Brave People From Around The World Share The Most Frightening Things They've Ever Seen

Brave People From Around The World Share The Most Frightening Things They've Ever Seen

Sometimes they happen completely unexpectedly, sometimes they happen when we're kind of asking for it: creepy encounters. Whether walking alone late at night, exploring some abandoned building with friends, or just minding our own business -- we've all had a spooky experience that put the fear of God into us for a moment or two.

The following brave souls were kind enough to share their scary stories online recently. If you're in the mood for a good spine tingle or two, read on and enjoy!

23648-1552677344790.jpgNikita No Koment/Flickr

45. "I Shouldn't Be Here"

I investigated a fatal fire in a forest in the middle of nowhere. This house was set off so far into the woods; it took me forever to get back there on a dirt road. I pulled up in front of the house and of course the whole thing was boarded up. But the house was huge and old. I got creepy feelings just looking at the place. The front door was boarded up with a bit I didn’t have in my toolbox, so I had to climb through a window in the back that the family had left open.

As soon as I set foot in the house, I felt like everything was wrong. I shouldn’t be there. I shouldn’t walk around. And I sure shouldn’t take pictures. It was that feeling you get when someone is mad at you and the slightest thing will set them off so you just kinda sit there in silence hoping they’ll forget you exist.

But I was there to do a job, so I started to do my walkthrough and take photos. This fire had clearly been set on purpose, and the guy who died had been murdered by his grandson. But I still had to document each area of origin thoroughly and do diagrams and all that because fatalities are a big deal. The entire time I was walking through the house it felt like someone was standing behind me, waiting for me to slip up just once.

I finished the first floor and headed down into the basement where the guy had died. It was mid-July and it was hotter than an egg on asphalt outside. But as soon as I got to the basement it was like somebody had turned on the air conditioning. Of course, it was pitch black in the basement because A) it’s a basement and there’s not much light down there on a normal day and B) that’s where the bulk of the fire was so everything was burnt.

I walked through the basement into the bedroom. The fire hadn’t reached that far, since it had been started at the stairwell which acted as a decent chimney to prevent spread throughout the basement. But it did get hot enough in this room that the outline of the guy's body was visible on the carpet, right next to his dog’s. As soon as I entered that room, every single alarm bell in my mind was screaming: “Get out you moron, have you not seen a horror movie?! This is where the angry ghost of gramps murders you with a hatchet!”

But I had a job to do, so I stayed. I took my photos, collected samples, searched the whole basement for any evidence. I frequently had to leave the basement to go outside to give my brain time to stop freaking out. And every time I walked back in the house, every fibre of my being would tell me to leave. The whole time I was in the basement it was like someone was standing in the corner, just watching me. And of course I was working by my tiny flashlight that’s basically useless, so that didn’t help much.

The last time I left the house, I crawled through the window and noticed that it had gotten cloudy and really windy while I was inside. Thinking it was a random midwestern storm, I walked around the deck and looked out into the yard to find a buck just staring at me. I’d never seen a deer look angry, but it just looked furious. I kinda shrugged my shoulders and half waved and it turned and walked away. As soon as it walked away the wind died and it started to get warm again.

That's the creepiest house I’ve ever been to and weirdest feeling I’ve ever experienced.

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44. Darker Than Dark

The scariest moment of my life was when I visited the solitary confinement cells at Alcatraz -- which is a pretty creepy place all on its own. But those cells are like the heart of darkness. There are four or five of them just off the library. All the cell doors open onto a windowless hallway, so it’s dark leading into dark. I went in there on my own and I swear something evil was squatting in the corner waiting for me to leave my soul unattended. Ten out of ten for creepy, will not go back.

23652-1552677553256.jpgTodd Lapin/Flickr

43. No Cover Except Darkness

Back during the Vietnam War, my unit got hit hard in the jungle. The uni split: one group went to help find the VC who attacked us, and we stayed behind to evacuate the wounded. The 4 able bodies were supposed to hop on with the injured and go. We load up and one chopper doesn't make it back so the four of us can't load. We would be grossly overweight. It's late, the sun is low, the pilot says he will drop these guys and come back for us. So we divvy up ammo from the wounded and squat in a open field.

