I was also camping in Michigan’s upper peninsula, at JW Wells state park. It was late, around midnight. Us kids were in a giant tent, there were nine of us. Adults out drinking at the campfire. Suddenly, there are headlights shining into our camp – a ranger pulled up and rushed over to speak to the adults in whispered, frantic tones.
Not two minutes later, our parents were scrabbling to get us out of the tent. We all piled into the van, scared… my mom explains that there are a family of wolverines in the campground that are aggravated over something, so the rangers want everyone in vehicles.
We are giggling and screwing around in the van for an hour when we hear this bone chilling, cackle like scream. It was LOUD. We all shut right up and are staring at each other, and I’m wondering if a wolverine really makes that sound when –
Our tent we were just in was ripped apart. We watched as something collapsed it and was thrashing around for what seemed like ever. All we had was the light of the campfire, myself and my two cousins staring HARD into the darkness behind the van, trying to make out this wolverine tearing up our canvas tent. It went still, and my dad and drunk uncle ran to the tent remains, beating it with sticks. They didn’t find anything. No animal, no nothing.
The scream came again as they were kicking through the remains, from the woods behind the van. My uncle pointed his giant craftsman flashlight immediately in that direction, and SOMETHING FURRY STANDING ON TWO LEGS took off running, howling and screaming and cackling as it went, hooking its weird angled arms above its head. I saw the flashlight shine in its eyes, and that was no fucking bear.
We slept in our cars and left as soon as the sun was up. We left the shredded canvas tent behind. The ranger refunded our week plus the night we stayed, and gave us a truck bed full of firewood. I think the adults knew it wasn’t wolverines.