The Gates of Hell | Clifton, NJ

Who would have thought that the gates into hell could be found in New Jersey? Legend has it that the storm drains behind the Black Prince Distillery in Clifton, New Jersey, once hid the likes of mass murders, Satan worshipers, a spirit named Red Eyed Mike, and of course, Satan himself. So, on Sunday (ironically, the Lord’s day) we found our way to the gates of hell.

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As Atlas Obscura says, the official “entrance” if you will, is the squared drain with little to no water. Originally we checked out a nearby tunnel, but ended up coming back pretty early due to strong water flow. Then, after pondering where this illusive entrance was, we turned around… oh, its behind us. Very well then.

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We walked through the drainpipes for quite some time, picking passageways with the least water flow, completing a few balancing acts, and ducking in smaller tunnels. Besides water shoes (which totally would have been convenient), you will absolutely need a strong flashlight. No, I do not mean the flashlight on your iPhone – definitely NOT satisfactory. These tunnels are pitch black 95% of the time. Without a flashlight you literally cannot see your own body.

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In the end, the water flow got a bit heavy and we called it a day. While we didn’t encounter anything creepy, human or otherwise, it was a blast. By the way, the location was really made popular by Weird NJ – if you want to amuse the hell out of yourself, read some of the comments. THESE people sure encountered creepy things (probably in the darkest corners of their imagination). I do have to say, having a fearless Marine as a co-explorer certainly help squash any feelings of unease.

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