Halloween Mystery On Stormy Lake
The noise of metal sliding on metal followed by a couple of metalic thumps woke both of us at 3:30 in the morning of October 26. We could not image what made that noise. 

It was a brilliant moon lit night, the brightest of the year. None of the four motion sensing lights around the cottage had been triggered. 

I turned on the outside flood lights and looked out from all the windows. I saw nothing moving. I looked down out of the bathroom window and noticed the extension/step ladder had been moved about 20 feet from where I had left it after raking leaves five days earlier. For the last couple of years I have stacked the two ladders on two 4x4s at the bottom of the hill behind the cottage where the more distant ladder is in the picture below.  

In the light of day I could see drag marks where the corner of the ladder foot had dug into the soil. That accounts for the metallic thumps. There were no other marks, no deer or moose tracks. There was no disruption to the leaves on the hillside above the ladders where an animal could have come from without triggering an automatic light. There is no chance that a beaver had dragged a tree past the ladder without leaving evidence. 

Several racoons pass through every night but I doubt they would be strong enough to move a ladder at the speed that it moved to make those bouncing skid marks. 

Could a passing bear have got its leg caught up in the ladders
causing it to drag the top one 20 feet before freeing itself?

Without leaving any evidence???