Are you interested in the most haunted hikes and haunted trails in Southern California? Does the idea of exploring secret catacombs in Riverside excite you? Want to see Shelly, the terrifying ghost that walks upside down like a spider?
Haunted Hikes and Haunted Trails
There are various haunted trails, locations, and hikes in California.
But in this post I’m focusing on the top 10 in Southern California.
If you feel brave enough, and up to the challenge, visit one of these spots at night.
If you survive…try your luck at another.
And now, I present for your enjoyment in terror…
10 Most Haunted Hikes In Southern California
Table of Contents
- 1 1. Keene Hospital – Keene
- 2 2. California Baptist University – Catacombs – Riverside
- 3 3. Oak Park Cemetery – Claremont
- 4 4. 101 Freeway Near Las Virgines Road – Agoura
- 5 5. The Old Zoo Trail – Los Angeles
- 6 6. Ojai – Creek Road
- 7 7. Adelaida Cemetery – Adelaida
- 8 8. Agua Mansa Cemetery – Colton
- 9 9. Skidoo
- 10 10. Scary Dairy – Camarillo
- 11 Your Next Step
1. Keene Hospital – Keene
This run-down abandoned hospital is located in the small town of Keene.
It’s one of those haunted trails accessed via old dirt roads.
Originally, it housed Tuberculosis patients who were suffering horribly.
Children were said to suffer the most and die the fastest.
Maximum capacity was soon reached, and exceeded.
Due to the overpopulation and mistreatment of patients the hospital was shut down.
Visitors today often hear the disembodied laughter of children, which turns into frantic whispers.
Photo credit: flickr/bentguy
2. California Baptist University – Catacombs – Riverside
Local tales say that this campus was originally an insane asylum.
From the early 1900’s through the 1950’s clinically insane, and dangerous, patients wandered the halls of the entire four story building.
Haunted trails – a vast network of catacombs – exist under the buildings.
Many believe the catacombs to have been both a transport system, and a secluded area to torture unruly patients.
Offices now exist within the basement.
But the offices are rumored to have more than one entrance to the catacombs.
Also, entrances to the catacombs exist throughout the campus.
Those who enter after sunset report hearing distant screams and seeing the spirits of patients looking for a way out.
Most disturbing perhaps is the appearance of “Shelly”.
Several witnesses report seeing a young girl, they’ve dubbed Shelly, in a hospital gown crawling on all fours, upside down.
Due to her manner of walking, they compare her appearance to that of a human spider, making clicking noises with her tongue.
Shelly sightings are said to be proceeded by a sudden gust of cold, stale, air.
Photo credit: flickr/paranoidvisions
3. Oak Park Cemetery – Claremont
Small, gray, hairless creatures have been spotted running between grave stones at night.
Initial reports claimed them to be larger-than-average raccoons with a genetic disorder making them hairless.
However, upon investigation, visitors reported the creatures to have human-like eyes and teeth.
Reports also claim the creatures appear to communicate with each other using guttural noises.
At least one visitor has been attacked on these haunted trails.
Fortunately, he was able to get away before serious harm was inflicted.
Photo credit: flickr/createsimona
4. 101 Freeway Near Las Virgines Road – Agoura
CHP has reported accidents here, caused by drivers swerving to miss a woman who suddenly appears.
The woman is believed to be the spirit of a young woman killed by a drunk driver.
Visitors who get out of their car to investigate the haunted trails in the area report the feeling of a strange “energy“.
Photo credit: flickr/batabidd
5. The Old Zoo Trail – Los Angeles
On the rare rainy night, it’s said the ghost of Doña Petronilla can be seen watching from the windows at midnight.
Others reports seeing an apparition descending a staircase across the street at the 1926 wooden carousel.
Reports have also stated seeing a ghostly man on horseback riding through the park
The trail will takes you to the fenced-off ledge of Bee Rock (which some say resembles the face of Petronilla).
On your way back down you’ll walk through the ruins of the Old L.A. Zoo – where the spirits of caged and tormented animals linger.
Photo credit: flickr/pkonoshobi
6. Ojai – Creek Road
A firefighter, disfigured in 1948 by a fire that blazed out of control, haunts this road.
After the fire he ran into the woods and wasn’t seen again until recently.
In recent years there have been conflicting reports.
Some state the spirit of the firefighter appears after sunset on the third Tuesday of each month.
Others report a large humanoid figure with an axe appears and chases them off the haunted trails.
7. Adelaida Cemetery – Adelaida
In the 1880s, the population of Adelaida was approximately 500, supported by the prospering Klau and Buena Vista mercury mines.
These days, the cemetery is populated by the lone spirit of Charlotte.
She is said to wear a long white gown and can be seen on Friday nights between 10pm and midnight.
Visitors report seeing her lay flowers on the grave of her son who was a toddler that died in the Diphtheria epidemic.
Some believe she killed herself here due to her grief.
Now she’s trapped within the bounds of the cemetery.
On August 17, 2001 a ghost researcher visited this site and collected evidence, including pictures, and composites from the haunted trails.
Upon developing the film he discovered a white apparition, believed to be Charlotte, and a ghostly white orb of unknown origin.
Some feel, including several psychic sensitives, that the orb was the spirit of Charlotte’s son.
Photo credit: flickr/cheryl_strahl
8. Agua Mansa Cemetery – Colton
The cemetery, and road leading to it, are said to be haunted by an impossibly beautiful and seductive spirit named La Llorona.
La Llorona drowned her six children and committed suicide.
It is said that due to her sins she is stuck in limbo until she can replace the six lives she took.
Young men often spot her on the haunted trails, naked and weeping, pleading for help.
Women see her wearing a white gown.
It’s believed that any man who attempts to help her will join her in limbo.
A 19 year old male and a 23 year old male both disappeared in 2009 after stating they were going to look for La Llorona.
They have not been heard from since.
Photo credit: flickr/whenigodeaf
These haunted trails exist in a barren patch of desert in Death Valley.
Littered with broken bottles and abandoned mine shafts, this is where Joe Hooch Simpson was murdered.
Joe was a saloon keeper that killed the town banker in 1908.
In a fit of rage, a lynch mob formed and hung Joe, then buried him.
The next day the local doctor dug Joe up and cut off his head, claiming to test for Syphilis.
Some believe the doctor was actually a practitioner of witchcraft and voodoo, and used Joe’s head for his dark arts.
Several townspeople reported seeing Joe’s grave appear to be freshly dug in the weeks after the incident.
No one knows what ultimately became of Joe’s head.
Today many claim to see a headless body wandering Skidoo on nights with a quarter moon.
Photo credit: flickr/tonyreynes
10. Scary Dairy – Camarillo
“Scary Dairy” is the nickname for this abandoned structure and surrounding haunted trails.
Originally it was the Camarillo State Hospital.
Locals believe the hospital also functioned as a dairy and slaughterhouse. They say that along with the slaughter of animals, patients without family members and deemed “incorrigible” were also sent to slaughter.
Some locals also believe foul experiments were performed on the patients.
Such as cutting appendages from humans and sewing them to cows in order to create more efficient milk production.
Visitor’s report seeing shapeless white lights in the area, spotting figures in the trees, and hearing moans and wails from beyond the walls.
Left photo credit: flickr/thomashawk
Right photo credit: flickr/shadowbeast
Your Next Step
Gather your courage and visit these haunted trails and locations.
Need Help? Have Questions?
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Do you think you could spend the night here alone?