Shades of Death Road

Located near Groom Lake, Shades of Death Rd is another one of those “don’t go there at night” type roads. Although not nearly as infamous as Clinton Rd, it is notorious for many things. It’s a lot of the usual stuff, people being chased down the road, the mafia and a woman in a pink prom dress who hitchhikes there at night. (She’s a ghost that will kill you if you refuse her a ride). One story unique to this road which is documented true is ther Polaroid trail. Located south of Route 80, someone found thousands of out of focus Polaroid’s of women. They were too out of focus to make out much more then that they were of a woman. The Marks verified this story shortly before all the photographs disappeared. Something else that is true is that the road is dangerous. There have been several fatal car accidents near one section of Groom Lake, and that section of road is supposed to be getting “fixed” by the DOT to make it less dangerous.

In 2003 I was out in Warren county doing a flea market & took a stroll down Shades of Death Rd. I had left my maps at home and had to try and find the road blindly. I managed to find it after driving on Heller Rd (which was much more scary then Shades of Death was…) Narrow & twisty, with heavy tree cover and few houses in sight, it’s not a place I’d like to drive at 1AM. I did see one barn with a cow skull on it, followed by a fenced in property out of which came a German shepherd.

As I pulled onto Shades of Death, I saw what looked like a fire in the trees ahead of me. There was a swampy marshy area between me & the woods, but the more I looked at it, the more it looked like it was on Route 80. I pulled over & looked for signs of trouble, and the smoke disappeared. A car pulled up & asked me if I had seen the fire, and I said I had seen the smoke. I drove on after seeing nothing else unusual, and stopped to take the above picture. Aside from a section of road with a dozen lengthy skid marks on it, and a cornfield that was way too close to the road IMHO (Sorry, I have a thing about corn fields) I saw absolutely nothing unusual or scary, but I wasn’t down near Groom Lake where the ghost & the Polaroid’s were, so perhaps I was just on the wrong section of road……



15 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Greeneyes45 on July 4, 2013 at 1:01 PM

    The name of the lake on Shades of Death Road is Ghost Lake not Groom Lake.


  2. Posted by Eoj on June 27, 2010 at 3:26 PM

    Well I did attempt to make it to Shades of Death Road, but was chased away by a car (I couldn’t tell if it was a truck or a car) and I was able to lose him. Going 60MPH down a twisty road = not that fun. I asked my friend if he wanted to try and go back, but then I thought it would be bad if that same car was coming in our direction as we went back. So we had to give up. We’ll try again tonight, and hopefully we won’t be chased away.


    • Posted by Amber on June 28, 2010 at 11:01 AM

      Its a public road and completely illegal to chase anyone away. When that happens, you call the cops. Most of Shades of Death is filled up with houses, not really that scary.

      The only road everyone should stay off is Lenapee Lane? or Indian Lane, its right off of Shades of death, but its not a road at all, its a driveway and its private property.


  3. Posted by Alexa Rosa on August 21, 2009 at 12:22 AM

    One night, a few months ago, some friends and I decided to go down Shades. We had heard all the stories, but for some reason we didn’t believe them. We were on the road around midnight, we decided it would be the best time to explore this road since that’s what everyone else had said. At exactly 12:12 a.m. we turned on to Shades of Death Rd. We were driving down the road going the speed limit 35mph, and nothing seemed strange. Soon we arrived at Ghost Lake. We got out of the car because our friend Phil really had to take a piss. He came back and said he heard crunching leaves and sticks, but none of us heard it because we didn’t get out of the car. We convinced him it was just an animal. Then as we were pulling out of our spot, a black pick up truck with an older man parked next to us. We figured it was someone who lived on that road so we started driving away, but he followed us. We then turned onto Lenape Road and the truck was never to be seen again.We got out of the car to explore. Of course we were all scared but it was all childish fears. But then all of us heard leaves crunching and twigs snapping and a huge buck approached us. His nostrils started to flair and he started to beat the ground with his front leg. We got the clue, he didn’t want us there and we slowly started walking back to our car. When we got back we tried to start the car but it wouldn’t start. The buck was right at the car. After a few tries we finally got the car started and we sped off. The buck chased us the whole way back and we had to stop suddenly because a white figure ran across the road. Then we watched as the figure started petting the buck and then they conjoined into a ghost buck. We sped off to the end of the road where the truck was waiting for us. The old man got out and the ghost buck vanished into the forest. The old man then told us that he was an ancestor to the white man that killed the indian and tonight was the night that the indians were attacked by the white man and the spirits haunted this road to keep the white man off. Then he told us never to come back because the idian spirits had our scent and would attack next time with a herd of deer. Then five deer ran out of the forest and trampled the man in front of us and he died and then the deer flew off as ghosts. We took the mans body and put it into Ghost Lake so he would have some ghost friends. We then drove home to our comfy beds and his spirit still visits us and leaves us the signs of the indians.

    If you are still reading this story you need to get a life… it’s just a road… DUMB ASS!!


