SPOOKY NEW ZEALAND

I have previously written about my supernatural experiences at Larnach Castle in Dunedin and the spooky feelings I felt at the Vulcan Hotel in St. Bathans, Central Otago. Both these buildings are famous for the various ghosts that make themselves felt on a regular basis. My last blog featured New Zealand’s most haunted cemetery. Staying with ghosts, here we go again! I want to now talk about  encounters I’ve had with the supernatural at some other locations in New Zealand that are not so well known for their ghostly activity.

LAKE PUPUKE

I used to live close to Lake Pupuke on Auckland’s North Shore and on every occasion I visited the lake I felt oddly uncomfortable. The lake is hidden from view and was formed by a collapsed volcanic crater 140,000 years ago. It is just a short walk from the busy shopping centres of Takapuna and Milford. Expensive properties reach to the water’s edge on the 4.5 kilometre circumference of this urban lake.

Over the years, the black waters of Lake Pupuke have claimed the lives of physically fit divers and swimmers. The deaths have happened in mysterious circumstances, only adding to the spooky atmosphere this lake generates. When I first moved to Takapuna, a number of people told me that huge eels lurk in the depths of the lake and their bite can kill a man. Perhaps these creatures have been the cause of these drownings.

Lake Pupuke (takapunainternational.co.nz)

Some people claim to have seen a monster in the lake and describe it as grey, smooth and large enough to capsize a canoe. Maybe this explains the lack of boats on the lake even on a hot summer’s day! In 1962, Robert Porter, an Australian tourist, was rowing on the lake and claimed he saw the outline of a creature over six feet long following in the wake of his boat. He claimed to whack it with his oar but it dived into the depths of the black water. Hmmmmmm!! Apart from the monster and dangerous eels, there have also been reports of strange lights hovering over the water. It really is a rather creepy place!

On a brighter side,  black swan, mallard, grey duck, Australian coot, pied and black shag and heron can be seen on the lake which is classified a ‘Site of Special Wildlife Interest’ by the Department of Conservation.

THE PUMPHOUSE 

In 1894, a pump house was built on the southern side of Lake Pupuke to supply water to the North Shore.  In 1906 a more attractive brick building replaced the original structure then was extensively restored in 1977 and is now a protected historic building currently used as a 190 seat theatre.

The Pumphouse Theatre is well known for the ghost of Cecily Escott who used to work as an actress there but committed suicide at Takapuna Beach on 15th August 1977. Known as ‘Peg’, this ghost is accused of moving objects around the theatre. Actors feel they are being watched and some have even been pushed by an unseen hand. When I visited the theatre to shoot some footage for a television documentary, I was told that the lights being set up for the first night of a new play had mysteriously blown and staff were desperately trying to locate the bulbs needed to make them work. In 2015, security cameras showed two large doors that open onto the theatre’s courtyard suddenly burst open on their own accord when the theatre was closed and nobody was inside. The force was strong enough to damage the security lock that had to be replaced.

The Pumphouse Theatre (tripadvisor.co.uk)

NORTH HEAD

For a year, I lived just a five minute stroll from North Head, also on Auckland’s North Shore so during the summer months, I was often there strolling around gazing at the amazing views of the city’s harbour.

Beginning in 1885, a series of tunnels were built at North Head as part of military fortifications constructed during a time when a Russian invasion was a possibility.

North Head Tunnel (tripadvisor)

Since the fortifications were abandoned in 1950, tales of supernatural happenings in the tunnels and around the old gun placements have circulated around Auckland. There have been ongoing reports from visitors seeing short fast-moving shadows rushing through the tunnels, tiny darting lights and icy cold blasts of a strange wind felt in buried rooms with no windows or outside entrances. People have also reported being touched by unseen hands in the tunnels. I have on a couple of occasions heard footsteps behind me when walking in the tunnels but on turning to look, there was no sign of another person. I have also felt the strange wind on an occasion when in one of the dank inner rooms. I can honestly say there is a ghostly presence there. However, I’ve not seen the ‘soldier in uniform’ others claim to have witnessed standing guard beside one of the gun turrets, looking out to sea then fading into thin air. There has also been persistent talk of a buried aircraft in the area but I don’t buy that story!

LION ROCK PIHA

Piha is a west coast beach 40km from central Auckland. I’ve been there on two occasions and both times, I’ve felt the heavy atmosphere and was glad to get away from the place. The beach is popular with surfers who like to challenge the wild surf that pounds the black sand along this part of the coast.

Lion Rock is the beach’s well known landmark and with so many people losing their lives in and around this rock, it is no surprise that it has been the setting for a variety of supernatural happenings.

Lion Rock and Piha Beach (Ceidrik Heward)

I’ve climbed part way up the rock but felt uncomfortable on the narrow track so I hurriedly retreated to the beach, then the car, then back to Auckland. There have been a number of deaths on the rock due to people falling off the track or slipping on the sharp rocks that line the side of the track. A few summers ago, a group of young guys decided to camp on the rock for a night. One stepped out in the dark to have a pee and fell into the angry sea and drowned. These accidents have happened quite often over the years.  Some people have talked about seeing misty figures on the rock at night. There have also been reports of a black figure standing stiffly on the summit. Others have claimed seeing thin, naked creatures with blazing eyes and sharp teeth darting around the rock after a death nearby. Hmmmmm! There is definitely a heavy atmosphere at Piha.

Ceidrik Heward

Ceidrik Heward is an Amazon TOP SELLING AUTHOR and has lived and worked in 7 countries working as a TV cameraman, director and film tutor. For the past 17 years he has focused on writing and has been published in magazines and newspapers in Europe, USA, Asia and the Middle East.
His interests include photography, psychology and metaphysics. He loves to read and always has at least 3 books on the go. He has written 22 manuals/books and has just completed his 4th short novel. Ceidrik believes sharing information and stories is the best way to stimulate the imagination and enrich our lives.

Comments

  1. Excellent read…..that lake was s Shortland street location for an end of year cliffhanger. Car drove crazily down and into the lake …..much H&S required as I recall.

  2. Angela Stevenson says:

    A great read, thoroughly enjoyed it.
    Angela Stevenson

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