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Stay Away From Colorado’s Most Haunted Street After Dark Or You May Be Sorry

You have heard the stories, seen the videos, and have maybe even had the guts to drive down Thornton’s Riverdale Road after dark… but is it really haunted or is it merely another Colorado urban legend? For those of you who have never heard of Riverdale Road (AKA The Gates of Hell), here is a little back story:

Located in a rural part of Thornton, Riverdale Road is the alleged site of a number of different morbidities, including the lynching of slaves, an insane man murdering his wife and children by setting their mansion on fire, and even serving as the location of an old chicken coop that was used by demonic cults to summon demons. As if all of this wasn’t creepy enough, legend also has it that the ghost of a Camero driver (and his car) coax living visitors into racing to their death, while demon phantom dogs and children play along the unpaved sides.

In 2015, we had the opportunity to speak with Denver Ghost Hunters Founder and Director Stephanie (Johnson) Smith, who gave us her professional take on the road and what she experienced:

The first time I investigated Riverdale, was many years ago. It was my first lead investigation and I went out to the road to spot good sites that I thought would work for all of our team and for some guest investigators. I was drawn to the one part of the road. It was daylight but there was just something about this spot. As the team’s psychic, I am often asked to locate hot spots of activity. That night we went to the location and I got out of my car and began walking down the road. It seemed pretty quiet. You could hear the oil drums beating in the fields, but other than that it was quiet. I decided to walk on the other side of the road for a while. As I was walking I could see someone ahead of me. The first thing I remember was that they had on boots, but otherwise it was very shadowed. I have seen ghosts, and this one just seemed to be walking toward me. I tried to think rationally, but I just kept getting nervous, and then that turned to panic and at some point in my walk, I turned around and ran the other direction. I ran and ran from the shadow with the boots. Past my team, past the camera crew, past the cars, until my head cleared. On camera, they caught a white ball of light zooming past me. After a few moments, I cleared my head and walked on the other side of the road. I felt fine, no trepidation at all. But every time I walked on the other side, I would feel the same panicked feeling. This got me thinking, if this was some sort of imprinted event, that I could only see and feel if I stepped in on it. So I began to get volunteers (different nights) and have them experiment. I told them nothing of my experience, just had them walk down the road for as long as they could and then come back and tell us what they felt or saw. Some have reported seeing a shadowy figure, others felt scared, some ran back to the car, some felt like they were being followed and others just felt ill. We have captured video, evps and photographs, but the most compelling is the sound of footsteps behind you as you walk along the dark road. I have never found any historical evidence to support this story, but I keep looking. There are too many people that feel the same thing.

Now that you have heard from an expert, what do you think? Have you ever visited what is quite possibly the most haunted street in Colorado?

For more of Stephanie’s takes on Colorado hauntings, check out These 5 Urban Legends In Colorado Will Keep You Awake At Night.

Annie
Annie is a freelance writer, content editor, and marketing whiz with a background in broadcasting and a passion for chicken nachos. When she isn't gushing about her love of Colorado, you can find her chasing after her two adorable sons and/or dreaming up a new home improvement project for her husband.