Strangest Moments On The Road
Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “It’s not the destination, it’s the journey”. This holds especially true when driving down the open highway and encountering strange things. From odd, supernatural occurrences to dangerous situations, these Redditors recount their strangest and craziest moments while journeying on the road. Buckle up for a wild ride!
1. All Fired Up
I was driving between Melbourne and Albury very late one night on the Hume Freeway. That stretch is very wide, flat, and straight, so it’s boring and hypnotic, especially driving alone at night. It was the middle of summer, so I was surprised to see little wisps of fog whipping through my headlight beams. Then, the smell of burning plastic hit my nose, and I realized it was smoke.
Then suddenly, just ahead, I saw it. There was one other car on the road, and I could just see a tiny yellow light on the back, like a candle flame. Worried, I sped up to catch this guy, and by the time I reached him, his entire muffler was on fire. I flashed my lights and honked my horn, trying to get his attention.
Just as I drew up alongside him, I saw him turn to look at me.
Then a HUGE gout of orange flame burst out from under the car and licked across his driver’s side window. Needless to say, he pulled over in a big hurry, and I pulled over about 50 meters ahead of him. I jumped out from behind the wheel and sprinted back to him to make sure he was out of the car and safe. I went back to get my phone and called emergency services while running back to him.
It was less than a minute since he’d pulled over, and the entire car was a fireball. I asked if he was okay, and he said yeah, but his phone and wallet were both still inside the car. I let him use my phone to make some calls and gave him all the cash in my wallet, which wasn’t much. Once the firefighters and ambulance arrived, I finally continued on my way. I was WIDE awake for the rest of my drive.
2. A Dodgy Encounter
I was in rural northwest PA, returning from a service call and heading towards the interstate to go home. On the way to this customer, I saw a small pickup truck on the interstate whose right rear tire was steadily deflating. A mile or so before my exit, they pulled off to the side. I didn’t stop to see if they needed help and felt a little bad about it.
As I drove down this dark, twisty road, I passed a Dodge Durango pulled over into a barn driveway. There was a person lying on the ground behind it, struggling with something. It looked like the guy was trying to change a tire or get the spare out from under the Durango. Remembering the pickup from earlier, I decided to turn around and see if he needed help.
I pulled into the first driveway I saw, about 1/4 mile down the road, turned around, and headed back. Halfway back, the Durango passed me, going in the direction I had originally been headed. I got back to where I had seen the Durango, planning to turn around again, but as I swung into the driveway, my headlights caught a chilling sight: There was a figure lying motionless in the snow.
I stopped and jumped out just as the figure sat up. It was a woman, maybe in her 40s, in a thin, torn black skirt and top. Her hair was mussed, her eye was starting to swell, she had red marks on her throat, and her lip was bleeding. I helped her up, got her into my truck, and cranked up the heat. I had taken my jacket off, so I gave it to her, and she covered her torso and arms.
She didn’t want to say anything. Her throat was sore, and she was badly frightened. I called the authorities, and they dispatched a car. I gave her a bottle of water, and she whispered, “Thank you”, then sat with her head bowed and eyes closed. It took about 15 minutes for officers to get there, and she stayed silent. As the cruiser pulled in, she said, mostly to herself, that the officer was going to take her in.
The trooper walked up and motioned me to exit, asked her if she needed an ambulance—she declined—then asked me what had happened. I explained what I had seen. He wrote everything down, then talked to her for a few minutes. He helped her out of the truck and into his car. She quietly thanked me for coming back because she thought that guy meant to kill her.
As far as I know, she wasn’t taken into custody. She was pretty beaten up, and the trooper spoke and handled her as if she were a victim. It was almost certainly a transaction that had gone bad.
3. Fire In The Sky
Myself and another truck were traveling on Highway 1 between Medicine Hat and Brooks, AB, on our way home from Saskatchewan. It’s really dark there since you’re 100 km away from any town lights. All of a sudden, the whole sky lit up as green as grass, and a huge fireball streaked over us. We all immediately pulled over and asked each other what that was.
I heard on the news the next day that it was a meteor the size of an office desk that had landed somewhere between Lloydminster and Cold Lake. We had never seen anything like it before.
4. Did Someone Dynamite The Deer?
I used to travel for work doing construction. My boss was driving, and I was a passenger on our way back home from Tennessee to Illinois. We were just leaving the mountains but still pretty much in the middle of nowhere and we noticed a couple of deer carcasses on the road. These things were exploded. My boss and I said, “That sucks. A semi must have been hauling and clipped a herd”. But this was just the beginning.
We got to the top of a hill and there were so many more deceased, exploded deer—dozens—possibly hundreds. They didn’t look like they got hit by a semi. They looked like they had sticks of dynamite put into them and lit off. Semi trucks had definitely been driving through because we didn’t have to dodge any of them. It went on for more than half a mile, up to a mile and a half. My boss seemed just as lost as I was. We weren’t about to stop to find out what it was all about.
5. Dodging The Flaming Weeds
I had a family member who was a trucker and regularly had to make deliveries from the East Coast to Los Angeles. They often drove through the open desert of the American Southwest. They claimed to see tons of weird stuff out there: glowing orbs, unexplained lights, and weird animals in the dark. The desert has a way of messing with the human mind but one night a bunch of floating orbs on the horizon turned out to be legit.