20 minutes go by; then a hour; then two hours. It's now pitch black and we're seated in a grassy field. We spent the whole night looking at every stick and leaf that twitched. You could feel the tension. We sat in a star shape, back-to-back, with our rifles pointed out. We knew we couldn't repel the attack, but we decided to take as many as we could before being overrun.

Finally, at sunrise, we heard the Huey come. On the way back, he had had a hydraulics issue they worked all night to fix it so we could get flown out ASAP. That field of grass was the scariest place I've ever been, even if it was just in our minds.

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42. Creepiness Left Behind

An abandoned mental institution in NJ. My friend brought us there and we wandered the grounds and went in a few buildings, including the morgue. The offices still had patient files and the pediatric area still had kids artwork. It had been abandoned for about eight years at that point. It was really creepy and also really sad.

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41. Rest Stops At Night

I went to a rest stop at 1 am outside Springfield, Illinois a few years back. Went to the restroom and there was blood everywhere. It looked like something got slaughtered. I have never high tailed it out of somewhere so quickly before.

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40. Playground Creepiness

There’s an abandoned mental hospital in my great aunt's old neighborhood. We were at her house for Easter and it was a nice day so she suggested that we go for a walk. Looking back on it, I think that she walked there purposely. They had a playground but all the equipment was made for adult sized people. I started to play on it and then had a "what the heck?" moment looking around. Like Alice in Wonderland. It was so bizarre. All overgrown.

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39. Frightened Creeper

One year I worked in a haunted house that was inside a building that used to be a funeral home. The morgue was downstairs and still had the drawers. My job was to lay in the drawer and pop out when people walked by. Laying in a cramped drawer, in the dark, on cold metal, with flashes of lights and screams in the distance was probably the creepiest place.

23659-1552678095100.jpgPavel Tchokalov/Flickr

38. Unnerving Coincidence

Forest Haven is an abandoned insane asylum in Maryland. It’s posted 'no trespassing' and technically patrolled by guards, but in reality is very easy to get into. I was there two weeks ago with my partner, exploring and taking photos. There are 22 buildings on the property, all just wide open and abandoned, covered in collapsed ceiling tiles, broken glass, and graffiti. There is still furniture in some of the rooms, and if you delve deep enough into the property, you can still find patient records that were left behind when they closed.

We actually found a stack of patient files in a dark, windowless room. It was so surreal, reading about a “severely mentally disturbed” man who “talks incessantly.” This patient had a 1-page handwritten summary for every year that he had been in the hospital, and they all started out the same... “Kenny is an almost 45-year old white male with severe mental disturbance. He has been at Forest Haven for five years”. Only the age and duration change from page to page. The first one is dated 1973, and the last page in his file is a printed memorial flyer showing that he died in September of 1990.

The facility was ordered to close in 1974, but didn’t actually close its doors until 1991. In its last year of operation, there were 9 deaths at the asylum. Kenny was one of them.

The creepiest part? The patient whose file I randomly opened up to, in the middle of a stack of wet, moldering files, sitting on the corner of a collapsing desk in an interior room of an abandoned basement? He shared the same first and middle name as my partner. Just a weird, creepy coincidence in a cold, wet, creepy place.

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37. Spiders Seeking Shelter

My own house during and after a flood. We got about four feet of river water in our house as did all of our neighbors. The spiders where indescribable. We handed our kids out of the living room window and I swear the spiders covered the walls. Once the water started coming up, they headed for higher ground. They were everywhere. I can feel them crawling on me as I type this. We left and came back three days later and they had taken over the house.

23661-1552678266397.jpgMaras Musine/Flickr

36. Grey Gardens

I was on a family vacation to Atlanta in about 1972. We went to visit some cousins of my grandmother's. Twin sisters, never married, in their 80's.

The house was in a rundown neighborhood. From the street, you'd think it was abandoned. Overgrown yard, part of the roof caved in, boarded up windows. Inside, it was all antiques, and furniture from the '30s and '40s, slowly deteriorating, and it looked as though they hadn't dusted in years. Wallpaper peeling, old portraits half fallen. Looking up to the second floor from the stairs, just cobwebs and collapsed ceilings. They said they hadn't been up there in years. And definitely rat noises.

They both looked and lived like ghosts, and seemed half mad -- very civil and proper but... off. As an 8-year-old, I was terrified, especially when one of them joked and said, "You should leave him here. He can live with us." I burst into tears, and we left.

