Saturday, March 5, 2011
How To Find HAUNTED Locations, CEMETARY Etiquette, and 5 Common GHOST HUNTING Mistakes
How to Find Haunted Locations - Plus 5 Locations that Are Almost Always Haunted
It can be easier to find paranormal locations in your local area than you might think. Most areas have local ghost stories about locations and these can be a good place to start. With a little research to see how true these stories are, you could be well on your way to discovering paranormal activity.
Ask the Police
Believe it or not, police departments across the U.S. receive countless reports on possible paranormal events that are usually overlooked because of their nature. You can locate events such as these by looking in your local newspapers police blotter, or by paying a visit to your local police department. They will probably be more than willing to point you in the right direction.
New to Ghost Hunting?
If your new to ghost hunting, starting with public venues with little to no permission required for access is the best idea for your investigations. These easy to access locations such as graveyards open to the public and local parks, are usually public property so you can access them without running the risk of trespassing. Rule number one for a beginning ghost hunting group is, Do Not Trespass. Here are some locations you can look at for starting you investigations.
Locations That Are Almost Always Haunted
1. Cemeteries — Cemeteries are a good source of paranormal phenomena. Most have at least mild spirit activity and the older the cemetery the more likely you are to possibly catch something. You should always start with the oldest part of a cemetery as it is the most likely area for paranormal activity to occur. Most cemeteries are open to the public during the day but close at night. If this is the case in the cemetery your interested in hunting, you can try speaking with the administration of the cemetery and seeing if they will allow an investigation. If they will not, please respect their wishes and DO NOT TRESPASS.
2. Colleges and Universities — Colleges and Universities are uniquely suited to two types of paranormal activity. Residual haunting's, and poltergeist haunting's. Because of the age of a lot of universities, they tend to have at least a few dramatic\traumatic events in their history which can lead to paranormal activity most commonly in the form of a residual haunting. Poltergeists are also common in colleges due to the fact there are so many people aged 18-26 in the area that it tends to attract poltergeist activity. In some rare cases, intelligent haunting's have also been reported.
3.Hotels —These days, more and more hotels are advertising haunted activity. With the thousands of people that constantly pass through them each year, its not a stretch to think an occasional death would occur. Some older hotels have been reported to be EXTREMELY haunted due to tragic events that have taken place over their history, but even local motels in your area may have some mild paranormal activity you could investigate. You will have to pay to stay in the hotel\motel overnight to be able to investigate but this will allow you to investigate uninterrupted.
4.Battlefields and Crime scenes — These two types of locations are usually good sources of paranormal activity due to the nature of the events that took place there. Battlefields especially due to the sheer number of human lives lost at a singular location. Some of the most haunted locations in the world are old battlefields or crime scenes.
5.Churches —Many Churches are known for spirit activity, and they are a great place to hold a paranormal investigation if you can gain access. A lot of churches will not allow ghost hunting groups access to them, but in recent years a good number of churches have shut down and are now vacant or being remodeled into something else. These places that were once churches still retain their history and any paranormal activity that occurred while they were churches will still be there, and could possibly be even more active due to the fact they are being remodeled.
Cemetery Etiquette for Ghost Hunters
Here are a few suggestions for your visits to cemeteries:
*Paranormal activity isn't the only thing your going to find in cemeteries when investigating. You are sure to come across other people visiting dead loved ones, along with possible genealogists, historians, and photographers. Remember, not everyone believes in ghosts, and most would rather not believe that their loved ones spirit is sitting in a cemetery. Running around making noise and disturbing people is a good way to find your way out of a cemetery. Its best to stay subdued while investigating a cemetery, and try not to disturb others.
* Joking is very inappropriate. While investigating a cemetery its very inappropriate to start making jokes about the dead. This is a very easy way to find yourself out of the cemetery. This may also anger the dead making them more likely to do something about it. This may actually sound like a good thing at first, but having a spirit upset with you isn't going to help capture evidence, its only going to make things more difficult.
* Protect what's in the cemetery. Do not touch headstones or other monuments that maybe within the cemetery. Most of these are old and decaying and do not need you contributing to it. If you wish to read a headstone that is older, using a halogen light at a sharp angle should reveal whatever your looking for.
* Respect the dead. Any spirits residing in your cemetery may think of the cemetery as their home. As such, you should treat it as if your in someone's home and try to be as respectful as possible. Being loud and disruptive or touching and moving objects is a good way to get some spirits upset with you. Also, never step on graves, its extremely disrespectful.
* Don't take your pet to a cemetery. Its highly inappropriate to have an animal running around in a cemetery with you. Especially if they are spooked easily by the paranormal. Animals won't understand what is going on, and if scared may run away, causing havoc in the graveyard.
* Do not move or remove anything. This can range from very simple things, such as flowers, or more important things like personal items left on a grave. Its very disrespectful to the living and the dead to touch, move, or take something that has been left for a persons grave.
* Do not eat, drink, or smoke in the cemetery. Step outside the cemetery if any of these pastimes are necessary.
5 Common Ghost Hunting Mistakes - What NOT to Do
Always get permission before investigating private property. Several years ago, there was a news story about a ghost hunter who trespassed on private property to investigate a haunted house. The person who lived in the house thought the ghost hunter was a burglar, pulled out a gun, and shot him. (Fortunately, the ghost hunter was OK.) This is NOT a situation that you want to experience, so always get permission before exploring private property.
2. Ghost Hunting Alone.
Investigating the paranormal requires at least 2 individuals at all times. Safety should be your primary concern. It is, also, a good idea to bring someone else along to assist you when experimenting with the paranormal. For example, logging information, equipment transfer, personal experiences, and to validate rare occurrences such as coming in contact with a manifestation. Remember capturing evidence is great, but proving your evidence is really the most important thing. Having someone with you to back up your claims will improve your credibility when showcasing your evidence.
3. Know the area before investigating
The initial walk through is necessary. Before any investigation can take place you need to map out the area. Most people new to ghost hunting don't take the required time to explore their surroundings, and that is where the troubles begin. Safety comes first. You and your team need to know if there are any hazardous conditions and take note of them, especially when hunting at night. This method also allows to debunk any natural occurrences that maybe reported as paranormal. Why invest the time and resources into investigating an area, when a simple walk through could have debunked all of the reported claims?
4. Ghost Hunting, a serious business
If you are a thrill seeker or just looking for a good time, then we strongly suggest that you participate in an organized ghost tour, or some other supervised event. Investigating the paranormal needs to be conducted seriously and professionally at all time. There are things that could go wrong when dealing with the unknown. Joking and pulling pranks on a location is unacceptable. The use of illegal drugs or intoxicants is also unacceptable. Thrill seekers beware there are both physical and psychological dangers that you may encounter. Physical assault such as hair pulling, scratching, or being pushed and psychological assaults such as sudden depression, anger, anxiety, and nausea have all been reported when encountering the paranormal. This is why caution needs to be used at all times, and the use of good common sense should always prevail. Leave the site immediately if you and your group encounter any of the above assaults. You can always retrieve your equipment or personal items at a later time or date. You and your groups safety should always be your number one concern.
5. Daring or threatening spirits/ghosts to appear.
Never dare or threaten spirits to appear. You might get your wish, and spirits aren't always friendly if you have threatened them. Always show respect for others around you - this includes ghosts/spirits, and property owners.