They saw a bunch of orange orbs crossing the highway a mile or so ahead. It turned out that a bunch of tumbleweeds had caught fire in a forest fire several miles away and were flying across the highway ahead. They had to drive down this open desert highway at night while being on the lookout for flaming tumbleweeds. Not really something you want to maneuver around when you are carrying fireworks in your trailer.
6. This Crazy Woman Kept Hanging Around
I had stopped at Love’s gas station in Emerson, Georgia on one of my routes. I had been stopped for about an hour just resting and eating some fast food when a woman came knocking on my door. I opened it and she looked homeless and pretty old, like in her 50s or 60s. I asked her if I could help her and she said, “I think we can help each other”.
I said, “How so”? She proceeded to proposition me, which I declined and sent her on her way. I continued to rest, eat and play on my phone for another 30 minutes when someone else came to my door, opened it, and attempted to hold me up wearing a Scream mask. It was obviously the old lady from before. I pushed her away, locked my door, and cranked it up.
I assumed she ran off somewhere because I could no longer see her. She wasn’t finished with me yet, though. After the truck was ready, I pulled off and started driving. Soon cars next to me started trying to get my attention, honking and pointing to the back end of my truck. I pulled over, and when I came to a stop, I saw someone jump and start running. It was that same lady. This crazy woman was hanging on to the back of my truck while I was driving! It was so odd.
7. Driving Down Tarantula Trail
My mom was a trucker driving through Arizona when she saw what she thought were leaves moving across the road in the distance. This puzzled her since there were mostly pine trees in northern Arizona. When she finally got to the “leaves”, she realized what they were and she let out a scream: They were migrating tarantulas. Thousands of them. There were so many that her truck was sliding on their guts, so she had to slow down.
She stopped at the first truck stop and told her co-driver, who was sleeping at the time, to fuel up because she wasn’t going to step foot outside after what she just saw. Her co-driver was mad since it was technically his time off, and he thought she was crazy. That is until he saw the tarantula guts and legs caked in the inside wheel well of the truck.
8. Head-On Horror
I was driving back into the city on the two-lane coastal highway in Chennai, India, with a few of my friends. Most of the highway has no streetlights, just reflectors. Around one of the bends, my friend who was driving slammed on his brakes. This was just after sunset. I asked what was wrong—then I saw it: Two motorbikes on their sides and a little debris from them scattered around.
It was only when we got closer that we saw three guys lying down awkwardly. The bikes were heading in opposite directions at high speeds, lost control, and slammed into each other head-on. The rider of one of the vehicles wasn’t wearing his helmet, and his face was smashed in. We could hear his shallow gasps for air, but he was definitely a goner.
9. A Date With The Dog Man
A trucker I know was driving a logging truck down a remote dirt road in the middle of a forest at around midnight when a “dog-man creature” walked out in the middle of the road. It stared at him for a few seconds, plainly visible and well-illuminated by all the auxiliary lights on the truck. Then it just took off and disappeared into the woods on the other side of the road.
He’s not a superstitious man, and he rejects everything supernatural as fiction, but he 100% believes that what he saw that night was real. I’ve only heard him talk about this twice, and just talking about it rattled him. He was clearly uncomfortable thinking back about that night.
10. Shaken By The Storm
I grew up in a trucker/mechanic family and was going to join the family business. At 16, I was on the road with my dad every summer because “you have to learn sometime”, and this is how my dad taught me. We hit a snowstorm once in Kansas. If there is one place where people can’t drive in the snow, during a storm, it’s in Kansas.
I was white-knuckle-tight as I passed wrecks, cars, and other tractor-trailers that had jackknifed. I begged my dad to take over, but there was nowhere to pull over, so I had to muscle through. Looking out the driver’s side window, I noticed a family in a caravan going backward. I locked eyes with the father, who locked eyes with me and just gave me a bewildered, sad little smile before veering off hard to the left in a puff of white powder and disappearing from view. I can still see his face to this very day.
11. Terror In The Night
I was delivering and installing machines for the company I was working for. I was in a 26-foot box truck with 12 machines in the back. I was having trouble with the truck the day before, had it checked out by the rental company, and they said it was all good. Since I was behind schedule, I decided to drive late to my next destination.
It was about 11 o’clock at night on a state route through the Upper Peninsula in Michigan. There were no street lights and no other cars. The headlights from my truck were the only thing illuminating the road; I was already creeped out. At the peak of feeling, I was in the middle of nowhere and every single light on the dashboard of the truck suddenly lit up, and then it stalled.
It was pitch black. I was stopped and the truck wasn’t restarting. Rather than eat up the battery trying to turn it over, I shut everything down and started making phone calls. As I was calling everyone and anyone who would listen, I sat in the dark night, with the only light being from my hazard lights. I looked up and saw something move in front of my truck, just out of the distance of the lights.
At first I thought it was my imagination. I finally got a hold of someone and they told me it would be 2–3 hours before they could get a mechanic out to me. I was sitting in silence, with the only noise being the clicking of the hazard lights, and I was staring out the windshield into a void of darkness when I saw movement again. Just as I was about to freak out, my phone rang.
