Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Legend Tripping: Gates of Hell

Ghost stories are sometimes told to inspire “Legend Tripping.” The Gates of Hell is just one tale of many told in the United States.

Most communities in the United States, large and small, have at least one Legend Tripping tale if not more than one.

Teenagers tell these tales about a supposed haunted area, house, cemetery, etc. where “scary” activity has been reported.

They are told to one’s peer group to “set the stage,” or scare the listeners before they visit the haunted area themselves--preferably at night, and alone or with a small group.

Legend Tripping is often done “on a dare” and means these teens have to go into abandoned places at night. Often they have to “trespass” to get to these locations.

I talk about a scary place in my state where many teens have Legend Tripped here.

This can be dangerous. While in High School, one of my nephews Legend Tripped at an old abandoned asylum in our area. Years later, when he told me about this, I was upset.

This is the former Insane Asylum
where my nephew Legend Tripped.
This location has several basements, and now they are just covered up by rotting boards. He could have fallen through one of these and gotten seriously injured--especially in the dark.

The following is a classic tale told to inspire Legend Tripping.

Pennsylvania’s Tent Church Road

Gates of Hell
Along this rural road, located outside Uniontown, are two steel gates known as the Gates of Hell.

At one time, a house stood further back from these gates. The story goes that a man and woman that lived in this house died.

In one version, this man killed his wife and then set fire to the house--he then killed himself. This property is considered haunted because of this.

It is said if a person dares to park their car near these gates, at night, they will hear unexplained noises.

People have heard: children’s laughter, the sounds of voices all talking at once, whispering, and growly sounds near the gates. Others have stated they saw shadows and strange balls of lights flashing.

Inspiration for Legend Tripping

These tales are always told with a personal connection--my friend or relative saw or heard this…

My cousin Brent and a group of his friends decided to drive down to the Gates of Hell one night.

The gates have a large chain lock
on them to prevent trespassers.

After they arrived, Brent got out of the car and walked up to the gates. He then yelled out, “Hello, is anybody there, we just came to chat.”

He then got back into the car. When nothing happened, the group started to talk and laugh.

A short while later, Brent thinking he heard something shushed his friends. As they listened, they heard several voices all talking at once.

These sounds were coming from behind the gates, just outside their car.

One member of the group spotted a blue ball of light moving around the gates--he pointed it out to his friends.

When this ball of light headed for their car Brent decided it was time to leave. As he started the ignition and hit the accelerator, the car hadn’t moved five yards before the front end crashed down.

The group exited the car and discovered that the front right tire had fallen off--its 5 lug nuts were missing.

Brent retrieved a flashlight but he couldn’t find these lug nuts anywhere.

The group now scared decided to high tail it out of the area. It was before cell phones, so the teens walked to a nearby house where they called a tow truck.

None of them wanted to return to the car to wait for this truck.

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