Halloween Ghost Hunting Tips and Checklist

Halloween ghost hunting - jack o' lanternHalloween ghost hunting is legendary. It’s the one night of the year when almost everyone expects ghosts.

Many of us want to prepare ahead of time, for the best ghost hunting experience, ever.

But then, between back-to-school, plus sporting events, and the change of seasons… well, it’s easy to wake up one day and realize it’s already Halloween.

Don’t panic. It’s not too late to organize your Halloween plans for ghost hunting success.

In the following video, Halloween Ghost Hunting Tips, I explain the steps my team and I follow to get the most from ghost hunting on Halloween.


Some of the most important points:

  • Plan ahead. Decide on at least one backup location, in case your first choice is closed or too crowded.
  • Verify each location ahead of time, in person.
  • Print maps, in case your GPS fails. (Especially during Halloween ghost investigations, never rely on anything electronic.)
  • Check the weather forecast, and dress accordingly… and bring any “just in case” items you might need.
  • Allow extra travel time for Halloween traffic and trick-or-treaters.
  • The night before Halloween, get a good night’s sleep. You may need it.
  • Expect surprises and (perhaps) more scares than usual. But, if the ghosts don’t cooperate at your Plan A location, it may be time for Plan B.
  • Also, you can read what happened to me in 1999, at a “not very haunted” cemetery: Ghostly Mischief on Halloween Night. I was glad I had a Plan B location in mind. And, after that, I learned to be prepared.

If you’d like to download a free Halloween ghost hunting checklist that includes all the points in the video, click here. (It’s a PDF at Google Drive.)

Also, if you’re a new ghost hunter, you’ll find additional Halloween insights at my Ghosts101.com article, Is Halloween the best time for ghost hunting?

Do you have additional tips for ghost hunting at Halloween? Share them in the comments section of this HollowHill.com article.

Photo credits:

  • DepositPhotos.com
  • Storyboards.com
  • FreeImages.com: Eric Nelson (Gettysburg), Daryl Chan (clouds), nvision88 (traffic), Title & credits page: old-manor-1231905

Halloween Ghost Hunting Checklist

Halloween can be a whirlwind for many ghost hunters.  Events, parties, investigations… and then the big night itself.  Are you ready?

Ideally, Halloween research plans are prepared far ahead of Halloween night.  However, even if you’ve been too busy, it’s not too late to organize your Halloween plans for ghost hunting success.

To help you, I’m sharing my own Halloween checklist.  I’ve used some variation of this, every year for the past dozen or so years.  I hope it’s useful and helps you make the most of Halloween ghost hunting opportunities.

Click here for the Halloween Ghost Hunting Checklist (PDF)

Halloween Costume Parties – Ghost Hunting Opportunities

Halloween costume parties can be opportunities to see ghosts.

I’m not kidding.

Of course, most ghost hunters will be at haunted sites on Halloween.

However, if you’re at a potentially haunted site and you’re attending a Halloween costume party, remain very alert.  It’s not just a fun social gathering… it’s an opportunity to encounter ghosts.

This possibility never crossed my mind until it actually happened to me.

In recent years, I’ve been one of the celebrity guests at the Official Salem Witches’ Ball in Salem, Massachusetts.  That popular Halloween costume party is usually held at the haunted Hawthorne Hotel in downtown Salem. More than half the partygoers wear costumes.

That hotel is at point #7 on my haunted Judges’ Line map.  If you’re spending the night, ask for room 325 or room 628… or any room on the sixth floor. According to reports, those are the most haunted sleeping rooms.

During the evening, I looked up from the ballroom floor to see figures standing at the mezzanine windows that overlooked the party.  Generally, they were people in the kinds of costumes you might see at Mardi Gras or any non-Halloween costume party  Now and then, the person would be in classic Colonial garb.

Usually, the person (or a couple of people) would sip their drinks while watching the party below.  Then, they’d stroll off and be replaced by others who wanted a “bird’s eye” view of the party.

However, a couple of times, I saw someone at one of those windows fade away into mid-air. The person didn’t walk away or duck down… they actually seemed to evaporate.

Generally, those people (or ghosts) were wearing fairly ornate Colonial clothing.  They didn’t stand out from the others at the party, except that their costumes looked a little more well-worn than others’ and sometimes they fit differently.  (Men’s jackets were more snug across the shoulders.  Women’s clothes were less form-fitting.)

It wasn’t until the figure faded from view that I realized I’d been looking at something ghostly.

If you’re at a party where you might see ghosts, here are some basics to remember:

1. You must be alert and in-focus.  This means no alcohol or anything that might dull your senses and alter your perceptions.

Likewise, be sure you’re well-rested before you arrive.  Get a good night’s sleep the night before, and eat a hearty lunch.  (Ordering a full, rich dinner might make you sleepy… eat just a light meal before the party.)

2. Watch the perimeter of the party, and glance regularly at doorways and windows.  Ghosts seem to prefer to watch the party from slightly outside it.  (However, I might have been elbow-to-elbow with a ghost and didn’t realize it.  That’s always a possibility.)

3. Blend in. Wear a costume, perhaps an authentic one from the time period of any expected ghosts.  You’ll want to catch the ghosts’ attention… but not because you’re in everyday clothing, holding a camera, a voice recorder and a K-II!

There’s no reason to choose between ghost hunting and Halloween festivities.  If you attend a Halloween costume party at a site that might be haunted, you may have the best of both worlds… no pun intended.