by Paul Dale Roberts, HPI Ghostwriter and Ghosthunter
Today is Sunday, December 23, 2007 and I am picking up fellow HPI paranormal investigator Chris Grissom and we are headed in my vehicle 'Ghost Tracker' to Nancy Bradley's office and home in Placerville. There we will team up with Nancy's husband Robert Reppert's paranormal investigative team called Gold Rush Ghosts. Chris and I, arrive at Nancy Bradley's home and waiting for us is Robert Reppert - Lead Investigator, Ronnie Roberts - Investigator - both work for Gold Rush Ghosts. Robert has a beautiful pick-up with Gold Rush Ghosts plastered all over the back and side windows. We load up a ton of ghost hunting equipment and head over to Ghost Mountain Ranch in Pollock Pines. When we arrive at this location, we are greeted by Angela DelGrande. She tells us that this location was once inhabited by the Miwok Indians. Angela introduces us to Carl Martin the owner of Ghost Mountain Ranch. Angela and Carl have a ton of ghost stories to share about Ghost Mountain Ranch. Here is a listing of some of the paranormal activities that supposedly happen here at this ranch - a ranch that looks like a miniature model of Tombstone, Arizona:
- Angela takes the team to infamous Cabin 13, where a picture of a full body apparition was taken by a tourist. There was a miner that was murdered on the property and this may be the reason that this is one of the most haunted cabins in the area. The door has been known to be locked and will open on its own accord. I tested the door, it was locked and I managed to easily open the door. Robert checked out the door locking mechanism and found some discrepancies with the locking device, which could be the answer on why a locked door will open. Nancy Bradley who has visited Cabin 13 felt there may have been a drowning on this property in the 1920s. Note: There is a small pond near Cabin 13.
- Orb balls of lights have been seen darting here and there.
- Music has been heard from the office area.
- In the camping area, people have claimed to seen a mountain man walking about. People who stay overnight at this ranch have a name for this mountain man, they call him: 'Old Mountain Man'.
- At the miner's cabin, a young boy fell from a great height and broke his neck, this is one of the tragedies that has happened on this property. People have felt negative energy at this location.
- Doors start banging by themselves.
- Strange noises are heard, the sounds of women laughing.
- At the saloon, a patron claims his shirt was tugged or pulled.
- A light figure darts across the room and is seen by patrons.
- Stereo/CD Player turns on by itself and one song seems to be a favorite of the unknown entity, the song is Cheryl Crowe's Leaving Las Vegas.
- An employee runs out scared out of his wits, he sees an apparition with a green shirt on.
- Employee sees another employee outside smoking and standing next to a stranger. When the employee is asked who the stranger was, the employee claims he was by himself and no one was standing next to him.
- During storms, when the ions are energizing the atmosphere, the doors will swing open and shut by themselves, making a big 'bam' noise.
- Mechanism device for slicer has been missing for two years and then one day appears magically on the center of the counter.
- A patron loses his hearing aid at the saloon, returns home and finds the lost hearing aid at his home.
- New Year's Eve - doors flew open, doors slammed shut and doors shook like there was an earthquake. The unusual part of this, there was no wind outside.
Ghost Mountain Ranch is a very unusual place, let me try and describe it. I mentioned it looked like a miniature version of Tombstone, Arizona. Well, this is true, it has a small Western town inside, with an old saloon, arcade, jail, general store. It even has wells, a windmill and of course cabins. There is a horse stable not too far away. We even adventured down Old Creek Trail to Tee Pee Road (where there was once some real Indian Tee Pees at). There are two famous entities that haunt this location. There is Hans - the Old Miner (that was possibly murdered on this property) and the Old Mountain Man. When we checked out the Headmaster Cabin, we were told that the Old Mountain Man has appeared at this cabin. They say that Old Mountain Man is burly, wears a heavy jacket and large hat. When we were doing our investigation, the sound of ravens filled the air, which made the experience even more mystifying. Angela says that she always feels like something or somebody is watching her, her cats sometimes act like they see things that are not there.
