Spooky Stories As Told by Aussie Truck Drivers

October 29, 2019


On the road


Pauline Morrissey

Given an Aussie truckers’ line of work, filled with long drives and lonely stretches of roads — often through the dead of night — it’s no surprise that they would have some spooky stories up their sleeves.

In honour of Halloween, here are just some of their terrifying tales.

1. Tales of the Pilliga Princess

Road at nightime, trees on the sides
Many truckers report seeing the Pilliga Princess. Photo: iStock

Ask any trucker to tell you a scary story and they’ll likely bring up the tale of the Pilliga Princess.

Running through the giant Pilliga Forest of NSW, there’s a 20km stretch called the Newell Highway, where a great amount of spooky stories have originated, regarding that of the Pilliga Princess.

It has been noted that she was actually a homeless woman who would walk along this road, often seen by truckers late at night. But then one night in 1993, she was killed when a truck accidentally hit her, which is when the hauntings supposedly began.

Truckers swear that they still see the woman walking the roads, late at night, only now, she has been described as a ghostlike figure, with a mop of wild white hair and glowing eyes.

One driver, Hank S, commented on a trucker’s forum, stating that, “it’s a beautiful drive during the day, but at night, even some of the toughest men fear to travel along this stretch of highway, unless they know they wouldn’t have to stop.”

“I’ve heard about drivers blowing out a tyre and driving it flat until they reach the other side,” he said.

2. Beware, Yowies for the next 121kms

Speaking of the Pilliga Forest, eerie stories around this area, seemily are not exclusive to just ghost-like figures, but also to Yowie sightings — Australia’s counterpart to the infamous Bigfoot.

According to the Yowie Hunters website, Yowie sightings around the Pilliga area have been frightening drivers along the lonely stretch of the Newell Highway for many years. One report documented on their website states that, fear has spread so far about this particular highway, that truck drivers have gone on to put up a warning sign near the area, saying, “beware, Yowies for the next 121kms.”

And perhaps rightly so, with another truckie making the news earlier this year, after claiming that he came across a 3-metre tall Yowie in broad daylight, whilst travelling within the Gold Coast hinterland.

"This thing scared the absolute crap out of me," he told The West Australian. “It was hairy and had hair probably two inches long, all over its body. It had a round face, like a chimpanzee, and he slapped, or punched the centre of the bonnet of my truck — it was like I had hit a small car."

3. Creatures of the night

Man driving truck during nightime
Driving throughout the night can lead to some pretty interesting sightings. Photo: iStock

Being an Aussie truck driver, it’s a given that you’re going to come across a great number of crossing wildlife — a kangaroo here or a wombat there. But then there are some truckers who claim to have spotted something a little bit more unusual.

Facebook user, Sean K, mentioned that once, when he was driving along a rural stretch of road, he came across a thylacine, otherwise known as the now extinct, Tasmanian tiger.

“I swear I saw one cross the road in front of me one night, and it looked like it had stripes over the rear of its body,” he said. “It was nothing like I’d ever seen before, and I can't really explain it any other way.”

This theory was backed by fellow trucker, Paul M, who added, “I don’t doubt you mate, because I’ve seen two of them myself on the road.”

Whatever the case may be, it should be noted that according to the The Australian Museum, the last known living thylacine was captured in Tasmania in 1933.

4. Sightings of the mysterious Min Min lights

Taking place along Boulia, located 1,700kms west of Brisbane, those who journey through this outback Queensland town may just have a spooky story to tell.

Now famously known as the Min Min lights, this unexplained light phenomenon has been reported to seemingly appear out of nowhere after dark.

One truck driver, Luke S, commented on Facebook regarding his firsthand experience, describing the mysterious lights as “strange floating balls of colour that follows you as you drive along the road.”

Another commenter, Sue B, backs this theory, noting that her parents who were once local stockmen in the area, would often say that the Min Min lights “amused them for years”.

5. The chilling coincidence

Starry sky and car lights
Coincidence or not? That is the question. Photo: iStock

By definition, a coincidence is a remarkable concurrence of events or circumstances that have no apparent causal connection with one another. But the thing you have to wonder with this next story is — was it just a coincidence or something more?

“Back in 2017, I was coming back from Mackay with absolutely no one around and my lights on high, when I suddenly saw a motorbike rider trying to pick up his bike in a field, about 200-meters from the side of the highway,” recalls Richard W.

Not being able to pull over safely for a good while, the driver rang the police and asked them to check it out.

“I thought nothing of it for about a year, until I decided to look it up on Google. As it turns out, nothing to note happened that particular night, but almost a decade earlier, at approximately the same time, a bike went off the road and both the riders (husband and wife) had died — it still gives me shivers thinking about it, and I remember it like it was yesterday.”

6. The sombre tales of 'Pikini Plains'

Located on the west coast of Cape York, about 200 kilometres south of the tip of Australia, the coastal mining town of Weipa holds a terrible history of Aboriginal oppression, resulting in its own saddening folklore.

“When driving up the Peninsula Road to Weipa just before dusk, it has been said that kids will appear to attack you by running in front of your car or truck,” says truckie, Ailan H.

“It has been said that they are the spirit of the Aboriginal kids that were massacred there, and they call that stretch ‘Pikini Plains’.”

7. Reality stranger than fiction

Moon, road and blurry truck
It seems that truckers have some kind of magnet for the stranger things. Photo: iStock

Ghosts, yowies, and mysterious lights aside, many truckers have noted that the most spookiest of things that they come across while on the job, are not other-worldly at all, but rather, of real life people doing strange things.

Facebook user, Shane A, tells a story of a "crazy lady" that stands on a bridge in Carnarvon, Western Australia, "taking photos of thin air at 2am."

And then there’s the account of Jamie W, who recalls a hair-raising incident of when he came across a woman standing on the fog line of the highway near Coffs Harbour, swaying back and forth in the early hours of the morning.

Reality really is stranger than fiction.

Pauline Morrissey

Pauline has worked in-house at Smith's Lawyers and has written for publications such as Domain, Real Living, Traveller, Time Out, Sitchu, and Houzz.