Spook Hill

Cars don’t roll uphill by themselves …or do they? Legends about Spook Hill, between Lake Wailes and Iron Mountain at Bok Tower Gardens, abound in Lake Wales.

Legend has it that the area around the lake was once the home of a tribe of Calusa Indians, led by a great and powerful Chief Cufcowellax. The tribe lived happily until a huge bull alligator moved into the lake and began to raid the Indian village. To save his people, the chief set out to find and destroy the giant reptile, and, after much searching, found the creature and engaged it in battle. Cufcowellax fought the gator for many days. As the tribe watched, the chief finally emerged from the lake victorious.

By the turn of the century, horses pulling loads on the road by the lake were observed laboring when traveling what should have been an easy route: downhill. Locals took note of the unusual phenomenon, attributing it to Chief Cufcowellax, and a local attraction was born. Years later, when the road was paved, residents found that their cars rolled uphill by themselves. Various legends have been used to explain the phenomena. Investigators continue in vain to discover what really lies behind the mystery of Spook Hill.

The Mystery of Spook Hill


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