When on the lookout for some of California’s best watering holes, the following list will prove to be an invaluable guide – but be sure to take note of the paranormal elements associated with these beautiful locations. Some might ignite an interest to go ghost hunting while others offer a dire warning to stay away.
These popular vacation spots have one thing in common: they are as terrifying as they are magnificent. From weeping women wanting to drag you down with them to creepy ghost children who lurk in the depths, you’ll find yourself thinking twice before heading off to explore these spooky and haunted locations.
10 Paranormal Swimming Holes In California That Will Make You Feel Like You’re In The Twilight Zone
Table of Contents
- 10) Agua Caliente Hot Springs – San Diego
- 9) Bass Lake – Point Reyes
- 8) Aztec Falls – Lake Arrowhead
- 7) Red Rock Pool – Santa Barbara
- 6) Mad River – Kneeland
- 5) Big Bear Lake, West Shore Beach – Big Bear Lake
- 4) Three Sisters Falls – Pine Valley
- 3) Bridge to Nowhere, East Fork San Gabriel River – Azusa
- 2) Tuolumne River – Tuolumne County
- 1) Rock Pool Swimming Hole – Calabasas
10) Agua Caliente Hot Springs – San Diego
Visitors have a lot to enjoy at this location – considered among the most fun, secret swimming holes in California – but reports of eerie paranormal activity state that the water has a mind of its own. Some say that the hissing appears to be natural, while others say the water itself is warning bathers to get out before they are boiled alive.
Believed to be haunted by angry, ancient spirits, witnesses say that you get the feeling that being drawn away from the natural source is what makes the spirits angry. One young girl ended up with a burn mark that looked like the word, “death” She hasn’t gone back since – for fear of an early, grisly ending.
9) Bass Lake – Point Reyes
Considered one of the most popular watering holes in Northern California, some swear that they’ll never return, after their children were attacked by nasty spirits who took over their bodies. One family advised that their youngest son – a four year old – was wading with his grandmother when she began to scream at him.
Witnesses reported that his face was twisted into an unholy snarl. He was looking up at her like he wanted to hurt her. When other children reacted the same way, they all fled – later reporting that their children were so terrifying, that they needed an exorcism – after days of behaving like demons and causing nightmares in the whole family.
8) Aztec Falls – Lake Arrowhead
Some who enjoy cliff diving in California say a victim of drowning haunts the Aztec Falls, who likes nothing better than to drag people down with her. She is seen as a beautiful Native American woman at first – drawing men close to her until she slips under water. They are so transfixed by her beauty that they slip under with her.
One older man advised that he couldn’t help himself – but once under the surface, she revealed her true self. He saw an apparition of a decayed corpse, gripping onto him and dragging him further down. When his friend dragged him back up, he had scratches up and down his arms and was screaming in terror.
7) Red Rock Pool – Santa Barbara
If searching for places to hike and swim near you in Socal, know that locals warn about strange entities appearing in the dark hours of the day – like blood-covered ghosts rising out of the water. It’s said that you can smell blood before they appear. One woman reports that she ignored it, until she saw a red mass floating above the surface.
She scrambled to get out but every time she went over to the banks, a scarlet spirit blocked her way. When she finally got out – with the help of her husband – she was covered in blood. Thinking that she’d hurt herself, they washed her with clean water but found no wounds.
6) Mad River – Kneeland
This pretty spot is a favorite for many vacationers looking for beautiful watering holes and SoCal swimming, although a few witnesses will tell you that you’ll lose your mind if you swim here. A group of tourists were horrified and started running about screaming after swimming. They reported that terrifying visions had infiltrated their minds.
A Chinese man spoke of the most disgusting images of torture – like human body parts being dragged through mud and then cut up with sharp rocks. Locals believe that the swimming holes are cursed and that the weaker you are the more likely you’ll be affected – eventually going insane.
5) Big Bear Lake, West Shore Beach – Big Bear Lake
There are disagreements about how the ghost children first arrived here, which is among the best Southern California lakes you can swim in. Some say they were killed by an evil woman while others’ believe them to be abandoned children who drowned in the lake. They appear as innocent, lost children until you get closer.
An old man advises that all he saw was a little girl crying at the edge of one of the swimming holes. He went over to see if he could help her find her mommy but when she turned around, she had large dark eyes and jagged teeth. Before she slipped back under the water, she said in a dark voice, “I’m dead, old man – and you will be soon.”
4) Three Sisters Falls – Pine Valley
People wonder if the name of this location has anything to do with the reports of the sound of women weeping when you swim under water. A local man advises never to do so, as the grief will become so powerful that you’ll end up doing your best to never surface again – essentially joining the weeping women for eternity.
He tells of how his brother nearly met the same fate when he dove under water and stayed there. When he saved him and pulled him out, his brother was weeping like his whole family had died. He continued to be inconsolable for the rest of the vacation and to this day is obsessed with the weeping women.
3) Bridge to Nowhere, East Fork San Gabriel River – Azusa
If you have fond memories you’d like to hang onto, don’t go swimming at this part of the river. Visitors report total amnesia after spending time here, where they can’t even recognize their families’ faces. One young man advises that he felt like his mind was being erased by a dark entity who was stealing them for a nefarious purpose.
He said that to this day he still hasn’t recovered some memories, even when shown photos and video of his past. He reports that the entity takes memories to feed on – like energy for a dark soul. Ironically, it is said that if you come back at midnight, you might have a chance to recover your memories – but no one dares.
2) Tuolumne River – Tuolumne County
The faint of heart need to stay away from the waterfalls at this location, which has some of the best swimming holes in Northern California. Witnesses say that you’ll see red eyes staring out after twilight. One visitor reports that she was swimming and looked up into the falls – to see three sets of evil, red eyes staring out.
When she screamed to her friends, they swam over and also saw the eyes – before a wailing sound chilled them to their bones. On the way home, she advises that she continued to see the eyes in the windows, even though her friends didn’t. She still believes they are waiting to pounce on her at any time.
1) Rock Pool Swimming Hole – Calabasas
It’s understandable to most people that there are rocks under water at most swimming holes, but some visitors say that after dark, they become something more sinister. It seems that people are being bitten by what they think are skulls with sharp teeth. An intrepid ghost hunter brought a headlamp for his encounter.
He reports that he felt teeth nipping at his ankles so he shone the light down and saw several skulls bobbing around his ankles. Even though he was shaking like a leaf and feeling the pain in his feet, he hoisted one of them up and threw it on the banks. According to the man, everyone saw the skull slowly morph back into a rock.