I heard the crushing and movement of the tiny bits of gravel from underneath the tires of our Jeep Cherokee. Matt then shifted the gear into park as the sun allowed the last bit of rays of the day peak out behind the nearby mountains. I heard all eight cylinders of the engine winding to a crawl as I jumped out of the Jeep and shut the door. Matt followed after gathering the gear for the night’s hike.
I adjusted my bag so that if fit pretty snug on my shoulders after retrieving my flashlight. “Are you sure we can be out here?” I asked Matt who was now doing the same.
Matt smirked at me as he rounded the back of the Jeep. “You’re not chickening out on me, Claire? Are you?”
“No, I’ve always wanted to do a night hike, and I’m going to do it tonight,” I said reassuring Matt as well as myself. I was a little nervous, but I was still excited about this adventure. We had planned everything out ahead of time, and Matt was an extremely experienced hiker.
“Okay, then,” Matt smiled again. He clicked on his flashlight and started to walk down a paved path. I clicked on my flashlight and followed suit.
We were supposed to see beautiful scenery, gorgeous waterfalls and wildlife on the hike, so I had my night vision camera ready to snap some interesting photos of our surroundings. We walked for a few moments as the sun fell completely behind the mountains and left us in the dark. Long unkempt grass met us at the end of the long paved path, so we were on our own with maps, compasses, our flashlights and our gear.
“Wait, is that a sign?” I said pointing ahead of us as we were walking.
“I don’t pay any attention to those signs,” Matt chuckled. “I’ve trespassed so many times before, and we might as well trespass now.”
I was slightly concerned, “You sure?”
He glanced back at my timid gait, “Positive.”
We kept walking till we found ourselves at this electric fence. It stood a good ten feet high and blocked our planned path toward the nearby mountain. We glanced around the open field that lied ahead of us and saw an old brick well sitting right in the middle.
All I could let out of my mouth was a very uncertain, “Uh.”
“It should be alright,” Matt said. He kept walking along the fence, and so I followed.
We saw surveillance cameras on the electric fence following us as we walked past. More “no trespassing” signs decorated the fence like tinsel and garland on an already overcrowded Christmas tree.
My breath began to quicken, “We should go back, Matt.”
“This is starting to get a bit creepy,” he said. “I guess we went the wrong—
“What?” I said waiting for Matt to turn around and meet my terrified expression.
I slowly walked up to where Matt was standing and found myself looking into a ravine. I quickly looked around and then let my gaze follow Matt’s down to the ground. Just below his feet was a medium-sized rock with words spray painted on it.
Look behind you.