Monday, May 25, 2015

Ratty And The Raccoons

I'm back from a little time off I decided to take. None of my little adventures were inspiring me to write about them so I just decided to wait until something struck me. It didn't even occur to me until now to just maybe post the pictures by themselves. I guess that's because the important part to me is the writing.

Anyway, I decided to bring with me this little blast from the past. Not many of you who are reading today know about my adventure with the raccoons. This was one of my most exciting adventures because it was the closest encounter with wildlife that I ever had.

It started out as an ordinary day at one of my favorite nature and hiking parks back in Michigan. I never expected anything odd to happen. I was just hoping to maybe see a few turtles in the pond at the back of the park.

When I stepped out into the clearing at about a quarter of the way I was shocked to see six raccoons up the trail from me, and they were headed in my direction. I figured they'd run off as soon as they saw me so I naturally began taking pictures. But then when they looked up and saw me they came running right for me!

I can admit that I was more than a little afraid at this point. The only thing I knew to do was to stop right where I was. I thought if I ran then they might just chase me, and I was sure at the time that I couldn't outrun them. I also didn't want to try to scare them because I didn't think that was going to work at all. I just had to hope for the best possible outcome to this encounter with these wild animals.

As they were quickly moving closer to me, I noticed that the majority of them were only juvenile raccoons. They were not full grown yet, and they were only about half the size of a full grown raccoon. I watched to see which one was the mother, but I quickly realized she wasn't there.

That was a  little bit of a relief. I didn't want to deal with an angry protective mother raccoon. Raccoons can be very dangerous animals. Probably the most dangerous I've met yet. Their teeth and claws are very sharp, and they like to use them.

The closer the little raccoons got to me the more I began to see that they weren't going to rip me to shreds at all. They were just curious and maybe wanted to make friends with me. They quickly swarmed around me and hugged up against my legs.This time I was very relieved. This could have turned into a very bad situation for me.

I realized how sharp their claws really were when a few of them began to try to climb up my legs. Those claws went right through my jeans. I had to shake each one of them off, which wasn't an easy task at all. I didn't want to hurt them, but I didn't want them to hurt me either.

I then began thinking about the mother raccoon again, and wondering if she existed and where was she. I didn't want her to come looking for her little ones and maybe getting angry with me. Then I thought maybe I should just leave the park for now. That's when I decided to walk away.

These little raccoons were having none of it. They wouldn't let me leave! They were all curled up around my feet, and they moved with me every time I tried to take a step. Then I realized I couldn't go back to the parking lot. They would follow me out there where it would be much too dangerous for them. I'd have to go deeper into the park. But how would I get away from them?

So I started to walk down the trail, and the little raccoons followed close at my feet. They were still closely surrounding me. I had to be careful where I stepped so I wouldn't hurt one of them. This was way out of hand now! I had to do something, and I had to do it now!

I quickly moved away from the crowd, and they came right back to me! I moved one direction and then another but they still kept coming! I finally stomped my foot at them in a threatening manner, but that didn't work either. They liked me too much now. I even growled and hissed at them to no avail.

So you know what I did? I did what I had to do. I ran! I ran as fast as I could go! The raccoons ran too! They were right behind me! I kept running until I began to pull away from them. I had never run so hard in my life! Up and down hills, and probably halfway through the park.

I stopped to rest once. I turned to see if they were still coming, and off in the distance I saw them running towards me! So I turned and ran again even farther and faster than before. I ran down a huge hill to the creek, and then up the other side with equal speed!

From the top of the hill I turned around again, and to my relief they were nowhere in sight. I had finally lost them. I have to admit that I felt bad about it, but it was the best thing to do in that situation. I couldn't lead them through the park only to have them get lost from their mom. Yup, I was finally away from them and I felt like a jerk for it.

I went all the way to the back of the park and waited for a long time hoping that they'd get distracted by a new adventure. Luckily there were two trails going through the park for part of the way, so I took that second trail on my way out. The only problem was that where the trails met toward the front was where I first encountered the raccoons. I was relieved to find no trace of them when I got back there.

After I left the park I checked with some park officials down the road a ways to have them check on the little critters. I wondered if maybe someone dumped off some tame raccoons or maybe if their mother had died. I wish I could end with some happy news, but I never found out another thing about the little raccoons.

This all happened to me about six years ago. Nothing quite like it has ever happened to me again. Almost all of you who are reading this today are different than those who read it all back then, so I guess it's all new to you. It seems like things have changed here so much since then. It's nice to sometimes look back. I hope you liked it too. I'll talk to you later.


  1. I do remember that story and it was a good one. It was worth reading about again. Some adventure you had with those raccoon

  2. They still tell the story of their dad running away from them forever. LOL

  3. wild animals shouldn't be that interested in us. I wish people wouldn't feed them :(

    Happy Memorial Day

  4. they're so very cute, but i'd not have wanted them to follow me too far, either.

  5. I am glad you chose to share this story Ratty and show the pictures again as I had never heard it before...they sure are adorable curious little critters!!

  6. I should have thought you were their mother years back.
    And you still are right now.

  7. Hello greetings and good wishes.

    Lovely photos and a very thrilling adventure with little racoons. I enjoyed the trick you played to get away from them. They are sweet, loving creatures although as you said they can be dangerous with their sharp claws and teeth. Fortunately for you the mother was not there.

    A few days back I was admiring little puppies on the road side and suddenly the mother dog which was behind the wall came charging barking loudly. I froze with fright. Fortunately the stray dog did not bite me. I slowly walked away.

    Fabulous story of thrilling adventure. I enjoyed reading it.

    Best wishes

  8. My human remembers those little raccoons! That was a long time ago!

  9. Good thing you had jeans on and not shorts! They sure are cute little critters though, great adventure!

  10. I remember the story and it is both cute and scary. I'm glad you got away without anyone being hurt.

    I agree with R Mac Wheeler--I wish humans would not interfere with wild animals and feed them. You did the right thing in getting away quickly.

  11. oh, that is so cute, though am not so sure how I would react, may be scared if there's a lot of them looking that way, but definitely would be very elated they chose to follow me for a while :)

  12. They're adorable! It's probably not a good idea for the wild critters to get very used to people.

  13. They thought you were the Mama Coon! Good thing they didn't have rabies.

  14. What an amazing story. I am so glad you did a rerun of it since I'm one of your new readers as you mentioned. A lady across the street here was chased by one raccoon (she lives on the side that borders some wetlands). She said this happened to her last summer and there were no neighbors here at the time. The park manager set a live trap and caught it. I love seeing these animals, but would not want to have your experience. Because I can't run worth anything.