The Hidebehind

Have you ever been in the woods somewhere, close to dusk, and you feel that you’re being watched? That there’s a pair of eyes somewhere just out of view? That if you turn just a bit you may catch a glimpse of your admirer? Me too.

This is the next phantom-critter on our list is: the Hidebehind.

The Hidebehind is a fearsome creature of American folklore that was often blamed for the disappearance of hunters, travelers, and loggers alike. It preys on folks in the woods by concealing itself behind trees or the person themselves, changing shape to be fully hidden by sucking its stomach in to decrease its size although many accounts say it is very large in stature. Once it catches its prey it’ll take it back to its lair in a cave somewhere to feast on the guts. Another less heard of tactic it uses to hunt is by mimicking voices, either of yourself or a loved one calling your name. Folks say it uses this to confuse its prey and lead it a certain way in order to be caught.

In the very few accounts where it has been seen, witnesses describe it as a dark, limber or wraith-like humanoid creature. It would sneak up on its victims when their back was turned, inching closer and closer until it was able to make a move. The old folks prescribe that in order to avoid it, you have to drink alcohol. It apparently hates the smell.

Although, that could’ve just been an excuse to sip some more shine!

My thoughts? I can’t say it’s not real and I can’t say it isn’t. I’d figure you’d be best not to wander off into the woods and mountains alone, or you might get some strange company trailing close behind.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed!

Big news! The book is going to print soon so preorder your copy now! A preview of Backwoods Witchcraft: Conjure & Folk Magic in Appalachia is also up!!!


Order the book via:

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Author: Jake Richards

Jake (Dr. Henny) follows family practice as a Yarb Doctor and Conjure man in the Appalachian Folk Magic tradition. He follows the legacy of his mother (a seventh daughter), that left behind by his grandfather, a baptist preacher who was a blood stopper, wort doctor, and thrush doctor; his grandmother, who was a knowledgeable woman in these works before Alzheimer’s set in; his great, great grandfather who witched for water in Washington County and his great grandmother who taught and worked from her roost at the foot of Devil’s Nest Mountain. Jake is the author of Backwoods Witchcraft: Conjure & Folk Magic from Appalachia, available for preorder on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Indiebound. When he's not writing, blogging, reading the bones or trying for clients: he is either traveling, gardening, sewing, book binding, reading, or sculpting. For questions, readings, recommendations for future posts, interviews and the like, you are welcome to email him below:

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