Is Browning Road in Delano, CA. home to a phantom hitchhiker?
Photo courtesy of Google Streetview
In the small town of Delano, about 30 miles north of Bakersfield there is said to be a spirit of a woman who haunts Browning Road. No one who the girl really is, but there are stories that she was a young woman who was crossing the street early one morning when she was struck by a car and killed instantly. It's said that if you drive down the road that sometimes you can see her standing on the side, as if she's waiting to cross. There have even been reports of her actually appearing in the backseat of several vehicles, undoubtedly terrifying the driver.
Most of the sightings seem to have occurred on a stretch of road south of town between Garves Highway (Hwy 155) and Woollomes Road. One witness reported seeing a shadowy figure leap in front of a car they were following and watched the figure disappear as the car swerved to avoid hitting it. Another reported that they heard the story, but not believing anything took a drive there one night. They said they were messing around and flashing their headlights trying to attract the ghost of the girl. There was one passenger in the car and they looked outside and saw the ghost standing next to the car. Terrified they sped off as they were severely shaken up.
Phantom hitchhiker stories have been around for centuries. And for some reason it was always some desolate road that the ghost chose to haunt. In the case of the Browning Road ghost, the woman seems to haunt the road she was killed on? All I know is that the legend is active as I found a Facebook page dedicated just to the legend itself. You can find it here.
Another interesting note. I was exploring the Google Streetview of the stretch of road that is said to be haunted. I noticed a roadside memorial. Hard to say if this is for the ghost of a woman or for someone else, but usually these are only at places where someone has died and I found that interesting.