again… Oh, one other thing, “thanks, Tommy, for all the memories bud.”
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