Beware Road Trippers, Seven Gates of Hell in Pennsylvania is a Terrifying Destination
Some describe Pennsylvania as heavenly, but it’s also home to the Seven Gates of Hell.
It sounds super scary, but maybe you’ll find this devilish destination right up your alley.
We’ll get to the bottom of this mysterious place and see if you should visit.
About the Seven Gates of Hell
A modern legend places the Seven Gates of Hell on private property in Hellam Township in York County, Pennsylvania. From the outside, it might look like a simple wrought iron gate. But according to legend, six more gates lie beyond.
Pass through them all in the correct order, and you just may find yourself face to face with the devil.
What Are the Legends Surrounding the Area?
There are a couple of different stories surrounding the supposed Seven Gates of Hell. The first involves an insane asylum that burned down sometime in the 1900s. Many of the patients perished in the blaze, and the gates went up to corral those who survived. According to legend, restless souls trapped by the gates populate the dark woods.
A much less frightening version says a doctor lived on the property and built the succession of gates himself to discourage visitors. The two different legends are quite different but have a common element. They both say that anyone who goes through the fifth gate never returns.
The spooky stories have spread through word of mouth and have shown up in books and newspaper articles. The Seven Gates of Hell was also the subject of an indie horror film called “Toad Road,” released in 2012. The movie took its name from a road in the area that has since been renamed.
Years ago, locals say, stone gargoyles resembling toads adorned the first gate.
How Do You Get to the Seven Gates of Hell?
If you’re brave enough to visit this intriguing place for yourself, head toward the southeastern section of Pennsylvania. York County is about 30 miles south of Harrisburg and about 50 miles north of Baltimore. The Seven Gates of Hell is about 4.5 miles from where U.S. Highway 30 intersects with State Route 24. Drive north on 24 (also called Mount Zion Road), and turn right on Druck Valley Road.
Veer to the left onto Trout Run Road, slow down, and look for the first gate near the intersection with Ridge Road.
Pro Tip: On the hunt for more places where you can meet the devil to make a deal? Check out the spooky Spider Gates Cemetery!
Can You Camp Near the Seven Gates of Hell?
Unfortunately, you can’t set up camp here, but there are many places nearby open to camping. There are also numerous private RV parks and campgrounds in York County. In addition, you’ll find three state parks and nearly a dozen county parks.
This particular region of Pennsylvania contains lush forests and lakes, plus some spectacular waterfalls. There are many other attractions in the area, including tours of Amish farm villages and quaint colonial towns. The Hershey chocolate factory isn’t too far away, either.
What to Know Before You Visit
You should know that the purported location of the Seven Gates of Hell sits on private property. On your search for the alleged gateway to perdition, you may encounter No Trespassing signs. Also, the township itself has officially denounced the stories as nothing more than urban myths. Most disappointing of all, the property owners have taken down the gates due to trespassing, so there may not be much to see.
Pro Tip: While traveling through Pennsylvania to get to the Seven Gates of Hell, you’ll likely drive on I-80. Plan the perfect road trip with our ultimate Interstate 80 Road Trip Guide.
Gateway to Hell?
What’s on the other side of the Seven Gates of Hell? Unfortunately, no one has ever returned with a first-hand report. Most people dismiss the story as nothing more than folklore, but maybe there’s something to it.
The only way to find out is to summon up some courage and venture toward York County. What are the most interesting things you’ve seen in this gorgeous part of Pennsylvania?
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