|“||There's a curse up in those mountains. In these lands particularly. The curse of the Wendigo. A diabolical spirit that devours the souls of even the most virtuous of men. It's said that should any man resort to cannibalism in these woods...the spirit of the Wendigo will be unleashed. And soon whatever trace of humanity they had left will be gone and all that is left is nothing but endless and insatiable hunger moved by pure primal savagery.||„|
|~ Warren Stokes|
Wendigo is a name given to mythical cannibalistic monsters or spirits from the folklore of the First Nations Algonquin tribes.
According to Native American Cree legends, the Wendigo are humans who have been mutated into monsters as punishment for committing the ultimate taboo; cannibalism. They are diabolical spirits that devour mankind and serve as a cautionary tale to the indigenous people who believe in it.
In one other particular legend, during a brutally cold winter a lost hunter's severe hunger drove him to cannibalism and after feasting on human flesh he became crazed and consequently transformed into an amorphous spirit that can assume many shapes then roam the forest for fresh victims. And no matter the amount of flesh the Wendigo devours its appetite could never be satisifed. This legend also applies to the tale behind the Donner Party where most of the American pioneers transformed into Wendigos and devoured members of their own group during an unforgivable snowfall in Truckee Lake.
Those who commit this grievous act become possessed by the spirit of the Wendigo. The influence of this spirit is said to invoke acts of murder, perversion, and insatiable hunger. They are elusive, eternally starving, and feasting only makes them hungrier. Moreover, they are said to be incredibly difficult to kill for they are known to be powerfully strong with a single Wendigo being more than capable of slaughtering a squadron of armed men. Despite being intensely hard to kill they are not invincible and can be destroyed, however, while the physical body is destroyed the spirit of the Wendigo lingers on to search for a new host.
Despite the common artistic depictions of this beast the Wendigo is described as an amorphous spirit that can assume many forms when possessing its next host. Due to this it is likely that the many depictions of the Wendigo could simply be a different form of the Wendigo when in possession of a human host.
Wendigo's are described as resembling "a gaunt skeleton recently disinterred from the grave". They have ash-gray skin, unclean and suffering from suppuration of the flesh, but despite their frail appearance, Wendigos have shown to be immensely strong, even capable of crushing a human skull with their bare hands. They are large and are capable of growing even more with each human they eat. Their most prominent features are the antlers and deer skull that sprout from their heads, which they use to gore their opponents to shreds before devouring them.
Wendigos are recorded to have some set behavior patterns. They have great predatory skills, often tracking their prey for several hours. They prefer to hunt alone rather than in packs. When Wendigos see movement or hear a sound, they focus on it intently to find the source, and then wait stalk silently, waiting for the right moment to strike.