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  1. #1
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    Strange, Weird and Unexplained in the Woods

    This is a rehash of a post I put up on the Nemba site a few years back that was pretty entertaining. Some of you guys probably read/contributed to it but I think there's also some other new folks and some new stories. Whadya got?

    Bigfoot, UFO's, Black Helicopters, etc in New England riding spots

    Anyone have any good stories of strange/unexplained happenings in your neck of the woods? Ever do a night ride near the old mental hospital in Belmont? Ever gone on a 20 mile solo ride in Freetown and been creeped out the whole time? Do you know anyone who's been abducted by a UFO? Or are all ghosts, bigfoots, ufo's, etc just pseudo science?

    Night riding solo is always an experience. I think twilight is the time that plays with your mind the most. I always tell myself that there is nothing to fear in the woods. There's no people out there, right. Any animals out here can't hurt me and they're gonna be trying to get out of my way. What's the worst thing that could happen? It's not like I'm going to see a dead body out here or anything.......DEAD BODY!!!!!!! Ah!!!! That's always when the log on the side of the trail looks like a dead body, giving you a huge blast of adrenaline.

    I used to ride Freetown in southeast MA a lot, before it got chewed up by dirt bikes. (edit - rode there yesterday and it was awesome). I never knew the history of it (Indian legends, gang/drug murders, satanic cults..... http://www.masscrossroads.com/bristolfreetown) but loved how I could ride for hours and never see another person. Some of my buddies hated it, said it gave off a really weird vibe. That made me want to ride it more and i did see a few weird things. At one point on the Freetown map, there was a place marked 'pet cemetary'. This was deep in the forest, far from any paved roads. Buddy and I found ourselves there after a few hours of pedaling and went to check it out. As we approached it I got the sense something wasn't right. A bunch of the little headstones were tipped over. There were fresh piles of dirt all around. As we got closer we saw little coffins. Empty coffins. Ok, that was enough. At that point, we figured we wanted nothingh to do with any deranged individuals disturbed enough to be way out here spending their time with such bizarre activities. I hate Massachusetts satanists.

    I've been lost in Freetown plenty of times. The place is huge and I'm often too stuborn to bring a map. I enjoy getting lost and finding my way out. A trail I was on once petered out into nothing and instead of backtracking, I decided to bushwhack to where I thought a trail might be. I soon find myself struggling through a nasty swamp, with very thick underbrush. I'd just seen the Blair Witch project and my mind was playing tricks on me and I kept thinnking I was seeing those weird little stick designs from the movie. It was mid winter and the late afternoon sun was sinking low. I was mentally preparing myself for a possible night stuck in the winter woods, missing a family function, with nobody having any idea where I was. With damp clothes, no emergency supplies, no lighter, this was either going to be a horrific night or my last night. The feeling of finding a trail as daylight was just about gone was unbelievable. Lesson learned, hopefully.

    Another time I'd lost my sense of direction and came upon a pickup parked on the side of a dirt road. Someone was in it. Great. I'm out of water and out of food, so I'll swallow my pride and ask for the quickest way back to a road. I pull up and notice the person is taking a nap. Who takes a nap way out here? Well, I'm in a bit of a desperate situation so I tap on the window. Nothing. Tap again. Nothing. I start wrapping on the window and the person is not moving. This wasn't a biker, or hiker, or hunter. This person looked a bit off. I could see them breathing but they wouldn't wake up. I pounded on the roof, but then figured, this might not be the type of person I want to be dealing with, unless I was looking for some smack or a knife to the throat. I pedal off taking my chances of getting out on my own.

