Glenyce Rae McGOWAN
Age: 19 Years
when missing Height: 155 cm
Hair: Light Brown Eyes: Brown
Glenyce Rae McGOWAN 19 years old, was enroute to Tom
Price from Perth, WA.
On the night of the 10th of December 1975, she camped
at Nanutarra Road House, 370 kms north of Carnarvon.
The next morning Glenyce had disappeared. There were
numerous other people also stranded there that night
due to the floods and Police would like to hear from
any of those people also. Glenyce was often referred
to by friends as Rae MCGOWAN. Despite extensive
inquiries by Police and family and comprehensive media
coverage, there has been no information regarding her
whereabouts since then.
years on and family and friends of Glenyce Rae
McGowan are still desperate to solve the puzzle
surrounding her disappearance from a campsite up
north in 1975.
Glenyce was born on the 28th of
August, 1956 and lived with her family in Medina
at the time of her disappearance. She was
independent, outgoing and popular, as was
reflected by the many friends she had. She was
also an experienced traveller, having travelled
both intrastate and interstate and always
maintained regular contact with her family
In December 1975 Glenyce decided to travel to
Tom Price to visit her best friend who had
recently become pregnant. She arranged to hitch
a lift with a family friend who was driving to
Port Hedland. They left on the 8th of
December, 1975 driving a 1962 blue Ford Falcon
Before she left, Glenyce sent a telegram to her
best friend advising her she was on her way and
she also told her father that she would be home
the 9th of December, 1975 Glenyce and the
family friend arrived in Carnarvon and spent three
hours there, during which time Glenyce withdrew
$40.00 from her bank account and made a couple of
small purchases. The two then headed north and
arrived at Nanutarra Roadhouse at 5:00pm.
Due to Tropical Cyclone Joan the road to Tom
Price was washed out causing them to spend the
night in the camping area adjacent to the
roadhouse. They ended up sleeping in the car
because the ground was covered in ants.
The following day – the 10th of December, 1975
the family friend continued travelling north
towards Port Hedland alone as Glenyce had
arranged to get a lift with a family at the
campsite who were returning home to Tom
Price. By coincidence, the family knew of
Glenyce’s friend. It was agreed they would leave
Nanutarra at dawn on the 11th of
Glenyce was camped about 30 metres away from the
family who were to give her a lift in the
morning. She was sleeping on the ground in her
When the family rose at about 5.00am the 11th
of December, 1975 and went to collect Glenyce
from her campsite they discovered that both
Glenyce and her belongings were gone. They
searched up and down the river for about an hour
to no avail leading the family to think she must
have left with someone else so they eventually
departed Nanutarra for Tom Price.
En route, the family could not pass the Beasley
River so were forced to camp there for another
two days during which time they did not see any
other vehicles pass. They arrived in Tom Price
on the 13th of December 1975, but only realised
that Glenyce was missing several days later when
they visited her girlfriend. A missing persons
report was lodged on the 19th of
When last sighted on the 10th of
December, 1975, Glenyce was wearing a long, blue
cottton or cheesecloth skirt, an Indian style cream
coloured, button-up top and a pair of strap on
sandals. She had a small haversack, a green sleeping
bag and an Indian style shoulder bag and was
swimming and reading by the riverbank.
Her bank account has not been accessed since the
9th of December, 1975 in Carnarvon.
If you have any information about the
disappearance of Glenyce McGOWAN or were
the Nanutarra Road House, 370 kms north of
Carnarvon in December, 1975 make a report online
or call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000, where
all calls are strictly confidential, and rewards
are offered. Please quote Reference Number 5308.
Aerial view of Nanutarra WA
Nanutarra WA 1975
*Editor's note - I
wanted to include this wonderful description of the remote roadhouse where
Glenyce was last seen. Thanks to Mark Moxon, travel writer,
Published with permission.
I reached the Nanutarra Roadhouse before dark. While the rain poured down I put
up my sodden tent – with a little help from a neighbour in a campervan, who was
from Geelong and had spotted my Victorian number plate, bless him – and cooked
myself some pasta, before finding shelter outside the roadhouse café.
Roadhouses are strange places. Like airports, they're transit stations: nobody
stays at roadhouses longer than they have to, and they're normally totally
isolated. Truckers make up the bulk of the roadhouse trade, and as such these
places manage to take the most bizarre qualities of European truck stops, double
the prices, add some serious isolation, and come up trumps. You meet some
interesting people at roadhouses, for sure.
Classic examples, and a common sight in these odd places, are the Japanese
cyclists. In Australia, the distances of totally flat, boring scrubland are so
huge, that cycling round Highway One is a bit like walking round the London
orbital motorway: the interesting stuff is off the road, but the road itself is
a drag. Enter the two Japanese cyclists I met at Nanutarra, soaked to the bone.
It's dark by this stage, but they don miner's lights, making them look like a
couple of modernist Daleks, set up their tents, and zip themselves up for what
can only be a sweaty, cramped night. You've never seen such small tents, and
looking at the way their torch lights swing around on the insides of their
tents, it's as if two strange anthropoid chrysalises have landed in the camp
area, and are communicating using some strange light code. All these cyclists
ever seem to eat is noodles, all the way round the whole continent. It sounds
like hell, and I feel nothing but complete admiration for those who pedal round
Australia. It sure takes determination...
They're peaceful, though, roadhouses. Well, normally, they are; there I was,
sitting by the café reading, and two coaches full of sixth-form schoolkids
turned up, and for half an hour the place was chaos, with everyone bursting to
the toilets, and buying cans of Coke and packets of crisps. It was a school
trip, I assume, taking a quick stop en route. The peace when they left was
palpable – even the road trains seemed quiet after that invasion, as Nanutarra
settled back into the tumbleweed vibe of the truly isolated.