There is certainly no shortage of haunted coves, harbours, tickles and bights in Newfoundland and Labrador. With such a deep history, and such a long coastline, it is no surprise to me that I continue to hear new ghost stories from haunted inlets.
A while back, I got an email from Janice Goudie, who told me two stories of two different haunted coves in the province. The first haunted harbour is in central Newfoundland, while the other is on the coast of Labrador.
Goudie’s first story took place at a spot called Julie’s Harbour, near Triton. It happened when she was a child.
“My family decided to visit the area on a day excursion and boarded our speedboat to complete the trip,” she says. “At the time, Julie’s Harbour always seemed romantic to me with its clear waters and old-fashioned abandoned snowmobile.
“I never gave it much thought of being an abandoned community, although we were told that a ghost lived there,” she remembers
Upon arriving, the family took to the shallow waters of the cove for a refreshing swim.
“It was mid-afternoon and we all took off our shoes and left them on the beach a few feet away from where we swam,” she says. “After exiting the water, we went back to our footwear, but one of my father's shoes was nowhere to be found. We searched the beach high and low, but never did find the missing sandal.”
“To this day, we joke that the ghost took it,” she says.
In the years since, Goudie has heard other stories from the area. One she remembers in particular concerns a group of kayakers who were planning to spend a night in Julie’s Harbour. They arrived at the harbour, “only to abandon the site halfway through the night because of sounds of children calling from the woods,” she says.
The second haunted cove is Island Harbour, Labrador. In that instance, it was Goudie’s husband who had the strange experience.
“His family has a summer home in Island Harbour, Labrador, that has been used by the family for generations,” Goudie explains. “They would spend much of their time there in the summer and could only access the area by boat during that time of year. Because of the location of the house in the two coves that make up the area, you can always hear if someone is coming into one of the coves by boat.”
One night, Goudie’s husband and his uncle were at the old family house in Island Harbour. The two men were the only people for miles around.
“As they sat at the kitchen table chatting, they heard three knocks at the door,” relates Goudie. “They both thought it strange as neither heard the sound of a motor approaching. Uncle got up to check, only to find no one at the door.”
The husband then ran to check the harbour for a boat. He found none.
“Needless to say, both men were spooked enough that they decided not to spend the night, and returned home to Postville,” Goudie says.
If you know something about the spirits of Julie’s Harbour, or Island Harbour, send me a note. Or, if you know of another haunted spot off the beaten track, let me know about that as well.
Dale Jarvis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org