According to the locals, a gold assay office built in the area in 1904 slid from its foundation in the early teens, coming to rest at an odd angle. Odd angles seem to create an illusion of objects seemingly rolling uphill. The same optical illusion can be seen in Pennsylvania's Laurel Caverns and at Santa Cruz, California's Mystery Spot which are copies of the The House of Mystery at The Oregon Vortex. Oregon Vortex is also famous for "height change" as the relative height of the two people changes varying on where they stand. Most people believe this effect happens due to a distorted background which results in a forced perspective, as with an Ames room. It should be noted, that photographs published at the official website of the attraction appear to demonstrate the same apparent height anomaly even when the potentially confusing perspectives of the background are removed, and can be done so with any pictures taken.
According to the legend, the Native Americans in the area considered the area of land as "The Forbidden Ground." Their horses would refuse to enter the area and, as result, neither would they. In fact, it is said that the area is void of most animals of all shapes and sizes who refuse to go anywhere near it. A geologist by the name of John Lister reportedly came to the area in the 1920s and was so baffled by what he saw, he stayed there the rest of his life performing all sorts of tests and developing theories. He opened the grounds to the general public in 1930 and continued to probe its mysteries until he died in 1959. ** Gold Hill Website
Gold Hill is about a 40-minute drive from Ashland, perhaps shorter if you drive Hwy 5, but we chose to take the back roads and it proved to be the right choice. Although we didn't make it to the Oregon Vortex on this visit, we did see a picture of a woman who is said to haunt the Del Rio tasting room and the local cemetery; and we had lunch where the locals have been gambling since 1887!
|The barn says it all
|Cool railroad trestle! Check out the couple in the lower left corner!