Polk County, Wisconsin

Near St. Croix Falls, WI

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Polk County Wisconsin (Class B) BFRO

June 2014

We set out to do some squatching at Interstate State Park in Wisconsin. Our party consisted of 4 adults and 2 children. We set up camp and had dinner in the South Campground. After dark we began our first night op at 10pm. We left my wife and the 2 year old in camp with the fire. Nick, his pregnant wife Jennie, their 5 year old son Atticus, and I went up a small ridge above our campsite to begin. We walked slowly working south east of camp and further from the campground. After about 5 minutes we heard something in the woods following us intermittently we stopped and waited with lights off for about 4 minutes. We continued to walk and stop with lights off until we got about a half mile from the camp. At this point Atticus, the 5 year old, was ready to go back. We started back and then stopped to do some whoops. I did two whoops spaced about 30 seconds apart, no returned noises. We continued to walk and stop. When we were halfway back we let Atticus try some whoops. He did two about 30 seconds apart. After his second whoop there was an immediate response from within a hundred yards of us. It was a slightly higher pitch whoop than I have heard before. We waited about 4 minutes before continuing to go back to camp. When we were about 100 yards from camp we stopped. Jennie and Nick remained with lights off as Atticus and I turned our flashlights on and returned to camp. As they sat by a tree they both heard something approaching them from the direction of the returned whoop. It got so close that Nick stood up. Then it took 'four large, quick, heavy steps' back. When Nick turned his flashlight on nothing was seen. They then returned to camp. As we sat and debriefed in camp we heard noises around camp, but dismissed them as raccoons. I was looking to the woods beyond camp and began to see orange eye shine. I thought it was a single star, but it moved lightly and would leave and return into view. The next morning I saw that where I was seeing the glow was well below the ridge line and could not have been a star. Nick and I traded places while sitting in camp and he saw the same shine leave and return a few times as well. Nick and I returned to near where he and Jennie had sat to leave an apple in a tree. We all went to bed around 12:30 am. Nick, Atticus, and I slept in a tent while Jennie, Sara and Hagen slept in a small teardrop camper. After falling asleep Nick and I both woke up abruptly at 1:35am. We immediately looked outside the tent to see a raccoon on the picnic table. When we made noises to scare it away we heard something else moving around camp. We listened for a while before returning to sleep. At 3:10 am we were woke up again. We listened for a while, heard nothing, and went back to bed. In the morning Jennie told us what happened to them in the camper. At 1:35 am she was woke up not by the raccoon on the picnic table, but by something large walking in the woods behind camp. She heard us scare away the raccoon and whatever was in the woods walked off. At 3:10 am something started to shake the camper. She said the camper was moved back and forth 3 times. Her reaction was to laugh out loud from inside the camper. She laughed because Sara and Hagen were sleeping through the event. The shaking stopped and she heard something retreat back into the woods.

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