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Spearfinger: The Smoky Mountain Stone Witch



The Cherokee Legend of Spearfinger. Photo: Blue Ridge Blog

Spearfinger is a witch who can change her shape at will, and is said to have skin as hard as stone. But perhaps her most terrifying feature is the obsidian knife that replaces one of the fingers on her right hand.

Other Names for Spearfinger

The Cherokee word U’tlun’ta is sometimes used to refer to Spearfinger. It translates as “she had it sharp”, which is an apt description. She is sometimes known as Nûñ’yunu’ï. This moniker translates to “Stone dress,” a title that was inspired by her skin, which was said to be as hard as stone.

The Cherokee Legend of Spearfinger

The story goes that Spearfinger earned her stone clothes after building a rock bridge, called the “Tree Rock,” that spanned up through the air toward the Higher Beings’ place of residence.

Her arrogance upset them, and they struck down the bridge with a powerful bolt of lightning, causing it to crumble down upon Spearfinger and cloaking her in a body made of rock and rubble.

Today, the ruins of the Tree Rock are said to be located in Blount County, Tennessee, and the area is known as Nantahala, or “The Spearfinger Place,” in Cherokee.

Spearfinger, the shape-shifting witch, had a forefinger on her right hand that was known as her “sharp finger.” This deadly digit, which resembled a spear or obsidian knife, was used to cut her victims.

Her mouth was often stained with the blood of the livers she ate, making her a terrifying sight that sent chills throughout the mountains.

Spearfinger’s evil heart was hidden in her right hand, which was also her only weak spot. Therefore, she kept it tightly clutched to protect it from harm.

Her body, being made of stone, required her to ensure her heart was never exposed to danger.

As she walked, her stone body made a sound like rolling thunder, crushing rocks and boulders into the ground. Her voice would bounce off the mountains and echo down the valleys into the villages, sending the birds flying into the sky. The villagers would take this as a warning that Spearfinger was on the move.

Spearfinger had a range of terrifying abilities beyond her deadly spearfinger.

One such skill was the ability to transform into the family members of her child victims, making it easier to get close to them. Once she took on a different shape, she was unable to shift back into her stone form if she was in sight of another person.

Spearfinger’s default shape-shifting form was that of an old lady who was known and trusted by the children she hunted. Being made of stone, arrows couldn’t pierce her skin and would simply bounce off, falling harmlessly to the ground or shattering into tiny pieces.

Spearfinger also possessed immense physical strength, allowing her to effortlessly lift and manipulate rocks and boulders to cause havoc and destruction.

To aid her search for victims with fresh livers, Spearfinger would use the Cherokee customs to her advantage. In the fall, the Cherokee would set brush fires to roast chestnuts, and the smoke and flames would guide Spearfinger to the villages where she could hunt.

The witch also utilized the swirling fogs that rose from the valleys, which gave the Smoky Mountains their name. These clouds provided cover for Spearfinger to hunt children who were picking strawberries or drinking from streams on the mountainside.

The combination of her supernatural abilities and her knowledge of the local terrain made Spearfinger a formidable opponent to anyone who dared to cross her path.

Spearfinger’s Decption

Spearfinger’s greatest power was her ability to deceive. She would hide her sharp finger beneath her robes and then strike out, piercing her victim’s liver. Her favored method was to disguise herself as an older woman of the tribe, gaining the trust of her intended prey before luring them to sleep and attacking.

The unsuspecting children would then become her meal. The Cherokee, aware of her tactics, were cautious of strangers entering their camp and were suspicious of those who went into the woods alone. They feared that Spearfinger could take on the disguise of a family member and enter the village unnoticed.

Spearfinger was also skilled in the art of shape-shifting. She would sometimes assume the form of her victim, hiding the body if it passed away soon after she took their liver. She would then wait until the family was asleep and take all their livers.

Parents warned their children not to go into the woods at night, for fear of encountering Spearfinger. They would tell stories of how the monster could take on the appearance of their grandmother or aunt, making it impossible to know whether it was a family member or the monster in disguise. Spearfinger was the ultimate boogeyman, striking fear into the hearts of all who heard of her.

