The Paranormal at Home: Hauntings in 50 States – New Mexico’s Highway 666

Please click here if you would like to read the first article in the series.

Today we have another outdoor haunted location. There’s a well-known highway in New Mexico with a rather unfortunate name. While most would chalk the majority of reports up to superstition and legend, the number of stories that focus on this stretch of southwest pavement indicates that there may be more to it than pure rumor.

Haunted New Mexico: Highway 666

Highway 666 once ran through a region known as the “Four Corners,” a name that describes the borders of Arizona, Utah, Colorado and New Mexico.  A route that ran through the area was upgraded in 1926 and assigned the new designation U.S. route 666. There was nothing sinister behind the name, it was appropriate because this followed the numbering guidelines used by all U.S. highways.

Paranormal Activity along Highway 666

Highway 666 sign
The Highway 666 sign in Gallup, New Mexico

Despite the innocuous background, New Mexico’s stretch of Highway 666 has carried a stigma due to claims of paranormal phenomena along the route. Sometimes called the “Devil’s Highway” or “a Beast of a Highway,” 666 is believed to attract some strange characters.

A little girl in a pale dress is sometimes seen wandering along the roadside after dark. This is odd to a traveler because the surrounding landscape is very desolate and no place for an unsupervised child. When motorists stop to see if the girl needs aid, she always disappears.

Along the same lines are stories of a female apparition. She also lingers near the roadside and disappears. Drivers have reported that she sometimes reveals herself multiple times to the same person, as if she’s waiting for them further down the road.

Shiprock, New Mexico
Shiprock, a landmark sacred to the
Native Americans, stands near
the former Highway 666 in New Mexico

Hitchhiker with no faces are sometimes seen trying to catch a ride. One of the most common tales involves a tractor-trailer that careens down the road. The truck is always surrounded by fire and driven by an alleged serial killer. The murderous vehicle charges along, but always disappears before it makes contact with its intended victims.

The infamous skinwalkers of Native American folklore are also believed to frequent Highway 666. They frighten motorists in their animal forms, trying to force the driver violently off the road by dashing in front of them. Many believe that the goal is to get the driver to crash. Other times they somehow appear in the backseat of vehicles, attempting to steal the souls of those riding inside.

Demon dogs are another unsettling theme in Highway 666’s legacy. Travelers have described terrifying packs of canine-like creatures with blazing yellow eyes and razor sharp fangs. Those who find themselves stuck along Highway 666 report seeing these monstrous animals.

The highway is also a notorious spot for unexplained time loss. Travelers will seem to disappear, as if stepping out of reality for a while. When they appear again they have no memory of what happened and they notice that more time has passed than should have.

Highway 666 Today

Most of Highway 666 has been re-named to exclude the ominous 666 denomination. Skeptics insist that the highway has a lower than average fatality rate in Utah and Colorado. New Mexico, on the other hand, is higher than average because it is a dangerous path to take (for conventional reasons).

Some, or even most, of the stories can probably be explained away. Perhaps the demon dogs are naturally occurring animals or stray canines that sound menacing to those unfamiliar with wild dogs. Maybe the other tales became taller as the legacy of Highway 666 grew.

On the other hand, the New Mexico length of the route has had some very real and very tragic fatal accidents. Maybe some spirits still linger there in the form of faceless hitchhiker or other entities. Perhaps the highway is one of those places where the world is thin and unfamiliar things can sometimes slip through. It’s impossible to know, but curious. Regardless of whether you believe the stories or not, those traveling Highway 666 should be wary and drive safely.

Have you been to Highway 666 (or would you like to go)? Share your personal experiences or investigative approach to this location in the comments.

2 thoughts on “The Paranormal at Home: Hauntings in 50 States – New Mexico’s Highway 666

Add yours

  1. I would love to visit this highway. I’ve always been fascinated with the paranormal. I live in Albuquerque.


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