Hikers vanish from California trails every year, sometimes without a trace. No one knows what happened to them. We do know that they were not alone. Strange things happen in the woods and deserts of California. Not all of them are easily explained by science (It's times like this that a phone psychic reading sounds pretty good).
These tragic accidents often occur in places with a violent history. Hikers beware. The following trails provide more than a physical challenge. The dangers on these trails seek your body, your blood, and your soul.
From documented crimes to alleged sightings, the level of paranormal activity and psychic phenomena in these areas is insane. Be prepared for ghost towns and Nazi fortresses, haunted forests and jealous prospectors, and everything in between.
Your blood could be next.
Have you ever felt like you were being watched in the woods? Have you seen things you can’t explain? Have strange entities invaded your dreams? If so, you might want to steer clear of these hikes. The spirits here don’t like intruders.
10 California Hiking Trails with Insane Paranormal Activity
Table of Contents
- #10 - Niles Canyon, Fremont
- #9 - Haunted Forest, Altadena
- #8 - Black Diamond Mines, Antioch
- #7 - Corralitas Red Car Trail
- #6 - Bodie Ghost Town
- #5 - Prospector Road
- #4 - Bridalveil Falls in Yosemite National Park
- #3 - Black Star Canyon, Orange County
- #2 - Murphy Ranch, Santa Monica
- #1 - The Old Zoo Trail, Los Angeles
- Choosing A Paranormal Hike
#10 - Niles Canyon, Fremont
Picking up hitchhikers may not always be the safest of ideas.
Especially in Niles Canyon.
A woman in a torn and bloodstained white dress wanders this area. She was thrown from her carriage in the 1920 and struck by an oncoming car.
According a to California psychic, she did not rest in peace.
Niles Canyon is disturbing by car.
It is even more disturbing on foot.
Could you be next? Lace up your best pair of hiking boots then take a walk through here to find out...if you're brave enough.
#9 - Haunted Forest, Altadena
Ever feel like you are being watched?
In the haunted forest, it might be more than a feeling.
The forest has a dark and bloody history. Lynching’s, burnings, witchcraft and murder stain the forest floor, leaving more than the remnants of old blood behind.
Hikers, and mountain bikers, report sightings of figures hanging from trees, apparitions, and the sense of being stalked. In these woods, the danger is real.
Whatever you see, don’t stray from the path (and keep your shoes on tight in case you need to run!)
#8 - Black Diamond Mines, Antioch
Not everyone comes out of the Black Diamond Mines.
Even if you do emerge after a walk through this paranormal hotspot, you’re still not safe.
If the ghost of Sarah Norton in nearby Rose Hill Cemetery doesn’t scare you, the Wailing Witch will. Ever since her execution, the wailing witch has haunted these mines.
She failed the children in her care, leading to their deaths.
Now she waits to lead you to yours.
#7 - Corralitas Red Car Trail
If you like old railroads, this is the hike for you.
Old train cars and machinery still litter the sides of this hike.
They are not alone.
According to a sage adept at reading Tarot cards, more than psychic remnants remain; the skeletons of long dead rail workers rest there too, killed during the construction of the red car route. All that remains today of their work are cement foundations.
And their ghosts.
As the sun fades, the angry spirits of the rail workers might just join you on the path.
#6 - Bodie Ghost Town
This ghost town is haunted.
If you survive the hike to Bodie, stay on your guard. Smells of cooking don’t mean that this town is occupied.
Ignore the giggling girl in the cemetery and the woman watching you through the windows of the abandoned homes. Neither wishes you well.
Above all else, touch nothing.
The residents of Bodie might be long gone, but their spirits will curse anyone who steals from their land.
#5 - Prospector Road
We like to think our pets protect us.
Animals often pick up on paranormal activity long before we do. On Prospector Road, it might be the last thing your pet ever sees.
He wouldn’t be the first pet to vanish along the seven-mile stretch.
Legend has it that the miners who lived here in the 19th century preyed upon one another along this road.
Now, an angry apparition is all that is left.
#4 - Bridalveil Falls in Yosemite National Park
A national nightmare.
The Miwok Indians believed an evil wind inhabited Bridalveil Falls at Yosemite. They named it “Po-ho-no.”
Stray too close to the edge of the falls, and Po-ho-no might lure you over.
There is a reason the National Park Service took such care with the railings around the falls. Even modern day ultralight backpackers have fallen to their deaths.
If you hear Po-ho-no whispering to you in your tent at night, those railings might not save you.
#3 - Black Star Canyon, Orange County
Black Star Canyon is one of the most haunted hikes in California.
It is also one of the most challenging.
The trail leads deep into the wilderness to the side of an abandoned Indian Village, the site of a brutal massacre.
Hikers report movement in the trees and hooded figures.
The news reports a savage murder, a deadly school bus accident, and horrific rapes.
Whatever lurks in Black Star Canyon, it doesn’t wish you well.
#2 - Murphy Ranch, Santa Monica
The paranormal and pure evil shaped the history of Murphy Ranch.
Nazi sympathizers tried to build an Aryan utopia here in the 1930s. They believed in the power of Hitler’s Germany, and in the occult.
All that is left of the site are creepy staircases and abandoned buildings.
Several local children went missing during construction. Whether they were experimented on, brainwashed, or worse, we’ll never know.
You could always try asking the expressionless children with red eyes.
If you dare.
#1 - The Old Zoo Trail, Los Angeles
The trail starts near the Crystal Springs Ranger Headquarters, past an old wooden carousel, up through the chaparral to Bee Rock and through the ruins of the Old L.A. Zoo.
Watch out for the ghost of Dona Petronilla watching from the window and a ghostly man descending a nearby staircase. If you see a man on horseback, run.
Human spirits might spare you. The tormented spirits of the caged animals in the zoo are not so forgiving.
Choosing A Paranormal Hike
First, get directions here.
Whatever happens, stick together, and don’t get lost. You don’t want to be on any of these trails alone at night.