A South Carolina Sighting

This sighting occurred in Pickens County, South Carolina in approximately 1981. I have since spoken with the witness and he has agreed to allow us to use his name. His name is Robby Raines and he’s spent his career in Law Enforcement. Also, I checked the BFRO database and there were other sightings in that same area at the same time, so that really corroborates his story. I spoke with him via video chat, and he was very sincere and forthright about his sighting. I could also see that, even after all these years, it still affected him profoundly. The following is his account, in his own words. The only edits I made were punctuation and grammar.

D.A. Roberts

The Nightmare Hunter Project

Ok this will probably be long, and I know that I am not the writer that you are, but I will try to describe my first encounter to you as best I can. As I told you earlier, I am also in law enforcement and have been since 1996 so I’m now one of the grizzled old veterans. I say that to let you know that like yourself, I prescribe to the evidence and what the evidence shows or tells me. I became an officer to follow in my stepfather’s footsteps and I approach things in much the same way as him.

He retired from Our local county Sheriff’s Office. After 25 years as a Lieutenant in the juvenile division of the Criminal Investigation Division and then he went and worked another 15 years as a School Resource Officer at one of the small municipalities within the county. This encounter happened in early 1981. Dad was a Sergeant on the road at the time and he was on second shift on the day in question, so he was not at home. We live in a small community in Pickens County, South Carolina, which was very rural back in those days.

We lived in the Dacusville community and there was a lot of woods and farmland and not much else. Back in those days we still sat on the front porch in the summer evenings and talked instead of what most people do nowadays. This one summer night, my mom and I, along with my grandparents and my great grandparents were sitting on my great grandparent’s front porch. Well, my mom and the others were sitting on the porch, and I was inside my great grandparents’ house watching TV. It was probably after 2100 hours (9 PM) because it was dark outside when I finished watching whatever show I was watching.

My great-grandparent’s house was just an old-style farmhouse with an open floor plan and where I was in the house was the den and it directly lined up with the kitchen and the back porch. So, from where I stood up to turn off the TV, I could look straight into the kitchen, the back porch, and right out the storm door into the back yard. As I turned the TV off, and to this day I do not know why I looked to my right instead of walking straight out onto the front porch where my family was, but I looked to my right after turning off the TV and the back storm door was 15 to 20 feet away from me.

The light was on in the room I was in, but no other lights were on inside the house, so as I looked out the storm door, I saw a big shape standing in the door. I wasn’t sure what I was seeing at first or if I was seeing anything at all other than a trick with the shadows and lights, but then I saw it move. And it moved exactly how you described it in Odin’s Call. That side-to-side sway. I will never, as long as I live, forget that movement.

The top of its head was at the top of the storm door and the significance of that is that the top of that door was probably a good 12 feet off the ground. I sat there staring at this thing for what seemed like forever, but was most likely only a moment, staring into the deep sunken black eyes. It had black leathery looking skin on its face, and it had dark fur/hair everywhere else I could see. It constantly did the side-to-side sway, but it followed my movement with its eyes. I was terrified but I found the courage to finally run outside to my mom and grandparents on the front porch.

Long story short, nobody believed what I saw. At least at that time. My stepdad was on a call and being before the cellphone age we could not get a message to him, but my mom did call my uncle to come down and try and talk me down. My Uncle, who I also looked up too, is no small man. At this time, he was probably close to 6’6 and weighed over 350. He played college football and was a center, so you get the picture.

Anyway, he went to the back porch and stood in the doorway to see if maybe I saw a person looking in on me, but he did not even come close to taking up the doorway like the creature had, and he was standing on the steps and his head was not at the same height as the creature’s. The next day, my dad looked for any footprints, but it had not rained in a few weeks, so the ground was really hard packed and there was no sign of anything.

Like I said nobody believed me then, but my stepdad has since become a believer and believes that I did in fact see a bigfoot that night. I have always believed that is what I saw, and I have been laughed at many times when I told this story, but it is what it is, and I saw what I saw. I would love to sit down and talk to you sometime, either on the phone, or face to face and discuss this and my other encounters further. Anyways, thank you for your interest in my encounter.


