There have been reports of some roads being the location where odd travelers can be seen hitching a ride to nowhere in particular and disappearing during their journey. It is said that these hitchhikers are actually phantoms wandering about a haunted stretch of road.
When looking at a phantom hitchhiker case, the documentation can be sorted into four different categories. The first category deals with hitchhiker encounters that involve a passenger who has left behind an address to the person who was nice enough to pick them up. They then disappear shortly after. Shaken by this experience, some drivers look into the whereabouts of their mysterious passenger and find that they had died before their meeting, sometimes years and years beforehand. Some cases involve the meeting of the same hitchhiker phantom on the same road by an array of different drivers.
Truck drivers who have picked up either an older woman or a young female on their travels often tell tales which fall into a different category. Some of these phantom hitchhikers were said to have borrowed an article of clothing before disappearing. A twist to these encounters is that the piece of clothing is sometimes recovered at the gravesite of the phantom. Some reports have dealt with older female hitchhikers who give predictions of the future before vanishing. Usually, these predictions hint to negative occurrences and events to come.
The last category that involves a phantom hitchhiker deals with the folklore and religious beliefs that gods and goddesses sometime descend upon the earth under the guise of a mortal, with hopes of testing humans. For example, in Hawaii, there is the goddess, Pelee, who is said to appear as a hitchhiker to the locals. It is said that bad luck is in the future if you refuse to pick her up and take her where she needs to go.
An example of a case involving a phantom hitchhiker deals with the ghost of a young female by the name of Maria Roux, who has been sighted on Barandas-Willowmore Road, which can be located close to Uniondale, South Africa. This road is also the site where Roux died from a car accident in 1968. It was 1978 and an Army corporal by the last name of van Jaarsveld stopped his motorcycle to give a female hitchhiker a lift. Ten miles after picking Roux up, he felt a jolt from his motorcycle and turned to see if she was all right. She was nowhere to be seen. His first thought was that she had fallen off of his motorcycle and he began to revisit his route. Then he noticed that the helmet he had let her borrow had been fastened to his luggage rack.
Van Jaarsveld was not the only person to encounter the phantom of Miss. Roux. In 1976, Anton Le Grange picked up a female who fit the description of Roux. While traveling, he realized that he never asked where she wanted to go and when he turned to inquire, he found that she was no longer sitting beside him. Frightened, Le Grange reported the incident to the local police and later identified the woman as Maria Roux.