“He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed, miracles that cannot be counted” (Job 5:9).
While living in Washington state, north of Spokane, our family enjoyed camping 25 miles south of the Canadian border at Lake Pierre. It was one of our favorite places and we had gone there many times. Our kids learned to handle a canoe all on their own there, did a lot of hiking and enjoyed bringing friends along.
Our daughter, CaSandra, age 14 at the time had brought a new friend, Sarah along for the fun. As normal and understandingly so, Sarah’s parents, who were very cautious about her going off for the weekend with strangers, came to meet us prior to the trip. We assured them we had been to this camp site many times and she would be safe with us. This was a big deal because she had never been allowed to stay overnight with anyone before.
We had a truck camper that Ken and I slept in and the girls pitched a tent about 20 yards away. The campground is small with only about 12 primitive camp sites so it was pretty easy to notice the few others who were around. We did all the normal stuff, canoe ride on the lake to see the beavers, cooked supper and sat around the fire before going to bed.
The campground was pretty remote – just a single lane paved road going by it so it was basically very quiet and peaceful. I’m a very light sleeper, and was still awake, unlike Ken who was snoring away. About this time I hear some teenage boys talking, while literally leaning against our truck. You could tell they were drunk or high on something. As I lay there I heard them discussing their plan to stop the next car coming down the road (which is few and far between at 1:00 a.m.) and if it was a woman they planned to pull her out of the car and rape her…. I couldn’t believe my ears! My heart was pounding and my mind racing thinking of what could we possibly do to prevent this since we had no cell reception to call the police.
Before I even had time to come up with a logical thought, one of the boys swore and said forget that, we can just go get those girls in the tent. They couldn’t have taken but a few steps before I was immediately shoving Ken (in a dead sleep) out of bed, screaming “Get the girls! Get the girls!” He had no idea what was happening. In seconds I tried to brief him what was happening and he burst out of the camper, yes, only in his underwear and some shoes. He went flying down the trail, grabbed the camp ax off the wood pile and yelled for them to get out of there (at this time the guys were already at the tent trying to get the girls to come out). They took off in all directions (guessing to be four of them) right through and over the picker bushes, not even on a trail. We laugh now just picturing Ken with his hair sticking up waving the ax like a wild Papa Bear. He got the girls out of the tent and to the camper where we could lock the door. At this time one not very smart guy (who had to be quite high) came back saying to Ken “You can’t do anything to me!”
He had a sudden change of heart when Ken went chasing after him with the ax a second time. Ken got dressed, went down and grabbed the tent, sleeping bags and all in a big heap and put on our utility trailer. We left the canoe and coolers and started back towards the nearest little town until we got cell phone reception.
Ken called the local Sheriff and we pulled over to wait for him to escort us back to get our canoe. We didn’t know for sure how many of them there was and if high and with little fear and common sense, we didn’t know what they might do. While waiting on the Sheriff, we started to calm down. The girls really had to go to the bathroom. so when nature calls and you are in the middle of nowhere – you go out behind the camper. (This is only being shared because of what comes later.) The Sheriff couldn’t find us so we had to move to a place he recognized and then we all headed back (in the middle of the night) to get the camping gear we left behind. As we backtracked and got to the area where the girls had answered the call of nature, there were two huge cougars, one lying in the road and one standing beside the road – EXACTLY where the girls had been. Each cougar made just one leap and on to the bank on the opposite side of the road. They were huge but instantly gone!
By now we are really counting our blessings over the girls being safe and that we didn’t have to explain scratch marks on bare skin. We got our stuff and returned home to face Sarah’s parents …. Needless to say, she never went camping with us after that.
Lucky? Blessed by miracles of 1) no rapes, 2) no actual violence 3) no cougar attack! Things could have gone very different and we are thankful we serve a God who is our protector!
Ken had a concealed weapon permit shortly afterwards, just in case God would ever need someone with “skin” to help out.
My name is Teresa Evans. I am a wife to Tom, a retired Circuit Judge, and I am a court reporter by trade, a mother by God's grace and a lover of Jesus Christ. I've grown up in a family blessed with many miracles, and have received multiple miracles myself.