When Are The Best Times For Ghost Hunting?
By Sarah Harrison
When are the best times for ghost hunting? Dusk, midnight, or deadtime,
which is said to be 3am. There is disagreement between ghost groups,
some say the witching hour of midnight, others say deadtime at 3am.
We encounter ghosts during daytime as well as after dark. But after dark
seems to be the time when most paranormal activity is noticed. The world is
quieter, people aren't running around living their busy lives. It is easier to
catch a glimpse of an apparition or hear a bump in the night. There is less
solar interference after sunset. Just as distant radio stations are easier to
pick up at night, ghosts can appear using less energy after the sun goes
down. EMF energy is higher at night than during the day.
Some also believe in the popular idea that between times are excellent for
ghost research. Perhaps a portal opens between the worlds when
conditions are slightly unstable. The between times include dusk and dawn,
and both Equinoxes and Solstices, when the seasons change. Since
Halloween, or Samhain, is the traditional end of the agricultural year, many
more hauntings are said to occur around that time. I personally don't
believe any particular night of the year brings about more activity. We've
been trained by popular culture that Halloween is a spooky time of year,
when the dead come out to play. However, EMF energy is higher in fall and
winter. Plus, you have all the excitement of the holidays at Christmas and
New Years, families getting together and everyone is full of energy. This can
stir up paranormal activity and deceased relatives can also drop in for a
visit. We seem to get a lot of requests for home investigations in late fall and
Some people believe that it's easiest to contact the other side while the
clock is chiming midnight, another between time. But, that seems to be too
horror movish to me. And it's also a part of folklore. In "A Christmas Carol,"
Scrooge is visited by each ghost after the clock finishes chiming the hour.
Midnight, in popular culture, has always thought to be the time of haunting
activity. Edgar Allen Poe wrote, "the hour of midnight to one belongs to the
dead." This stems from earlier cultures that believed witches did all their
spell casting at midnight. In "McBeth," the three witches gather for their
sabbath at midnight. Shakespeare refers to them as "black and midnight
hags." In the movie, "Midnight In the Garden of Good and Evil," the Voodoo
lady starts her magical workings at 11:30pm at the grave of her husband.
She stated the time for doing good magic was between 11:30 and midnight
and the time for bad magic was midnight to 12:30.
Deadtime, or 3am, has become a popular idea in recent years due to a
certain TV show. The thought behind Deadtime is Jesus died at 3pm and
3am is the opposite time on the clock, so 3am is time for all that is evil. This
makes the presumption that all paranormal activity is evil. If Uncle Fred is
seen in your living room at 3am, is Uncle Fred evil? Or, perhaps he's stuck
or just popped by for a visit. I've recently read that some paranormal
investigators are re-inventing the definition of Deadtime as any time after
dark, when all the equipment is set up, everyone is sitting quietly, watching
the equipment, and waiting for something to happen. It is during this quiet
time that EVP's are done.
When planning an investigation, find out when others have experienced
anything odd at a certain time or place. We've heard about hauntings in the
morning and afternoon. Generally, most haunings occur or are noticed at
dusk and after dark. Hauntings that alway occur at a set time and place are
It is a good idea to keep a diary of your encounters with ghosts to see if
there is any pattern to the hauntings. If so, it may be a characteristic of the
ghost. Or, you may have heightened sensitivity to the paranormal during
certain times, such as a full moon or, for women, your time of the month.
No matter what rules or patterns you establish for your research, there will
always be exceptions. Ghost hunting is still trial and error. No one can say
with certainty that one time is always better than another. We ghost hunters
need to keep testing and comparing notes with other investigators in order
to find consistent patterns, if any exist. We are far from knowing everything
about the paranormal. Mainstream science doesn't accept the paranormal
as a valid field of study, so the research is up to us.