Raising the Dead in Glenwood Springs
The Glenwood Springs Historical Society is getting ready to summon the ghosts of Glenwood’s past. The 22nd annual Ghost Walk takes place two weekends in October and brings back a roster of feisty Old West characters.
Always a sellout event, the Ghost Walk in Glenwood Springs is a long-standing October tradition, one that has been returning from the grave for 22 years, even making an appearance during the pandemic when it was a virtual event. This year’s characters have not been revealed, but based on experience, there will be a few new apparitions to spook visitors.
Brave Souls Hike to Haunted Graveyard
Tours of up to 30 people take place after dark and begin at the trailhead to Linwood Cemetery, the burial grounds for Glenwood’s pioneer residents. In the darkness pierced only by lantern light, tour guides lead groups to the old graveyard on top of a hill that overlooks Glenwood Springs.
The path is one-third of a mile, rocky and steep. Visitors are advised to wear sturdy footwear and carry flashlights or purchase lanterns to illuminate their way over the uneven ground. Tours take off from the trailhead at 6:30, 7:15, 8:00 and 8:30 p.m. over two weekends, Oct. 21, 22, 28 and 29. Because it’s not quite so dark or scary, families are encouraged to attend the 6:30 tour.
Meet the Ghosts of Glenwood’s Past
Flighty types, ghosts are notoriously unpredictable. They may or may not show up when summoned. While some of these phantoms are sights as reliable as jack-o-lanterns on All Hallows Eve, others are fickle in their appearances. Regardless of who shows up in the haunted cemetery this October, these friendly ghosts have been starved for attention and long for nothing more than an audience to listen to the tales of their lives and deaths.
- Jasper Ward. The first mayor of New Castle, Ward was a versatile fella. He was also the town martial, a justice, a saloon owner and on Sundays, a preacher.
- Caroline Barlow. The mother-in-law of one of the first white settlers in the region, Barlow was a hard-working woman in a rough-and-tumble town. She ended up taking care of the poor and running her husband’s hotel.
- Doc Holliday. Most everyone knows the story of the gentleman dentist turned gambler and gunslinger who died destitute at a hotel in Glenwood Springs.
- Kid Curry. A bad-to-the-bone bank robber who killed himself to avoid being apprehended by authorities.
- Elmira Kier. She made her living in Glenwood’s red light district and was known as the “Nine of Diamonds.” A low-class and tough lady, she made the best of what life offered her.
Tickets for the Ghost Walk are on sale now and sell out quickly. Learn more about Glenwood’s past and the many things to do this fall in the historic hot springs town. Make plans to visit today!
Download the official Glenwood Springs Travel Guide