Since February 23rd, 2010, the National Geographic has been hunting down and documenting paranormal activity in the television series Paranatural. Whether it is a haunted house or a mountain range, they have been scouring for strange occurrences. Unlike most Youtube videos and other questionable ghost sightings, the National Geographic tends to utilize professional equipment and experts within the field of paranormal activity. One such area they have investigated, Lineville Gorge, lies within Western North Carolina.
The Lineville Gorge is well known to the residents living within the vicinity, telling tales of strange lights, dancing orbs, paranormal appearances, and all sorts of ghostly happenings. There have been so many occurrences that the residents have taken to calling them “ghost lights,” “The Ghosts of Brown Mountain,” or “The Brown Mountain Lights.” These lights are described as glowing orbs of bright light that manifest suddenly, float upward, and often move unnaturally quick.
Traditionally, glowing orbs, more commonly known as will-o’-the-wisp, can be easily explained. Decomposing flesh can potentially give off the chemicals phophine and methane. Phosphine will spontaneously ignite when contacted with oxygen in the air, thus lighting a small fire above the decaying corpse. This fire continues burning for a prolonged period of time, often until the corpse has completely decomposed and no longer can produce phosphine gases. However, unlike the video above, these lights are not known to move, hover, and change colors. Will-o’-the-wisps are merely a natural bacterial byproduct.
The ghost lights in Lineville Gorge do not represent a singular occurrence. There have been countless sightings of dancing, glowing orbs around the world. And even today, in our modern society, we are still trying to figure out where they come from and why they appear. Whether they are the restless souls of the deceased, or the oxidation of phosphine and methane, we may never know. One thing is certain: they have captured the attention of the human race and continue to freak us out.
Sleep well, lock your doors, and keep a camera close by for those late night ghost sightings.