It scared the daylights out of me. It was a mechanic who wanted me to get out, open the hood, and check some things out. I said, “No. I am not getting out of the truck”, and explained why. After seeing the movement just out of range of the lights one more time, I threw on the headlights with the high beams. The headlights caught three wolves snacking on something that looked like roadkill.
I honked the horn and they looked at me like they were irritated more than scared. I was safe, the wolves more than likely weren’t going to bother me, but it was spooky just knowing they were there, so I shut the lights off. I would turn the lights on occasionally to check to see if they were still around. I was basically just sitting there listening to the hazard flashers click, while surfing on my phone.
Each time I turned the lights on, the wolves were still there. Then, I suddenly heard what I can only equate to a woman’s scream of terror that sounded like it came from right behind the truck. Something slammed into the side of the truck hard enough to rock it. I wasn’t afraid of the truck tipping over, but whatever hit it, hit it hard enough to rock the suspension and move me around in the cab. It was a pretty heavy truck.
I turned on every light the truck had. I slipped it into reverse so the reverse lights came on and laid on the horn. I was checking both mirrors, and the only thing I saw was a shadow bolt across the road. I couldn’t make out what it was, but in my head, it was some type of werewolf—Yeti—Bigfoot—lizard monster that was going to end my life, and it was going to be agonizingly painful. This is when I reached full-on panic.
I also noticed the wolves were gone. From every nature documentary I’ve watched, the only time predators leave food is when there are bigger/badder predators around. Whatever crossed the road didn’t cross very far off the road. I could hear it thrashing around in the brush, breaking sticks and what sounded to be logs. There was no noise pollution; I only had my window cracked a little bit, and I could hear pretty well.
I had the steering wheel gripped, all the lights on, and was feverishly looking out the windows and through the mirrors to make sure nothing was around the immediate area of my truck. I couldn’t see off the road, and the flashlights I had were in the back of the truck in my tool bag. I’d have to get out of the truck to get to them.
Finally, I saw some headlights through one of my mirrors. It seemed like it took hours for them to close the distance to me. The noise stopped as the headlights approached. It was obviously the mechanic because no one else was stupid enough to be out there besides me. The mechanic pulled out in front of me; my headlights were shining on him and his truck. But it wasn’t over yet.
As his door opened to step out, we both heard the “woman screaming in terror” yell again, and the brush thrashing intensified. Whatever it was, it was still close and mad. His door immediately closed, and my phone rang. He called my phone, asking me what it was, and he sounded more panicked than me. I had no clue what it was, and he had no clue what it was, either.
So the mechanic called the authorities. He wouldn’t work on my truck until we could secure the area, and he didn’t like my idea of him getting out of his truck just to check things out.
Two Michigan state troopers showed up. They lit that area up like it was a stadium. I finally stepped out of the truck for the first time since it all started.
We heard that scream three more times while the mechanic was working on my truck. Thankfully, it was getting further away. The officers had no clue what it was either; they were kind of spooked too. The mechanic finally got my truck running, and I made it to my hotel for the night. The next morning, I walked around the truck to inspect it, and the side that was hit had an indentation about the size of a basketball.
Whatever hit it didn’t hit it hard enough to push all the way through, but it definitely mushed the fiberglass. The indentation was about seven feet off the ground. I have no idea what it was, and I probably never will. I do confidently know that I will never ever drive through the Upper Peninsula at night again.
12. What Was Lighting Up The Sky?
One July 4th, both my trainer and I saw the sky in southern Missouri light up for no discernible reason. It got steadily brighter until the entire sky was white, then dimmed at the same pace. The whole event lasted about five seconds. There was no boom or anything, and no one had been setting off fireworks in the area. The entire sky visible from all the windows and mirrors was just evenly lighting up.
13. In Pole Position For Disaster
I was driving north from Grand Forks to Canada very late at night. I could see a car’s tail lights a mile or so ahead that I was slowly catching up to. Then, I started to see an intermittent flashing yellow “light”. The yellow light was getting closer to me faster than the tail lights. Then, in an instant, I saw the flash in front of me and realized it was a steel pole bouncing down the road toward me, making a bright spark with each bounce.
Right then, I watched it come within feet of my driver’s mirror right past me. It really shook me up. Then as I approached the car, I realized what it was. It was one of the poles on the back of a boat trailer that is used to submerge a boat on a launch ramp. Every time I see a boat trailer on the highway, I think about how I was probably less than 10 feet from taking a pole through the face.
14. The Mothman Lives
I used to haul Kraft Foods from Columbus, Ohio, to Southeast Virginia and would travel close to Point Pleasant, West Virginia, where the supposed “Mothman” sightings occurred in the mid-1960s. One night, I had an overnight run on that route and spotted two very large white dog-like animals close to the Point Pleasant turnoff and was quite spooked by them.
15. Dancing In The Buff
I worked nights at a truck stop in Indiana when I was a teenager. A Pepsi driver told me he had to drop the rig off at a service shop in Illinois, so his wife drove up to get him. On their way home, they were taking the back roads just trying to enjoy each other’s company when they saw a bunch of people without any clothes on, dancing around a fire in some backyard. It wasn’t quite dark out yet, and he put a lot of emphasis on how mad his wife was for him wanting to stop the car.
