A lot of the locals have scary stories about this road. A little over a hundred years ago, a lady asked for a ride on this rural back road. A carriage driver picked her up, and decapitated her. She is often seen between 1 and 3am still walking along that road, seeking a ride. Sometimes she appears inside the car, in the backseat, and may grab your arm. Local gangs also kill people and dispose of the bodies back there, which leaves lots of bad vibes. As a result, sometimes the local radio stations will turn into nothing but screams of the undead as you drive down that road late at night.
The Steinbeck House, where John Steinbeck lived as a young man is also reportedly haunted. He tended to his dying grandmother there in the upper floors, and wrote stories such as the Red Pony there, while looking out on Central Ave. At the time he said it was very haunted on the second floor. And these days visitors see a silhouette in the window late at night.
Steinbeck’s short story “Flight”, from his novel The Long Valley, was about Dark Watchers. Dark Watchers are an Indian legend about shadowy giants who roam the hills of California. If you see them , it means you will die soon thereafter. In the story, a young man takes his spirit journey in the hills to become a man. He encounters the Dark Watchers, and then meets his doom not long after. Steinbeck’s son claimed to have seen some of them too. he co-authored a book where he went and interviewed well known locals at the time who had witnessed them. Mostly, they are seen near the town of Soledad, which was a setting in Of Mice and Men. Soledad is a 20 minute drive south down Highway 101 from Salinas. It is a small town with a rather large prison, and many bumpy roads. Every summer there are massive fires there (by the way). Pinnacles National Forest is a major hunting and outdoors spot near there, and that is where the Dark Watchers dwell.
There is also this local high-school Alisal, which I think is on the East side of town, and it has video footage of a ghost swimming laps in the pool after hours: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y4cXB2KZggU
The local hospital, Natividad, is said to be especially haunted. One security former guard said the ghosts have been caught on camera. The ghosts of deceased workers from there chatted in the break room with current staffers. One ghost even used that button on the bed you can push for the nurse to come, and then asked for the nurse on the intercom over and over. And the local newspaper had sightings of a female from the 1940’s dressed very ‘prim and proper’, putting on red lipstick in a doorway window.