That’s his story in his own words. I, for one, totally believe him. You can check for yourself on the BFRO website. Just check Pickens County, South Carolina. I look forward to more conversations with Robby and plan to have a beer with him the next time I’m in South Carolina. I even want to visit the spot where the sightings occurred.

Folks, this is what the Nightmare Hunter Project is all about. You can help and become a member of the project. Strange things are happening every day, all around us. You just have to look beyond the shadows. Welcome to The Nightmare Hunter Project.


The Ozarks Howler

The Ozarks Howler

The Ozarks Howler

The Ozark Mountains are part of one of the oldest geologic formations on the planet, the St. Francois Mountains, which date back to the Protozoic age. Over the ages, these mountains have eroded and shifted, leaving little of what they once were. What remains is scattered sections of highlands that range from Ohio to Texas. A large section of this extinct mountain range is the Ozark Mountains or Ozarks Highlands. Ranging from just south of St. Louis, they run through Missouri, Arkansas, and parts of Kansas and Oklahoma. By extension, they join with the Ouachita Mountains of Arkansas and Oklahoma, offering a vast area of heavy forests, waterways, lakes, rivers, valleys, caves, and thick brush. This provides the perfect backdrop for all sorts of legends, tales, and cryptids. But every legend has its roots in the truth.

Since the settlement of the Ozarks Region by European settlers, there have been strange tales of creatures in the woods. The entire area is rich with folklore, legends, stories, and myth. Stories of creatures like the Missouri Wildman, MoMo the Monster, ghostly apparitions, strange creatures, hauntings, and the Ozarks Howler. These stories date back to the early 1800s, long before stories of Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster were ever heard reported. Some of these stories even predate European settlers, coming from the Native American tribes that lived in the area for centuries before the first explorers arrived in the area. Even in modern times, sightings are still being reported. Out of the dozens of eyewitness reports, many more go unreported. In some cases, hundreds of accounts go unreported because of the insular and untrusting nature of the people who live in remote areas.

Dozens of blog entries could be written, just focusing on the Ozarks. More will undoubtedly come from that area, but this article will focus on one, the Ozarks Howler. If you’ve never heard of the Ozark’s Howler, then you’re not alone. Many people outside the Ozarks haven’t. As legends go, it’s very localized and seldom reported. The origins of the legend are lost to antiquity but easily trace back to the first settlers in the area.

The Ozarks Howler is also known as the Ozarks Black Howler, the Black Howler, Devil Cat, the HooHoo, and the Nightshade Bear. Eyewitness accounts of the Ozarks Howler describe a massive predator, roughly the size of a bear. Descriptions mention glowing red eyes that can be seen from a distance. Witnesses also describe a creature with a body of a bear or large dog. Some accounts say it’s a large cat, bigger than a mountain lion. They all describe the coat as being black with thick, shaggy fur. Accounts also describe the creature as having horns. Descriptions vary, calling them deer-like or like the horns of a ram. Then there is the howl, which is said to sound like a mixture of a wolf’s howl and the bugling of an elk. A blood-curdling scream that is said to turn the blood to ice in your veins.

Accounts of the Howler range from sightings to animal attacks and mutilations, to missing people. People who have had a face-to-face encounter describe the feeling of fear and pure evil. Undoubtedly, whatever they saw frightened them deeply. Having spoken to several witnesses personally, I have found their accounts to be credible and the fear in their eyes told me that they weren’t lying. Over the years, I have developed a good sense of when someone is making up a story and there are always inconsistencies. Unfortunately, some people seem to delight in hoaxing or making up stories, which is terrible. Hoaxes and lies only serve to discredit actual accounts, making it harder for the truth to be found. Due to the negativity in the press and stigma placed on people who have had encounters, many true accounts are never reported.

