Tag Archives: Haunted Hills Tours

No Tours July 2015


It’s been a great first half of the year. Thanks for all the support and interest in the tours.

I’m on holiday for this month.

Tours recommence in August.

If you want to get in contact with me, email is best for this time: hauntedhillstours@gmail.com

In the meantime you can check out our past ghost tours, and history of Gippsland.

No tours July 2015.

No tours July 2015.


Gallery from April 10th Yallourn North Ghost Tour

If you click on the first picture, you can click through all of them at the size I uploaded them. Instead of scrolling down this page.

Let me know what you think!


See March 13th’s ghost tour gallery

See photos from February’s ghost tour

Also see: The difference between a ghost tour and paranormal investigation

spirit, ghost, other, light tricks, landscape,

Ghost or Not

spirit, ghost, other, light tricks, landscape,

I’m new to deciphering the visual language of the spirit world. So, I’m putting it out to the people.

At the very first Yallourn North Ghost Tour, I was shown some  photos on a phone that looked amazing. Of course, I was really jazzed that I might have found evidence of ghosts on my first tour. It had been a great night, everybody was really complimentary afterward and it was spine tingling delicious icing on the cake.  I was a little bewildered because couldn’t pick reasons for ghosts to be in those places. (But maybe I’m over thinking it and the ghosts go where they please.) I received the photos by email and had a look tried to get some feedback on them, and was asked for photos of the area, which is a good question. So I’ve included those here for you to look through as well. (This is a picture heavy page).  But it is hopefully everything you need to know to make up your mind about the photos.

(Right at the bottom are more photos, check them out I might have missed something, and I’d love your opinion.)

Yallourn North, War Memorial, Spirit pic, ghost pic,

The first picture on the meme above is cropped, and the full picture of it looks like this: (without being stretched) 
It looks like a man wearing a hat, is it a trick of light or a spirit manifesting? This photo was taken on the War Memorial (made of rock) at Yallourn North, two women were taking pictures of the rock that was wet, and has a yellow light at the bottom, other photos on Haunted Hills Tours have photos of the memorial

The full file of the photo of the above picture

The full file of the photo of the above picture

The full file of the photo of the above picture

The second full file of the photo of the above picture

Is this a spirit photo? Taken on North Road, the place where I talk about the haunted houses in Yallourn North and a ghastly finding on Quarry Road.

Is this a spirit photo? Taken on North Road, the place where I talk about the haunted houses in Yallourn North and a ghastly finding on Quarry Road.


This is a park on North Road, Yallourn North, that has a seat and plenty of space to play marbles as residents remember doing when they were kids. This is a daytime picture of the above possible or not ghost pic.

If you stuck around for all that there are more photos.

If you’re entering the competition things  you need to know apart from all those deets above!

Help me decipher these photos. Tell me, if the following pictures are spirits or ghosts or not in the comments below to win a Yallourn North Ghost Tour Ticket for the 13.03.15! Follow these steps to enter:

1. Write why its a ghost or not in the comments below
2. Confirm your entry here: http://tab.fo/9whf2fs (+ see rules)

We will pick the best comment on Sunday 8 March 2015, 7:50 pm and contact the winner through the email. Find detailed rules in the link above.

You can comment without going in the competition – as to enter the draw you must follow this link http://tab.fo/9whf2fs.

If you want more information, which no doubt you do, see my blog and read all about it first and then come back here and comment – http://hauntedhillstours.com/2015/02/27/ghost-or-not (that is this page – so clicking it will link you back here – but it’s on the Facebook post and I thought it prudent to record what I do fully)

And the terms and conditions of course.

1. The promoter is: Haunted Hills Tours ABN 66287600504. You can contact Haunted Hills Tours via email, Facebook page, website, or phone 0473 945 639

