When a crew from the Utah Department of Public Safety left, their mission was to count sheep. Instead, deep in the Mars-like landscape of red-rock desert, they uncovered a mystery — a metal monolith in one of the most remote parts, the stuff of sci-fi sagas.
The smooth, tall structure was found during a helicopter survey of bighorn sheep in southeastern Utah, officials said Monday.
Pilot Bret Hutchings of the Utah Department of Public Safety recalled someone on board spotting the gleaming metal object from the air on November 18 implanted in a small clearing set against the redness of the rocks.
“He’s like, whoa, whoa, whoa, turn around, turn around,” Hutchings told KSL-TV in Salt Lake City. “There’s this thing, there’s this thing back there. We’ve got to go look at it.”
Utah officers, on a routine helicopter flyover stumbled upon a mysterious, shiny, metal monolith in the middle of the desert — leaving everyone baffled…
“Who would do this?” pic.twitter.com/G3MJahE4LN
— Rex Chapman (@RexChapman November 24, 2020
What Did The Crew Discover?
The crew landed to check it out during a break from their work. They found the three-sided stainless-steel object is about as tall as two men put together. But they discovered no clues about who might have driven it into the ground among the undulating red rocks or why.
“This thing is not from another world,” said Lt Nick Street of the Utah Highway Patrol, part of the Department of Public Safety.
It is, however, clear that it took some planning and work to construct the 10- to 12-foot (3- to 4-metre monolith and embed it in the rock.
The exact location is so remote that officials are not revealing it publicly, worried that people might get lost or stranded trying to find it and need to be rescued.
Stuff of Sci-Fi Sagas
The monolith evokes the one that appears in the Stanley Kubrick movie “2001: A Space Odyssey.”
Hutchings joked about the object’s possible other-worldly origins and the obvious parallel to the classic Stanley Kubrick film, but thought the answer was more down to Earth.
“I’m assuming it is some new wave artist or something, or somebody who just is a big ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ fan,” he said.
Whatever the Utah object’s origins, it has fired up the minds of conspiracy theorists and sci-fi fans on social media.
“Finally someone gets it!” said Twitter user Dwight Jackson of Calgary, Alberta. “This is the 2020 reset we’ve been waiting for! Where is the mothership…?”
Bureau of Land Management officials are investigating how long it’s been there, who might have created it and whether to remove it.