Spearfinger and the Stone Man

Spearfinger’s sole adversary, aside from the humans she preys upon, is the Stone Man. As both are made of stone, they have a natural ability to detect each other’s presence. They are rivals because they both crave the same delicacy – livers.

The Stone Man is said to possess greater powers than Spearfinger, and he doesn’t need to manipulate rocks to construct things. Instead, he wields a staff that enables him to create bridges that span from one mountain to another.

The Death of Spearfinger

The legend of Spearfinger

The Cherokee convened a council to devise a plan to eliminate Spearfinger once and for all. Representatives from surrounding villages gathered to discuss the matter. Being aware of her modus operandi, they decided to create a trap that would lure her in.

They dug a pit and camouflaged it with branches, then lit fires in the usual way to harvest chestnuts, hoping the smoke would attract her as she searched for fresh livers.

As expected, Spearfinger saw the smoke and made her way down the mountain, leaving a trail of destruction behind her. Disguised as an old woman and hiding her deadly finger under her cloak, she tried to trick the men into helping her.

But when they saw through her disguise, they were unsure of how to defeat her. Their arrows proved ineffective as they shattered upon hitting her stony skin.

Enraged, Spearfinger charged at the Cherokee, her sharp finger slashing at them. Despite falling into the pit, the stakes lining its interior shattered upon contact with her stony skin, failing to pierce her.

The tribe fired arrows at her, but they proved useless as she swatted them away effortlessly. In a moment of desperation, a titmouse came to their aid, singing “heart, heart, heart” to indicate where Spearfinger’s true weakness lay. However, the hunters mistakenly aimed for her chest instead of her hand, where her heart was hidden.

As a result, the arrows did not harm her but cut off the titmouse’s tongue instead. From that day on, people believed that titmice were liars because of the incident. The little bird flew back to the sky and never returned.

After the chickadee revealed the secret location of Spearfinger’s heart, the hunters took aim at her right hand, which protected her heart and held the spearfinger.

As they shot an arrow at her wrist, separating her heart from her body, Spearfinger trembled with fear. She fell to her knees and then collapsed into a pile of stones, bringing an end to her curse.

Stone Man, who also fed on livers, heard the cheers of the hunters as Spearfinger fell. He looked down from the mountainside and saw her right hand mounted on a post as a warning to him. However, he knew that the villagers didn’t know his weakness, so he ignored the warning and continued to hunt for livers and sing his song of war.

Do you know of any other cool Native American legends like Spearfinger? Let us know in the comments.

If you enjoyed the story of Spearfinger you might also be interested in the story of El Sibon or the legend of Loana the bloodthirster.

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Fleshgait: Predatory Mimic in the Woods




A fleshgait is a creature that imitates the voices and appearances of people in the woods, with the intention of luring them away. People who have seen fleshgaits describe them as tall, thin, grey beings with long claws and no hair.

Description of a Fleshgait

Imagine a mysterious creature lurking in the depths of the woods, capable of mimicking human voices and appearances. Meet the fleshgait—a cunning trickster that entices unsuspecting wanderers. Witnesses who have encountered these eerie beings describe them as towering, slender figures, draped in a shroud of grey, with razor-sharp claws and an absence of hair.

Picture this: as you venture into the wilderness, unaware of the lurking danger, the fleshgait slinks in the shadows, perfecting its masquerade. With a supernatural ability to mimic the voices of both people and animals, it skillfully mimics the ones you hold dear, beckoning you deeper into its treacherous domain.

It is widely believed that fleshgaits are dangerous towards humans and often lure them deeper into the woods in order to harm or eat them. Some people also think that fleshgaits are connected to the Missing 411 disappearances, but there is no evidence to support this claim.

The powers of fleshgaits are not fully understood because nobody has witnessed their full capabilities. Based on reports, here are the commonly agreed-upon traits:

Voice Mimicking: Fleshgaits can imitate the voices of both humans and animals. They can only mimic voices and phrases they have heard before. Their calls can be captivating and difficult to resist, even when people know the voice is not from the person they are concerned about.