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35. An Empty Town

Just next to the Lower Ninth Ward (Arabi, LA) following Hurricane Katrina. About a month after Katrina hit, they started to gradually let people in to assess the damage to their property. They let business owners in first and, since my mom owned her own business and was running it out of our house, we were one of the first people to go back. It’s a level of creepy you couldn’t imagine.

Our house was tucked away in a suburban neighborhood, like the side street to a side street, and it felt post-apocalyptic. There was nothing except destruction all around you! And by nothing, I mean nothing. We knew we were the only people in the entire neighborhood, if not the entire town. Try and imagine this; driving through your neighborhood and knowing there is not a single living being in any house you drive by and also knowing a fair few had dead bodies and exponentially more than that were housing dead pets.

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34. The Cryptkeeper

The crypt (I think that’s what it was) of a church in Bayeux, France. I was there on a school trip and we could choose whether to go to this historically old church, or see the Bayeux tapestry. I chose the church. As I recall, they had just found the crypt a couple of years before.

So I was down there by myself, taking pictures, and after a couple of minutes I started feeling downright nauseous. Like, “I’m going to get sick right here,” nauseous. I went upstairs to get some air, and the feeling went away instantly. It creeped me out, because when I went down with the group afterwards I felt totally fine.

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33. Mystery Room

I was working at Livingston Mall in New Jersey. This mall is filthy behind the scenes. It was supposed to be for the rich, as Livingston is full of rich people. But no one came because they went to the vastly superior Short Hills Mall.

Anyway, one of my things is exploring new places and this was the first time I was able to explore this place. We had pallets that we needed to get rid of, and my boss gave me the job of making them disappear.

So I’m traversing the labyrinthine back halls of this mall and I come upon a door that seems to be in a weird place. I open it up and peek inside and it’s like a 3' by 11' mini hall, maybe a bit longer. Inside there are a long series of shelves with nothing on them. There are leaves on the ground, roaches both living and dead on the shelves and floor, and a set of overhanging tube lights that had at best three semi-functional bulbs, casting a pale eerie glow from them. This room looked like it was straight out of a horror film.

I never found out what the place was for, but it did make a good place to stow some wooden pallets.

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32. An Unearthed History

At my old house, about five years ago, I was living in a town just outside of Washington, DC. The house was a short two-story house with a basement that was built in the '50s. The whole house has a weird vibe to it, not exactly scary, but unsettling.

In 2011, the year that we moved in, the guy that built the house stopped by, he told us that he built the house with his dad and three brothers in 1952. During the building, they found a few skeletons while they were digging out the driveway and of course called the police. Turns out the bodies were union soldiers from the civil war who had most likely been killed during the Battle of Bull Run and buried as the union army marched back to DC.

23666-1552678989011.jpgArcheologie Gorinchem/Flickr

31. Big Mother

I went to an interview shortly out of grad school. I’m a librarian, and it was a cataloguing job. It was located outside of the city, on a remote country road. There were no other buildings or houses located nearby. The address was a house. I was desperate enough not to turn around and drive away.

When I get up to the porch, there is a VERY LARGE dog waiting in the mud room. I knocked on the door, and out comes this Norman Bates type. He starts touring me around the main floor of the house, which is set up as an office, explaining to me that “Mother” is the supervisor (seriously, you can’t make this stuff up). The place is musty, and has a Bates Motel meets The Office style of decor.

By the time he takes me out the back deck, I’m thinking, “What on Earth am I doing here? Am I going to be murdered?” And then he gives me a cataloguing test (the most normal thing so far). Once I finish it, he explains “Mother’s" rules. She’s super strict about a lot of things, but especially the dog. No complaints about the dog, ever.

I go back through the house with him, and sure enough, there is a photo on the wall of Mr. Bates and Mother. I got out of there as quickly as I could, and I ignored all further emails from him.

The moral of the story is that you shouldn’t apply to random jobs without researching.

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30. Intuition

When I was a kid, we lived in my dad's old house, from when he was a kid. It was one of the oldest houses in town, and had been there since the 1800's. The house had three bedrooms: a master that used to be a screened-in porch, a regular room, and a room off to the side that was barely big enough for a twin bed.

When my dad was about 11, his older brother died of heart failure, and they had his coffin put in the small room for the viewing. When my grandfather died about 10 years later, his was put there too. Before I was born, my grandmother offered the house to my parents, as she'd gotten remarried, so they took it for $30 a month.