2. Employees of Haunted Hills Tours or their family members or anyone else connected in any way with the competition or helping to set up the competition shall not be permitted to enter the competition.
3. There is no entry fee and no purchase necessary to enter this competition.
 4. Route to entry for the competition and details of how to enter: You must connect through Facebook for more information Closing date for entry will be 08.03.15. After this date the no further entries to the competition will be permitted. No responsibility can be accepted for entries not received for whatever reason.  The rules of the competition and the prize for each winner are as follows: Further information can be found at: http://hauntedhillstours.com/
5. In order to win you must be able to attend the Ghost Tour on the 13.03.15 at 8pm in Yallourn North, Victoria.
6. The promoter reserves the right to cancel or amend the competition and these terms and conditions without notice in the event of a catastrophe, war, civil or military disturbance, act of God or any actual or anticipated breach of any applicable law or regulation or any other event outside of the promoter’s control. Any changes to the competition will be notified to entrants as soon as possible by the promoter. The promoter is not responsible for inaccurate prize details supplied to any entrant by any third party connected with this competition.
7. No cash alternative to the prizes will be offered. The prizes are not transferable. Prizes are subject to availability and we reserve the right to substitute any prize with another of equivalent value without giving notice. Winners will be chosen:  as a result of a vote conducted via this application as measured and recorded by Tabfoundry’s software. The winner will be notified by email within 2 days of the closing date. If the winner cannot be contacted or do not claim the prize within 3 days of notification, we reserve the right to withdraw the prize from the winner and pick a replacement winner. The promoter will notify the winner when and where the prize can be collected. The promoter’s decision in respect of all matters to do with the competition will be final and no correspondence will be entered into.
8. By entering this competition, an entrant is indicating his/her agreement to be bound by these terms and conditions. The winner agrees to the use of his/her name and image in any publicity material.
Any personal data relating to the winner or any other entrants will be used solely in accordance with current Australian data protection legislation and will not be disclosed to a third party without the entrant’s prior consent. Entry into the competition will be deemed as acceptance of these terms and conditions.
9. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook. You are providing your information to Haunted Hills Tours and not to any other party. The information provided will be used in conjunction with the following Privacy Policy 
Haunted Hills, Yallourn, Herne's Oak, Gippsland legend, cattle

What’s in a name: Haunted Hills Tours

Would a rose be a sweet if named anything else? Shakespeare pondered. Would ghost tours be as scary without without a name like Haunted Hills preceding tours? It’s a gift from our area that is well documented in Gippsland’s history, that gave us the Haunted Hills. Whether it’s coal or something paranormal, spiritual or otherwise, its definitely stocked with stories.

Haunted Hills, Yallourn, Herne's Oak, Gippsland legend, cattle

Written by a correspondent for The Argus (Melbourne) in 1947: You can read the full link here: http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/22529858

Today in our busy, noisy world, thousands of people fly by the Haunted Hills, never hearing the disconcerting sound nor the unnerving sight of “ghosts of dead gums”. That is unless you drove through the Latrobe Valley after the 2014 bush fires that started in Herne’s Oak (the home of the Haunted Hills). The Princes Hwy was an eerie sight with burnt bark on trees that in the middle of summer had no leaves, it changed the landscape. Reviving fears of the day that flames threatened Morwell and then went into the Morwell Open Cut. It was a ghastly reminder of natures power and propensity for destruction, some of the trees today aren’t recovered fully.

Even though the Haunted Hills were renamed in 1939, Gippslanders never let go of the legend of the Haunted Hills, the name has been preserved for over 150 years. The first account I can find is an article from the Gippsland Times that recounted a Journey from Melbourne to Sale referred was in 1872, that they “rounded the haunted hill”.

These days the haunted hills are a different place to the thickly wooded hills covered in native hops. 1931 is the first recounting of the legend of the Haunted Hills. The legend that had run rife, as drovers taking cattle through to Melbourne had a predictable place they’d experience trouble on their route – the western slope of the Haunted Hills. The cattle would walk up the Eastern slope with no concerns, however, at the precipice of the Haunted Hills, the cattle would become agitated, stampeding off, many a cow was lost at this point in the journey to Melbourne.

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The experiences of people who do take time to wander or as they’re driving by with eyes wide open, they hear phantom brumby’s galloping, some people have seen a man standing by the side of the road, an eerie noise through the trees, the groaning noise under the ground and in places find their mobile reception is non-existent.

The sounds are dismissed as the coal, however, coal seams travel all the way through Gippsland – in all terrains. I’d love to speak to a geologist about the make up of the Haunted Hills. (The picture I’ve found isn’t very scientific, however it’s a start).

You can stay in the Haunted Hills at Brigadoon Cottages if you dare, and experience it for yourself.

Join Haunted Hills Tours on a Ghost Tour of Yallourn North for the Haunted Hills story.

If you’ve had any experiences on or around the Haunted Hills, I’d love to hear your story. If you want to share you can in the comments below or the contact box.

A resident who lived in the Haunted Hills, recounted on one day they heard the sound of Brumbies galloping, yet none were to be seen, it was a really odd experience.

This picture shows the Gippsland Basin’s coal deposits in purple, the coal covers Gippsland through various terrains, but there is only place in Gippsland that makes noise because of coal?