Super Speed: Fleshgaits are known for their unnaturally fast movement, often disappearing quickly into the woods.

Excessive Strength: Animals found torn apart in areas where fleshgaits are sighted suggest that these creatures possess tremendous strength.

While some reports suggest that fleshgaits can change their shape, not all reports mention this ability. Reports of shape-shifting fleshgaits occur frequently enough for many people to believe in their shape-shifting abilities.

Fleshgait Sightings

The Lore Lodge covers the the legend of the Fleshgait

Angeles National Forest, California – Alex Reynolds, Sarah Mitchell, and David Thompson, had a heart-stopping encounter with a fleshgait almost ten years ago. Despite the scary moment, these brave explorers managed to come out of it without any harm.

On a sunny afternoon, specifically on July 21st, 2013, the trio set off on an exciting adventure deep into the breathtaking Angeles National Forest. Towering trees and stunning views provided the backdrop for an experience they would never forget.

As they went further into the wilderness, a strange feeling of unease settled over them. It felt like the forest was holding its breath, and they sensed something they couldn’t see. Curiosity pushed them forward, unaware of the terrifying encounter they were about to face.

In the heart of the forest, they heard a voice calling their names from all directions. Confused, they looked at each other, trying to figure out where the calls were coming from.

With fear gripping them, the hikers cautiously followed the enchanting yet unsettling voices. Suddenly, in a sunny spot, they saw the fleshgait appear. It was tall and slender, with eerie eyes that seemed to shine from another world. Its appearance matched what others had described—a tall and thin creature with pale skin that stood out against the green forest.

Surprisingly, the fleshgait showed no signs of wanting to harm them. Instead, it seemed curious and watched them with an enigmatic gaze. The hikers watched in both awe and fear, their hearts racing with a mix of emotions.

After a few intense moments, the creature vanished into the forest, disappearing quickly as if it were never there. The hikers were left bewildered but relieved that nothing bad had happened. They hurried back to civilization, eager to share their extraordinary story.

How to Know A Fleshgait is Near

Here are some signs that suggest that a Fleshgait may be nearby:

You hear someone calling your name, but it’s not the person you know. For example, a woman heard her “mother” calling for help in the woods, even though she knew her real mother was far away. Despite the strange voice, she felt a strong urge to follow it. Later, she heard chattering noises and realized something was wrong. She barely escaped.

Your group feels like it has more people than before. People often sense an “extra person” around them before a fleshgait attack.

You see claws wrapped around a tree or a very thin figure that doesn’t look human. Many people witness them with their hands wrapped around trees or standing nearby. Some even describe them as resembling the character Gollum from Lord of the Rings.

There are reports of animals being killed in unusual ways or strange disappearances happening nearby. This makes sense because fleshgaits are predators.

The forest suddenly becomes quiet and eerily still. This often means there’s a predator nearby and creates a feeling of panic in the woods.

Your “friend” starts acting strangely and doesn’t sound like themselves.

If you notice any of these signs, it’s a good idea to trust your instincts and make a quick exit from the area.

How to Avoid a Fleshgait Attack

Fleshgaits are believed to be attracted to bright colors so it may be wise to wear more dull colors when adventuring in the woods.

Have you ever seen a Fleshgait? Tell us about it in the comments.

If you enjoyed learning about the Fleshgait you might be interested in similar creatures such as El Silbon or La Siguanaba.

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Bélmez Faces




One of the Belmez Faces.

In 1971, strange stains in the shape of human faces started appearing on the kitchen floor of a house in Bélmez de La Moraleda, a little village in Andalusia, Spain.

The Story of the Bélmez Faces

Another Belmez Face

Back in August 1971, María Gómez Cámara noticed a weird stain forming on her kitchen floor. It soon transformed into a creepy face, and to her surprise, the stain seemed to move around.

