There's a reason why a person driving along the West Coast Road on Vancouver Island at night should not pick-up hitchhikers. This is the road I live on.
The West Coast Road in British Columbia from Sooke to River Jordan gets pretty foggy at night this time of year, especially around the unincorporated town of Shirley. The weather is extremely mild along the coast bringing in a rolling mist off the Pacific Ocean. Sometimes the fog is so thick it makes it difficult to navigate through the old growth rainforest, especially if there's a drizzle. The only light source comes from your headlights, with almost zero visibility ahead. The shoulder is nothing but a few feet on each side. Deer, bears and cougars are often struck by surprised motorists as they dash in front of cars blinded by their headlights. Many people walking this lonely road at night have also been struck and killed.
You often see hitchhikers, teenagers carrying backpacks and camping gear. Most hitchhike during the day but occasionally you see the odd hitchhiker at night. I myself have seen them, but I never stop to give them a lift. A few of them seem out of place, like a woman scantily dressed for the weather or an old man, far too old to be up in the wee hours of the morning, standing beside the road in complete darkness, supported by a cane, his thumb out. Far too odd.
You've heard the story; a motorist picks up a hitchhiker at night who crawls into the back seat saying that they're only going a few kilometres up the road and when they get to their destination they turn around to look and no one is in the back seat. Well, it happens far to often on the West Coast Road.
Rumour has it, a young girl leaving her reception one night dressed in her wedding gown was struck and killed by a passing motorist. Then, there's the story of an old man wearing a black suit and donning a black hat who was struck crossing the road going to Church early one Sunday morning. A child was supposedly killed playing on the shoulder of the road one sunny afternoon. It's ghost haunts the shoulder of the road near French Beach a popular campground. Many people have seen this young child and have claimed to have struck it as it crawls out onto the middle of the road, but when they stop to investigate, no body is found. The stories are endless.
This is why I never pick-up hitchhikers at night, especially on the West Coast Road. In fact, I never pick up hitchhikers period. I just don't want to meet a ghost! You never know, it could be them that will be taking you for a ride.
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