That tiny room always creeped me out for some reason growing up, and I didn't like going in there. When I was older and renting the house from my grandma myself, that's when my dad told me about the viewings. Intuition, I tell you.

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29. Fun Abandoned

I explored the abandoned Six Flags in New Orleans. It was closed for Katrina and never opened again. While my friends and I were there we found everything essentially as it was left four years prior: computers in the admin office, tickets in admission booth, even jars of pickles in the concession stands.

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28. That Haunted Feeling

My family went house hunting one weekend and we came across one in Salem, MA that had been built in the 1700s. It looked it, inside and out. The lady who’d been showing us houses really tried to push us to commit to this one. It was a decent enough house size wise and in pretty decent shape...but none of us could shake the eerie gut feeling we got as we were going through it. We all admitted that the creepy feeling was the strongest when we opened the basement door. None of us was brave enough to go down. When we got a moment to ourselves my mom said she’d gotten the vibe that bad things had happened in that house. Like, people had been killed or something. We all admitted we’d gotten the same feeling and politely got right out of there.


27. Bread, Breakfast, And Fear

In a B&B in the Isle of Skye in Scotland. It was right next to a nursing home that was suspiciously silent. It was right above the sea in October and it was very windy and cold. The B&B owner was a very old lady with a TON of porcelain figures in the house. The room she rented as a B&B was on the top floor of her house. It was very creepy. We just went in to see the room out of respect to the lady and got the heck out of there.

23671-1552679610439.jpgGina Collecchia/Flickr

26. Brothels And Sisters

Earnestine and Hazels in Memphis. It's an old Blues bar that Ray Charles played at back in the day, and prior to that it was a brothel at one point, run by two sister named Earnestine and Hazel. Later, we find the place is reportedly haunted.

We had a few beers and ate possibly the best handmade hamburger I’ve ever had.

We venture to the upstairs, which still looked like an old boarding house with dark-colored bead board on the walls and ceiling. It was darkly lit with empty rooms filled with dim lights, broken pianos, jukeboxes, odd furniture, broken desks, etc. The upstairs bathroom had a claw foot tub with a single red light bulb in there. It felt like a murder scene. We were buzzed, but I still felt a bit uneasy up there.

There was one door closed and you could tell someone was in there. We figured it was the office or something.

The end of the hallway had an upstairs bar that we chilled at for a while, but we left soon after.

A few months later, I read about the owner, who lived upstairs (and was probably the one I saw in that upstairs room). Apparently he committed suicide in that very room.

It was a very cool place but I will probably never go back in there.

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25. A Gift From The Past

The creepiest place I've ever been was the very room in which my uncle committed suicide before I was born. My mum showed me the hook from which he hung his noose. It was the handle on the attic door. We went into the attic to retrieve his old things and paid our respects. I had inherited some of his stuff: his favourite books, a teddy bear he had bought especially for me before he died, his school books -- which on second thought was strange but my mum wanted me to have been able to ‘know’ my uncle as a person and she said maybe looking through his school records and old notebooks would help me connect more to him.

I went to where his ashes had been scattered to leave some stuff by the ‘shrine’ we had created for him.

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24. Ghost Port

Port Arthur, Tasmania, Australia Port Arthur was a convict colony in Tasmania and one of the most haunted places in Australia. I went there three or four times and did the ghost tour at night twice. Through the day everything seemed fine and is actually a quite beautiful spot but when the sun starts setting you can feel the vibe change dramatically, some of the stories still give me cold chills and I personally experienced some creepy things.

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23. Pushing Boundaries

When you're a teenager and first get your driver's license, you like to stay up late with your friends, but there's nothing to do at night for a bunch of 17 year olds. So you go find fun.

There was a place that we all called Shadytown here in New Jersey. I don't remember what it was officially called, but I remember it was around Montgomery, and I think it has since been demolished. It was an entire decrepit ghost town with houses, a school, and a psychiatric hospital -- all falling apart.

We went late at night a few times. We explored some of the abandoned houses and the school the few times we went. It was creepy for sure, but after having been a few times we actually felt kind of comfortable around there. Comfortable may be a stretch, but we weren't exactly scared.

