Whether it’s with your family or friends, there’s no better way to end a day than by sitting around a campfire. Today we want to share some of the best short scary stories that will make your next campfire even more memorable. This firepit is our favorite to sit around while telling scary stories!
Short Scary Stories for Adults Around the Campfire
The Deer Woman
There are many variations of this scary campfire story and whether the main character was the easter Woodlands or the Central Plains tribes’ spirit.
At times, Deer Woman can be found in her human form. Other times in animal form. Sometimes even a mixture of the two.
Deer Woman is usually portrayed as a calm spirit that helps women conceive children. Still, she is also described as a spirit that poses a danger to men or disobedient children.
Deer Woman is often seen as a “bogeyman” type character. Stories can be adapted to meet the audience’s age appropriateness.
If you find yourself at a campsite that is near water, the story of La Llorona may be just the scary story for your occasion.
In this story, La Llorona is a ghost known for hanging out around waterfront areas. She is mourning the loss of her children who drowned.
In the most well-known version of this story, the ghost of La Llorona is a beautiful woman who goes by the name of Maria.
Maria caught her husband with another woman, and blinded by her anger, she chooses to drown her children. In some variations of this story, Maria is not the biological mother of the children. Maria drowns them to avoid her husband taking them to be raised by his new lover.
This story can be found in German folktales that date back as far as 1486 but begin appearing in Hispanic texts in the 19th century.
The Dog’s Lick
This scary story revolves around a young girl left at home by her parents. Before her parents leave, she shares with them that she is scared to go to sleep in the house by herself.
They ease her worries by instructing her to let the dog sleep under the bed to occasionally lick her hand and comfort her. The girl’s fears are not calmed as she watches the news before going to bed. She discovers there’s a serial killer on the run in the area.
The story ends the next morning after the girl is comforted throughout the night by her dog licking her hand. The girl soon discovers the death of her dog and the words “humans can lick too” written in blood on the bathroom wall.
Like many scary stories, this one includes a prisoner escaping from a local prison. This prison escapee is missing a hand, and in its place, he wears a hook.
A couple of teenagers, Donald and Sarah, find themselves at the local lookout point when the radio informs them of the prisoner’s escape.
Sarah wants to go home. Donald becomes agitated as he realizes the plans he had are about to be foiled.
He tries to rescue the evening by rolling the windows up and locking the doors. Sarah will have none of it. Sarah hears what is described as a scratching noise at her door and demands to be taken home.
When Donald goes to open the door for Sarah at her home, he discovers a hook hanging from the door handle.
The Little Black Dog
The Mansfield and Burton families find themselves in the middle of a family feud in the middle of the wild west.
The rivalry culminates in Silas Burton begging for his life after being shot by Billy Mansfield.
After putting the final bullet in Silas, Billy turns the gun on the Burton’s little black dog. After murdering both Silas and the family dog Billy tries to go on with life, but he can’t.
Everywhere he goes, he sees or hears the little black dog. He often was so convinced the little black dog was following him that he could be found yelling and throwing rocks to scare it away.
One day Billy’s neighbors notice there’s no fire coming from Billy’s chimney and soon discover Billy’s deceased body.
There were no signs indicating how Billy had died, but many black dog hairs were found on and around Billy’s body.
Defago was an Indian that had been hired as a hunting guide by a wealthy man that wanted to hunt in Northern Canada. Defago escorted the man out into the wilderness and they set up camp near a large frozen lake.
In the middle of their third night of hunting, the rich man woke up and could hear a powerful windstorm outside of the tent.
When he opened the tent he noticed the trees and bushes weren’t moving in the wind whatsoever.
It was then the rich man who listened to the wind and noticed it was calling his hunting guide’s name.
The wind began to pull Defago from the tent and all the rich man could hear was Defago yelling about his feet being on fire. In a matter of seconds, Defago disappeared and the sounds of the wind were gone.
The next morning the rich man went to investigate Defago’s tracks and discovered the tracks disappeared. A year later the rich man returned to Northern Canada to hunt again and inquires if Defago ever returned.
The local hunters inform the rich man that Defago had yet to be seen. They joke that the Wendigo, a mythical creature of the wind, must have got him.
They share about how the Wendigo pulls you away so fast your feet catch fire until your entire body is consumed by fire.
The story ends when the rich man notices another local hunter sitting by the fire who is non-responsive to the rich man’s attempt at conversation.
The rich man removes the local hunter’s hat and discovers nothing but a pile of ashes.
Scary Campfire Stories for Kids
The Yellow Ribbon
This scary story starts with two young children, Jane and Johnny. The two children grow together and Johnny eventually begins to develop feelings for Jane.
All throughout their lives, Johnny was curious about why Jane would wear a yellow scarf around her neck. She always declined to provide an answer as to why she wore it.
As their relationship grew and eventually turned romantic, Johnny learned to accept Jane’s scarf in all circumstances.
They got married, raised a family, and grew old together. All the while Jane could be found wearing the yellow scarf.
It wasn’t until Jane was on her deathbed that Johnny knew this was his final chance to ask Jane about the significance of the scarf.
Jane finally grants Johnny’s wish and lets him remove her scarf and her head immediately falls off.
Dem Bones is a scary story about pirates that buried stolen treasure on an island. Onlookers noticed the pirates burying the treasure and under the cover of night tried to steal the treasure, but were unsuccessful.
The legend states that for years and years people were digging up the island. They were attempting to find the buried treasure, but none were successful.
The legend also says that to this day the skeletons of the pirates raid the island at night and celebrate and tell tales of their pirating adventures.
The Thing at the Foot of the Bed
The Thing at the Foot of the Bed is a humorous scary story of a man who bragged about not fearing anything. He was home alone one night when he decided to watch a scary movie before going to bed.
The man laid in bed, but couldn’t fall asleep. Every little noise he heard reminded him of the scary movie, but then he saw something.
He saw two eyes at the foot of his bed staring back at him and so he grabbed his shotgun.
The moonlight shined on the figure at the end of his bed and the man aimed and pull the trigger of his shotgun. He quickly realized the figure at the end of his bed was his big toe.
The Coffin is a fun story about a man walking home on a windy night. The man passes by a cemetery when a coffin begins to chase him.
The faster the man moves the faster the coffin moves. No matter what the man does the coffin continues to pursue him.
It isn’t until the coffin bursts into the man locked in his bathroom and the man discovers the coffin’s weakness is cough syrup. This is a comical story that can be found in varying lengths and is guaranteed to a laugh from the audience.
The Hairy Toe
The Hairy Toe is a tale of a young woman who ventured into the woods searching for dinner. The woman spots a funny-looking object that is sticking up out of the ground. She proceeds to dig it up.
She soon discovers the object is a hairy toe that has a lot of meat on it. The woman is convinced she can make a fantastic hair toe soup.
She eats the soup for dinner and goes to bed. She is awoken by the thunderous sound of a voice saying, “Hairy toe! Hairy toe! I want my hairy toe!”
The woman hides beneath her bed covers when she finally yells at the voice that she ate the hairy toe for dinner.
The voice confirms that the woman did eat the toe for dinner and the woman is never seen again. The only evidence left at the scene is a giant footprint with a missing toe.