16. Watermelons Ablaze
My cousin’s a long-haul driver, and the scariest thing he’s ever seen was his own rig on fire. He was driving at night somewhere in the northwest of Australia when he saw some sparks in his passenger wing mirror. He stopped to check it out and saw that the rim of one of his rear wheels was glowing red hot. Before he could even think, the tires burst into flames.
He was unable to reach the fire extinguisher because of the flames, so he had to call the fire brigade and stand back. The prime mover and the semi-trailer full of watermelon were engulfed by flames within a minute or two, and by the time the firefighters showed up, they were completely destroyed.
17. Star Light Star Bright
When I was traveling through east Texas around midnight in the early parts of 2003, a very bright light lit up the sky enough to not have to use the lights on my vehicle. The traffic on the highway came to a standstill with people pulling off on the side. As soon as I started to do the same, this star-like light flew right over the top of my vehicle without making any noise. It made some very erratic movements, then disappeared behind some trees.
18. A Storm Of Something Was Coming
I worked in Los Angeles and lived in Las Vegas for a while, so I saw a lot of I-10 and I-15. One thing I used to do was check the weather because flash floods in the Mojave are nothing to be messed with. Before I left once, I checked and the NEXRAD was blank, so I headed out from LA close to sunset. I stopped to eat in Barstow and as I left, I noticed some lightning on the horizon.
This was before smartphones, so I considered turning back or finding a motel to wait it out, but I decided to keep going. As I passed Yermo, the lightning kept getting more and more intense. The thing is, I didn’t see any clouds. I pulled over at an exit and had a look to see if the storm would be crossing my route. That is when I noticed that Fort Irwin was due north of where I was. What I had been seeing wasn’t lightning at all—it was artillery.
19. Hot Truck Time Machine?
I was driving a truck delivering appliances in Connecticut on a road that my helper and I had driven hundreds of times. We were between stops, and from point A to B, it should have taken us 20 minutes to get there. Eventually, I made a bizarre realization: I had been driving for well over an hour, and we were still between points A and B.
There was no unusual traffic, nothing out of the ordinary besides missing more than an hour of time. If I were by myself driving, I might’ve dismissed it, but my partner had experienced the same thing right alongside me and was equally bewildered. I usually say that “I was abducted by aliens, once” but I rightly don’t have any explanation for it. It was just a lost-time event experienced by two dudes in a truck.
20. A Strange Turn Of Events
Around 30 years ago, my dad was driving particularly late, returning home after being away for a while. It was around two or three in the morning when he saw an old lady walking on the side of the road. My father is a kind man, so he naturally pulled over and asked the lady where she needed to go or if she needed help. The lady just turned to him and said something so eerie, he never forgot it: “Why did you stop? It is not your turn yet”.
The lady dismissed my dad, and not wanting to make a scene, he left her alone and continued driving. Not even five minutes later, down the road, he saw a crashed car with an ambulance already on site. The following day, the crash was on the front page of the local newspaper. The driver had lost their life instantly in the crash. Even now, my dad still wonders where that lady was going since the closest town was 30 minutes away by car.
21. On The Wrong Side Of The Tracks
My dad was a trucker, and he stopped at a rest stop up north. They were pretty full, so he found a place to park. It had been heavily snowing, so ground visibility was zero. He hopped in the back and went to sleep. A few hours went by, and he heard a train coming; the horn blaring woke him up. He stuck his head up front to see a train light through his driver’s window coming straight at his truck.
He hopped up front to move his truck but, going from half asleep to full adrenaline-pumping terror, he had miscalculated how close the train was and it was seconds from impact. All he could do was hold the wheel and scream. He said he screamed staring into the big light as it came right at him. It then started turning a few degrees and completely missed the front of his truck by a few feet.
He had parked over the top of tracks without realizing it, and, by luck or miracle, the train hit a track change that set it down another set of tracks. He said if he had let his truck roll just a foot more forward, it would have taken him out.
22. The Ultimate Sacrifice
My buddy was going down to Georgia, on just a normal trip of diapers and baby wipes. He spent a good long day traveling with a man who was carrying a full load of gasoline. The trip was a week there, and my buddy and this gas tanker guy spent the last six hours on the road together, talking through the radio and whatnot.
After nearly a full day of talking, my buddy got a call from the tanker guy, and his words made my friend’s blood run cold. He said, “Hey buddy, my brakes are out”. My friend got on the radio, and let the other truckers know. They tried to cordon off the passengers behind him while officers could make their way ahead of him, clearing the road.
My buddy lost line of sight as they shut down the freeway. They finally got the all-clear to go ahead, and the situation had resolved. By the time my buddy got to the emergency stop section of the freeway, he saw that the entire section was now a 50-foot-wide crater. There was metal and dirt everywhere, but there was not a single injury or casualty save for the brave tanker guy who dove headfirst towards his doom to prevent any others.
23. Chopping Away
We were driving up from Baltimore to PA, somewhere just outside of Towson, right before dusk. I saw a pickup truck pulled over on the side of the highway, and a man—the driver presumably—was kneeling in some tall grass, maniacally chopping and hacking away at something on the side of the road. I said, “What is that dude doing”?
I immediately assumed the worst was happening after years of brain rot from horror movie overconsumption. As we got closer, it became apparent the guy was quartering a roadkill deer on the side of the road. It was wild to see in broad daylight on a busy highway.
