Thursday, November 8, 2012

Haunted Travels: Cumberland Falls State Park, Kentucky

Another weekend getaway is under my belt as I traveled to Kentucky in September for a trip to Cumberland Falls State Park near Corbin, Kentucky. I planned an end of summer getaway to the mountains shortly after returning home for North Carolina back in the summer. I wanted to take a nice relaxing mini vacation to a secluded area for some quite time with nature and my family.

I started searching local state parks and lodges and when I saw a photo of the DuPont Lodge at Cumberland Falls State Park, I knew that was the place I wanted to go. This charming stone lodge looked simply beautiful from the photos, and upon research I discovered that a magnificent waterfall was located within the park, just a short distance away. Cumberland Falls is known as the Niagara Falls of the south, but its other claim to fame is its nighttime rainbow known as a moonbow. Cumberland Falls’ moonbow is the only predictable moonbow in the northern hemisphere. The weekend of our planned trip offered us an opportunity to catch a glimpse of the moonbow; we would be traveling there during the full moon (which is the only time the moonbow can be seen). The moonbow appears from the mist of the falls as the light of the full moon hits.

We spent our long weekend enjoying the area; I had a number of wonderful photographic opportunities while there. We went hiking on the falls view trail, it was a steep trail and a tad rough in spots, but it was totally worth the hike. We took a train ride in nearby Stearns Ky, where we went though some old ghost town and former coal camps and we also took a trail ride by horseback before the rain set in on our final day there but what we really went for was the falls…

Our second night at Cumberland Falls was the night the predicated moonbow would appear, so of course we found some other things to do in the meantime. But finally the time came and we headed out onto the rocky ledge just above the falls, waiting for the moon to peak over the horizon so that we may see this famous moonbow…and finally after waiting for about an hour it began to appear. At night, the rainbow appears colorless but it was well defined in shape …almost like a ghost rainbow. Speaking of ghosts, Cumberland Falls is a romantic and somewhat mystical place, and it most certainly seems a fit setting for a good ghost story. The falls also seem to the perfect setting for a story of a ghost bride. That’s right, within the rushing waters and mist of the falls there has been a ghost bride spotted many times. One legend states that an upset bride plunged to her death as she threw herself into the falls after learning of her fiancĂ©e’s death. Another legend says that the couple was honeymooning in the park when she accidentally fell to her death from the rocks above the falls. No matter the true story behind this legend, Cumberland Falls draws both the living and perhaps even the dearly departed to its amazing beauty.

Now going back to our accommodations, we stayed at the DuPont Lodge, located within the park. The original lodge was built in 1933, but was destroyed by a fire in 1940 but rebuilt in 1941 and has been there ever since. I could not find any specific stories that would relate back to the lodge being haunted, but it seems that perhaps the ghost bride and her groom may be to blame for some of the strange things that happen there today. I found some comments from former employees of the lodge online that state employees’ will not enter into some of the rooms, and doors shut on their own and the apparitions of the bride and groom have been seen there as well. The two nights we stayed, we did not encounter any of the lodge spirits. But I would recommend anyone a weekend’s stay at the lodge.

I don’t believe the stories end there, there seems a stir of many other ghosts that haunt the Cumberland Falls State Park, but you may just have to take a trip there yourself to find out!
HPIR Founder

November Updates

It’s about that time again, time for some group updates! So my last update was right before October, busy, busy October. The month leading up to Halloween is usually pretty hectic for HPIR and indeed it was this time, the past month or so has given us little time for rest but in the end it was all worth it (as always).

Ghost Tours:
We started out the beginning of the month giving a few private ghost tours and those turned out amazing. In fact, the more tours we do it seems the more likely we are to have a paranormal encounter during a ghost tour. We just so happened to be finishing up one tour for the evening when something happened that surprised us all. One home we use during the tours has a little spirit that likes to play pranks and throw things. Well, this little prankster made his little presence known to us all that evening. I personally won’t elaborate anymore on this “incident”, I do however want to share with you readers a blog from one of the ladies on our tour that evening that describes her experience during the tour and the incident in the house that night. Here is her blog and photos from that night: Tour Guest Blog

After those two private tours we had a week in between to prepare for our public tours. The weather was not as cooperative as we had hoped, it rained and it was cold two nights out of four. I can do cold, but the rain in the cold is not my favorite however, that did not stop people from coming out to attending our tours! I appreciate everyone who braved that nasty weather to take a tour, you guys are truly awesome and that makes what we do that much more enjoyable for us. Although I must say as cold and wet as it was, giving a ghost tour in those conditions does have an eerie ambiance that you can’t quite duplicate on a nice clear night. Again we want to thank you all for coming out, for supporting what we do and we will see you all very soon for more ghost tours.

We also had a return visit from our friend from the Cemetery Knights Hearse Club who not only brought down his hearse, but invited three friends along too! We had a total of four hearses on display during the first night of our Ghostly Encounters Tour. The hearses were awesome, as were the guys and gals who own them and we thank them for coming down to show off their sweet rides.

We are also happy to report that during the month of October that two stray kitties found forever homes during two different tours. Cats seem to be routinely dropped off in Guyandotte and have found their way to our tours. One tiny fuzzball only about 6 weeks old found a home as well as declawed young black female cat that had been dropped off in the neighborhood. Bless those of you who took these poor little animals in and we hope that you have wonderful new pets!


With all that was going on in October we didn’t get much time to investigate, but we did do one. We did our third full night investigation of the Buffington House, this one was a private investigation we did for our raffle winner from our ghost tours back in August. Our guest, Georgia and her friend Carol had an excellent night and even had several personal experiences with the ghosts of the Buffington House. We all had small experiences that night in the house, reaffirming our conclusion that this house is most definitely haunted!

Halloween Party:
Speaking of the Buffington House (we do spend a lot of time there), I decided to throw my daughter a Halloween party for her and a few of her friends in a real haunted house before Halloween. I, my husband, daughter and her friends and some of the other members of HPIR all had a good fun filled night and it seems that we may have had an unexpected encounter with the other side during the party. To add to the fun for the kids, we had some fishing line rigged to some items such as a fake spider, a fake rat and a door handle. Well, we thought that an additional door had been rigged to rattle and open up but as it turns out, the joke was on us. When we discussed that one door rattling and opening while we were trying to scare the kids, my husband (who had rigged all of the stuff up) informed us that the one particular door we were talking about was in fact not rigged with fishing line or anything else! That one caught us off guard, it’s just a shame we didn’t realize it when it happened that it may have been a real encounter instead of a prank!


Several of the members of the group attended the Guyandotte safe trick or treat party, we set up a table and handed out candy to the kids as well as talked to a number of people about our ghost tours. We had a fun time and many thanks go out to Angie Clay for pulling together this fun and safe event for the kids and inviting us to be a part of it. We all had a blast!


Investigations: We are still working on securing a few dates for upcoming investigations, now that we have a little more free time on our schedules you should see some new stuff coming from us toward the end of this year and the beginning of 2013. Some of our previous planned investigations were pushed back until after Halloween.

Website Updates: Also now that I have some free time on my hands I will finally get around to adding some new EVPs to our website soon and I hope to write several haunted travel blogs as I had previously promised.

Holidays: We tend to slow down a bit around the holidays in order to spend time with our friends and family. However we are planning one last tour for the season in December, check out our Ghost Tour website for details.

We hope you all have a marvelous Halloween!

HPIR Founder