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Haunted legends surround this peaceful-looking park and hiking trail in Pasadena's Arroyo Seco. Beneath a craggy boulder, shaped by Mother Nature into the undeniable profile of a horned devil, lies a bubbling brook and a flood control dam. Devil's Gate Dam's historic reputation as a portal to evil goes back to the first settlers here, the native Tongva tribe. Strange occult rituals were documented at the site as early as the 1940s, and the disappearance of at least four children in the 1950s fuels the sinister vibe. The entrance is through a foreboding, dark cement tunnel on Oak Grove Drive, which leads to a dirt trail descending into the canyon. The hike itself is beautiful, if you can get past the gnawing feeling that something is watching you. But we all know that's part of the fun.

End of La Cañada Verdugo Road, Pasadena.

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