24. The Flying Frenchmen
My dad drove trucks while I was about five, and my brother was three. He did so entirely to make money to take care of us, which also meant that he needed to be able to actually make it home to his kids at the end of the day. He was driving up the side of a mountain that apparently genuinely resembled one ripped right from a Bugs Bunny cartoon.
It spiraled up, had these rickety, flimsy metal guardrails that wouldn’t prevent even a Smart car from vaulting over the thing, let alone a semi. It was an insane hour, and my dad was super tired but he wanted to push forward so he could get home faster. What happened next woke him right up; so much so that he had to actually take an hour break on the side of the road just to collect whatever was left of his sanity.
He was making his way up the mountain when on his radio he heard, “Flying Frenchman”, followed by a whole bunch of hootin’ and hollerin’. My dad apparently wasn’t confused by the exclamation for long, as mere seconds later, two full-sized, seemingly fully-loaded semis came barreling down the mountain on EACH SIDE of the road.
My dad had to make a quick decision—cliff or rock face. There was hardly a shoulder, but it beat almost certainly crashing into the side of the mountain. He did what he could to avoid them the best that he could and went for the bank. My dad turned the wheel as quickly but carefully as he could toward the extremely narrow embankment and did everything he could to avoid skidding, and narrowly avoided the closest truck.
He apparently also narrowly avoided jack-knifing the truck, and the scariest part of all was that his own semi had tipped during the procedure. All of the wheels on one side of his truck got air, and he was sure he had just tipped the truck down a bloody mountain, all so these two jerks could have a dangerous game of chicken.
25. Fishtailing Fiasco
My dad and my older brother were truckers, and I rode with our dad many times. A car tried to pass us on the freeway when disaster struck: Its tire suddenly blew out. The car fishtailed left and right and finally went off the road into a guardrail. We were at speed, so dad didn’t stop, but car parts flew off when the car hit the guardrail.
In the rearview mirror, I saw people stop to help. The car was lucky because they only made contact with the guardrail but no other vehicles. We were carrying 75,000 pounds of mail, so if we had made contact, it would have been ugly. My dad was a bit shaken after that and he took a few years off from driving and did some other jobs for a while.
26. Smoky Mountain Shocker
My best friend and I were driving from Western MD to Western KY on short notice because his brother had passed. We set out at about 8 PM and by 10 PM we were somewhere in the West Virginia Appalachians and we hit total white-out blizzard conditions. We were sliding all over the road, and crawling at 15 mph, but the semis were zooming past us doing 60 mph minimum.
Their wake was also shoving us toward the guardrail with frightening regularity. It was absolutely terrifying. I wasn’t even driving and it was stressful; I can’t imagine how bad it was for the driver. Fortunately, he was a good driver with lots of experience in snow and ice which is the only reason we made it through in-tact. By about 7 AM the next morning, we had come out the far side, were totally exhausted, and in need of gas.
We spotted a “gas station next exit” sign up ahead and as we left the highway, we descended into the fog of the Smoky Mountains. It wasn’t too bad where we were, but occasionally, the terrain would fall away on one side of the road or the other and the valley was filled with very dense fog. It’s about 50/50 beautiful and creepy early in the morning with the sun barely above the horizon and absolutely no one around.
To make matters worse, this town we come into on the service road didn’t have more than 50 people in it. It was barely more than a post office, a couple of stores, a handful of houses, and two gas stations, so we got our pick. There was one that had been abandoned for at least 10 years, or one that had been abandoned for at least 40 years.
After seeing the state of the gas stations, we looked around and it was pretty clear that the whole town was abandoned. Regardless, gas or no gas we need a break, so we parked up in the 10-year lot and got out. We were there for about 20 minutes, grabbed a light breakfast and some refills from the cooler. The fog was rolling in fast enough that it was getting noticeably harder to see.
So, we got back in the car. As we were pulling out, we noticed some scraggly-looking guy in beat-up overalls and no shirt standing up from behind a short retaining wall, looking startled. My buddy rolled down the window to ask him where we could find a gas station, but before he could get two words out, the dude started screaming at the top of his lungs and ran off into the fog.
As he was running, I noticed he was carrying a rifle of some variety, and he started firing it off at random while screaming like an absolute wild man. I heard at least four pops, followed by more screaming. There were now at least three people, and we high-tailed it out of town as fast as we could. While the screaming faded pretty quickly, the blasts echoed through the valley all the way back to the highway. To this day, I have no idea what that was about, but it thoroughly creeped me out.
27. Ditching The Deliverance Dudes
I was driving somewhere in Southwestern Mississippi near the Homochitto National Forest on a foggy night. I was headed back home to Texas after a work assignment when I saw a beat-up old Dodge pickup going the opposite way, turn around fast, and start catching up. It was dark, but my headlights caught the occupants well enough to get a good look at them.
They appeared to be large men without a lick of clothing on, and they were now closing on me at a high rate of speed. I definitely didn’t want to stick around and see if I could hear the Deliverance banjo music play, so I flipped on my spotlight, cut my other lights so I’d be less visible from behind, and punched it. I made sure I didn’t take any wrong turns and kept it at about 90-120 mph until I knew I’d lost them. It was the creepiest encounter I’ve had.
