Saturday, November 1, 2014

#GhostHunt No. 6 for new book: the *very* haunted Hotel Norwood

This article highlights one of the accounts from our latest book, WILD WEST GHOSTS  -- a travelogue of haunted hotels in western and mountainous Colorado. You can click on the tab just under our blog banner called "Wild West Ghosts" for more context and a bit of backstory about the project.

This time, we report on the *very* haunted Hotel Norwood. (To see the haunted history of this building, check this article.)

But first a S/O to owner/manager Logan Tease and his very friendly and helpful staff.

The Hotel Norwood did not disappoint. Our ghost hunt team this time included “bug and ghost magnate” Egan Kelso, our oldest daughter. She’d experienced multiple paranormal experiences before, making her a good candidate for flushing out ghosts at the hotel. 

Hotel owner Logan gave us a tour of the whole facility, pointing out those rooms on the second-floor with reported paranormal activity. During that initial tour, we walked through a cold spot in the west wing’s Room Twelve – an early promising start, which made us eager to return there.

Nonetheless, we wanted to be systematic, so we started on the east wing rooms above the lobby. We took a variety of baseline EMF readings (EMF stands for Eletromagnetic Field, and ghosts are said to interfere with this natural force field to make their presence known), starting with Room One, where a handprint on the bed had occurred; and Room Six, with an account of a guest having his bedcovers pulled down on repeated nights. No meter spikes in those rooms while we were there, so we tried EVP sessions in both, but with no results. (EVP stands for Electronic Voice Phenomenon, and is an audio recording that sometimes produces spirit voices not always audible to the ear in real time.)

Next we entered the door into Room Two and hadn’t taken three steps before a coffee cup tumbled off the table and hit the wall behind it. That really caught our attention. We’d have dismissed it as vibration from a slamming door, but the nearby door remained open. Kym’s EMF meter (set for micro Teslas) jumped from 30 to 356 μT, and both Kym’s and Egan’s Spirit Boxes began squawking. Egan’s seemed to establish a train of thought, spitting out in rapid succession the words “follow,” “instinct,” “dining room,” “kitchen,” and “cook.” We took that as a cue, packed up our stuff, and headed downstairs to the dining room and kitchen.

Dining room where we felt presence
There’s nothing scientific about the next observation, but Egan and Kym immediately felt a presence in the room. Egan said the feeling resembled the haunted feeling growing up  in our old two-story log cabin (see our earlier blog on that experience). She walked straight toward one corner next to an old bookshelf filled with antique volumes, telling us, “Stand right here.” In turn, we both did, and we each had the sensation of goose bumps and raised hair. 

When Egan’s Spirit Box blurted out “kitchen” again, Kym and Egan followed that suggestion while Mark stayed behind to do an EVP session in the corner, which produced the recording of a whispered voice saying, “Help me.” The ghost of former kitchen help, possibly the cook?

In the meantime, Kym and Egan staked out the kitchen, where Egan’s Spirit Box soon announced, “Stay.” The room and nearby parking lot were too noisy to try EVPs. Plus the kitchen was so filled with pipes and cooking equipment they decided not to bother with EMF readings because all the metal might artificially skew those measurements. 

Since we were right below Room Twelve at this point, we decided to go up a flight and focus on the cold spot we’d noticed earlier.

Found cold spot by armoire
The cold column of air was still there, in the same spot between the wardrobe armoire and bed, an easily discernible region we could all walk into and out of. No open windows or draft, and the air all around it was much warmer. And that’s when the conversation really kicked in. We asked the spirit to communicate by turning on a flashlight we placed on the floor in the cold spot. Before long, Egan’s Spirit Box chirped, “trying” and then “practicing, while Kym’s EMF meter soared from 30 to 350 μT and then back to 30 μT afterwards. 

We asked the spirit for a name and immediately got, “Leah.” The three of us started talking about what was happening, but the Spirit Box announced “quiet.” The flashlight never turned on. But when Kym asked if we were talking to Leah, the box immediately repeated, “Leah.” On later analysis of the EVP session in that room brought out a woman’s voice that said, “Stay,” a repeat of the Spirit Box in the kitchen directly below.

Even more impressive,  that later review of our findings also produced Leah's voice on our digital recorder, first responding "Yes" and then asking us to "Remember." The second EVP is definitely a Class A, which you can listen to here:

Class A EVP of Leah interacting with us
And in case Egan didn’t know where she was when she stepped into the restroom next door, her Spirit Box told her, “bathroom.” This happened right after our visit with Leah.

Our final investigation focused across the stairwell in Room Nine. Within minutes, Egan’s Spirit Box said, “flashlight.” This time we turned it on and asked the presence in the room to turn it off. With no delay, the light flashed off, then began blinking, and finally diminished the 160-lumen strength to a barely visible glow. At the same time, Kym’s EMF meter shot up to an astounding 1071 μT from a baseline of 23. Egan’s phone battery drained 50 percent during this episode. Afterward, we tested the flashlight to see if it, too, had drained, but it came back on at full strength. (Later we repeatedly retested the flashlight at home, and it never blinked or dimmed.)

Rm 9, where flashlight turned off on request
Egan asked the spirit to identify itself, and she got a quick response from her Spirit Box that said, “Jack.” We asked its circumstances, and Mark’s Spirit Box said, “guess.” But we also received some clues: “bush,” “dive,” “alone.” We found no EVPs from Room Nine.

We’d had so many rooms to investigate we’d decided not to keep setting up and tearing down the camcorder. In retrospect, we wish we had – particularly during the flashlight episode.

We almost felt guilty packing up to leave later that day. The spirit in Room Nine was alone, the one in Room Twelve wanted us to stay, and the cook in the dining room had asked for help. But it was time to go.

We're still having as much fun documenting current and ongoing investigations as we did conducting the investigations for our book, WILD WEST GHOSTS.

There are puzzling experiences and encounters aplenty out there, and you just may want to pick up a copy of that book for either armchair musings or else as a guide for your own expeditions into the fascinating world of the paranormal.

You can buy the book as either an e-read or a trade paperback. Visit our Website for links.

In the meantime, happy hunting!

An don't forget you can follow along during our investigations as we live-tweet from Twitter @writeinthethick. You can check out ourFacebook page for updates about dates and times.

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