The first Yallourn North ghost tour and review!

The first Yallourn North Ghost Tour. These photos were kindly provided by Rodney Lloyd. Thanks so much they’re great!

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It was a worrying start to the first Yallourn North Ghost Tour, on Friday the 13th of February, as the weather bureau issued a severe weather warning for most of Victoria, however in our little neck of the woods, the storms went around us, we got some rain, a little lightning (a flash came at the best time, as I’d announced I’d tell the legend of the Haunted Hills) and we could sometimes hear thunder. I was watching the rain radar for most of the afternoon, not that I’m worried about the rain, I have umbrellas.

The umbrella’s got a work out on the very first tour. They’re now drying on an impromptu drying rack. I was also told by some Yallourn North residents, that they saw the parade of umbrella’s making their way around town. I’m glad we’re very visible.

So far, all the feedback I’ve received has been positive including the very first review posted the day after. You can read more about that here. The demographic of the first tour was mostly made up of Latrobe Valley residents, plus four from out of the Latrobe Valley, including 4 from outside the Valley and one of those people was from another country. First tour and we’ve gone international! A smaller group of ghost tour participants went on to the Rossmore Hotel afterwards.

The ghost whisperers’ chatty dress

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Thanks to the residents for letting us on their property and thanks to Lynton Gale for the photos.

In January, I ran a competition to decide the ghost whisperers’ costume. Originally, I was trying to go for dresses inspired by the 1910-1930 era which was the start of the Brown Coal Mine and Yallourn. I couldn’t really find any, and none of the choices were from this time period. It’s tough to find dresses from 1910-1930, that isn’t a flapper’s dress – its way to cold to wear that in winter!.  I made up a competition and put it out to the people, asking for comments of the communities to pick their favourite.

The costume competition winner was Catheryn Thompson whose comments inspired the dress to speak volumes.

“This dress is school marmish with blood red flowers – the sense of controlled horror & femme fatale, will suit the haunted hills”

These comments captured my imagination as I appreciate the film noir genre where the femme fatale character emerged. Film noir has a particular look, using shadows to change the everyday into something, shady. It’s the genre of most old school detective movies, as they investigate the shady side and disclosed side of life.  Anyhow, how does all that relate to the ghost tour setup delivers this film noir look, while it’s a walking tour not a film. The elements of a film noir are all there as walk commences in the twilight setting the atmosphere, casting shadows on the otherwise beautiful town of Yallourn North. The stories shared throughout the tour, take us back in time and to the things we don’t really talk about as the history. You know, things the like the four skeleton’s found in a stones throw from Yallourn, the unsolved murders and the spirits unable to rest lacking justice. The tour covers the sly grog trade as well, according to an article by ancestory.com on Australia day, we like having criminals in our histories. The tour also covers creatures that were in Yallourn, like the Gippsland Lion. That’s the main elements of the ghost tour. Ghost tours don’t usually have a genre but, I would say most are a combination of film noir, horror, thriller and suspense.

“The controlled horror” I most certainly hope the horror is controlled. There are elements in the stories that may horrify people.

The dress has an aspect of looking like school Marm. Well, that comes with other aspect to ghost tours, history. To explore the spirits past some understanding of their life helps, which will be provided to you on the tour.

A later addition to the costume was a red cape

Congratulations Catheryn

You can book your place on the next ghost tour below:

book now

A scary business proposition        

Note from Tegan: I really appreciate the help I received from Michelle through the Small Business Mentoring Service, and that it was so easily accessible thanks to Latrobe City Council, in conjunction with Business Victoria. I’m very thankful for all the assistance I’ve received. Whether encouragement, stories, historical assistance or on a personal level. Published with permission you can view the original here: http://www.sbms.org.au/haunted-hills-tours.html you can obtain a PDF version through this link as well.

Tegan Dawson’s business idea was literally scary … but that’s a good thing. And her dream of running Haunted Hills Tours is now a reality thanks partly to the Small Business Mentoring Service.

A keen story teller, Tegan continued her interest in amateur theatre and youth groups while working for eight years in community services with homeless people, the unemployed and those in trouble with the law.

After starting a Bachelor of Professional Writing and Public Relations, she decided she wanted to run a business combining her theatrical skills and fascination with the paranormal.

The result is Haunted Hills Tours, a walking ghost tour of Yallourn North, which was formerly known as the Old Brown Coal Mine, named after the historic mine. Tegan takes the 90-minute night tour of up to 30 people to a number of locations and uses her theatrical skills to reveal the town’s forgotten secrets, paranormal and macabre events.