28. I Found Myself In A Bit Of A Twist
I was still in training, so while waiting for our appointment, we stopped at a Love’s truck stop for a shower. This was the only real privacy I got during training, and I had the time, so I was taking a long shower when the lights went out. I figured it was some automated thing to say I was taking too long in the shower, so I finished rinsing off, but it wasn’t.
I got out and as I’m drying myself, I checked my phone—and my stomach dropped: There was an emergency tornado notification and a text from my trainer. He texted me saying to stay in the shower while he and all the other customers were gathered in the freezer. As I was getting dressed, I started hearing the wind and soon, the entire building was shaking.
Being from the mountains of the Pacific Northwest, I’m not used to this kind of stuff. I legit thought I might be a goner in a truckstop shower stall. A tornado touched down and passed right by us, but luckily our truck didn’t sustain any damage and the building wasn’t damaged too badly.
29. The Freaky Forest Dude
A few years ago, I was driving along some random logging road in northern BC, secluded, and forested, when this random chalk-white guy in a black trench coat walked out into the headlights. When I say white, I mean absolutely chalk white. I was at least 20 kilometers off of the nearest major road, and probably hundreds away from the nearest town, in a valley between two mountains.
I backed up pretty quickly with my fair share of swear words. Around fifty meters away from the figure, he stepped forward. I opened a window and yelled at it to get away, and it just walked right back into the forest. To this day, I have no idea what it was.
30. Driving Through The Apocalypse
I was a teenager riding along with my dad when another trucker was completely blocking westbound traffic. The driver was experienced, but he had just frozen up during a bad brush fire that was on the road. Finally, my dad got on the CB, yelled at him, and took the lead. Everything around us was either burning or burnt.
The wire on the fences was glowing red. The only fire trucks we saw were surrounding a train that looked like it was hauling coal; they were trying to keep the fire away from it. Tracks on either end were bright red. The worst part was that our AC had been broken for the better part of a week by that point. It took us a good 3–4 hours of watching fire alongside the road to get past it all.
31. Little Girls Lost
When I was a kid, my mother was driving at night with my stepdad in the passenger seat and us three kids in the back. I was asleep when both of them saw something out of a nightmare. Flitting across the road from one side to the other, two glowing silhouettes of what looked like two little girls holding hands. Instead of featureless black, they were featureless bright yellow/white, in the perfect shape of two little girls moving across the road in their headlights.
They saw them for so long that my stepdad was able to process the scene and sternly tell my mother not to steer suddenly, just to brake and not to attempt any huge movement. The forms reached the side of the road and faded away. Our car slowed but didn’t stop, and my parents continued their journey. When they related their encounter to my grandparents, whom we were visiting, they said that two young girls had lost their lives in a traffic accident on that same road.
32. Bite The Ice!
I was driving double trailers on a wet road that turned to ice for about 1,000 ft. Three trucks were turned over in the ditch between interstate roads, a few hundred feet apart. One looked fresh, others had been there a while, and a set of double trailers looked burnt. In the middle of the night, surrounded by fog, I saw the flashing reds and blues of emergency vehicles and what I imagined were the bodies of fellow truckers.
Then, I saw some absolute moron in an old-style truck closing the distance behind me like a scared Usain Bolt. He zipped out of the right lane into the left and zoomed past me, still in clear view of the overturned trucks. In broad daylight, I would be able to react, but not in ice and fog. If he spun out, I’d be boned. It was absolutely terrifying.
33. Bouncing Bonehead
I was heading home after a night of astrophotography in the desert outside of San Diego around 4 AM, doing about 75 mph. I was on I-8 west, between the Tecate divide and Buckman Springs Road, when a semi with an apparently empty container absolutely blew by me, doing at least 85–90 mph. Their rear tires were bouncing and losing contact with the road and heading into my lane. I thought maybe their brakes were failing, so I slowed down.
Then, they slowed down, stopped bouncing, and left their lane. So I got back up to the speed limit, then they zoomed by me again, the trailer bouncing around. It repeatedly happened for a solid 15 minutes, all on a 3–5% declining grade. I called the authorities, and they notified the CHP. I finally got safely around them and then hit the gas, so they didn’t bash into me at high speed. I have no idea why they were driving like that.
34. Suffering Cessna!
The craziest thing I ever saw was a small Cessna plane coming within ten feet of the ground while passing over the interstate, close enough to me that I was afraid of it hitting me. When I got back to the office, my coworker told me a Cessna had crashed in the same time frame and in the same area I had just driven through. Everyone on board lost their lives.
35. And The Band Stayed On
Back in my college years, I had a band member who went to a college that was about 45 miles from our practice spot. Our bassist and I would take turns driving him back to school. One Saturday night, it was foggy, and there was a bad accident on the main highway. We decided to take the backroads through rural Washington County, Maryland, to go around the accident.
My guitarist, myself, his girlfriend, and a girl I was dating were driving along when we saw a SUPER bright light cutting through the fog. We were about 3–5 miles from Knoxville, MD, at the time—a big bunch of nowhere. We saw a farmhouse to our left with what appeared to be the brightest light I’d ever seen. We pulled over and had no idea what we were looking at.
My instinct was to run. My guitar player told me to wait, and we just tried to process what we were seeing. All of a sudden, it moved straight up, slowly at first, and then it just moved so fast it disappeared. We started driving again, not getting terribly excited about what we saw. It was strange and eerie; we couldn’t speak.
