The Phantom Man

This is not the only paranormal experience that myself and my friend have experienced but it was one that chilled us both.

My friend Liv and myself both own horses and we go to our yard often to check on and exercise them.

It was around 6.30pm we had tacked up and decided to go on a hack. We have a couple of mile long gallop strip running around the farm. It would get dark soon but still it was a nice night and seemed a shame to waste it.

I shall describe the setting for our experience; the gallop is long and runs in a straight line for some distance till it dips down a very large bank onto a quiet road next to another stables. It then curves into a large loop round a small freshly planted forest to join the road again later and back up to this large bank.

We were talking of the weekend before and completely engrossed in our conversation. We had reached about the half way mark on the straight section of the gallop when we saw other riders coming towards us and we broke into single file to allow them to pass. It was still light and as we were talking Liv looked ahead and said "oh great there is someone standing on the track". Firstly I should explain the gallop is not very wide and we both love to use it for what it is named for, a gallop, and my horse in particular is highly strung. If I should try to even canter past the 'person' odds are my horse would spook and I would end up in the hedge.

I looked ahead and there was a dark figure upon the brow of the hill. Liv has amazing eyesight and had spotted him first. I say "him" because that's the impression I got from the figure.
He was standing looking out over one of the fields, not facing towards us but was sideways to our eye line.

We took little notice since people do walk along our gallop and continued walking towards the hill. Again Liv spoke up "that's so strange, he isn't moving, what is he doing?" I again looked up and the man was still standing there, which may seem common but it is not. The only people you usually encounter are joggers or people walking their dogs. The fact that this man was simply standing there, doing nothing, seemed a bit unusual.

I stared at him for some time and what struck us both odd was he seemed completely in black, even his face seemed dark. Liv joked "maybe we should ride past him, that should wake him up!" we both laughed at the idea and Liv was changing a song on her mp3 player, so I looked towards her for what I would estimate was around three seconds, then back to the hill as we were getting quite close now. And to my shock he had gone!.

I felt the hairs on my neck stand on end, how could someone have moved so quickly. I stopped my horse and burst out to Liv "he's gone!" she snapped her head up as she was saying "he what!?" There was nothing on the hill in the time it took me to look at my friend and look back, he had disappeared. We stared at each other and without a word kicked both our horses into a canter. Both of them are very keen and any excuse to go up a gear they will snap it up.

We galloped to the spot where the man had been and found nothing. It only took a few seconds to get there and there was nothing. I looked down the bank, no one was running down it. To understand why this puzzled us so much, this bank is very large and very steep there is no way that anyone could have run down it faster then it took the horses to reach the top. Either side is a field but with a low fence with no real hedge or anything to hide behind.

We searched everywhere and couldn't find him. It also seemed unlikely that in the time it took me to glance at Liv then glance back up, I reckon about 3 seconds, that someone could have vanished off the top of the bank. They would have had to literally wildly leapt down and why would someone stand for all that time in our view, I would say nearly a minute, in plain sight, then run away so madly?

We stopped there for a few minutes finding no footprints or any evidence that someone had been there. And surely the riders we came across earlier would have seen him since they were coming from the same direction. It was like he was there then he wasn't.

I am not one for jumping to conclusions but no matter how I tried I couldn't see how anyone could have got out of our way faster then our horses could have gotten us there.

Even now, a couple of months later, it still makes the hairs on the back of my neck rise.

Nothing was right about that figure the fact he was just standing there doing nothing, the way he just appeared, the fact he looked completely black from head to toe and the way he could move faster then horses with nowhere to hide.

Both fields are large and open with short grass and any cover was a serious distance away, no one could have hidden in that amount of time.

I still can't explain it but I still feel whatever or whoever we saw was not a normal human being.

Submitted by Hayley, UK