    I know there's some other weird things I've seen in Freetown but my memory is a bit mushy these days. I do remember Buddy and I stopping at an intersection of some single track and a dirt road, taking a little breather. Soon we hear a car approaching. You don't see many cars out here, but sometimes hunters drive in for better access. But then we realize this car is screaming down the road and we can hear the tires spitting gravel everywhere. We decide to back way off the road and we soon see a pickup approaching. In it is a bunch of teens (those damn teenagers!). First thought is that they're just out in someone's car, messing around and driving like 17 year olds do. But as we watched the faces of the guys in the back of the truck go by, they didn't appear to be having fun. They were hanging on for their lives, looking terrified as their buddy put the pedal to the floor, speeding down this beat up road, way too fast to be safe. Weird. Why are they scared and driving so out of control? Then, we hear another car approaching. WTF? Now we back ourselves further into the woods off the trail. The next car comes spinning around the corner, pushing the limits of an old station wagon on a back road. We noticed a smashed out winshield as it gets closer. The driver is an older guy and his face is all bloody. This was not a happy looking and he was apparently hell bent on catching the kids. We just popped back deeper into the woods from there. I don't know who the good guys were here or who the bad guys were, but we really didn't have any interest in getting too involved. No idea what they did to him and no idea if he caught them, buut this certainly brings a strange vibe to a good Saturday afternoon ride.

    Last one for now...Again, a solo trip down to Freetown. I decide that instead of parking at the main lot, I'll drive in to get some better access to the deeper areas of the forest. I park and I'm going through the motions of pumping up tires, etc, when I hear a car bombing towards me. I watch as it approaches and does a sweet Dukes of Hazard skid turn and it bangs a right as at very high speed. It looked to be some kind of under cover cop car. Soon another similar car flies down the same road, but this one stops where I am. An official looking type guy gets out and starts grilling me as to who I am, why I'm there, etc. WTF?!? REalizing I'm not a major threat, he explains that there is a felon on the loose in the area with a major man hunt in progress and I should vacate the area immediately. Huh? Uh, ok. No worries. As he drives off I contemplate my options. I just drove 45 min to get here, I'm already to go, and I'm pumped and jacked to ride. There are no options. I am riding, felons be damned. Soon I come across to other mtb'ers. I ask if they heard about the man hunt. They hadn't. I explain my run in with the cops and they seemed a bit freaked out as I pretended to be completely nonchalant. They decide to follow me around, which was fine by me. We never did come across the felon, but it was pretty cool to have the police copters buzzing over our heads, giving it a bit of a Hollywood feel. Ah, Freetown, my kinda town.
    Last edited by Scott O; 09-12-2015 at 07:58 PM.

  2. #2
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    This is a weird but awesome post.

    Weirdest thing I've ever come across while MTBing:

    Last fall, night ride at LDT state forest. There is a group of large glacial erratics on/near Gumpus in a stand of pines. In daylight, it is easy to see that the largest has some graffiti and scorch marks from occasional fires. On this particular night there actually was a fire. I stopped maybe 30 feet from it, expecting to sneak up on some bums or high schoolers getting drunk. Or maybe that transvestite we'd all seen loitering around those woods that summer (2nd weirdest thing I've ever seen on a bike). Except there was nobody there by the fire. I called out "Hello? Anybody around?" My only answer was loud rustling just outside the ring of light cast by the fire. Clearly somebody who didn't want to be seen was lurking in the dark. But they wouldn't talk to me. It probably was just a couple of kids, but on the other hand, it was Lowell, and who knows? Could have been a drugged out bike troll waiting to mug me and steal my ride. I turned around and booked it out of there as fast as I could. Too fast - at one of the sharp turns my bike slid out from under me on the fall leaves. I bounced right up and kept going before I even realized I hit the ground - too bad I didn't have Strava, because there were definitely some KOMs in those 2 miles back to the car.

    You're right, Scott O: night riding is a very different experience. The woods take on a different personality after the sun goes down. And it's really creepy when you actually DO come across somebody - or something - that's not supposed to be there in the dark.
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  3. #3
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    I've seen some things at Trail of Tears... I think a lot of have that we would rather forget. But it wasn't UFOs or ghosts.

    Beyond the usual pickle park stories from TOT I was driving by one night and decided to grab a trail run before the sun set, I had little time. In the zone I tend to loose sight of surroundings and focus on the trail, suddenly out of the corner of my eye there is a dude standing off the trail trying to hide but obviously not really. Really spooked me. I had planned to backtrack, as the sun was setting now.

    He was wearing sweats in the cape summer and just looked...off. I asked if he had the time to break the silence and he just looked at me and turned around. I was five feet from him and it was so strange. I just took off and figured out a loop as darkness set in.

