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Spooklights 101 * Characteristics of Ghost Lights

Ghost lights exhibit a variety of characteristics, with lights at different sites showing their own patterns. Individual experiences are widely disparate, but the following represent the most typical characteristics shown across all surveyed lights.


Ghost lights can come in any color, but the most common color reported is white. Next most common are yellow, orange, and blue, with red and green not far behind. The lights at many sites are reported to come in a variety of colors or shift colors as they shine.


Movements can be roughly categorized into quick movements and slow movements. In the majority of cases, slow movement consists of a swaying or bobbing motion, or a meandering drift at a pace no quicker than a human walk. Quick movements, on the other hand, comprise flitting, bouncing, shooting upwards, or even moving at incredible speed (with the latter usually observed from a distance). Some lights are described as blinking out and then reappearing within seconds much closer to the observer. The strangest characteristic of ghost lights is the seeming tendency of some of them to either approach or avoid the observer.


This is the most inconsistent attribute of ghost lights, with reports ranging from a single, relatively stationary light to hundreds of lights at once. The number of lights observed seems somewhat--although not perfectly--related to the distance at which they are observed. For instance, most multi-light sightings take place from a great distance, such as looking down into a valley or up at a mountain, while many (although by no means all) of the single lights are seen at a much closer range.

Size and Shape

The majority of lights seem to be smaller than the human body, with the average size range perhaps between that of a baseball and a large beach ball. Not all lights follow this rule. Some are described as huge balls of light, while others are described as rod-shaped or "whirling". However, the majority seem not to be too large.


Twinkling, flickering, and glowing--these are the three words most often associated with ghost lights. Brightness thus varies, but in many cases is described as bright enough to read by. Ghost lights can fade out gradually or disappear in an instant.


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