P R E L I M I N A RY
R E P O R T
THE EXTERIOR OF THE TRADING POST AND A MODEL OF THE BUILDING
Red Rocks Trading Post Preliminary Data We were contacted by Channel 7 News about reported paranormal activity at the Trading Post building at Red Rocks Park. Due to the current and past reports of paranormal activity we decided that we
RAMP WHERE FOOTSTEPS WERE HEARD
would look into the history and possible causes of the reported activity.
for an onsite investigation with our equipment.
The preliminary investigation started with an onsite interview and tour of the location to see the areas of reported activity and get the logistics
We started the investigation by researching the history of the property and collecting the current reports of paranormal activity
History of the location: The rock formations were formed around 300 million years ago and was formed from an inland sea.
Whitman Cross discussed the area in the 1849 U.S. Geological survey when he named the uplifted rocks the “Fountain formation”.
The Ute indians were known to frequent the area. One Ute Chief named Colorow is famous for camping in what is now known as Colorow cave located in the Willow Creek subdivision just south of Red Rocks Park.
The people of Morrison named the area “Garden of the Angels” and dedicated the name by holding a parade on July 4th, 1870 lead by Jefferson County Judge and farmer Martin VanBuren.
In the 1820’s an Army expedition being conducted by Stephen H. Long, Edwin James another member of the expedition was quoted as saying Red Rocks had a “striking resemblance to colossal ruins”.
The start of the current concept of Red Rocs was started by John Brisben Walker and his son John Jr. and they held events in the are including baseball games and races.
A VIEW FROM THE BACK OF THE TRADING POST SHOWS THE GEOLOGY OF THE AREA
After years of negotiation, Mayor Stapleton purchased the area from John Walker Jr. for $50,000.00, this allowed for the creation of the city park.
VI E W S OF T HE TRA D IN G P O ST
The Trading Post was constructed from 1930-1931 for the cost of $18,000.00. When the Trading Post was opened it was staffed by a caretaker who had a residence in the lower level of the building. This residence was in use until 1983 when it was converted to offices and storage.
There are reports of a “Grizzled looking old man” described as about 5’5” tall, with a beard, dirty brownish hat and a bottle in his hand. He shows himself very briefly and then disappears. He is rumored to be a miner who frequented the area looking for treasure.
In 2005 a staff member reported seeing the large door to the old cold storage room open. This included the handle on the door moving.
Reported Paranormal activity and Urban legends of the area:
Many sighting of “Indian spirits” have been reported in the area, including seeing Indians in traditional dress and even performing ceremonial dances.
In an adjacent basement room an employee reported that while she was stocking shelves, she saw what she describes as a box “Coming right at her from across the room”.
Current activity has included stories of missing or moved merchandise from one night to the next.
Before the current layout of the merchandise was moved, the rock wind-chimes that are on the sales floor were located in the main room of the trading post near the back by the fireplace. When an employee was in the room they reported that the chimes started to move and swing on their own.
The story of the “Hatchet Lady” who is said to roam the park has several different versions. 1- Cill Carle a former concession worker said that it might be the ghost of “Old Mrs. Johnson of the Johnson clan” he said that she used to gallop around the area on her horse to stop couples from using the area as a “Courting area”. She was said to pull her jacket up to appear headless and carry a hatchet.
2- The Hatchet lady is said to be a “Homeless woman living in the Red Rocks canyon during the 1950’s. Since her death her spirit has been seen walking with a hatchet in the canyon. She is reported to chase away visitors.
3- The Hatchet lady is said to be a woman who is naked and carrying a hatchet. She is rumored to kill children who come too close to the cave that she used to live in and then she is said to hide the bodies and severed appendages under rocks in the area.
A Coffee cup with the name “Randy” had been reported to fall off of the same shelf every day. Several of the doors have been reported to sound like a dog scratching or something trying to get in. Employees have reported that a door leading to the back storage area in the basement would lock by itself and they even heard and saw the knob moving with nobody near it. The door was locked one time and the maintenance people had to break the handle in order to open the door. The door handle is missing and the door broken to this day. Nine years ago a staff member reported that around two in the morning he heard “Boot Steps” coming his way and then felt a chill and something brush the hair on his back.
A staff member tried an experiment by leaving a digital voice recorder in the basement and reported that he heard the sounds of breathing and boxes being moved around.
Employees have reported the sound of footsteps going up to the office on the second floor, but they never make it to the top of the stairs. One employee reported hearing their name called while working in the laundry room when nobody else was in the basement.
The sounds of footsteps have been reported coming from the main floor on the ramp to the candy counter.
The majority of the reports seem to happen from dusk to around 2:00 in the morning when employees are picking up supplies for the following day.
We decided to look into the geology of the area to determine the possibility of any seismic activity that could cause a potential low frequency that could influence the people at the Trading Post. The report from the N.C.R.S. U.S.G.S. concluded that while the area has an amazing array of unique features it has nothing that would seem to promote a cause for perceived paranormal activity.
1- Video camera located in the basement where the Manager’s office was previously located. 1- Video camera in the basement storage room where the employee reported recording breathing and boxes being moved. 1- Video camera in the basement laundry room. 2- Video cameras in the back basement storage room. 1- Natural Tri-Field meter located in the basement back storage area. 1- Natural Tri-Field meter located in the room where the employee reported recording breathing and boxes being moved.
Basement Laundry room The team arrived around 5:30 for the initial investigation. The setup immediately followed.
The base monitoring location was set up at the back of the building near the Coffee bar.
1- Standard A/C E.M.F. meter used to sweep the entire location. 1- Temperature sensor used to monitor any possible temperature changes during the investigation. 2- Seismometers used in various locations throughout the building to monitor for vibrations.
high man-made fields located in several areas including: The area around the cash register and the computer on the opposite wall. We determined that this was caused by a combination of the cash register, 2 computers, a printer and a large display lit by fluorescent lights. The main room just under the stuffed Buffalo. We determined that this was caused by a main power bus running through the wall. The kitchen and Coffee bar areas. We determined that this was caused by a combination of wiring and electronic equipment. The stairs leading to the basement. We determined that this was caused by the fluorescent lighting on the wall. The first office in the basement. We determined that this is caused by the office equipment in the room. The crawl space with the heater. We determined that this was caused by the wiring and the mechanical system of the heater. The back basement storage area near the main breaker panel and the exposed outlets. We determined that this was caused by old wiring.
Equipment used and locations were: 2 - Sony camcorders in the main room pointing towards the area of the location where the report of the moving wind-chimes.
There were no unusual areas of natural E.M.F. during the initial sweeps.
1- Microphone in the main room. 2- Camcorders in the back room where the “Boot steps” were heard coming from the ramp. 1- Microphone located on the ramp where the “Boot steps” were heard.
Back storage area in basement While setting up the equipment we mapped out the area and took baseline readings for both natural and manmade Electro-magnetic fields. It was determined that there are areas with
The E.M.F. readings were consistent throughout the night and no unusual changes were noted. Temperatures in the building remained consistent and the only changes were due to outside temperature changes.
During the investigation no unusual video was recorded in any of the areas being monitored. No unusual sound were monitored during the investigation.
The main electrical panel
The door with broken handle Due to the randomness of the reported activity and our short visit, we cannot determine any causes either natural or other at the location.
We are looking forward to returning to the location to continue looking for causes of the reported paranormal activity.
Research Sources: Channel 7 data Current and past Trading Post employees Legends of America Canyon Courier Sacred Stones Colorado’s Red Rocks Park & Amphitheater. By Thomas Noel
The stairs leading to the main floor