Jim only came a few times but he always seemed almost reckless. He'd see a closed door, open it up and walk right into the middle of the room. If you've ever been exploring abandoned creepy buildings, you'd know that you tend to creep about kind of slowly, peeking around corners and through cracked doors before moving on. Jim just moved around like he belonged there.

On maybe our 8th or 9th visit, Jim found a basement window into the psych hospital. The hospital was always hard to get into. The doors were locked and the windows boarded up. We were all cool exploring the houses and the school, but the abandoned psych hospital in Shadytown was a little heavy for us. Not for Jim though. He went right for the window, and when some of us told him not to go in there, he just looked confused. "Why?" And in he went.

We went in after him, even though we really didn't want to. It was a big room but nothing was in it. There was a door, though. Of course, Jim walked right over to it and went through. The rest of us froze up, but Jim hollered, "Come on." So we went.

We were in a really long hallway with concrete floors and cinder block walls, lit only by our flashlights. At least we were towards the end of the hallway and we could see the wall at our backs. At this point, I started to get really scared. Me and another guy said that we didn't want to go down that hallway. Jim said, "What, do you think there are ghosts here? IF THERE ARE ANY GHOSTS HERE, DO NOT MESS WITH US."

The other guys were really scared too, but Jim laughed at us and started walking down the hallway. We kept going because who wants to be the first to wimp out when you're 17 and exploring creepy abandoned buildings with your friends? We went into some rooms that had a bunch of old disgusting linens and mice in them, but then we eventually got into the morgue.

It was almost cathartic to reach the morgue, like when the monster in the horror movie finally shows itself and is visible for the rest of the movie. We stood still, even Jim seemed frozen for a second. And we flashed our lights on the old abandoned mortuary refrigeration chambers, where the bodies were stored.

And here is the reason this story is about Jim. He went right over there and opened one of those doors, pulled out the gurney, and laid down on it. It's worth noting that the gurney itself was gross, regardless of all the implications of death associated with such a thing. He asked for one of us to push him in and close the door. We all said hell no. He actually started to get kind of mad, which caused Ed to go quietly push him in and close the door. We just stood there and waited for what seemed like a really long time, but who knows. It was probably 30 seconds. Eventually we heard a knock, and we all jumped out of our skin. But it was Jim wanting to be let out, so Ed opened toe door and pulled the gurney out.

We were really stunned at what we just saw. Who in their right mind would do such a thing? Why? We all had the bravado thing going on, but that is one of the scariest things I can even imagine doing. When Jim got out he just laughed a little bit. He started opening other doors and pulling out the gurneys while we hung back towards the entrance. He looked like he got bored and left the room. Jim started to go BACK down the hallway to explore again, but we had had enough. We walked back to the window we crawled in from and helped each other out. Jim followed us like a toddler who was told he couldn't have candy before dinner.

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22. Visiting The Dolls

The dollhouse was a little house in the side yard of a normal house in a neighborhood by the school. It was surrounded by lighted angel statues, so many you couldn't walk on the grass and had to step onto paving stones arranged into a path. It was insanely well-built, like a scaled down version of a normal house.

At first, it seemed normal, just small. There was carpeting and a set of stairs leading up to a tiny second story. Then you would see them. Dozens of dolls, all posed on small couches, standing at tiny tables, just dolls, a meter tall and frozen as though you'd just caught them doing something they shouldn't have. It was creepy and even after seeing that weird stuff, you still had to walk back out past all the angel statues.


21. House Of Horrors

My house. The guy who lived here last was super into DIY home renovation stuff, except he wasn’t very good at it. Our basement has three sections, one being regular basement with like a washing machine and a dryer and stuff. The second section is a little workshop area. When we toured the house there were a lot of studded collars in there.

The third section is where it gets terrifying. The guy who lived here last put a hot tub in the basement. There’s already one on the deck, and he built a room underneath the deck and put in another hot tub. It didn’t work very well because he was bad at building, and so it’s a dark room painted all black with a hole in the middle where the hot tub was. There’s mould growing EVERYWHERE. There are 3 doors that don’t open, with what look like small bones coming out from under. There’s also a shower.

Pretty sure this is where he guy kept his dead bodies. Also there’s nearly 45 light switches in the house, half of which do absolutely nothing. And all the walls are painted lime green.

