Best Places for a Ghost Encounter
This Halloween, discover eight haunted places from the Oregon Coast to the mountains. Ghost hunters will love visiting these spooky Eugene, Cascades & Coast locations. Just don't go alone.
1. Heceta Lighthouse Bed & Breakfast
The most well-known haunted place in the region, the Heceta Head Lighthouse, was built in 1894. The former assistant lightkeeper's house (now a bed and breakfast) and the lighthouse itself are said to be haunted by Rue, a friendly ghost in search of her child. Fodor's Travel named Heceta Lighthouse Bed & Breakfast one of the "...Most Haunted Hotels in America"! Sit by the fire on a stormy night on the coast and read all previous guests' accounts of Rue's presence. Then snuggle up in Victoria's Room — the room with the most paranormal activity as reported by visitors. Sleep tight!
2. Eugene Pioneer Cemetery
More than 4,000 are buried at the Eugene Pioneer Cemetery – some of whom are rumored to make appearances above ground. Students taking a shortcut to class have famously seen a woman floating in a fog dressed in white and a man playing the bagpipes in full regalia who dissolves behind trees or old monuments. The large, old-growth trees in the cemetery keep the grounds dark and cool while their roots fracture old headstones. For the best chance at a spooky sighting, visit when the church bells across the street strike 10 p.m.
3. Eugene Masonic Cemetery
Some of Eugene's well-known figures such as Eugene Skinner were laid to rest in this cemetery on the National Register of Historic Places. Locals visiting the cemetery to pay their respects have reported visions that appear and quickly disappear. The most haunted location on the grounds is the Hope Abbey Mausoleum. Entrance to Hope Abbey is limited to special occasions such as the Music To Die For concert series each summer until October — indefinitely canceled due to pandemic protocols, so check back.
4. Luper Cemetery
Luper Pioneer Cemetery located just outside of Eugene is one of the oldest in the area. Seventeen of those buried here were pioneers on the Oregon Trail. The isolation of this cemetery adds to the scare factor: it's hidden by trees, surrounded by open fields. The area has been repeatedly vandalized and now has increased security. Only visit this cemetery during the day in your attempt to connect with the dead or you might get reported for trespassing.
5. Shelton McMurphy Johnson House
Although the folks who run the museum claim the Victorian-era house is not haunted, we included it in this list because it has the classic features one expects of a haunted house. And then there are the rumors — people working and living here over the years have reported flickering lights and the sound of footsteps or laughter even when no one else was there. The "doll room" feels spooky on its own even before you hear the story that one of the dolls toppled over on its face, without a breeze or for any reason when a visitor stepped into the room.
6. Bijou Art Cinema
If the works of cinematic art don't give you the chills here, then the ghosts in the walls sure will. The Bijou Art Cinema played award-winning foreign and independent films in a converted mission-style church which once was a mortuary. When the lights went down and the films began, patrons reported feeling a strange presence. The ghosts here seemed to be friendly and interested more in enjoying the entertainment than frightening guests. (UPDATE: Bijou Art Cinema closed in 2021 — leaving the spirits to wander the halls alone!)
7. Mt David
Cottage Grove, Oregon
Mount David in Cottage Grove is a local treasure, loved by residents for being a beautiful piece of nature in the middle of town. But true locals know to leave before dark. There is said to be a spirit that will chase away any visitor as soon as the sunsets. There is a family cemetery of colonists from the 1850s on the hill which is named after the settler David McFarland. And in the 1920s, a swindler named Reverend Olson claimed Mt David was full of oil — but after the initial well was dug, he disappeared along with all the investors' money. No oil was ever found but the hole remains today.
8. Bohemia Mountain
Cottage Grove, Oregon
Deep in the Umpqua National Forest is Bohemia Mountain – full of abandoned mines and a ghost town left behind by the rugged men who spent their days working here. Exploring the ghost town on the trail is immediately spooky. Bones of old structures and rusty tools left behind make it feel as though the people living and working here disappeared in the middle of some task. Many men died hauling out the modern equivalent of more than $30 million worth of gold and silver. Visitors today might encounter the ghost of a prospector or two who lost their lives to the treacherous mines or a greedy fellow gold hunter.
9. Cottage Grove Armory
Cottage Grove, Oregon
Looming on a downtown corner in Cottage Grove, this massive, 31,000 sq foot cast-in place concrete, Art Deco building served the Oregon National Guard from 1931 to 2009. In its following incarnations the Cottage Grove Armory housed childcare and a pro wrestling club in the basement. The upstairs auditorium and meeting rooms were used for community dances, weddings, arts and crafts fairs, concerts and theatre, sports and even a short-lived roller rink. For a few years a Halloween haunted house dubbed the "Severed Armory" transformed the building into a ghoulish attraction. Its historic style and musty vibes enticed ghost hunters from the Coast Ghost Paranormal Research Society to spend an evening looking for spirits within the armory's decaying rooms — and they claimed success! Today, the city owns the building and is renovating it room by room; still leasing out its storied halls and banquet rooms for meetings and events.