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COUNTY: Todd County
NEAREST TOWN: Long Prairie
NEAREST ROAD: US highway 71
OBSERVED: Around 1989, I was home from college for a weekend in the Spring--April or May--with my best friend, and since we were looking for a little cash to earn, my parents hired us to clean out the garage of boxes, paper, etc. We decided to get my dad's tractor and hook the wagon up to it, throw the garbage in and haul to a burning pile we used to burn brush, and now the contents of the garage--this burn pile is about 200-250 yards from the house next to a woods that my parents owned. Next to the woods has always been a farm field, usually grown with alfalfa and around 150 acres; leading up to the brush pile is long, tall grass with sparse trees here and there with an old barn and old house nearby (both abandoned).
We worked through the afternoon cleaning the garage, getting a sizable load on the wagon until it over flowing. We decided to finally go down to the pile, dump off what we had and leave the remaining garbage for another trip once we got the fire going. It was beginning to get dark as my friend and I took the tractor and wagon to the pile, unloaded it, and started a very big fire (with my parents’ permission). Both of us stayed and unloaded the entire trailer and made sure it wasn't going anywhere--I remember vividly that it was dead calm that evening.
I asked my friend if he thought one of us should go get the remaining garbage, which was agreed upon, and somehow I was the one to go back with the tractor while he stayed back to tend the fire. I suppose I was gone at most, 20 minutes to half hour, and returned. I shut off the tractor and threw a few things on the fire and decided to take a break. As I was standing there next to my friend I didn't give it much thought, but he was very quiet and seemed almost serious. Suddenly, I heard a sound like someone (thing) was running around the perimiter of the fire and us just far enough out of the light of the fire to see any movement. I looked at my friend and said something like "Did you just hear that?" He replied, "Since you left, I have been hearing very strange noises all around me, and I have standing as close to the fire as possible". I could see that he was visibly shaking and had definite "fear" in his eyes. That is when trees started breaking in the woods, and I'm not talking about a twig breaking, it sounded like limbs from the trees were being torn out of the trunks, and becoming more and more frequent and increasing in size. At that point, we began hearing the "running" again--this time, it was multiple "things" running and at a speed that no human could run--at least myself, and I was an athlete then-- they were "heavy" sounding. We both looked at each other and didn't want to be there any more--fire watch or no fire watch. We decided the only thing to do at this point just to feel safe was throw more boxes and stuff on the fire to keep whatever was messing with us at bay. As we were throwing garbage on the fire, I happened to look up, beyond the fire, and saw this dark, black "figure" deftly moving along the perimeter of the woods and suddenly duck back into the woods--at most, 100 yards away. I said, "Forget it! Get on the tractor, we're getting out of here!" I started the tractor, and my friend instinctively grabbed the pitchfork with us, jumped on the wagon and basically guarded us if something was to "attack", which didn't happen. We didn't go back that night. I did return the following morning to make sure the fire was out, which it was. I also went into the woods to see if I could find any tracks but there were so many leaves that I found nothing. The fields too, had growth on them and were hard packed.
I purchased the land about 8 years ago from my mom, and I spend a lot of time up there cutting wood and playing around with my kids, friends and relatives; and every time I drive by the perimeter of the woods, I think to myself, from the distance that figure had to be 7-8 feet tall, maybe taller--and quick. My friend and I are still best friends and do a lot together, and when we're alone, we talk about that event occasionally and both of us still get a little rattled about that evening, because we still feel like we were intentionally chased out of there, possibly because of the fire? Warmth? Abandoned buildings to nest in? We still ponder those variables.
When this happened, it was so weird that I can’t explain—these beings were like goblins. They intentionally did things by making us think that there isn’t something ordinary about this evening. They didn’t need to attack us to get us to leave, just break some branches and run around us; however, this was enough to paralyze us with fear. Let’s be honest, when night falls, humans are severely limited in our faculties: we can’t see in the dark—are dependent on light, and really cannot function in any remote behavior like these beings.
ALSO NOTICED: Wish i knew what to look for, but looked for the tree branches broken--however, I looked for branches snapped off trees--in the spring after winter, there is brush and branches everywhere so i thought something like this looking for a needle in the haystack.. I didn't realize these beings can literally twist a small tree trunk, so that may have been the case as I have learned that recently....
OTHER WITNESSES: yes--best friend
OTHER STORIES: yes--other BF sites in Ottertail and Wadena counties
TIME AND CONDITIONS: About 9:00 pm
ENVIRONMENT: There is a woods that fills close to a section near--600 plus acres. A 125 acre lake which feeds a small steam which leads through my property, diverse array of hardwood forest, willow scrub, meadows, farm fields, and cat-tail swamp with City of Long Prairie very close.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Andy P.:
I interviewed the witness by phone and have the following to add to his report:
- The area contains tracts of woodland (some quite large), farmland, swamps, a small town, streams and a few lakes.
It was completely dark by the time the witness returned to the fire with the second load.
- The witness describes the animal he saw near the woods as being between seven and eight feet tall, as estimated on a tree it passed by (he has been back to this spot on numerous occasions since the sighting). The animal moved “like a football player going through the tires” likely due to the tussocks in the area.
- One thing he forgot to mention in his report is that, as they were throwing the last load on the fire, he also briefly saw the head and shoulders of another animal peek out at them from behind an old trailer that was parked on the site near the woods about seventy yards from them. He noted the head as being tall without a neck. This glimpse was very brief as it quickly ducked back behind the trailer.
- He did not see any details of the animals, only their silhouettes.
- It is possible that the two young men were being pranked by local boys, but I find that unlikely as the animals moved around them in complete darkness with ease and speed, even through the woods, despite the area beyond the fire being completely dark.
- In the interim, he has noticed a few other things out of place in the area from time to time. Occasionally, his mother's dog is too frightened to go out to the woods with him, which is strange behavior for this dog. Other dogs in the area have gone missing or been found killed with broken bones. Recently, the witness and a friend found a three inch diameter tree near his new hunting stand twisted off and down. They cannot figure out how it could have happened naturally in the deep woods with no other trees having been damaged in the area.
I found this witness to be very credible. He has a degree in Natural Science and was very knowledgeable about animal behavior and the animals of the local area.
About BFRO Investigator Andy P.:
Andy P. lives in Minnesota. He is a professional writer with a degree in English and Biology. His interest dates back to his first sighting in 1985.
He attended the following BFRO expeditions:
- 2006 Wisconsin I
- 2007 Michigan
- 2008 Michigan
- 2008 Minnesota (private)
- 2009 Wisconsin
- 2009 Minnesota (organizer)