María tried to remove it, but nothing worked. Her husband and son even tried destroying it with a pick-axe and re-cementing the floor, but it came back a week later, along with more faces.

News of the “house of faces” spread quickly, attracting many curious visitors who wanted to witness this mysterious phenomenon for themselves. Parapsychology experts arrived and considered it a great mystery. They even claimed to have recorded strange voices in the house.

A local urban legend began to spread claiming that skeletons were found buried under the floor during an investigation.

Eventually, a new floor was made, and people thought the faces were gone for good. However, just two weeks later, a different face started appearing, surprising everyone once again.

By Easter of 1972, a large number of people were visiting the house to witness the faces. The Pereira family continued to claim that new faces kept appearing for the next 30 years. These faces were of both men and women, and they varied in shapes, sizes, and expressions.

Investigations into the Belmez Faces

The main researchers involved in the Bélmez case were Hans Bender and Germán de Argumosa. They worked together in Bélmez and Freiburg in the early 1970s when the alleged phenomena began. Surprisingly, neither Bender nor de Argumosa published an official report on their findings.

Bender only mentioned the case briefly in his journal, Zeitschrift für Parapsychologie. He did make some references to the case in his lectures, particularly mentioning the sealing of certain areas of the floor where faces were forming, using transparent plastic material. He stated that slight changes in the faces’ appearance during this sealed period, as documented by a notary, supported their paranormal origin.

In 2014, a TV show called Cuarto Milenio, hosted by Iker Jiménez, conducted a technical analysis to investigate the possibility of a hoax related to the Bélmez faces. The research was carried out by José Javier Gracenea, a chemical engineering doctor and general manager of Medco, along with Luis Alamancos, a forensic criminalist who served as the chairman of Gabinete Pericial Inpeval and director of the Spanish Institute of Applied Criminalistics. Alamancos was later honored with the European Police Cross of Honor.

With the permission of the house owner, Gracenea collected samples from the faces and analyzed them. His conclusion was that the images “were not created with paint” and that there was no evidence of external manipulation or added elements based on scientific knowledge and analysis techniques.

Alamancos attempted to replicate similar images using various methods that had been considered valid in previous investigations, including concrete solvents, hydrochloric acid, and silver nitrate. However, he failed to reproduce the faces and concluded that he was utterly perplexed by the phenomenon.

Skepticism about the Belmez Faces

Super Horror Bro covers the Belmez Faces

According to skeptical investigator Joe Nickell, the Bélmez Faces were intentionally fabricated, and he believes that the faces had a very unprofessional and amateurish appearance in their design.

Similarly, Brian Dunning from Skeptoid has written that investigations revealed the faces were actually painted onto the concrete floor, initially using paint and later with acid. Dunning also suggests that the woman residing in the house was involved in perpetrating a hoax on the public, potentially for financial gain.

In a journal article published in July 1993, Luis Ruiz-Noguez discussed the presence of three pigments commonly used in paint manufacturing: zinc, lead, and chromium. Based on this, Ruiz-Noguez suggested that the use of paint should be considered when it comes to the Bélmez faces, particularly with the suspicion of lead being involved. Here are the reasons he provided:

Lead was commonly used as a pigment for primary colors for a long time.

The analysis showed that the amount of chromium present was too low to be a likely option.

Lead tends to create dark and hard-to-see colorations, unlike chromium.

The most common and inexpensive primary colors are enamels that contain lead, which are widely used in homes because they are easy to apply.

However, Ruiz-Noguez also mentioned some objections to the hypothesis of paint being used based on the ICV (inorganic chemical values) samples. These objections include the fact that alkydalic-type enamels are not resistant to abrasion, paint leaves a visible film that is easily distinguishable from the surface it is applied on, and alkydalic enamels have low chemical tolerance to acids, alkalis, and detergents.

What do you think caused the faces to appear in Belmez? Let us know in the comments.

If you enjoyed learning about the Belmez Faces you might also be interested in other ghostly faces such as the SS Watertown Ghost Faces or faces appearing in an airplane oven on Flight 401.

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