36. Something Smelled Ghostly
It was the middle of the night, and my dad, who was driving, got off to use the bathroom. He climbed back into his truck and smelled something foul and musty. He didn’t think much of it and started up the engine. Once on the road, from his peripheral, he could see what he describes as red eyes right above the passenger seat.
Once he confirmed that he had picked up a hitchhiking ghost, he began to panic, yelling at it to get out. He turned on his cabin lights, and on the passenger seat was a dark shadow. Whatever this thing was, it began hitting his dashboard. On a long dark stretch, he finally saw a small light; it was a gas station on the road ahead.
After what felt like hours, he pulled into the gas station. Not even taking the keys from the ignition, he ran inside, where the gas station clerk said, “You ok, man? You look like you saw a ghost”. Once back in the cabin, the smell was gone, and whatever entity followed him was no longer there.
37. Besieged On A Back Road
My dad was a trucker. One day, he was coming back from a job, and the main road was blocked because of an accident, so he took the local access through a nearby town. He saw a woman screaming and asking for help, so he stopped. That was a big mistake. The next moment, three German Shepherds along with two guys, jumped out of the woods and charged at him.
He took out his hunting rifle and proceeded to fire a warning. They stopped for a moment but came at him again. He blasted one of the dogs and one of the men in the leg. He called the authorities, and they caught the other guy that night. When interrogating them, they said some messed up nonsense about cow monsters. After examining them, the officers found out that one of them was schizophrenic, and they were both high. They never managed to find the woman, though.
38. The Man In Black
A relative of mine was driving between one and four in the morning. They saw a man with dark hair walking, wearing a black jacket and jeans. About three minutes later, they saw the same man walking on their side of the road. About another three or five minutes later, the same man was again walking down the road. After seeing this guy walking for a fourth time, they ended up pulling over for a nap, thinking they were tired.
After a few minutes of sleep, there was a knock on the window that made them jump. It was the same man, and he had pure black eyes. That family member now refuses to drive that road.
39. Big Cat On The Causeway
I was on a rural stretch of a well-maintained four-lane divided highway in Virginia. It was late at night/early morning. The night was clear, and the moon was out, so it wasn’t exactly pitch black. I was cruising along at about 60 mph with my high beams on, and I saw a pale mound in the grassy median that I assumed was nothing more than a large clump of freshly cut grass that had dried in the sun.
Then, my headlights hit it, and it lifted its head to look at me. The size and shape were about right for a nearly full-grown male African lion, with most of a mane that may not have been quite fully grown in yet. I did not stop, pull over, or turn around. For a minute, I doubted what I saw, but there was no way it was just a deer. When I got to my next stop, I started googling images to compare the color, and an albino lion looked just about right. It may have been someone’s escaped “pet”.
40. A Gaggle Of Monks
One time, I was on the road with the band, and we were playing a string of shows on the West Coast. We were on the I-5 northbound just north of the California/Oregon state line and hit up a truck stop/fuel station. There were a bunch of dudes there dressed up like Buddhist monks. I talked with them for a minute while my compatriots were paying for fuel.
I turned around to grab something out of the van and when I looked again, all of the Buddhist dudes were gone. A whole gaggle of them were gone, and they didn’t have a car. I was seriously confused. I told my bandmates about it and they thought that I was tripping.
41. The Pilliga Princess Returns
A woman used to walk her shopping trolley up the Newell Highway in a remote and generally spooky part of New South Wales, Australia at ungodly hours of the night. Eventually, she was hit and killed by a truck driver. For many years after, truck drivers swore they saw her pushing the trolley at similar hours of the night as if she was still alive. She came to be known as the Pilliga Princess.
42. A Different Kind Of Stick Up
I pulled off the highway to get a few minutes of rest at a truck stop. A man came up to my car and started walking around it. I was mentally preparing to go at it with this dude, as it looked like he was about to mug me. I looked out the window and saw that he was violently pleasuring himself in my direction, about one meter away. I flashed my headlights and called the authorities, but he was nowhere to be found.
43. The Weird, Wild West
I was driving out west with a guy, Jose, who had never been out west, let alone in the middle-of-nowhere out west. It was about three in the morning, and he woke me up to tell me that he could not find the gas station that he put into the GPS and that he couldn’t see any signs of one. Once you get away from I-80 and I-15, it gets dark out there.
He had also lost the GPS signal, so I asked him how long he had been driving and looking; he told me 40 miles. At that point, I was a little mad because we were almost completely out of gas, and it was apparent that this guy was planning on running it to empty before stopping like an idiot. With no other choice, I told him to go back to Winnemucca.
Soon the signal picked up again, and I found that there was a Marathon that opened at four in the morning just a few miles away. I told Jose to go there, and we began driving until we ran out of gas just a mile away. We started pushing the car to the gas station when Jose suddenly stopped in his tracks. He turned and asked if I had said something.
I said no, but I then heard a guy yelling from behind Jose, probably 100 feet. I had this huge Maglite in the truck and pointed it in the direction of the voice. It illuminated a short white dude who was like, “You guys need help pushing”? I said yes, and we finished pushing the car to the gas station, where we filled up.
I spoke to the man a bit, and he told Jose and me a story about how he and a friend were looking for this chick who went missing and how she had ditched him at a rest area because he got her mad. He then asked us to stop at one of the four houses in this town that this gas station was in, and Jose and I almost high-tailed it out of there, thinking the dude was about to commit a home invasion.
