1. Make sure you have permission to be at the location you choose to investigate. If it is a public area, make sure you are allowed to be there after dark or when the area closes.
2. Respect the area you are in. The old house that WAS at Gretchen's was pretty badly abused. Near the end of it's life, every time I went down there, there was a new hole in the wall or the protective coverings of the windows. The house was dangerous to be in, as was evident when the floor collapsed. Some one else also broke in the door of the Grist Mill. And put graffiti inside. If I catch any one doing that, I will take pictures of them, their car and licence plate and turn it into the police. I love that park and I will protect it. I strongly urge you to do the same.
3. Never ghost hunt alone. A group of friends is the best way to do it. You will have the most fun and if some one gets hurt, there is someone else there to save the day. Ghosts won't hurt you. It is the living you need to worry about.
4. Never believe everything you see. If you see a mist, or a shadow, or a ghost, go after it and see what it is. You usually debunk the sighting by doing this, but it is better to know that the white thing you are seeing over by the rest room is the garbage can and not a ghost. Always keep an open mind, of course, but be thorough. Check things out.
5. You ghost hunt with all your senses. Not just sight. Your eyes can deceive you. There are other things to consider. Phantom smells like the smell of pipe tobacco or perfume. The sensation of some one stroking your hair or touching your arm. Even that nagging feeling that you are somewhere you shouldn't be might be a ghost trying to get you to leave. Have you ever entered someones home for the first time and felt so completely comfortable there, like you could stay for hours. Or just the opposite, where you have such an awful feeling that you can't wait to leave. These are all signs that you may have encountered a ghost.
6. Watch your weather. Outside investigations have to consider things like rain or snow, or extreme cold where you take a picture and capture your breath. In the spring you have to consider bug noises and birds. Obviously you don't want to be out in an electrical storm for safety reasons. Fog can give you thousands of orbs in a picture.
7. Never smoke during an investigation. Cigarette smoke has been mistaken for phantom mists and vortex's more than anything else. Drinking and drug use is also not recommended. Try to remember that we have no idea what we are dealing with when it comes to ghosts. If it is true that there are demons out there, drug use weakens you and your will power.
8. And finally, respect the entities you have chosen to interact with. Remember, no one knows for sure what we are dealing with. The Spirits of those who once lived is only a theory. Demons is another theory. Aliens is another possibility. People from the future is yet another. We just don't know. Not to mention, if you want success with these beings, be nice. Respect them, and often they will respect you. You will get that EVP or great photo. Try it. You might be surprised.
Good luck with your efforts in the ghost hunting field. Any questions? Email me.