Storytelling has been part of the human experience since the beginning. Early humans painted animal figures on cave walls worldwide, and everyone from primitive tribesmen to American cowboys sat around campfires sharing tales about tracking and hunting prey.
In fact, hunters and anglers today carry on that tradition wherever and whenever they gather. The outdoors remains part of our shared experience, even if we regularly stretch the truth or manipulate the details.
Although we often question these tales, some of the most bizarre stories are unquestionably true. For example, the following three stories might sound crazy and unbelievable, but they’re certifiably true. Trust us! We couldn’t make them up if we tried!
1. Bear and Man Meet Face to Face in a Treestand
Can you imagine what you’d do if a bear got all up in your grill? You don’t have to. Watch this video of a hunter who keeps his cool in a treestand as a black bear climbs his tree to eye level, sniffs around to investigate, and then calmly descends. What would you have done? Scream? Cry? Jump?
2. Three Hunters Take Unintended Swim with 650-pound Gator
A husband-and-wife team hooked into a large alligator the night of Sept. 2, 2016. The gator tangled their lines in underwater debris, forcing them to call for help. After a second boat arrived, the gator surfaced and slammed into the boat so hard that its bow lifted out of the water. The impact knocked three of the five boatmates overboard. Brian Broom, who wrote the original article chronicling the event, described the scene: “If you’ve ever fallen out of a boat, you already know it can be a startling event. But falling out of a boat at night almost on top of an angry gator estimated to weigh over 650 pounds can be downright frightening.” Luckily, the men were pulled back into the boat, and later landed the 12-foot, 6-inch gator. And they have the pictures to prove it!
3. Moose Tempts Fate, and Then Licks the Hunter’s Broadhead
Many bowhunters have documented close calls with big-game animals since the invention of cameras, but the encounter in this video with a cow moose is unique. Watch as the mature cow wanders through a windy woods toward a statue-like bowhunter. Once the cow reaches the bowhunter, her curiosity causes her to smell and lick the guy’s broadhead! Talk about fearless!
Did your jaw drop? Yeah, ours did, too.
Lots of crazy stuff happens in the woods. If you make time in nature a priority, chances are you have some incredible stories of your own. Treasure them, but don’t become complacent. Be safe, be smart and respect the environment. The best stories always have happy endings.