  4. me and my friend actually were just on this road. I live 10 minutes away from it, i’ve been there dozens of times. once my friends car wouldn’t start under the bridge (which is one of the stories).

    but the other night, me and my friend turned off my car and sat there for five minutes when the windows started fogging up (which is part of the story). hand prints didn’t show up, but when i tried starting my car, it stalled.

    then when we were leaving Shades, and some black truck started following us doing about 60 mph. there was NO road he could have turned off of and we were going straight. i didnt wanna pull over cause i was too scared. then i sped up and did around 45-50. at night. in the woods. on a windy road. with deer and other animals. yeah. then when we got to the end of the road, we turned the the truck turned the other way


  5. Posted by Rose on July 6, 2009 at 4:22 PM

    I go to Jenny Jump every year, but never had the chance to to go on shades of death road or ghost lake. But in a couple of weeks, me and my friends will be in the area, and I suggested checking them out. Good or bad idea?


    • Posted by lostinjersey on July 12, 2009 at 11:51 AM

      it’s a cool road to travel. it’s really not much to see in the daytime. and all rural roads are spookier at night.


  6. Posted by Tess on March 19, 2009 at 11:22 AM

    I enjoy your site. I like looking at all the creepy/weird *** in New Jersey, too =) I live right near Shades of Death Road/Jenny Jump State Park so I think it’s funny that so many people come out here to visit it.


  7. Interesting blog, I’ll try and spread the word.


  8. Posted by Justin on March 18, 2009 at 11:17 PM

    i went to shades last night and ever since me and my girlfriend left there has been a thick fog every where we go. email me and tell me what this *** is about.


  9. Posted by A local resident on March 18, 2009 at 11:16 PM

    Your info on Shades of Death Road is incorrect. The lake you referenced is called Ghost Lake, not Groom Lak


  10. Posted by Chris on March 18, 2009 at 11:15 PM

    Hey….first and foremost, I’m glad that I came upon your site when I searched for Shades of Death Rd. on Yahoo. I was reading your review and it doesn’t seem as if you visited “Shades” at night. I have been to Shades with my friends (usually 4 of us) a few times, maybe 4 or 5, each time at night. Being from Clifton, it’s about a 40 minute drive. I must say that the first time we went there, we were all scared because as you’re driving on the road, all you see is total darkness in front and back of the car, surrounded by trees; very creepy. We drove for about 20 minutes on the road, checked out the lake, which was also creepy, then left. You could definitely sense some kind of presence on the road and the road doesn’t seem like a welcoming place at all.

    Anyway, we went there a couple more times as the time went on and met a few local residents by the lake that told us about the Organ House and that it was demolished. Most of the people we met there were either drinking or just hanging out. The next time we visited Shades was probably the scariest experience of all. It was maybe 1 am in the morning and we heard something about a dirt road called Lenape Road, right by the corn field. We decided to check the road out. We made the right turn from Shades onto Lenape and were driving slowly. So we were driving carefully for about 10 seconds when all of a sudden headlights of a truck appeared out of nowhere about 75 yards ahead of us and the truck slowly began driving towards us. We were freaked out by this point, so my friend kicked the gear in reverse and slowly drove back onto Shades. It didn’t end there, however. The truck began following us and each time we thought we lost it, it would appear in the back of us.

    So we got to the end of Shades of Death Rd. and made a right just to escape whoever was chasing after us. As we looked back, we didn’t see a single car in the back, as if it disappeared. We had to go back on Shades to get back to Rt. 80. We passed by the Lenape Road again and chills ran down my spine. Who knows what could have been hiding there. The last visit to Shades of Death was last November. Once again, it was dark out, windy, and it was raining a bit. This time, we decided to check out the woods by the lake with the flashlights. There was 4 of us and we decided that we would split into two groups. One group would drop the other off by the lake and drive off so that the rangers that frequent the road don’t see anything suspicious going on. So I was the first one to be dropped off with another friend of mine. We went inside the woods and started walking deeper and deeper but my friend and I had a bad feeling about this and called the other group to come get us.

    So we switched places and now we were in the car and the other group went to check the woods out. To make the long story short, they found a well inside the woods, heard food steps, and heard chain noise. They freaked out and ran out of the woods. We picked them up and left the road. So these were my Shades of Death experiences. From your review, I can’t picture Shades of Death being less scarier than Clinton Rd. I’ve been to both roads at night and Shades is 10X scarier. Maybe you should try checking out Shades at night and then reconsider your review…I hope you enjoyed reading this. Thank you.


    • Posted by lostinjersey on March 18, 2009 at 11:15 PM

      I completely agree that this road would be much more unnerving at night because there are no street lights. That being said, I really don’t think there’s much to this road aside from the name.


    • Posted by AmberRae on July 17, 2009 at 12:31 PM

      Lenape Rd. is a private road with a farm and houses at the end. Normal people live there… its not haunted what so ever… I found out the hard way when I drove right up to the owner’s house….
      I’ve been to shades at night a few times and during the day… not that scary… in fact, it reminds me of the rest of the back woods roads in NJ


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