    Other than that night rides/skis/runs at Otis where I could hear the copters buzzing over head and once I ran into a fisher cat, but that was plain cool!
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  4. #4
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    I remember this post from the NEMBA forums - it led to some great stories!

    One that pops to mind for me right now was just a late afternoon ride at Callahan SP. As I was climbing up Gibbs Mountain on the north/ Marlboro side, this dude was walking down the hill. He generally seemed baked out of his mind and immediately if I'd ever had beer can chicken... "ya just jam a beer can in and cook it up!" He then asked if I wanted any.

    I politely declined and continued on my ride up as he wandered down the hill.... yikes.
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  5. #5
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    So, my most recent bike tour took me through south east MA, RI and the NE corner of CT. I'm stealth bike camping in RI on the CT border. Some Carbuncle pond wild life management area. A pond down a 2 mile dirt road with no signs. I get there after dinner with a sandwich and some cold IPA's. People swimming, fishing and families hanging out, great ,I swim and eat, set up the hammock 100 into the woods, out of sight, way past the parking area. 11:00 at night I'm woken up by buba trucks flying down the dirt road, lifted, diesel, music cranking, on a tuesday night. They fly past the parking area rocks 1/2 way into the water to get around them, doing donuts in the dirt, not that far away. Thank goodness for a dark green tarp covering me, the hammock and the bike. They are cranking speed metal, breaking bottles, Ok I'm going to die now. They do not see me, first rule of stealth camping. Large, 4" mortar fireworks, like pro grade stuff being set off, 100-150 ft in the air. Lighting up the giant white pine I'm behind. My little paring knife is way at the bottom of one of my bike bags. It's like dukes of hazard meets deliverance. Great. So after 1/2 hr, either the crack, meth or fireworks runs out, they leave, lights flashing across my trap as they spin out going back to their doublewides. Nice. Not so great sleeping after that. The next night I spent the $20.00 for a nice site in CT, much better.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by leeboh View Post
    The next night I spent the $20.00 for a nice site in CT, much better.
    Solid investment right there.
    Riding bikes rules!

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    Yup, best $ 20.00 ever at the Thompson, CT dam. A lean to, perfect for the hammock set up. Poured all night, and no crazy rednecks.

  8. #8
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    Weirdest thing I saw was in the Fells. Finished a ride and was getting my bike on the rack when movement caught my eye in the woods. I couldn't see clearly what it was because of the brush but I could see that it was walking on two legs. - It was about 1.5-2 feet tall. I tried following to get a better look but it was in dense brush and it walked away from my direction. I still can't figure out what that freaking this was.

    Another odd sight was also in the Fells; an old runner wearing nothing but sneakers. Trying to forget that image.

    Just after 911 I had the great idea to ride at Otis. I overshot the turnaround and approached the gate to the base. Guys in full camo came out of nowhere holding big guns surrounded my car. I checked with them that parking at the fish and game lot was okay and they said it was. Went back to that lot and was changing my clothes in the car when a Humvee pulled up quickly and more guys with guns surrounded my car. They freaked me out because of their aggressive posturing but I still got a ride in. :-)

    Also just after 911 I went for a solo night ride and noticed two lights at the bottom of a hill. They called after me and told me to wait right there. Ended up being two cops on full rigid bikes. They had to push their bikes up and were way out of breath when they got to me. Asked me a million questions about what I was doing there; at the time white middle aged guys on expensive mountain bikes must have still been seen as a threat to our nations water supplies.



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  9. #9
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    Guys these stories are awesome.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fitch View Post
    I remember this post from the NEMBA forums - it led to some great stories!

    One that pops to mind for me right now was just a late afternoon ride at Callahan SP. As I was climbing up Gibbs Mountain on the north/ Marlboro side, this dude was walking down the hill. He generally seemed baked out of his mind and immediately if I'd ever had beer can chicken... "ya just jam a beer can in and cook it up!" He then asked if I wanted any.

    I politely declined and continued on my ride up as he wandered down the hill.... yikes.
    Hahahahahahhahaha

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Locoman View Post

    Another odd sight was also in the Fells; an old runner wearing nothing but sneakers. Trying to forget that image.

