In December 1936, Margaret E. Wood took a job as a housekeeper at the Sun Valley Lodge. She had transferred from the Mount Washington Hotel in New Hampshire. For some reason, she seemed a little hesitant to explore her new surroundings. Associates at the lodge persuaded her to get out and enjoy the beautiful scenery and take the Proctor Mountain Tramway to the top.
The housekeeper was enjoying the ride in the fresh air when about halfway up she heard a flute playing in the distance. Why would anyone be playing a flute somewhere out there in the snow? Wouldn’t their bottom lip freeze to the instrument?
She heard the music all the way to the top and heard it again on the way back down.
Curious, Miss Wood asked around. No one knew of any lonely shepherd soothing his flock with a flute or, for that matter, a teenager told to practice that dang thing outside. She happened to tell the story to Charles Williams, who worked as a bridge inspector for Union Pacific. His reaction was one of relief.
“Did you really hear it?” Williams said. “That’s great. I was afraid I was the only one. It’s been worrying me for days.”
Miss Wood and Mr. Williams took a little trek to the tram in search of the answer. Williams had installed the lift, so he was particularly interested.
Together, they found the ghost flutist. A pipe that connected one chair to the cable had some holes in it. As the lift traveled up the mountain, the breezes it encountered blew a haunting melody through those holes. Another good ghost story dashed by physics.