He asked us where we were going and what we did. I just told him that we worked on repairing farm and construction equipment remotely, and he seemed to believe that story. I then told him that we were heading to Bend, Oregon, before heading back east to Montana. He was trying to get back to Portland, and thus began the most awkward 6–7 hour drive of my life.
The towns between I-80 in Nevada and Bend are really sad. You reach these towns that have a population of 72 and are a collection of wooden shacks. They might have a gas station with a pump that’s 50 years old, but they usually don’t, and it’s rare to see people under the age of 50 in these places too. We eventually reached Bend and parted ways with this weird traveler. I don’t think that he would have done anything to us, but it was definitely weird.
44. Bathroom Bloodshed
My dad was a truck driver for more than 20 years. Once, he went to a truck stop where he sat to eat. He had his meal, went to the bathroom, and when he walked out of the bathroom, he was stopped by the authorities. Apparently, there was a person in the stall next to him who had been brutally murdered. Sadly, that man had been in the stall for more than a few hours before he was discovered. Obviously, my dad wasn’t the culprit, but it was terrifying.
45. Fishing For Trouble
I came down a hill with a full load of grain—gross weight around 86,000 lbs—and rounded a curve doing somewhere close to 60 mph. Straight ahead, about 100 yards, was a narrow bridge. Sitting in my lane in the middle of the bridge were several people in lawn chairs with coolers scattered around and fishing lines tossed over the side.
I laid on the air horn and hit the tractor-trailer brakes, and stopped about 15 feet from the lawn chairs. The people were already scared stiff and were standing next to the bridge railing. I asked if they had noticed the “No Fishing Off Bridge” signs posted on both ends of the bridge. One of them answered, “We seen ’em, but we didn’t know you was gonna be comin’ this way”. I just rolled up the window and pulled away.
46. What The Devil Was Happening On Route 666?
A few years back, I was traveling through Ute native land in New Mexico on Highway 491. That highway used to be Route 666, but they changed it a few years back. I was in the middle of the desert around midnight, with no lights or civilization for miles, when up in the sky there was a huge, orange flash. The orange flash quickly “inflated” into a giant ball, bigger than the sun.
It even had a fiery-looking texture to it. Suddenly, the orange ball disappeared, and the entire desert sky, horizon to horizon, flashed a bright yellow, lighting up everything around me like it was daytime. Then everything went back to normal. This all happened within a few seconds, but it was definitely the weirdest thing I’ve seen on the road.
47. This Run Ran A Fowl
The town I grew up in had a chicken processing plant at one end of town. So they had the chickens shipped in, then butchered and processed for packaging on site. On the other end of town was the rendering plant. Trucks got loaded up with the remains of whatever was not packaged for consumption—innards, blood, bones—and sent off across town to the rendering plant for disposal.
One night in 2008, a truck left the chicken plant and headed through the main drag of town down to the rendering plant. It was only when the truck arrived that the driver realized a valve on the truck had somehow released, leaving chicken guts, blood, and all manner of other chopped-up bits all the way through town on the main street.
48. Toppled By The Tow Truck
My dad is a truck driver. He got a flat one time and called the tow truck. The tow driver got my dad’s semi all hooked up and it started inclining upwards to go onto the tow bed, but something wasn’t hooked up right. The semi’s wheels started slowly inching back down onto the tow driver’s leg. The wheel cut this guy’s leg clean off. My dad stood, transfixed in horror, as it seemed to happen in slow motion.
He got up into the tow truck and stopped/reversed it, and fixed what wasn’t hooked up correctly, so the wheel was no longer crushing down on this other guy’s body, and called an ambulance. By law, my dad was not supposed to help the guy because the tow company could sue the trucking company, but he just acted on instinct.
There was a restaurant across the street from where they were parked, so other people were seeing this happen too and started coming over to see if help was needed. The guy had his leg reattached, and my dad ended up having to go to some hearing afterward to give a statement on what happened. For a few months after, my dad had flashbacks and PTSD thinking back on what happened.
49. Lady And The Cross
My father was going back home in the middle of the night in Eastern Europe. There was a cross 2 km away from his village where he saw a woman. He stopped and stepped out with one leg and asked if she needed help because it was a cold night, and the villages were a bit away. The lady didn’t say a word. My father thought it was creepy, stepped back into the car, and drove away.
He stopped 100 meters away and stepped out of his car to see if she was still there, but she had disappeared. Around that cross, there were only meadows with short grass, so he could see if she had run away or anything, but no one was there.
50. Seen And Herd
One night, I was in New Mexico, and I pulled off of the I-40 to smoke. It was pitch black, with no light but the stars and no humans around, in the middle of the desert. I got out of my car, sat on the hood, and lit up. Several minutes later, I heard a sound from about 20 meters away, under an overpass. It sounded like someone was walking toward me.
I got creeped out and called out, “Hello”, but nobody answered. Then, the sound got louder. So, I became nervous, got into my car, and turned on the headlights. In front of me was a herd of giant horned deer animals that looked like elk. It was extremely unnerving because they could have easily taken me out if they had decided to charge. I remember seeing the muscles in their necks and being in awe at how powerful they looked.
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