    .
    Do you think the Naked Fells Runner has a season? Does he give up the naked running once the temperature goes below 40 degrees? Or does he still get out there in a sweatshirt, sneakers, and no pants? Or does he fly south and let it flop around in Florida for the winter months? Is the Naked Fells Runner even a thing anymore?

    Great stories all around in this thread - very entertaining.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Locoman View Post
    Just after 911...
    I read both those as 'Just after emergency services...'

    I think our apprehension at dusk comes from a time when it was the most dangerous point in the day for us to be exposed. Just enough ambient light so that our pupils weren't dilated enough to make out detail in shadows.

    Here's two images that settle well with that concept for me:

    Strange, Weird and Unexplained in the Woods-encroachingdarkness.jpg

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    Imagine you are standing among trees in the forest looking out over the clear horizon where there is a hint of light remaining. You see the blackness of the forest off in the distance, and understand that is how where you are standing appears to someone looking towards you from the opposite side. While it may still be light outside, the darkness has already claimed you. Abandon all hope.


    The weirdest thing I witnessed was from my front yard, nowhere near any significant woods. I was stargazing when something lit off like a rocket. I assumed it was a combat jet going for altitude at max power (afterburner), but it did not behave like the hundreds of scrambles I witnessed while in the service (got to see things launch/land every day from the airfield). It spent about 30 seconds in level flight, then very quickly rotated to a 70º climb.

    I pulled up my nocs (20x80) and could see the flame was oddly wide, like there were 10-12 GE F110's stacked side by side. I could not, however, make out a vehicle, or aviation lights, or individual flames.

    I thought it was 10-15 miles away, but later found a storm that hid it from view for a second during level flight was 50-60 miles away. It maintained the 70º climb to about 3x the height of the anvil, when the flames began to lose intensity and disappeared. It had not begun to rotate back to level flight, and was continuing to gain altitude when it disappeared.

    No rocket ranges within viewing distance (Ky). Didn't have the sloppy look of a rocket flame at lower altitudes, and definately wouldn't have been in horozontal flight for more than a second before a self-destruct command would have been sent. No clue.

    I've heard a lot of weird noises while camping/hiking, but they've all been small mammals and birds. They can make some really odd noises that I'm sure some mistake for cryptids.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott O View Post
    Do you think the Naked Fells Runner has a season? Does he give up the naked running once the temperature goes below 40 degrees? Or does he still get out there in a sweatshirt, sneakers, and no pants? Or does he fly south and let it flop around in Florida for the winter months? Is the Naked Fells Runner even a thing anymore?

    Great stories all around in this thread - very entertaining.
    I'm not sure about the naked guy; I pretty much stopped riding the Fells years ago because of one too many times getting dog crap on my tires and thus flung up my back..
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigflamingtaco View Post
    I read both those as 'Just after emergency services...'
    I meant just after September 11, 2001.
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  15. #15
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    I haven't seen the naked runner in a long time at the Fells. Plenty of other naked men that must really be into gardening since they are always on their knees...
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  16. #16
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    I only consider the existence of spirits when I am night riding alone.
    This one happened yesterday and was not spooky at all.
    I was riding intervals up the Great Blue Hill access road and down coon hollow after work until sundown.
    As I approached the stone observation tower, I noticed a guy with a photo tripod and umbrella lighting set up. No big deal until I passed and noticed that his subject was a 25ish year old woman. Naked. Posing. Next interval, still there. Next interval, sitting there in clothes. I had to stop to tell her that she looked good in clothes. Good for some extra pep in my step.
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    There's a area in cutler park Needham called naked man island. Back in the 90 there was a naked guy who would run through there. Back in the 80s when I was just learning to MTN bike in dover ma. I would run into " literally" a naked dude running through the the woods. I always wondered if he moved from Dover to Needham to escape the ever increasing numbers of mountain bikers...

