We all love a good ghost story, but what does it take to turn curiosity into a hobby?

37-year old Pakuranga native Sam Collier looks outside the realms of possibility and takes an open-minded holistic approach to investigate the paranormal.

The self-proclaimed “huge Ghostbusters fan”  grew up “watching the X Files”  but is not someone who blindly follows the hype promoted by ghost hunting TV shows, where participants have been known to fake poltergeist activities, and are encouraged to hamm things up for the cameras.

Sam, who has a life-long interest in getting to the bottom of claims of paranormal phenomena, joined investigative group Haunted Auckland in 2013. The team has been around since 2006 founded by respected ghost researcher, Mark Wallbank.

The group has conducted over 100 site visits to allegedly haunted locations, including Puhinui House located within the Howick Historical Village.

Sam Collier looks pensive during an investigation. Photo supplied

In a 2016 solo investigation by Wallbank, a torch that was mounted on a chair atop the stairs from the ground level inexplicably fell with under its own volition. The footage is available to view on hauntedauckland.com

Sam is well versed in the use of the tools of the trade. Investigators kit themselves up with video cameras, EMF detectors, EDI meters, and a good deal of common sense.

When asked for his personal theory on what he thinks ghosts could be, he favours the idea that people are witnessing “what’s leftover of what was once living”, where the events, people and their associated energies are left imprinted on the environment.

For the skeptics who question this theory and ask Sam questions like “why there are no Ghost dinosaurs’, he answers that he believes the ‘ghost’ returns to a “particular time and place due to an emotional attachment. “

For now, Sam and the team at hauntedauckland.com will keep putting in the late shifts at a ‘haunted’ location near you.

The truth is out there-maybe.