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20. The Hatch

At my college, there's a weird "second and a half floor" annex between floors two and three of a building on campus. Anyway, in the bathroom on that floor, there's a wooden panel in the wall that you can open. I went in once with some friends, and it was a small alcove with a creepy looking doll and some drawings that look like a kid made them. Very creepy. Reality is warped on that floor.


19. Rats!

My friend and I were coming back from a concert one night and were taking a shortcut through this area that was being worked on, so there wasn't really anyone around. As we're crossing this small bridge, I looked up and saw what appeared to be a zombie rat jumping at my face. Scared the life out of me.

Turns out that someone had taken a mummified rat or squirrel and used wire to position it midair on that bridge. The creepiness of that combined with the abandoned atmosphere of the construction area was so terrifying that we ran until we hit a busy street.

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18. Horror Movie Settings

I was a maintenance guy at a college that used to be a mental hospital for 60 years. It finally closed in the mid-'90s. Half the campus had been renovated/built right before I started. The other half was still the abandoned mental hospital. There have been two low budget horror movies filmed at this place that I know of.

The one building was pretty normal it was where the patients had lived. It wasn’t too bad to be in. The 2nd building was where all the treatments happened and it was sketchy as heck. I walked around in it one time and found the old electric chair they used, there were big jars of formaldehyde with body parts and organs in them, there were display cases with skeletons in them. The heat and water had been shut off for like 10 years so all the paint was peeling off the walls and it was dead silent in there except for the squirrels that you could hear scurrying on the floor above you.

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17. Friendly Guardian

In high school my friends and I would go up to the local abandoned state mental hospital to explore. The rooms were mostly creepy from the state of decay they were in. There was a lot of graffiti, with things like “666” and bands names (Tool, Marilyn Manson) spray painted on the walls. The graffiti wasn’t creepy, just markings from other teenagers. Sometimes we would find bullet casings scattered on the floor.

However, the creepiest area I saw were the underground tunnels. A security guard “caught” us on the property and told us to come back in a half hour after he finished his rounds. We met up with him and he took us down into the tunnels that staff would have used to travel between buildings. I just remember how dark it was and he was the only one with a light, as cell phones at this time were Nokia bricks.

16-year-old me was really stupid. Even though nothing bad happened, it always sounds like the makings of a horror movie.

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16. A Storm And The Dark

I visited the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp in Poland. One of the last stops was the remnants of the crematoria where all of the bodies were burned. On the way back, you stop into one of the prisoner barracks. The day I was really hot and humid and a thunderstorm developed in the afternoon. For safety reasons, until the lightning threat passed, our tour group remained in these barracks. It was so dark outside, inside was almost totally black. It was unsettling and horrible to be in there. We didn't stay for more than 20 minutes, but it forced me to really consider where I was and what happened in there. But I’ll never forget the darkness, ever.

23682-1552681070493.jpgMilan Boers/Flickr

15. Island Of Vanished Lepers

Off the coast of Trinidad in the southern Caribbean, there is a little island called Chacachacare. Up till the late '60s, it used to be the place they sent lepers. On the island, there is the old abandoned hospital and leper quarters. To get there from the main jetty, you have to hike through thin forest trails until you find a little decaying cemetery. There are no proper graves, only mounds. The ground is far too stony. Only staff and patients of renown were buried there.

A little distance away you find the courtyard of the hospital. It's perched on the edge of a cliff. In the yard is a naturally formed chasm that has been cemented over, save for a hole. This is where the other patients would end up. There is a metal slide that comes from an upper window of the hospital that was used for getting the bodies down. Stepping inside is quite a surreal experience. There are still dishes and patient records scattered around. Everything feels trapped in time somehow. Sort of like the people all just vanished.


14. Ice Box

In rural Missouri, back in high school, there was an old abandoned house on a country road that everyone had heard rumors about. “The dad murdered his whole family inside and then shoved them in refrigerators.” Or, “Back in the 30s, the son would murder his classmates on the way home from school.”

So, naturally, my friends and I decided to go check it out. The front porch was mostly all caved in, but once we got inside -- it was very bizarre how abandoned it truly was. There were newspapers and pieces of mail from the 50s (this was in the early 2000s) and mattresses with what looked like old blood on them.

The kitchen had an old fridge, so I took a photo of it. The room beside the kitchen had another fridge and two large freezers. There was a pair of overalls hanging on a door. It was mostly trashed and pretty creepy, since we had to rely on our flashlights and we were all feeling super creeped out by the multiple antiquated refrigerators.