When Angela was telling us this story, we could see the fog moving in slowly, talk about eerie! The ravens, the fog and all of these ghost stories! In the lodge area, guests have heard strange whistles, mysterious footsteps and the radio has turned on by itself many times. I met one of the guests, named Justin Dieteman. He tells me he has personally heard odd noises and footsteps. He has experienced the radio turning off and on by itself. He tells me that he knew of another patron being pushed and other patrons have witnessed items being flown off the shelves. Angela while giving us the grand tour, points to a well where patrons have heard women's voices coming from the well. Angela tells me to make sure to interview Bryan Rogers of the General Store...so, I walk over to the General Store and introduce myself to Bryan Rogers and he tells me that he has heard people walking on the roof, he says it sounds like 2 people walking on the roof. (Note: We discover in our investigation, there is a roof ladder that leads to the roof, we theorize that possibly animals can easily walk up this ladder to the roof). He tells me about ashtrays sliding on the bar, seeing a shadow in the office area. He says that in the saloon his friend Carl was pushed by an unseen force. He has heard footsteps in the bathroom area. Bryan shows me the jail safe and at one time a patron told other patrons if they could get the safe open, he would give them a $100.00 bill. The next day the safe was found mysteriously opened. No one claimed the $100.00 prize. Before I left, Carl says he has another story, but it doesn't have anything to do with the ranch. He said at his own home he was visited by his friend Rick at the front doorway. Rick then somehow vanished. He learns a few minutes later that Rick died in a motorcycle accident. Later he finds out that Rick visited 6 other people on the day of his demise. He remembers this incident as if it happened yesterday. This experience will haunt him for the rest of his life. Shannon 'Ms. Macabre' McCabe calls and I give her a full report on our ongoing investigation, she asks later.."are you and Chris enjoying the snow?" I say..."what snow?" Hmmm...are we feeling the effects of global warming in Pollock Pines? Anyway, Shannon is pleased with the report.
Robert Reppert's Findings:
Robert picks up spikes (from temperature gauge) throughout the property. Chris Grissom and I investigate the outside perimeters. With my Listen Up Sound Enhancer, I pick up a male voice that sounds like it says 'get out'. Chris and I hear a strange metallic grinding sound near the windmill. Robert Reppert discovers with a slight movement of the windmill, it will make a strange metallic grinding sound. Chris Grissom and I, smell burning wax outside of the Pony Express Building. Later the smell dissipates. Robert, Ronnie, Chris and I continue to investigate the outside perimeters. I am holding the thermal imager and pick up a heat source the size of a man, standing near the trees. We approach the heat source and at 15 feet, the heat source vanishes.
Robert Reppert's CONCLUSION (Note: These are the exact words of Robert Reppert):
"The site where the old west town is located has been reported to have been used for the old west show "The Virginian" in the 1960s'. Upon arriving, we found our host, "Angela" who related some of the history of the grounds as well as the tales of sightings and sounds. We at Gold Rush Ghosts have been to this site a few times for different events but have never been invited to do a full investigation before, so this was a great opportunity. We first went to Cabin 13, then to the old Miner's Cabin, and then to the old west town. Cabin 13 was located next to an old man-made pond and it was reported to us that the door would sometimes come open even when slammed shut and locked. Upon researching the latch on the door, it was found that the catch was not lined up with the door jam so that it would not fully engage and stay closed. The figure in the guest's picture would be great to see and Angela is currently trying to get it for us. We proceeded down what was called Teepee Rd. which was more of a trail than a road, and Angela showed us several campsites and also where th residend bear likes to eat.
We soon arrived at the Old Miner's Cabin and were allowed to search the building for any traces of spirit energy. The Building showed no abnormal signs or sounds according to our equipment. After this we moved on to the Old West Town. We set up our control base in the bar area where there was a stage for our camera equipment. We first conducted a sweep of each room with our EMF and Temp meters, keeping records of any spikes or places of interest for later use. After this we set-up the infrared cameras and recorders to see if we could catch any activity on film. We then proceeded to use the FLIR and other meters to see if we could confirm any of the reports of energy that we learned of with the interviews. When Paul and Chris came in from outside with the reports of hearing metal being dragged, I was intruiged to see if I could locate the source. With Rodney Roberts, Chris Grissom, Paul Dale Roberts and I outside searching for the mystery sound I made the discovery that it only took a slight air movement to move the windmill and create the sound that they heard. We were never able to identify where the candle wax smell came from or what was causing it. We were then let into what is called the Blacksmiths shop, which is kind of a game arcade, where there were reports of footsteps heard on the roof. The building has a tin roof and we soon located a set of steps leading to the roof level of said building. We also found several pine cones on the ground by the building. On a hunch, we conducted an experiment by having someone throw a pinecone onto the roof while the others listened inside. The ones inside related that it was really loud inside when th cone hit and that it sounded like steps when it rolled off. This led us back to the saloon area to reposition the cameras and continue researching the outside areas. When we returned to the yard area, we were using the FLIR and also taking flash phtography of the area and buildings when we found a large heat source on the FlIR. We followed the image as it appeared to duck behind the treeline and then reappear. We searched the area around the treeline and also the horse arena to see if the horses may be setting the camera off, but the arena was set to far down the hill to be interfering with the FLIR camera. We were never able to determine what the image was but we saved it for future reference. Gold Rush Ghosts and HPI will be doing further research into the Ranch as well as the area surrounding it as to try and explain some of the tales related to us on this investigation. This is a very worthy site to visit, and one that we will look into in the future."
Gold Rush Ghosts Investigators:
Paul Dale Roberts
EMF meters, Tri Field Meter
Digital recorders with Mics
Infrared Cameras with DVR system
FLIR imaging camera
35mm Cameras, Digital Cameras