The Appalachian Trail is one of America's most famous hiking paths. The massive journey spans close to 2,200 miles and runs from Maine to Georgia and is the longest hiking-only trail in the world. With that big of an impact on our culture and history, it's no wonder so many urban legends and scary stories are based around the trail.Much of the Appalachian Trail is desolate and remote, cutting through mountains and thick forests. And when you've been hiking for a few days, haven't seen civilization in a while, your mind can start to play tricks on you. Or maybe not. Maybe there really are unexplained incidents and creatures lurking in the woods. Check out the list below to read about the creepiest stories to come out of the Appalachian Trail, and decide for yourself whether the hike is still something you want to do. Vote up the creepy Appalachian Trail stories that scare you the most.
Kidnapped By Mysterious Men
In 1988, a man was hiking along the trail when he underwent a traumatic experience perhaps more frightening than a ghostly encounter. He was hiking on the trail when he noticed a bright light coming from the forest next to him. Not wanting to bother anyone, he didn't investigate, but set up camp somewhere close by.
He awoke in the middle of the night to find a man standing over his hammock. Startled, the man quickly fled and yelled to unseen people that the hiker was awake. The hiker was terrified and quickly packed up to put as much distance between them as possible.
A few days of non-stop hiking finally allowed the hiker to relax a little bit, but that night, he was sleeping in his hammock when suddenly he was cut down, wrapped up, and dragged away. He was beaten mercilessly while the people shouted at one another as they were preparing something. Luckily, The hiker was able to cut through the hammock and escape. Even though he made it back to civilization, police inquiries into finding the people who kidnapped him came back with nothing.
Stalked by Unknown Forces
A young couple was hiking on the Appalachian trail in the southern part of Virginia when experienced something they could not explain. While they were asleep in their tent one night, they suddenly woke up to the sound of rustling and odd noises coming from outside their tent. The man went out to investigate and managed to scare off some figures he saw lurking around. He almost chased after them, but then decided against it.The next night, they made camp with their backs to a cliff in order to be prepared. They both slept with guns next to them and sure enough, the figures returned. Once the man announced they were armed, the figures retreated. The next day, the couple hustled to get out of there. Around midday, they rounded a corner and saw a silhouette of a figure standing in the distance, watching them from afar. They quickly were able to get off the trail and back to civilization, but the whole time they felt they were being watched.
This Isn't the Appalachian Trail
Children usually make everything creepier, and that's what makes this man's tale even more frightening. By his account, he was backpacking along the Appalachian Trail with a few people, when something bizarre happened. He and his group awoke one morning to find their campsite surrounded by a thick mist. As they were packing up, they started to hear children's laughter coming from all around them.Once they were about done packing up, a group of children lead by one parent walked out of the mist and started to walk past the group. The kids asked the backpackers where they were going, and someone responded that they were hiking the Appalachian Trail. The kids started to laugh and one of them said, "This isn't the Appalachian Trail," and kept walking. Throughout the day, the campers could hear the children giggling all around them.
Phantom on the Appalachian Trail
In May 1972, a hiker saw a ghost from another time. The hiker was walking alone and noticed a heavy ground fog had started to surround him. He looked up and saw a person walking with a heavy coat and wide-brimmed hat. The man slowly staggered about, looking at the ground as if he was looking for something he had lost. The man started walking toward the hiker, still looking down at the ground, so the hiker moved to avoid him.When they were close to each other, the man suddenly looked at the hiker, who instantly became afraid of the man's cloudy, blue eyes that stared straight through him. He was also shocked to realize that the man's clothes all seemed to come from a different time period. The hiker tried to say hello, but the man did not respond. After the hiker walked a little distance, he turned back only to discover the man had completely disappeared.