I Was Charged By An Aggressive Grouse While Camping In Northern Minnesota
This was probably one of the more bizarre encounters I've had in the woods. I was camping with my family in Northern Minnesota when I was charged by an aggressive grouse.
We were camping at Whiteface Reservoir Campground near Aurora, Minnesota. It's one of our favorite places to go, and they also have the cleanest vault toilets I've ever seen. No joke. Teri and the campground hosts do a fantastic job!
There is a trail that goes from the campsites down to the lake. I was walking the trail to find a spot where my kids could fish from shore. Along the main trail, I spotted in the distance a grouse standing right in the middle. I figured as I got closer it would drum its wings and take off. Seriously, those things scare the hell out of me when you don't see one and they fly off next to me.
Instead of flying off, this grouse puffed up its feathers and charged directly at me. I was more confused than scared, but it was alarming. It was squeaking at me and drumming its wings.
I actually took a few steps back, trying to get it to calm down, but it kept throwing a fit. I needed to find a way around it, so I waited a little bit to see if it would walk off. It clearly was being territorial. Maybe it was protecting some eggs? I'm not an expert, but the internet says it is possible.
In fact, it happens quite a bit. The grouse was very similar to this one.
Eventually, it started running circles in the brush on the side of the trail. That's when I quickly side-stepped it and walked quickly down the trail. It followed me for probably 50 yards before it stopped, screaming at me the entire time.
Man, even nature has a beef with me. What gives?