People all over the world are finding inexplicable stairs in the woods and it’s starting to scare the heck out of the Internet.
As anyone who frequents the forest will tell you, it isn’t uncommon to come across some unusual things. Strange-looking trees and odd animals are common fixtures on any foray into nature. Sometimes you’ll find even rarer things. However, there are some things out in the forest that seem to defy explanation. The phenomenon of coming across stairs in the woods is starting to freak people out.
What is the stairs in the woods phenomenon?
Over the years, there have been many tales about mysteries centering on United States National Parks. People go missing in these parks with some regularity. There have also been countless tales of cryptids and aliens being spotted. There have even been tales of spontaneous human combustion in National Parks. Stories about hikers coming across mysterious sets of stairs add to the foreboding atmosphere of these national landmarks.
According to the legends, hikers exploring National Parks occasionally come across full sets of stairs placed randomly in the forest and leading up into the sky at various heights. They describe these staircases as looking as if someone had cut a staircase out of a building and pasted it into the woods. There is never any evidence of other structures nearby; just a lonely set of stairs leading to nowhere. Some report seeing staircases that seem to have been placed on the ground upside down.
The staircases are often made of brick or iron, but their condition varies. Sometimes they look brand new and sometimes they are little more than ruins. Some go straight up and others spiral. Some have railings and others don’t. Those who have discovered the staircases even report seeing them covered in pristine white carpeting. What is truly eerie is that these stairs are generally free from all dirt and debris and show no evidence of activity from animals. Those who have seen these staircases state that it is almost as if the stairs exist in a bubble that protects them from everything else around them.
Although the majority of the stories of the stairs in the woods come from United States National Parks, people from around the world have begun telling their own tales of mysterious staircases found deep in the forest. There doesn’t seem to be any pattern to where the staircases are spotted. Some who have discovered them have reported that they have also found evidence of graves nearby. One person even claimed to see a staircase coming up out of the water when they were boating on a lake in the woods. However, the only common factor in the disparate stories is that they are typically found between 10 and 40 kilometers (6 to 25 miles) into the forest, far away from any other evidence of civilization. One story reported a staircase a staggering 60 kilometers (37 miles) away from the forest edge.
How did the legend start?
Unlike many legends that are born far back in the beliefs of our ancestors, the legend of the stairs in the woods is a much more modern tale. This story was born on the popular social website Reddit.
The legend began when a Reddit user who claims to be a member of a search and rescue team working in an unnamed United States National Park took to the website to publicize their stories of the bizarre things that they have witnessed while working in national parks. They tell stories about paranormal disappearances, missing persons cases and unexplained noises in the forest, all of which, they claim, are hushed up by the powers that be. However, the story that really seemed to strike a chord with the readers was the story of the mysterious staircases in the woods.
According to the storyteller, they were perplexed by this sighting. They asked a colleague about the staircases the first time that they saw one, hoping for a simple explanation. The colleague stated that out-of-place staircase are a common sight for search and rescue personnel. However, the storyteller was warned to stay away from the staircases. No other explanation was forthcoming.
The storyteller goes on to say that they see one of these mysterious staircases on approximately every fifth trip into the forest. This suggests that the stairs are often located near spots where people have gone missing.
Readers of the story quickly jumped in to tell their own stories about strange stairs in the woods. Other search and rescue personnel, hikers, campers, and law enforcement staff members excitedly confirmed the story with accounts of their own encounters. Many of the storytellers also stated that they spotted stairs near spots where people had gone missing, died, or witnessed paranormal events such as UFOS or Bigfoots.
Why do people believe the stairs are paranormal?
Although it is certainly unusual to find a full set of stairs standing alone and perfectly clean in the woods, there isn’t anything inherently paranormal about such a sight. However, anyone who has come across one of these mysterious staircases insists that there is more to the story than a simple architectural anomaly.
Those who tell stories of encounters with these staircases all describe them as being unnervingly out of place in the natural landscape where they are found. It is a common thread among the stories for the discoverers to state that just being near the staircases gave them a terrible feeling of dread, as if they were looking at something dangerous that was not meant for their eyes.
One thing that is apparent when reading the numerous accounts of the stairs in the woods is that almost everyone who finds them has an overpowering urge to flee when looking at the stairs. There are almost no stories in which people actually go up the staircases or even get close to them. Instead, they quickly turn around and get as far away from the stairs as possible. Some even claim that it is common knowledge in their towns that the stairs are not to be trifled with.
However, there are a few accounts of brave souls who walked close to the stairs. One person, who also claims to be a member of a search and rescue team, reports walking up a staircase covered in a perfectly clean white carpet. They state that at first, everything seemed normal. However, when they reached the top, the air became oppressively silent. They couldn’t even hear the sound of their own breath. Terrified, they quickly ran back down the stairs and caught up with the rest of their team. However, according to the team leader, they had been missing for hours. The leader immediately accused them of going up a set of stairs. When asked how he knew, the leader said that it was because they never found the lost hiker they were looking for.
Another person who climbed up a staircase similarly reports that the walk up the stairs was normal. However, at the top, they began to see things in the trees. They said that someone with a dark, lean face and round, black eyes was staring at them from the foliage. This hiker only caught a glimpse of the face before it disappeared and the hiker quickly ran back to the bottom of the staircase. This hiker also reported that they seem to have lost a large chunk of time while on the stairs.
Very few people have actually captured a photo of the staircases that they have found in the woods, making the phenomenon even more mysterious. Also, anyone who comes across one of these sets of stairs and tries to go back to find it again is inexplicably unable to do so. It seems as if you can only get one glimpse of a particular set of stairs before it disappears.
What theories exist about the stairs in the woods?
Many people believe that the stories about these sylvan staircases are entirely fictional; after all, they did originate in the “nosleep” section of Reddit: a forum where users regularly craft eerie, yet believable works of fiction. However, the Reddit users who read the original story and added their own tales seem to give the tale some validity. While “nosleep” readers often play along with the story, the accounts that they give in this case are too detailed and numerous to be dismissed.
Those who believe the staircases do in fact exist have come up with several explanations for their presence. One of the most commonplace theories asserts that the staircases are just remnants of long forgotten settlements, possibly those that were hastily erected to mine the nearby land. Those who believe this theory state that buildings most likely rotted away, leaving behind the sturdier staircases. However, not everyone holds to the prosaic explanation. Some believe that the staircases were built to be used as pulpits for occult ceremonies. Yet, neither of these theories explains the feelings of dread that are associated with the stairs or why they can never be spotted for a second time.
There have been some other, more paranormal theories about the stairs. Some believe that the staircases are most likely gateways to another dimension or even to hell itself. However, one of the more popular theories comes from a psychic who publicized her thoughts in a blog post. She claims to have psychically explored several of these staircases. Allegedly, there is a clear energy shift near the staircases and that getting close to them with her mind causes her emotions to become numb. According to the blog, the staircases are used as locations for alien abductions. She says that the stairs serve as portals through the many layers of the earth so that aliens can take their victims away to experiment on them. According to her, this is why the staircases are so often spotted by search and rescue personnel looking for missing people.