The first week of November 2010, Tyler, Carol and I drove up to Altadena for an investigation of the old Cobb Estate, or what is locally referred to as the Haunted Forest. It sits on 107 acres at the top of Lake Avenue in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains. Because it is part of the Angeles National Forest, the estate is open 24/7, and it hosts numerous night time visitors in the form of both hikers and local teens.
Reports of hauntings at the Cobb Estate are wide-spread yet, for the most part, non-specific in nature. People report negative feelings, being “watched” or even touched, strange lights, laughter, screams, along with tales of Satanic rituals and KKK gatherings. The land the estate encompasses was once a temporary home to many who prospected for gold in the hills. Around 1916, Charles Cobb purchased the parcel and built a summer retreat. Cobb was an active Mason, and after his death in 1939, the main house became a Masonic Home for a time, then was used as a retreat by the Sisters of St. Joseph. In the 1950s, the Marx Brothers purchased the estate and the main house was torn down by 1960. The site was almost sold to developers until the citizens of Altadena raised enough funds to buy it at auction and donate it to the forest service with the provision that no structures would ever be built on the land.
In the past, the LAGP has focused more on indoor locations and we were excited to hike into the woods on a chilly Southern Californian night. Walking through the spooky main gates, we were immediately surrounded by the deep black of the forest at night. We followed the paved road up and to the left, back towards where the main house area was thought to be. It became apparent that we were not alone: there were some kids with a stereo and a tambourine and the sound was audible throughout the estate. A major annoyance, but something which we were going to have to put up with the entire night.
We reached the back of the estate where a bridle path & hiking trail continued up to a storage tank and then further into the mountains. High up above us and to our right on the lower Sam Merrill trail, we could see the lights of hikers in the forest. This could explain the often reported lights – nothing paranormal about them. On the far curve of the paved road, we started to get random hits on the KII even though our phones were turned off and we were in an electricity-free area. We decided to try a EVP session here despite the faint radio noise. About 10 cold minutes into the session, we began to experience what can only be described as pebbles being thrown:
Unfortunately, we cannot be 100% certain that these pebbles were paranormal in nature due to the presence of other people in the park. However we did not spot anyone in our immediate area upon searching with the night vision cameras.
We moved on to the steps of what we think were the main house area. These had been painted with graffiti and faced a cleared area planted with palms, which that night gave us a view of the crescent moon. Once again we settled in and started an EVP session. After several minutes of no responses, Tyler decided to walk into what would have been the house and that’s when things began to get interesting:
We heard footsteps approaching down the road and when Carol grabbed the camera there was nothing there. Then the footsteps were heard near the stairs moving into the area of the house. At this area in the park we were positive that these footsteps were not caused by any human visitors. In the middle of all this, Tyler’s flashlight died even though he had put in fresh batteries. After Tyler asked a direct question about whether they wanted us to leave and I began to walk up the steps, we got the strongest KII hits of the evening. It was pretty amazing.
To see a full video of this investigation, check out our YouTube channel. We plan to post all our future investigations as webisodes as well as write-ups and video excerpts here on our site.