Samantha Harris appeared on Celebrity Ghost Stories in 2012 and told a story about a place in Minnesota called Leech Lake where a group of teenagers went camping and were supposedly murdered. Samantha is best known for hosting Dancing with the Stars.
I was 12 years old and my parents sent me to Camp Birchwood, a fantastic all-girls camp in Northern Minnesota. There was a very special camping trip that only happened once a summer. Only a select group of girls were asked to go on it and my name was called.
My two best friends, Jenny and Jessica, were also going on the trip and we could not contain our excitement.
While we were getting ready, some of the other girls started whispering, “You know the campsite you’re going to on Leech Lake is haunted.”
I thought they were just trying to freak us out and get us nervous before the trip, but I was not going to let them ruin it for me.
The day of the trip came and when we got to the campsite, it was a thick, dense wooded area. We set up our tents and sat down to roast marshmallows around the campfire.
Of course someone said, “You know, this place is haunted.”
One of the counsellors said, “I come here every year with a group of girls and I always go back with one less.”
We all just laughed it off. Then, afterwards, we went back to our tents. We lay awake talking for a while and gradually fell asleep.
A couple of hours later, I woke up and I needed to go to the bathroom, but I didn’t want to go on my own. Just then, I saw a light passing the tent.
I unzipped the tent and stuck my head out, but there was nobody there. The campsite was empty and eerily silent. It seemed odd, but I just decided to go back to sleep.
A little while later, I heard a roar way off in the distance. It sounded like engines revving. Vroom! Vroom! Vroom! I thought I was hearing things, but it seemed like it was coming closer.
Then, suddenly, I heard a high-pitched scream. It chilled me to the bone. I was completely freaked out, so I shook my friends awake and told them to listen. They heard it too.
“There’s something out there!” I said.
Those screams were so blood-curdling, they had to come from someone who was badly hurt.
The roaring sound got closer and closer until it sounded like it was circling our tent. There were lights going around and around. It sounded like motorcycles circling faster and faster.
Then we heard the screams again. We didn’t know if they were going to kill us or drive the motorcycles through our tent. We were so scared, we were just holding onto each other the whole time.
Then, the sounds suddenly stopped. Taking a deep breath, Jenny and I stuck our heads out through the flap. There was nobody there. No lights, no people. Just complete silence.
That really freaked us out, so we got back inside and zipped up the tent. We huddled together and I don’t know if it was sheer terror or exhaustion, but somehow, we finally fell aseep.
The next morning, when we got out of our tent, we looked down and saw that there were tyre tracks circling our entire tent. The tracks weren’t anywhere else, just around our tent.
“My God,” I thought. “This really happened and nobody else heard anything.”
When we got back to Camp Birchwood, I was talking to some counsellors who had gone on the trip when they were young.
“Oh, you went to the haunted campsite,” they said.
“Yeah,” I said. “Do you know anything about that?”
“You never heard about what happened out there?” they said. “Back in the 1970s there were some college students, two girls and two guys, who decided to take a weekend break. They jumped on their motorcycles and headed up to Leech Lake to go camping. They were murdered by a guy with a chainsaw and he cut up their bodies into pieces.”
For a solid minute, I couldn’t breathe.
“Oh my god,” I thought. “The motorcycles… The screaming… The tire tracks around our tent… Could this have been the ghosts of those college kids? Maybe this was their way of warning us and telling us to stay away because whoever hurt them was still out there, lurking in the woods…”