Nevada July 13, 2017
The Sinister Story Behind This Popular Nevada Lake Will Give You Chills
Nevada is chock-full of haunted and mysterious locations, particularly in and around Goldfield, Virginia City and even Las Vegas. However, not all haunted locations have to be within or near buildings. In some cases, even the most beautiful area can have a creepy and sinister history. Such is the case with Nevada’s beautiful and unique Pyramid Lake. Located in southeastern Washoe County within the Truckee River Basin, Pyramid Lake is a mere 40 miles from Reno. Don’t lets this lake’s beauty and grandeur fool you, for despite its splendor, Pyramid Lake is home to several sinister and paranormal legends. Read on.
Pyramid Lake is nearly 900 feet deep and is the last remnant of ancient Lake Lahontan that covered much of Nevada from the Pleistocene era. Since Pyramid Lake was the deepest part
of that prehistoric lake,
nobody knows exactly what lurks in the sediments below.
Pyramid Lake is so named for the large tufa rock formations in and around the water, particularly the large pyramidal one that gives the lake its famous name.
Among the other tufa formations are the Stone Mother, ...
...Indian Head Rock, and ...
The lake is well-known for its crystal clear waters, pristine beauty, and picturesque vistas. It is also a sanctuary for numerous birds including pelicans, owls, geese, gulls, grebes, and ducksand, and the lake also serves as a home to several endangered species of fish.
The surrounding area of Pyramid Lake has long been inhabited by members of the Native Paiute tribe. This tribe is actually comprised of three related groups of Native Americans: the Northern Paiute, from California, Nevada, and Oregon; the Owens Valley Paiute from the California-Nevada border; and the Southern Paiute from the Mojave Desert and Colorado River basin.
The tribe lived peacefully until 1844 when explorer John C. Fremont discovered and named Pyramid Lake. The rapid settlement of the area by European settlers turned violent and the bloody Pyramid Lake War ensued in 1860.
There are many legends of strange creatures lurking beneath the water's surface. One such creature is the mermaid that a Paiute warrior fell in love with. According to the legend, when he took her back to his village to marry her, he was told to return her to the water. Becoming enraged, rumor has it that the mermaid cursed the tribe. Today, many Paiute members believe that all bad luck (including the Pyramid Lake War) is tied to that curse.
Another legend says that the spirits of a cavalry troop that fought in the Pyramid Lake War can be seen riding over a nearby hill, going in to battle with the Paiute.
Witnesses have reported that at times the calm water becomes turbulent with waves without any rhyme or reason. Then, as abruptly as it started, the turbulence mysteriously and quickly subsides.
Another mystery involves the bodies that have disappeared from Pyramid Lake that have resurfaced in Lake Tahoe over 61 miles away (and vice versa.) Not only does Lake Tahoe feed the Truckee River but the Truckee River feeds Pyramid Lake. Making matters even weirder is that Pyramid Lake has no outlet whatsoever. Rumor has it that there are underground tunnels connecting the two rivers, and the bodies are drawn into these subterranean tunnels and transported between the two lakes. Regardless, there is no proof one way or the other.
Then there's the legend of the ghostly, impish Pyramid Lake Water Babies who haunt the lake. For centuries, the Paiute would throw unwanted deformed or premature babies into the lake to dispose of them. Many have heard the sounds of babies crying or laughing coming from the lake; even those who are not familiar with the legend. Rumor has it that if you hear the Water Babies you will have bad luck, and if you see them, you're dead. Creepy, huh?
Reports of Water Baby "activity" increases significantly in the spring.
Additionally, every spring, at least one fisherman falls into the lake and disappears. Fishermen flock to Pyramid Lake to fish for the giant Lahontan cutthroat trout. While some say these poor unfortunate souls sink to the bottom of the very deep lake, others believe the Water Babies eat them.
Many believe that people drown in the lake because near the shoreline the water is quite clear and the lake's bottom can be easily seen; however, a 350-foot drop appears from nowhere.
Pyramid Lake remains shrouded in beautiful mystery whether people believe its sinister history or not.
Regardless of its sinister history and haunted lore, Pyramid Lake remains one of the most beautiful areas in all of Nevada.
Fishing, camping, and boating are allowed on Pyramid Lake; however, remember that since it sits on Native American land, permits are required. And you may want to visit in a season other than spring. Just in case. You know, Water Babies and all.
Have you seen the splendors of Pyramid Lake up close and personal. Did you notice any strange phenomena or happen to hear the sinister and disembodied cries or laughs of the dreaded Water Babies? Please share your experiences below.