Haunted houses are not just a way to get your spook on during the Halloween season; often, they are as historic as they are haunting and give visitors a glimpse into an area’s past, even while serving up the unknown and possibly paranormal.

And while most travelers have heard of haunted buildings and even entire towns, it’s unlikely that many among us have stopped to think about the specters of the unknown and downright creepy that can linger out of doors—in places like campgrounds and campsites.

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Like something out of a B horror movie where a group of friends pitches a tent in the deep, dark, scary woods, these campsites are packed with eerie mysteries and strange phenomena; a recipe for chilling outdoor adventures that sometimes go beyond tales told around a blazing campfire.

7 Braley Pond, Virginia

Located in the lovely Appalachian Mountains, the George Washington National Forest is a scenic, sprawling spot where visitors can enjoy a number of outdoor activities including hiking, biking, fishing, and leaf-peeping in the fall. However, lurking in the shadows of this beautiful park is Braley Pond—not only a popular campground and fishing spot, but also a reportedly haunted one: and, in 2003, the stories only got weirder after an act of violence resulted in several deaths at the site. Ever since, witnesses have reported strange sights and sound including disembodied laughter and mysterious, unearthly figures roaming the shore.

6 Holy Ghost Campground, New Mexico

New Mexico is home to a host of lovely spots to pitch a tent—and one of the most scenic is definitely in the Santa Fe National Forest. Home to the Holy Ghost Campground where visitors can scope out the awe-inspiring scenery of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, and macabre tales of unknown disappearances and strange occurrences. Though officials deny any supernatural activity in the park, some locals say that this area of the Pecos Wilderness is like the “Bermuda Triangle of New Mexico,” as people are known to disappear without a trace. Add in the stories of a 17th-century priest haunting the area and possible UFO sightings, and you’ve got yourself a seriously spooky spot to spend the night.

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5 Lake Morena, California

For more than 40 years, Lake Morena and its nearby campground near the Pacific Crest Trail have been home to stories of unexplained phenomena. Both visitors and employees alike have reported unsettling tales of specters haunting the area, including a mysterious woman in white and an old man that appears out of the corner of your eye—and then mysteriously vanishes. There have also been witness accounts of strange sounds like footsteps echoing through a seemingly deserted campground. With all these creepy vibes, it’s no wonder the San Diego Union once ran a story titled, “More Than Fish Haunt Morena.”

4 Crystal Lake Campground, California

Those that are fans of the Friday the 13th movies will already feel a chill when hearing the name Crystal Lake. But while that lake is fictional, the one in Southern California isn’t—and is reportedly home to more than just trees. Throughout the years, numerous people have reported the sighting of a family in the campground that is said to have lost their lives to a grizzly bear attack in the 1930s—oddly enough, over ten years after the last grizzly bear was hunted down. The father of the family, Stephen Majors, was hired to work in the Angels National Forest as a builder—and it’s said that he and his family reportedly haunt the ruins of the dance studio he helped to build.

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3 Beaver Creek Campground, Montana

Under the waters of nearby Quake Lake are the remains of a campsite destroyed during an earthquake in 1959; the resulting caused all 28 campers to tragically lose their lives. Today, Beaver Creek Campground overlooks this haunted spot that is allegedly home to a number of unexplained phenomena such as mysterious, glowing orbs circling the lakeshore. The nearby Ghost Village is equally as creepy, as adventurous visitors can see some of the remains of the disaster like remnants of the destroyed cabins, to this very day.

2 Big Moose Lake, New York

Often, haunted places get their spooky reputations because of tragedies or acts of violence that occurred onsite that lend them a mysterious and macabre mien—and Big Moose Lake is one such place. Located in New York’s Adirondack Mountains, Big Moose was the site of the violent death of a young woman named Grace Brown in 1906. And unlike other scary tales of grisly deaths that give some haunted places an air of murderous mystery, the death of Brown is well-documented, leaving no doubt as to the veracity of the tragic tale. While this doesn’t necessarily mean that the supernatural stories surrounding the lake are true—what is certain is that numerous people have reported seeing (or feeling) an otherworldly presence while visiting this otherwise lovely lake.

1 Bannack State Park, Montana

The town of Bannack is a well-known ghost town in Montana—once a bustling hubbub of activity during the gold rush the deserted town now has a ghostly reputation that is a draw for tourists looking for a taste of the macabre. And while visitors can’t actually camp within the town, they can pitch a tent in nearby Bannack State Park—close enough to the action to be sufficiently bone-chilling. Reports of paranormal occurrences and roaming spirits are certainly enough to give this area an eerie air of mystery.

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