Dark Entry Forest, Connecticut
Unlike the other wooded areas on this list, Dark Entry Forest — despite an ominous name that, in the words of The Washington Post practically screams "We dare you to walk through our totally haunted forest" — is private property. Translation: No rowdy teens or EMF meter-toting thrill-seekers allowed.
Located in the idyllic Connecticut town of Cornwall, this 750-acre swath of woodland is home to the ruins of Dudleytown — New England's very own Village of the Damned. Not an actual village but a hilly and isolated section of Cornwall settled in the 1700s, the area later became synonymous with tales of death, disease and general misfortune. By 1900, the accursed settlement was abandoned altogether. In 1924, a collective of shareholders operating under the rather shadowy name Dark Entry Forest Association purchased the parcel. Much to the chagrin of modern-day association members, the creepy — and rather complicated — mythology surrounding Dudleytown never really faded away and the area has garnered a reputation for being a hotbed of supernatural activity.
And so, this secluded part of the Litchfield Hills that once, according to local lore, acted as a magnet for bad mojo, began, in the latter half of the 20th century, to attract a veritable parade of paranormal investigators, partying high-schoolers and at least one birding enthusiast with National Geographic. The release of the "Blair Witch Project" in 1999 and unwanted Dudleytown shout-outs from ghostbusters real (Ed and Lorraine Warren) and pretend (Dan Aykroyd) haven't helped. And so, vigilant area residents, most of them descendants of the original shareholders, are reportedly not shy about calling the police and reporting interlopers. Yet folks show up in droves anyway, willing to risk arrest for illegal trespassing. After all, it seems that the more aggressive that beleaguered association members and authorities are about keeping people out, the more curious people become. Writes the Cornwall Historical Society: "Imagine if someone wrote that your home was haunted, even though it wasn't, and you suddenly had total strangers wandering around your yard, peering in through your windows, setting fires and leaving litter, invading your privacy on a regular basis. You wouldn't like it very much, and neither does anyone in Cornwall."