Once back in the car, we went back through the digital camera that I used to take several photos. Almost all of the photos had these very prominent orange/yellow streaks -- and on one of the photos of a refrigerator, there was a perfect orange orb circle outline.

We never went back.

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13. Fog In The Fort

An abandoned WWII-era coastal defense fort in Alaska. Only accessible by sea, surrounded by rugged, forested terrain, and totally underground. The fog was rolling on as we went inside, and it quickly filled the main hallways and passages. Just pitch-black, echoing, and dripping wet. Fog rolling through the halls, muffling every step you took through the labyrinthine bunker complex. Occasionally, a view through a firing or observation slit, but the fog was so thick you couldn't even see trees, just white.

23685-1552681724104.jpgPatrick M. Loeff/Flickr

12. Head Temple

I went to a village in western Borneo that still practices head hunting. I was in no real danger because they only sought out rival tribes but seeing the big round temple-like building that I knew was full of heads was really creepy. We spent the night there too.

23686-1552681934576.jpgMatthew Goulding/Flickr

11. Twenty Whacks

The Lizzie Borden Bed and Breakfast in Fall River Massachusetts. Here’s the story behind it...Thirty-year-old Lizzie Borden lived in Fall River in the 1800s. On August 4th, 1892, her father Andrew Borden and her stepmother Abby were both murdered, each hit in the head with an ax multiple times, the father was hit 11 times and Abby was hit 14. Although Lizzie was never found guilty of the murders, everyone in and around the city still suspects her involvement, considering there was no evidence of her not knowing it was going to occur. The home is now a museum and a bed and breakfast. Tourists can pay to stay the night in the victim's rooms, and live in the house for the day.

23687-1552682009493.jpgMassachusetts Office of Tourism/Flickr

10. The Woodsmen

My uncle used to take me and his son out hiking at the falls between the San Gabriel mountains. It was a very dense wooded area with a river that ran between the mountains and the area would get narrow and higher as you progress. We would go as far as we can from one end to the other and try to make it back before night time.

It got dark on us one time before we got back. It was the most terrifying experience ever and still haunts me when I'm out hiking solo. All you can literally see is the moon light from tiny holes between the branches far above you and everything else is pitch black. We had no flash light. All we could do is follow the river to the drains and wonder what was out there, watching us.

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9. Bitter Medicine

I spent a weekend partying in Athens, Ohio when I was in college. There's an old insane asylum called The Ridges, complete with old unmarked graves with just numbers. We went at night after a few beers and I'll admit, I'm the jerk who throws stones and sticks and move stuff around to make noise with the intention of scaring other people. Well, in that cemetery, I felt the coldest hand I've ever felt in my life grab the back of my neck, hard enough to throw me down if it intended to, when nobody was behind me...because, remember, I was the jerk in the rear throwing stuff around to scare everyone else.

23689-1552682207450.jpgBeny Shlevich/Flickr

8. Follow Instructions

St Paul's catacombs in Malta. Husband and I found a passage haphazardly taped off and decided to explore a little bit further. It got pitch black pretty fast so we tore back to the public area. I can't even imagine how badly that could have ended.


7. Bring A Light

The abandoned turnpike in central Pennsylvania, specifically the Sideling Hill tunnel. Once you get about 50 feet inside, there is no light and the road is all torn up in places, so bringing lighting is mandatory. I went in the middle of winter, and there was nobody around besides the person I was with. Very creepy, but cool.

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6. Just Keep Swimming

I did a shipwreck dive and found a pile of human bones on an operating room of a sunken ship. Didn't seem creepy at the time but in retrospect...

jason-blackeye-1039692-unsplash-300x200.jpgPhoto by Jason Blackeye on Unsplash

5. City Of Fire

Centralia, Pennsylvania. The coal veins under the ground are on fire and have been for years. The ground smokes and is hot. The town is abandoned.

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4. Not Quite Abandoned

I had a friend who cleaned out and sold foreclosed homes for a living. He once took me on a ride to a house he had to photograph for the bank after it had gone into foreclosure.