  18. #18
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    Great thread! About 6 years ago my wife and I were out for an after work ride at Big River Management Area in RI. Big River is one of RI's most popular riding areas and many consider it to be the Area 51 of Rhode Island. There have been many stories over the years that range from suicides, typical park & ride activity, exhumed graves, nude guys jogging or on bikes, homeless guys living in the woods, lots of old family cemeteries, etc. Anyways, back to the story.... we were on an after work ride in the summer. It was probably about 7pm, but still light out. The trail we were riding on went by an old, overgrown, 50x50ft cemetery plot. When we rode by the cemetery I happened to notice a pink colored book leaning up against one of the gravestones. It seemed really out of place so we decided to take a look. As we got closer we realized that it was a stack of bright colored books. In addition to that there were all sorts of strange items strewn about on the ground. There was a glass jar full of playing dice, a bunch of different colored and different shaped small glass bottles, a hair brush....at this point I'm thinking this is REALLY wierd. And then I see a purse, and a few credit cards. That's when I realized that something potentially bad is going on here. Did a woman get attacked, raped or killed here? Did we come across a crime taking place and the criminal is looking at us in the woods? We were creeped out beyond words. I decided to snoop around a bit more and I see a white envelope stuffed into the middle of a small pine tree about 10ft from the purse and all the other random (weird) stuff. I reach in, pull it out....it says Citizens bank on it. I open the envelope to find $800 in 50's and 20's! Now we're like WTF!!!!! We immediately called the police. I explained to the dispatcher exactly what we came across and said that I could meet the officer at the closest point where the trail comes out to the road. Luckily it was less than a 1/2 mile. I put the money back into the tree, that way if there was someone watching us in the woods they would have the opportunity to get away with the money while we were heading to meet the officer rather than killing us for it. About 30mins later the officer shows up and we take him to the scene. Everything was exactly where I left it. By this time it was beginning to get dark and we still had a 20 minute ride back to the trail head where we parked our car. The officer took our contact info and off we went back to our car. After 2 weeks of not knowing what the hell went on out there that strange evening, I found out. The PD said that we came across the belongings of a "troubled woman" who had her purse stolen. She must have been watched as she was leaving citizens bank with all that cash. The person/people who stole the purse were being chased by the police and in fear of getting caught they stashed the purse in the woods to come back at later time and get it. That why everything was thrown about and the money was stashed in a tree! Well, needless to say we got to it before they did and I was told the woman got her belongings back and all of the money. That was one creepy ride that I'll never forget!

  19. #19
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    Last summer I was exploring some lesser known trails in Dennis and came upon this homeless camp. I did not test the fence.


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  20. #20
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    COOL WEATHER BUMP

    - the blow up doll (tinder date???) on the big drop near West Hill Dam....that thing has been there for a while and seems to occasionally move?

    - riding fat bike in mid January on a foggy afternoon, did not bring lights (fail), sun is going down fast, up ahead I see a medium sized black furry critter slowly scamper down the trail. mind spins while I think about rabies for a minute or two, then he bails.

    - could make a whole thread on "people you see in cars parked at the state forest".

  21. #21
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    ^Nice bump, goingblank, and great thread by the OP.

    I'd say a part of the reason I like to get out into the woods is to get away from everyday normal life and see what I can find. Here's another one from my memory banks:

    Mid 1990's I did a ride in Blue Hills. It was a lousy day. Rainy. Cold, probably in the 40's, but I was fully engaged in mountain biking at the time and would ride anytime, anywhere. Meanwhile, it was the type of day that normal people would not be caught dead in being outside in the elements.

    I was in the Fowl Meadow area, which is kinda isolated relative to the rest of Blue Hills. It parallels the Neponset River and at the time it was overgrown and not very well used by hikers or bikers. I had my head down and was cranking along, in the zone, when I glance up and make eye contact with a guy 20 yards ahead of me. We were both startled to see each other, like, 'hey!? wtf are you doing out here????' He was dressed in camo with a poncho and a large pack and I gave him a 'how's it going' as we passed.

    He looked down and sort of grunted back. Weird. I got a strange vibe from the guy and felt like he was not comfortable seeing anyone else out there. What was he doing out there? No one hikes around this section of Blue Hills, especially on a cold rainy day. Was this guy responsible for some of the hobo-type camps I'd been coming across out here lately? I bet he was. He didn't appear to be a nature lover, getting his Thoreau on - he was more into hiding out from what I could surmise.