“I think I’m offering the history we don’t tell,” she says. “I love ghost tours and we don’t have that many around here. I think it’s good for tourism and offers another form of entertainment for the locals.”

After writing a business plan, Tegan registered her business and investigated insurance. She also spoke to a number of people and looked at establishing general links within Yallourn North.

Haunted House Tours

Tegan knew she had a fascinating idea, but wanted to ensure she covered all bases. So she spoke to Latrobe City Council, which was really helpful and gave her a free session with SBMS.

“I felt I needed a mentor as I’ve never run a business like this,” she says. “I’ve sold Tupperware and Lorraine Lea, however those businesses are completely different.”

SBMS is a non-government, non-profit organisation of volunteer expert mentors who give their time and experience to help small business.  It is supported by Small Business Victoria, which refers clients to it.  Tegan was matched with mentor Michelle Anderson.

Michelle has worked in tourism, business management, marketing and sales and specialises in business account management, marketing and promotions, sales, staff training and development. She has a consistent record of exceeding personal and corporate objectives as well as excellent interpersonal, customer service and organisational skills.

Tegan saw Michelle over two months and had two phone and face to face sessions. Mentoring is continuing.

Michelle provided Tegan with an overview of the Victorian Tourism Industry, regional tourism associations and local tourism associations and the associated links, such as visitor information centre roles, local tourism association key roles and functions.

As well, Michelle helped Tegan with:

  • Advice about print media versus radio advertising
  • Marketing materials and what works, for example postcards versus flyers
  • Local networks, providing her with a number of local people to speak to about her new venture
  • Linking with other businesses, tour providers, accommodation providers, restaurants and retail stores.
  • Advice on the use of social media for business, website content and online bookings.

Michelle also suggested that Tegan put together a five-year plan that captured business growth in each year. The Action Plan would involve finalising business registration and a business plan, speaking with local tourism associations and preparing a marketing plan for the first 12 months.

Since Tegan saw Michelle, profitability has improved and she has a better knowledge of the tourism sector and how each level of the industry fits. “She is more aware of the importance of local contacts, networking and what she needs to achieve in her first year,” Michelle says.

“Tegan now has the knowledge to ensure she gets the best from her new business venture. She will save valuable time and money in regards to how to spend her marketing dollars.

“She has already achieved a story in the local paper which has given her valuable exposure to the local community and generated interest in her business.”

Haunted House Tours

Tegan said Michelle knew exactly what she needed. “She discussed how I progress with my business and which kinds of registrations I should look at,” Tegan says.

“I’m starting very locally although I haven’t restricted my website and I’ve had four hits from Canada. If people are planning a trip, I’d like them to think of Haunted Hills Tours as something they can do while in the Latrobe Valley.”

The business doesn’t have direct competition, but there is a ghost tour in nearby Walhalla and a Rosedale Haunted House. Haunted Hills Tours is unique as it uses location-based stories.

“There aren’t any tours covering the Yallourn North area, except for the Old Brown Coal Mine Museum and they focus more on the mainstream narrative for the area,” Tegan says.

Tegan says the mentoring helped her to forward plan better and make achievable goals. “I can also see when I’m achieving them,” he says.

As Haunted Hills Tours is a new business it is hard to quantify improvements, but Tegan says the mentoring has prepared her well for the challenges ahead. It also helped encourage her to “get out and talk to people” and secure the story in the local paper.

“Getting out and talking to people as well as the newspaper article by the Latrobe Valley Express has helped boost enquiries,” she says.

If she hadn’t found SBMS, Tegan says she would be “still without a clue about the tourism sector in Latrobe Valley, Gippsland, Victoria and Australia”. “I’d be making a lot more mistakes and working a lot harder to discover the information without this assistance,” she says.

Tegan Dawson
Haunted Hills Tours
Tel. 0473 945 639

Email: hauntedhillstours@gmail.com

Website: http://www.hauntedhillstours.com


Small Business Mentoring Service Inc
Suite 1, 12 Maroondah Hwy
Ringwood VIC 3134
Contact: David Gregory
Chief Executive Officer
Tel.  9879 4486    Fax.  9879 4486

Email: CEO@sbms.org.au

SBMS Mentor: Michelle Anderson                     The Small Business Mentoring Service (SBMS) Incorporated is a non-profit organisationIncorporated Association RegistrationNumber: A0032560Y