This week Into the Portal teamed up with Brian and Angelo, fellow Canadians and hosts of Double Density podcast of Montreal for a cross country Canadian tour of the strange and unexplained… Beginning on the west coast of the Great White North, we explored the legend of Lost Creek Mine, sometimes referred to as the Pitt Lake Mine.
The story of Pitt Lake gold begins in 1858, the year of the Fraser Canyon Gold Rush. One native miner named Slumach was particularly mysterious, and always came into town with large amounts of placer gold but never revealed its source.
In 1891 Slumach came across some trouble, and had a run in with a man named Louis Bee, who was metis and who he knew his whole life. These two men hated each other and the story goes that Slumach, in fit of rage provoked by Bee, shot the man in cold blood and was later hung for his crime. A map allegedly drawn up by Slumach before his execution was lost in the lawless history of the gold rush and no one has since been able to locate the mine. Most of these treasure seekers have lost their lives in the process of searching for the Pitt Lake Mine, resulting in the pervasive rumors of Slumach’s Curse.
Next, Angelo took us to the Yukon to investigate some strange happenings at the old Caribou hotel located in the gold rush city of Carcross. Allegedly haunted by the Ghost of Mrs. Gideon and many guests have reported awakening to see the apparition of a woman at the foot of their bed beckoning to them, pouring bubbles into the bath, or peering out from the upper storey windows to the street below… The terror continued into the province of Alberta, home to one of the most haunted cities of all Canada: Calgary. Whether it is the mysterious goings on of the Cross House, the echoes of a ghost monkey in the Firehall or the multitude of unexplained deaths that curse the Deane house, Calgary has it all when it comes to the paranormal!
Another terrifying legend is that of the Waheela. Found in northern indigenous folklore which tells of a giant bear-wolf rumoured to prowl the vast wilderness of the Northwest Territories. Also known as the Amarok in native legends, the size is reported to be three times larger than that of any known species and is rumoured to hunt alone in place of the traditional pack methods used by wolves. This monstrous size far outweighs any known species, leading one to wonder if we have inherited more from the era of MegaFauna than is presently known…
Saskatchewan was the next stop on our Cross Country Tour of the Great White North, where we covered another legend steeped in the lore of the indigenous Cree peoples. The story goes as follows: when white European settlers came to the area of Candle Lake in Northern Saskatchewan they found it deserted, with evidence of rotting dwellings present as well as multiple burial sites. The settlers began hearing stories from neighbouring Cree tribes that described Candle Lake as haunted by evil spirits and was therefore strictly avoided by the natives.
The Cree described a mysterious phenomenon seen late at night, an eerie glow described as a sphere moving about usually on the northern side of the lake. The strange unexplained light prompted the Cree peoples to call the place ‘Candle Lake’ in their own languages, which was later Anglicized and persists into modern day. It seems that since the earliest times many have spotted the mysterious light of Candle Lake, sightings that continue to present day…
Heading eastward Brian tackled some fascinating paranormal encounters in Manitoba, including a tip of the hat to the infamous Falcon Lake Incident and the story of Room 202 in Fort Gary Hotel. The room is reportedly haunted by a newlywed bride who committed suicide in the hotel room after her husband was run down and killed by a carriage. To this day people claim to see the ghost of the young woman restlessly pacing about waiting for her lover to return.
It was a great amount of fun collaborating with Double Density on this uniquely Canadian episode! The second part of this cross-country tour picks up on Episode 53 of the Double Density Podcast, where we discuss captivatingly tales of lost pirate treasure, UFO sightings, a Canadian Cryptid and so much more from the Eastern side of the country, so be sure to go listen at http://www.doubledensity.net/episodes available Wednesday, May 2 2018.
Written by Amber Rae Bouchard