The Legend of La Mala Hora

In Chiapas, of Mexico, they tell of La Mala Hora (or La Malogra). She usually appears as a lovely long-haired woman clothed in white or black walking along the side of the road at night.

La Mala Hora

La Mala Hora typically hides in the shadows near a crossroads, waiting for an unsuspecting visitor to cross its path. Some believe it is more feared than the devil. It appears as a huge, black lump that is continually moving and changing shape. It can also swiftly change the size, getting larger and smaller.

La Mala Hora usually appears as a lovely long-haired woman clothed in white or black
La Mala Hora usually appears as a lovely long-haired woman clothed in white or black

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According to legend, La Mala Hora is an evil spirit entity or a demon. It is said to be as dreaded as the devil throughout New Mexico and Mexico. It appears along the sides of rural highways, usually before lone travelers and at or near crossroads.

At best, it is a negative omen – the female spirit cloaked in black is regarded as a harbinger of death – and at worst, it is a vindictive demon.

According to most versions of this urban legend, individuals who see La Mala Hora are either driven insane by the apparition or suffocated by its mist. However, it is unclear how this is known.

It only assaults solitary travelers, who are discovered dead the following day. Those who have avoided meetings with the entity allege that it numbed or entranced them into complacency.

Any person who will be unfortunate enough to encounter this demon risks going insane. It seeks to hypnotize and immobilize everyone who comes across it at night.

When it attacks, it rushes towards the unknowing victim, developing and suffocating him. The following day, the victim is discovered dead by the side of the road.

La Mala Hora is thought to be kinder and more graceful when dressed in white. She hypnotizes tired travelers who, if they overlook the fact that her toes are reversed or that their lanterns have quit functioning. All sense of direction appears to be gone, will follow her obediently into whatever peril she chooses.

La Mala Hora becomes more violent when clad in black. She will use any measures necessary to stop a traveler and assault them directly with her pointy nails. The brave should expect to meet her on a white night, but no one should want to see her in black.

La Mala Hora typically hides in the shadows near crossroads
La Mala Hora typically hides in the shadows near crossroads

In the most well-known story, a woman named Isabela calls her friend upset over her upcoming divorce. After obtaining permission from her husband, who is away on business, the buddy jumps in their car and races over.

She comes to a crossroads while driving and sees La Mala Hora.

The lady describes the encounter as follows:

She (La Mala Hora) had a demon’s face, with twisted features, fiery eyes, and short pointed fangs. I shrieked as she jumped at my window, her clawed fists slamming against the glass.

I pressed the accelerator, and the automobile shot forward. For a few terrifying moments, she rushed alongside the car, easily keeping up and hitting at me repeatedly.

Devil and a Witch

Then she slipped behind and into the rearview mirror. I saw her grow larger and taller until she reached the size of a tree. Red light swirled about her like mist, and she gestured behind me, her mouth moving, but I couldn’t understand what she was saying.

I drew my eyes back to the road, terrified of what would happen if my car veered off the road.

She informs Isabela about the weird woman at the crossroads when she gets to her house. The companion then explains the legend of La Mala Hora, which is an omen of death.

The next day, the police arrive at her house to find that her husband, who was in Chicago on business, had been mugged and murdered at the same time she saw La Mala Hora.

La Mala Hora, or La Malogra, was described by Aurelio Espinosa in 1910 as an evil ghost that haunts the crossroads at night, pursuing people who traverse the roads alone.

You will be irrevocably insane if you witness it. La Malogra, according to Espinosa, resembles a giant lock of wool, or possibly an entire fleece, that swells and decreases in size in front of the beholder.

Witch on a skeleton
Witch on a skeleton – Credits Metropolitan Museum of Art

It only appears in human form on rare occasions, but when it does, it is a horrible omen: calamity or death.

More contemporary La Mala Hora is described in new Mexican versions as a scary woman in black who appears to travelers at night when death is imminent.

There is no physical evidence of the encounters with La Mala Hora, as is typical of an Urban Legend, and information about them is spread through word of mouth.

No one who shares the story appears to have any personal connection to the survivor or witness, and as of date, La Mala Hora is haunting near crossroads.

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