A lonely highway at night can be an eerie place. Tree branches cast spooky shadows, abandoned barns loom out of the darkness, and headlights appear behind you without warning (or worse, you never see any other cars at all). But there’s nothing to be afraid of — it’s just a road, right?

If you’re traveling on any of these 7 haunted roads, you may have good reason to feel a chill. Discover the frightening tales that have made these roads infamous.

1. Resurrection Mary, Archer Avenue, Chicago, Illinois

The story of Mary dates from the early 1930s. According to legend, Mary left the Oh Henry Ballroom in a huff after a quarrel with her boyfriend and was struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver as she hitchhiked along Archer Avenue. She was buried in her white party dress and dancing shoes in the nearby Resurrection Cemetery.

Soon after, drivers began reporting a fair-haired woman in a white dress walking along the avenue, looking distressed. Whenever she was offered a ride, she’d accept, only to disappear once the car passed Resurrection Cemetery.

2. Dead Man’s Curve, Clermont County, Ohio

First opened in 1831, this stretch of road was nicknamed “Dead Man’s Curve” because it turned so sharply that carriages would often go over the edge. Though the road was widened and the curve smoothed out in the late 1960s, it only grew more notorious.

In 1969, a dreadful crash between a Chevy Impala and a Plymouth Road Runner killed 5 teenagers. Since then, locals claim to have seen apparitions of the 2 vehicles speeding through the area and phantom carriages going by.

The most well-known local specter, though, is the “Faceless Hitchhiker.” Dressed all in black, he appears in full detail — except his face is blank where his features should be. Usually he only sticks his thumb out for a ride, but sometimes he throws himself in front of cars and then tries to climb aboard when the vehicle stops.

3. Whirlwind Hill Road, Wallingford, Connecticut

An apparition known as the “Lady in White” haunts this country road. According to local lore, a young bride was left at the altar in the 1930s and, out of despair, drowned herself in a reservoir. Her ghost now walks along the road, dressed in a soaking wet wedding gown. She reaches out beseechingly to drivers for a ride, but vanishes when their backs are turned.

4. Sweet Hollow Road, Melville, New York

This Long Island road has its own “Lady in White” who reportedly roams the woods and occasionally walks in front of passing cars. Some say she was a distraught patient who burned down a local hospital around 1850, trapping herself inside. Others claim she was pushed out of a moving car and killed.

Her glowing figure would certainly be an eerie sight, but one of the creepiest local phantoms is a police officer who’ll pull you over and stand wordlessly by your window, shoulders covered in blood.

5. Highway 666, Gallup, New Mexico, to Monticello, Utah

Although “666” has been associated with the devil, this road’s number was the result of a naming convention — it was the sixth branch of Route 66. Nonetheless, it became known as the “Devil’s Highway” and is notorious for paranormal events.

One legend involves a young girl who wanders the road in a long nightgown. If you stop to help her, she disappears. Unfriendly spirits have also been known to materialize in the backseat of your car. In other cases, a huge, flaming semitruck might bear down on you at high speed, or a pack of diabolical, yellow-eyed dogs may attack your tires.

These supernatural tales still abound despite the fact that the highway was renumbered U.S. 491 in 2003.

6. Old Pali Road, Nu’uanu Valley, Oahu, Hawaii

On the Old Pali Road, the Pali Lookout has an important place in Hawaiian history. During the Battle of Nu’uanu in 1795, King Kamehameha I seized victory by pushing hundreds of his opponents over the 1,200-foot cliff. It’s said the ghosts of the vanquished army can still be seen tumbling to their deaths.

But that’s just the beginning of the supernatural goings-on near Old Pali Road. Sightings of “Night Marchers” (spirits of ancient warriors doomed to walk the island for eternity) have often been reported here. Others claim the road is haunted by the ghost of a teenage girl with long, dark hair who drifts along skipping rope. Her face is missing except for 2 bulging eyes.

7. Clinton Road, West Milford, New Jersey

This remote 10-mile road has been called the scariest road in America … and no wonder. From reports of satanic rituals and mob slayings to rumors of mutant animals whose ancestors escaped from a local zoo, nearly every bend of this route has a spooky legend attached.

One popular legend is of a little boy who drowned at a stone bridge along the road. It’s said that if you stand at the bridge and throw a coin into the water, the boy will throw it back. Locals also warn of a phantom black truck that suddenly appears, blazing its headlights as it rides your bumper and tries to run you off the road — and then disappears without a trace.

In the mood for more creepy?

Highways aren’t the only things that can be haunted. Houses can be too. If you’re looking for some more spine-tingling fright, read about 4 of America’s most haunted houses, and find out how to tell if your own house is haunted.

Travel hacks


about Ellen

Ellen has spent many years as a professional wordsmith, helping to shed light on such topics as world travel, cargo pants, and the porosity of bath tiles. As a freelance copywriter for Esurance, she brings her boundless curiosity to the world of insurance. Outside work, she can be found cheering on the San Francisco Giants, hiking in the Oakland hills, and (barely) resisting smuggling penguins home from Antarctica.