THUMBS UP: Hitchhikers are doing it tough in the wet weather.
THUMBS UP: Hitchhikers are doing it tough in the wet weather. Ella Archibald-Binge

Thumbs down to hikers

WHEN backpacking season rolls around, there are always a few hitchhikers dotting the highway, but there are better ways to get from A to B.

While many of us hesitate to pull over when we see the thumbs up, Stanthorpe Police Traffic Branch Sergeant Dan O'Dea said the practice can actually be more dangerous for hitchhikers than motorists.

"As a general rule, it's more unsafe for the hitchhikers, but obviously you don't know who you're picking up," Sergeant O'Dea said.

Despite the risks, there have been no incidents on the Granite Belt.

"We haven't had any issues or problems reported," he said.

"We know it happens and it'll continue to happen."

Hitchhiking may be here to stay, but Blue Topaz Caravan Park manager Sue Carter thinks it is a declining trend.

"There's definitely not as much of it as there used to be," Ms Carter said.

Ms Carter said there are other ways to navigate the district.

Along with several other caravan parks, the Blue Topaz provides a shuttle bus for patrons.

"A few of us have shuttle services, so that helps them out. Around one-third of our guests use the shuttle bus, while others have their own transport.

"There's more car pooling going on too.

"There's no way you could put on public transport because it's so spread out."

Stanthorpe Border Post


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