Investigating the Tunnel
First and foremost, you must understand that if you visit the tunnel you are trespassing on private property, and that both the Blue Ghost Tunnel and the property surrounding it are very dangerous. If you visit, you do so at your own risk and hold no one, including this author, the publisher and its subsidiaries liable for any injury or death. It is my understanding that in the future the area may be used as municipal parkland and given an historic designation. Until then, it is private property, and should be treated as such.
The tunnel can be accessed via a private roadway owned and operated by General Motors Canada. On this road you may encounter security personnel from both GM and The Seaway Authority. They may or may not let you pass, and they may even decide to call the police and have you charged with trespassing. Also on this roadway you’ll see a newly constructed chain link fence, a gate, lighting and security cameras.
Some who have left a vehicle in this area have found it vandalized or even stolen. With the added security, the risk of this occurrence may be reduced, but it is best to err on the side of caution.
Once you pass this gate, follow the dirt roadway. To your left will be the Old Welland Canal. As you cross over the tunnel on this road, you will notice a railing that is spray painted with various text and pictures. One of these read “Blue Ghost”, with an arrow pointing downward. You will notice a well-worn pathway here that you can take to access the tunnel. This is a steep trail and can be quite dangerous especially in the winter or after a good rainfall.
The preferred approach is to keep hiking until you see the Pump House with the warning sign. Here, make a right and follow another trail down to the right, which will take you to the Blue Ghost Tunnel. This pathway is much safer, and may be of more interest to those seeking a paranormal encounter. This trail seems to have ignited some paranormal activity about 100 metres or so from the tunnel entrance itself.
On this trail, you may choose to hike down off the pathway to where the rail bed once lay. There is a small stand of trees with level ground. Here you will find a large rock which I placed to mark the exact location of the train wreck. If you dig down about eight inches, you will discover blackened sediment indicating where an intense fire burned long ago.
You may want to conduct an investigation at this particular location. However, on the occasions that I investigated this area as well as the tunnel, I had no luck attempting to communicate with the train wreck victims. The exact location of the train wreck did not produce a single noteworthy paranormal event. No EVPS, apparitions or feelings were encountered.
If you do decide to take photographs of this particular location, keep in mind there is a natural phenomenon that results in photos which depict unexplained mists. What is happening is that the ground releases a natural gas that can be photographed with long shutter speeds.
The front entrance of the tunnel is of great interest to many paranormal investigators. A number of feelings and sightings have occurred outside the tunnel, sometimes even when nothing was happening on the inside. When recording EVPS, keep in mind that there are coyotes, birds and also bats in the area which may produce sounds that when played back sound terrifying. If possible keep note of the natural sounds.
As you enter the tunnel through the iron door, walk slowly and watch your step. The floor is uneven and there may be hazards such as used condoms, needles and broken beer bottles. If you have remembered to bring a flashlight its best to use it as you navigate further into the tunnel.
Stop when the natural light of the outside world fades and let your eyes adjust to the darkness. Keep a watchful eye on the doorway so that others trekking down to the tunnel do not interfere with your visit.
If you are with a group of people, split up. Let a few people remain at the entrance, while others enter the tunnel. Once inside the tunnel stop at the number four beam. Conduct an EVP session there, take photos and speak out loud, telling the spirits that you have come to respect them and the land.
Next, stop at the number six beam and do the same.
Your next stop will be at the number eight beam. Here, remain as silent as possible and listen for footsteps, screams and whispers. If you are coming in the summer months, the constant dripping of water may interfere. In the winter, the silence of the tunnel may be deafening. At the number eight beam, many individuals have felt an energy that changes the atmosphere.
Finally, walk all the way until you cannot go any further. You'll know when to stop in the summer as you reach the flooded area. In the winter you may encounter a four-foot block of ice.
Keep in mind that photographs may reveal “orbs” or “ectomist”. Remember the tunnel is damp and cold, and may be seeping water, causing your camera's flash to reflect from water droplets or your own breath. You can dismiss these photographs altogether.
Recording EVPS in the tunnel may be difficult because of the natural sounds of the tunnel. You may hear banging, which is natural. Your entire session may be useless due to the interference of the water dripping.
If you do record a voice or an anomaly, have friends listen to the sound and determine for themselves what is being said or heard. If several people hear the same thing, without any prior discussion of what the sound might be communicating, you may have captured something paranormal.
Videotaping the tunnel is a great way of capturing your visit. If you have a night vision option, use it. Otherwise use a lot of light to make sure you don't end up with a pitch-black video.
Once you are finished visiting the tunnel, trek up the path that curves around and visit the Pump House. Be very cautious here and remain safely away from the water and building. Next, follow the road to where the pondage area is laid out. Here you will see that the roadway continues on the other side, near the escarpment and towards the Lakeview Cemetery. You cannot cross here as the bridge has been removed. To visit the Lakeview Cemetery and the grounds of the old burial ground you will need to go an entirely different route.
If you plan on visiting the cemeteries, do so when the Canal is drained so that you can make a proper visit to the old burial-grounds. If that’s not possible, you'll need a boat. Use the maps provided to access the historical cemetery and old burial grounds. Do so during the day, as visiting at night is considered trespassing and disrespectful.
If you find any artifacts, please leave them in place. Take only photos and tread lightly. There is not much to see of the old burial grounds as sediment and time have covered most of it up. The area, however, has produced some remarkable paranormal activity and it is well worth the visit for those seeking to contact the other side.
Specific directions to the East end of the tunnel, the house foundations and John Walker's house location are not provided here. There is a tangle of bush and trees to trek through in order to find each one. Us the maps provided to find them, if you so desire.
Once you have completed your visit, check out the Welland Canal Centre at 1932 Welland Canals Pkwy (at Lock 3) in St. Catharines for more information about the canal and updated stories about The Blue Ghost Tunnel.
If you are interested in the paranormal and local history you may want to pick up Shadows of Niagara: Investigating Canada's Most Haunted Region, which, along with records of 30 other investigations, transcribes two visits to The Blue Ghost Tunnel that produced some interesting results, including physical contact. The book is available at the Welland Canal Centre and online.