From the moment we got there, it was unsettling. It was in the area of a ski resort, and the neighborhood was wealthy. But once we stepped inside, it was clear that it had been used as a kind of boarding house for resort staff. There were numbers outside each of the bedroom doors; large closets and weird spaces had been turned into bedrooms. The place was filthy, with black garbage bags everywhere, pizza boxes, booze bottles -- clearly a party house for staff, but recently abandoned.

At one point, I was on the ground floor, and my friend was in the basement, when I suddenly got full body chills. I was standing in the kitchen and there was a bathroom next to it with the door closed. I somehow knew that there was someone hiding in that bathroom. At the very same instant, my friend called me down to the basement where he had found a back corner which had been converted into another sleeping area. There was a television still on, just showing static, and a kitchen knife on a crate next to the mattress. That was the moment I stepped directly behind my 6’4”, 300lb friend and told him we had to get out of there.

I’m pretty sure the home was being used as an illegal boarding house for undocumented resort workers, and I honestly felt bad for the terrified kid who was still squatting in the basement, but I sure didn’t want to find him.

matthew_t_rader-1280944-unsplash-300x176.jpgPhoto by @Matthew_T_Rader on Unsplash

3. Never Follow The Footprints

So, my fellow officer and I had a lunch break at the same time and we met up at a little rest area off one of the county line roads. Window to window -- typical cop stuff -- and we’re chatting and eating. He tells me he got the new set of spike strips (for stopping fleeing vehicles).

I get out of my car so he can show me. We’re admiring the new kit when suddenly he noticed there were human tracks leading off into the wooded area to our right. Just beyond where the trees start, there’s a barbed wire fence. The area beyond is government property and it’s not accessible to public.

Reason being, there’s an old abandoned mining town about ten minutes into the woods.

We radio about possible trespassers and we go slogging into the woods. We get to the abandoned town, and this place looks like something out of that episode of Looney Tunes where bugs bunny and Yosemite Sam are braving the Klondike gold rush. Only creepy and... well, empty.

The tracks lead toward the mine itself. Of course it does. We get to the mine entrance and waltz in like we own the place. There are all these old chains hanging from the ceiling of the cave, and it smells like ammonia from animal urine. Creepy.

But when we turned our flashlights on and both of us nearly died from fright.

There were four mannequins in Native American garb in a semi circle around a dais with some sort of bovine skull and just a bunch of charred wood lying around. The mannequins had eyes painted on them. There were no people around. I guarantee you the screech we heard was from wind passing through a crevice in the cave wall, but we both, again, nearly pooped ourselves.

We decided to let the next shift deal with this and got out of there as quickly as possible.

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2. Moans In The Dark

I'm a paramedic.

One morning, we got a call for a person down at an intersection. We arrived just before dawn. As we approached the intersection, the street lights were still on and there was a fog bank that hadn’t cleared yet. Proceeding with caution, we saw a power chair on the sidewalk -- the kind that the elderly drive. But it was empty.

We exited the ambulance and walked up to the chair to investigate. The fog bank made it extremely eerie and quiet. I took a few steps down the sidewalk and noticed a small smear of what appeared to be blood. A short distance away, I found another smear. I told my partner to follow me. I soon realized this blood trail was gradually getting bigger. And I began to notice a faint sound in the distance. I realized whatever was leaving this smear of blood was just ahead of us.

We walked forward,  unable to see much, but the sound kept getting louder. It was a moan, mixed with a gargling sound. Whatever was up there was alive, but as I would find out it shouldn’t have been. I saw a figure in the air not touching the ground and I stopped dead in my tracks. My partner, being less cowardly than I, walked ahead. I followed close behind him and we came up to the figure.

It wasn't floating; it was caught on a chainlink fence. And it was a person. This guy's clothes were all torn up. His skin was cold and gray. His head was hanging low and his body was positioned like he was being crucified. And he had no legs. Hence the power chair.

He had been there all night. Once we cut him down and gave him glucose, he was able to tell us his story. His power chair had run out of batteries on his way home from the liquor store. No one was around to help him and he didn’t have a phone. So he tried to crawl to a payphone. But his sugar got low (being a diabetic) and he got caught on a broken chain link fence.

The scene was straight out of a movie and felt so terrifyingly real.

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1. Not So Uninhabited

I explored an old military housing complex (for soldiers with families) in my city. It was known for terrible living conditions and a bunch of suicides happened there. It was pretty creepy especially because there were homeless people living there that we didn't expect.

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