One of the earliest accounts of the Ozarks Howler was from Daniel Boone, who claimed to have wounded one and later to have encountered it again new Cuba, Missouri, where he was able to kill it.  Allegedly, he had the animal stuffed and added to the collection of trophies he kept in his home. This can be verified by a letter written by Boone, himself, to his sister.

During my research, I have found several similar legends that range across the United States and beyond. The legend of the Shunka Warakin is remarkably like the Howler. As are the Black Dogs of Death from English Folklore. The legend of the Black Dog is an omen of death and misfortune. There are other similarities to the Cù-Sìth of Scottish folklore, the Barghest of Northern England, the Black Shuck of East Anglia, and most notably, the Hellhound. This could be due to overlapping of the legends or, possibly, that they were all describing the same creature.

Whatever the origins of the legend, it has been part of the local folklore for over two hundred years. Despite claims of hoaxes and false stories, there are still sightings happening all over the Ozarks. There are numerous similarities to the appearance of these creatures as well as the behaviors exhibited. Far too many similarities to dismiss them outright. Add to that the fact that many eyewitnesses are telling the truth, then we start seeing a pattern. Say there are a thousand reports. Tossing out 90 percent of those reports as false would still leave you with one hundred reports that aren’t false. If even one report is true, then that means the creature must exist. Now, I know from experience, the percentage of false or hoax reports is much smaller than the percentage of honest accounts. That’s very telling.

Some accounts could be a simple misidentification. Many accounts are from experienced hunters and woodsmen who know the animals in their area. I cannot accept that every account is a simple misidentification of a known animal. I once read that “Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, however improbably, must be the truth.”

I submit to you that it is impossible to dismiss all these reports as either a hoax or misidentification of a known animal. I’ve interviewed too many people personally to ever believe that they’re all making it up. Too many people have seen something in those dark Ozarks woods, things that they know shouldn’t exist. Yet, saw them, they did. The experience haunts them to this day, casting doubt on every odd sound they hear in the night or outside their own homes. Fear like that leaves a stain that you carry with you for the rest of your life. You can’t fake that kind of fear. That’s how I know they weren’t lying.

So, the next time you find yourself walking alone in those deep, dark Ozarks hills and you see glowing red eyes followed by a blood-curdling howl, try telling yourself it’s just a wolf. It’s just a cougar or something similar. Convince yourself that those glowing red eyes aren’t following you. Try not to run, because that’s the worst thing you can do. It triggers the hunting response in predators. They will chase you and you will not escape.

The Ozarks Howler is out there. It’s very real to the people who have experienced it, firsthand. Sightings have been around since the early 1800s and continue to this day. It’s easy to sit behind your computer or television and dismiss these creatures as pure myth, as a hoax, or just as the imaginings of a scared person. It’s quite another to be out in the deep woods at night when the howling starts, and you can see the red eyes in the distance. The old expression “there are no atheists in foxholes” comes to mind. Don’t believe me? I can give you a few places to go and see for yourself. Don’t forget to take a good flashlight.

There are many strange things in the world that we don’t fully understand. Science discovers new species every day. Most are just insects, but sometimes they find something big. We’re fooling ourselves by saying that we know everything there is to know about this planet. There are places in those Ozarks woods, and in many places in the world, where man either has never been or rarely goes. Those woods are dark, deep, and mysterious. They have yet to reveal to us all that they know.

I believe that the Ozarks Howler is out there. Much like Bigfoot or the Dogman, I do believe they exist. We cannot, in our hubris, dismiss the legends and folklore of the Native Americans. All three of those creatures were known to them. We’re fools to ignore their wisdom. You do so at your peril.

I am the Nightmare Hunter. This is what I do. Join me as I search for the truth. Be safe, be careful, take precautions, and do not go alone. The Nightmares are real.

#cryptids #cryptid #bigfoot #cryptozoology #sasquatch #aliens #paranormal #ghosts #ufos #ufo #mothman #bigfootsighting #bigfootisreal #creepy #conspiracytheories #haunted #spooky #monsters #yeti #fringe #sighting #sightings #documentary #wendigo #wisconsin #fringescience #greys #alien #ozarkshowler