    As I was driving home later that day, thinking about this weirdo, I remembered the recent local news stories of a bandit that had been raiding houses in the area. The Patriot Ledger kept updating stories about it. People would find their fridges raided, maybe a cigarette butt left behind, but nothing else stolen from what appeared to be a friendly burglar. No valuables were taken, just food, maybe some beer. Some people felt it was kind of quaint, and didn't feel threatened.

    That had to have been the guy! I figured. All of the crimes were on the border of the Blue Hills which is a massive tract of land that connects Quincy, Milton, Dedham, Canton, and Braintree - the towns where all the crimes were reported. I was sure this was the guy! He looked guilty as hell, had a huge pack and looked like he was living in there and that would explain all the small camps I'd be coming across. Cool.

    Flash forward a few months and another local story intersects this one. A prostitute had gone missing and eventually her body had been found in the Quincy Quarries which border the Blue Hills. They eventually arrested and convicted 3 scum bags of torturing, killing and dumping her body in the quarries. As it turns out the 'gentle burglar' who had been living in the Blue Hills was one of the 3. I'd looked this guy in the eye months earlier on the trail, initially assuming he was just another person enjoying the woods. Nope.

    Few links to news stories:
    https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=...qHZLLjt4e0BXdT

    https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=...cu6B_fE-_5eyZU

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    What the hell!!!! It is odd when you realize those woods are smack in the middle of all that development.

    Also western massholes, was in Charlemont a few weeks and a helicopter buzzed right over us while in the woods, guy said it was the state police looking for grow operations. This is still a thing?

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    Wow, crazy stories.

    I pulled into a lot at Harold Parker once, turned off the car and as i turned to grab my camelbak i realized there were people in the car next to me. It was an old dude getting a blowjob! It was awkward since i was right next to them, but i was like **** it, not my problem so i proceeded to unload my bike, air up the tires, etc. All the while the chick never skipped a beat. Probably a prostitute.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by HuffyMan View Post
    Wow, crazy stories.

    I pulled into a lot at Harold Parker once, turned off the car and as i turned to grab my camelbak i realized there were people in the car next to me. It was an old dude getting a blowjob! It was awkward since i was right next to them, but i was like **** it, not my problem so i proceeded to unload my bike, air up the tires, etc. All the while the chick never skipped a beat. Probably a prostitute.
    Did you ask if they needed any chain lube?
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    This past summer in Wompatuk, the one day I could not ride my riding buddy came across a photo shoot, dude with a camera and a chick with Blue hair and her birthday suit....

  26. #26
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    Came across a heart while fatbiking in Willowdale in 2014. Just a heart. Just a lone human-ish sized heart. And some spatter. No body/carcass around.

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  27. #27
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    Came across a deer laying in the trail. Shot in the side and no hunters around.


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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by connolm View Post
    Came across a heart while fatbiking in Willowdale in 2014. Just a heart. Just a lone human-ish sized heart. And some spatter. No body/carcass around.
    Did you report that? I don't think I would have gotten quite that close to it.
    This post is a natural product. Variances in spelling & grammar should be appreciated as part of its character & beauty.

  29. #29
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    ^^^^ Maybe what's left of an e biker? More likely from deer that was field dressed.

  30. #30
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    No hunting in Willowdale. So best hypothesis: a hunter field dressed a deer far away and a bird dragged the heart into Willowdale to munch on.

    Trust me - it was alarming. I stood there for 20 minutes trying to decide if I should call the police.

    A human heart is supposedly the size of a fist. That heart is a actually a little to large to be human.

    Of course, all these things I learned later.

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  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by connolm View Post
    No hunting in Willowdale. So best hypothesis: a hunter field dressed a deer far away and a bird dragged the heart into Willowdale to munch on.

    Trust me - it was alarming. I stood there for 20 minutes trying to decide if I should call the police.

    A human heart is supposedly the size of a fist. That heart is a actually a little to large to be human.

    Of course, all these things I learned later.

    Sent from my VS990 using Tapatalk
    Or a poacher.

    I've said it already, but it's worth saying again. This thread is awesome. That heart just lying there is next level.
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