Bridget’s Stalker Meets Her SAINT
March 26th, 2020
5 minute read
Since 2016, I have spent my summers in a small 1971 camper trailer that I remodeled. This camper trailer is my way of staying on public land while supporting myself as a fly-fishing guide far from home. It also gives me a safe and secure place to lay my head and lock my door.
This warm and cozy shelter provides me the opportunity to move around the mountain and hunt and fish as much as possible. I follow the local forest service and BLM laws and move from campsite to campsite each summer. This trailer has been my summer home for four years now and I love the simple life that it allows me to live!
Am I Alone?
One of the most asked questions I receive is about if and how I feel safe being a young, small woman alone on the mountain in a trailer. In my mind, being a woman doesn’t make me more vulnerable. I am constantly armed and trained and not afraid to use my home-defense-weapon, or in my case trailer-defense weapon, at any time. And my self-defense firearm of choice is my Springfield SAINT Edge 5.56mm (you can see more about my rifle and how I have equipped it here).
Even with a rifle, being a woman alone on the mountain sounds dangerous to many people. My whole life I’ve participated in and excelled at male-dominated activities such as hunting, fishing and shooting. However, I would have never expected that I would have to load and shoulder my SAINT in defense of myself while living in my trailer. To my surprise, that day came on a crisp summer night.
Facing the Threat
On this particular night, I was packing up some outdoor items so that I could move my trailer to a new camping spot in the morning. In certain parts of the West, like where I park my trailer, you do not have to camp in designated camp spots. This means no campground hosts or fees, no other people and some very desolate areas. I like having the wilderness to myself and enjoying the peace, quiet and stars each night. After it got dark that night around 9:30 pm, I settled into my trailer for the night and went to bed.
It was about an hour after midnight when I noticed that my trailer cat was moving around the bed. My cat, Brookie, typically sleeps through the night and only wakes up when she hears something outside, usually a bird and occasionally a bear! Since she alerted me, I saw some headlights shining through the curtains on my trailer. Someone in a vehicle was approaching my trailer in the middle of the night. I sprung out of bed instantly, cautious and prepared for the worst. When I am sleeping, I place my SAINT at the head of my bed, right above my pillow.
I grabbed my rifle and shouldered it with the barrel facing down toward the floor. I chambered a round and kept the safety on. An old red truck with a serious muffler problem approached my trailer and parked right outside. This truck was about five feet from my door. My trailer door was deadbolted from the inside. I peeked out the window to see a middle-aged man exit the truck and approach my door. I knew that there was absolutely nothing good that could come from this situation and treated him as a threat to my safety, immediately.
I stood by the door with my gun and yelled to the stranger “What do you want?” My yell was firm and serious. From my concealed carry, self-protection, and self-defense classes I’ve learned to treat these situations with a strong tone and simple questions. After my question, this strange man replied, “I’m just seeing what you’re doing.”
My initial thought to this situation as soon as the man drove up is that I need to get him to leave immediately. From the way the man looked and walked to my trailer I could tell he was impaired and on some sort of serious substance. I yelled back at him, “You need to leave right now!” He replied, “Are you all alone in there? What is a young girl doing out here all by herself?” As if there weren’t enough red flags already, this was a big one, and my caution and fear turned to anger.
I yelled “Leave NOW! I’m not asking you again, this is your last chance!” Thankfully we both had the locked door between us, and my curtains were closed so he could not see in, but I could see out.
“Okay, okay…jeez!” this man replied as he walked back to his truck and proceeded to leave. I watched him drive back the way he came and sure enough he was gone, and never bothered me again.
Thankfully nothing bad happened and the confrontation was very short, but the point is that this could happen to anyone at any time. I think we can all agree that no strange, impaired man should ever approach a woman (or man) in the wilderness during the night. This man clearly was not thinking right and had bad intentions, and I read the situation immediately and knew how to treat it.
If that same situation happened and I only had a knife on me, or nothing at all, I would have been far more scared. Feeling confident in protecting yourself is priceless. This encounter was a good reminder that there are simply weird, crazy people out there. It is important to be well-trained, and have a gun close and ready God forbid that moment ever comes.
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