For Mountain Monsters, Day of Wrath Just Another Walk in the Woods

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Mountain Monsters day of Wrath Trapper's Initials

This fifth season of Mountain Monsters has seen production dial back the drama in a big way. In fact, to some degree, they've almost over-corrected from the season where every night was three or more mysterious encounters with demons, various bigfoots, and ghostly little girls. This seventh episode contains what might have been half-an-episode of those earlier seasons for all the revelations actually emphasized.

Starting right were the last episode ended, with Willie and Bill coming upon a mass of bloody coyote carcasses, the rest of the team catches up with them to look in awe upon the killing field. Buck is sure that what did this is a smoke wolf, and the team agrees they are in a dangerous place right now and need to regroup and reevaluate their situation. But first, making Smokey the Bear proud, they've got to go back to Point Rock and put out their campfire (which, in retrospect, they shouldn't have left unattended anyway).

Returning to the rock, they find the fire already out because it's raining. But just before they start to break camp, Buck remembers something he was just about to look at when Bill and Willy called them away. There was something on the rock itself that had caught his attention, and he had forgotten about it. Investigating the face of the rock once again, he clears away the moss to find a carving in the rock: JRT. That would be John R. Tice -- Trapper's initials, carved into the rock. It's an impactful moment for the team to find this memento of their mentor -- but there's more. Beneath the initials, Buck uncovers more carving: "Dies Irae." Jeff, the team researcher, understands that this is Latin, and translates to "Day of Wrath." What this means, however, is a mystery, and not spelled out explicitly in Trapper's journal, that has been their guide so far on this new exploration of Tygart County in West Virginia.

The next day, they meet with another local named Tony to learn more about the smoke wolves and the area of the woods they refer to as No Man's Land. Tony tells them that it's well known that animals that go into those particular woods don't come back out, and he relates the story of how he lost his family dog to those woods, finding only the collar later. He also adds that, strangely enough, animals are attracted to the woods and want to go in, prompting the team to recall the dog they found wandering around in their during their expedition. However, when they ask Tony about the inscription, Dies Irae, it has no meaning to him. "Day of Wrath," on the other hand -- that's something he's heard before, in relation to a cabin he's heard talk of back in the 70s. Tony has no idea where the cabin is, however, but later that night as the AIMS team prepares to go looking for it, Tony calls Jeff with information from a friend on how to locate the place.

Cue up several minutes of the team slipping in leaves and mud, and congratulating Buck on finding creeks, and we see the cabin. But what's more, there's a light on in the cabin and smoke coming from the chimney. Rather than go up and knock on the door (on a cabin in the  woods, in the middle of the night), they decide to sneak up on it and fan out -- because that never gets anybody shot. The fact that there's blood all around the front door area, a hatchet, and a busted off padlock should be more than enough reason to back away. But they hear talk inside -- one of the timber pirates they know to be operating in the area is on the  phone, talking about having been attacked and having claw marks in his arm. Realizing that the person likely needs help, no matter what they've been doing, Buck knocks on the front door, and they immediately hear the back door slam as the man runs out.

The man was weigh 800 pounds and stand 13 feet tall, because he's leaving a trail of blood that goes beyond pints and into the gallons territory. The team ends up chasing him toward a vehicle, when they hear shots and a scream. When they find the vehicle, there's blood on the fender, and they find the shell casings that were shot. They never find the man who left behind both. 

The scene ends there as the team returns to camp. But then around 4am, the production team gets a call from the AIMS team to get to base camp quickly to cover an incident. Colt Straub takes the call from Buck and explains as they drive through the woods to the base camp. Upon arrival, the team is out in the woods looking for something that made a noise like "a herd of elephants" breaking trees. They're in disarray -- Willy's hair is frizzed out, Wild Bill's in his tighty-whiteys, Buck has on Huck's hat -- and they can see tree tops littering the ground, obviously broken off, not sawed. This, they are sure, was not done by any smoke wolf, and Buck gets an idea. Picking up a log, he makes a loud tree knock.

And gets a response.

"Boys, we got a bigfoot."

Finally, because I was getting a little tired of coming across absolutely nothing remarkable in the woods.