Phantoms are a sort of specter that acts much more consciously. Their motivations are completely unknown and they baffle players. Phantoms may, or may not take a humanoid shape. Most often, however, they take the form of whirling mists that have no apparent cause.
One spiral can be located near a bridge in North Chumash, directly on the border of Raton Canyon, a few meters east of an ATV race. Throughout San Andreas, there are mysterious spirals of a black, smoke-like mist that do not move and do not interact with the player, or the world around them. It is impossible to extinguish them, and they remain even if clipped with a vehicle.
Their purpose in the game is unknown, and they remain despite patches, suggesting that they may not be glitches. Beyond this scant bit of information, they are a complete mystery. No one knows who or what they are.