Stories, as we all know, can come from two places: truth and myth. So, after you’ve finished reading this story, you’ll need to decide whether what you’ve read here is real or fiction.
Either way, this story begins on the Elk River banks just west of Pineville, MO. Locals in the area are familiar with a variety of forest creatures from;
- Hawks to owls
- Rabbits to squirrels
- Armadillos to possums
- Fish to otters
- Bears to deer
Nothing really out of the ordinary, except for what locals call the horsap. A small illusive but fearsome creature, rarely seen by locals. But the story goes, it stands no taller than two feet and lives along the banks of the Elk River.
Although locals describe this creature as small, it’s not well-known how it got its name. It has a distinctive screech that often echoes in all directions. But generally only heard after dark during the last two weekends in October, which only adds to this American Horror Story.
Some locals talk of having encountered the creature as appearing horse-like with appendages that do not appear to leave behind hoofprints. According to one local, Harper Gladlock (fictitious names were used to protect local residents), he heard the creature’s harrowing shriek late one evening on the Friday before Halloween two years ago.
Mr. Gladlock reportedly knew the creature was nearby because of how loud it sounded and hearing something moving about in the shrubs along the Elk River banks. So he wandered down to the river bank in search of it and was frightened by someone or something charging him from the bush with a snarling grumble.
Although the horsap didn’t continue to pursue Mr. Gladlock, he reportedly looked over his shoulder at the last moment. Unfortunately, he only saw a small, deformed creature that looked much like a miniature horse with flippers.
The next day Mr. Gladlock returned to the river-side to look for tracks from whatever he encountered but only reportedly found drag marks in dried mud that looked more like feathers with 4-inch talons on end.
Scottish Gaelic lore talks of a similar creature, the aughisky or ech-ushkya (pronunciation: each-uisge). English translation, the water horse. Perhaps this tiny creature isn’t as vicious as the mythical creature the Scots portray, but one thing makes this story eerily creepy. Where does this creature go for the other 50 weeks out of the year?
Myth or Legend, Book Your Haunted Float to Decide
To decide if this story holds water, book your haunted weekend stay at Lazy Days Campground today; call (417) 223-3498. There are only two weekends left to book a haunted float trip down the Elk River.
Tickets are available for purchase online. The first haunted float launches at 7:00 pm, with the last raft pushing off at 10:00 pm.
- Friday, October 21
- Saturday, October 22
- Friday, October 28
- Saturday, October 29
- Sunday, October 30
- Monday, October 31