UFO sightings are something more people have experienced than talk about, but a reddit thread asking for UFO sighting stories brought out many fascinating accounts. PHOTO: Stefan-Xp, CC License
Reddit user Yoga_Butt put out a question to the reddit community, and it generated what one user called a “reddit campfire” worth of bizarre, and in some cases, inexplicable stories. The question: “Alien abductees of reddit of people who have claimed to see a UFO, what’s your story?”
Here are some of the highlights from reddit’s UFO and paranormal witnesses (all emphasis added):
"First time I ever tried to write this down, first time telling anyone outside the family. I’m leaving out time and location and some other details because I’m still scared of what might happen with it publicly I guess. Summer before 8th grade, me and two of my friends snuck out at midnight to go walk around the neighborhood and go see these girls on the next block who were having a sleepover. We turn a corner in our neighborhood and there’s this huge black blimp shaped thing in the sky. Like the pictures of the Hindenburg but bigger than that and as close if not closer. Completely silent and the size of at least four to five football fields across, no exaggeration, even though I was young. We stare at it entranced, asking each other over and over again if we see it, which we all agree that we do, standing there, frozen in one place. It’s like black polished gunmetal, no lights, no sound, no anything. It’s just hovering there. And then I don’t know what happened but time clearly jumps. Next thing I remember is the craft/ship/government experiment/whatever the hell it is has gone and there’s a tiny glowing white barbell thing in the sky, seemingly slowly falling to earth with wisps of smoke coming off it. Then two brand new black trucks with silver gearboxes on the back, like f150s or s10’s but nicer came speeding down the street, going about seventy in a residential 25mph neighborhood. Then after that I remember walking home to one of my friend’s houses and going to bed."
This sort of UFO sighting account is a class unto itself. Bizarre craft spotted in the sky, followed by what look like government vehicles. They seem almost too perfect in how they fit in with UFO sighting mythology, but it’s odd how many stories like that are out there. Here’s another one:
"I was on a wildfire just south of Dugway Proving Grounds in Utah. We were in fire rigs driving to the incident area, four trucks in close convoy, when we heard helicopters. Eight black military choppers escorted us in formation for like ten miles, we assumed they were just doing drills and using us for fake target practice or something.
"A little while later we are parked and about to start hiking to the fire line when suddenly a thin column of smoke shoots probably about two hundred feet into the sky, it was a good mile away but the concussion was pretty significant when it hit us and the noise was still ridiculously loud. We thought it was probably no big deal, we knew we were near a strike zone.
"A good five minutes later an aircraft like nothing I have ever seen flew by us at maybe five hundred feet. It was flat black and sort of rectangular but with fins and wells on the underside. It was moving pretty slow and was dead silent so I have to assume it was some sort of stealth glider. It sounds ridiculous but it immediately reminded me of a huge, flying bat mobile, Time Burton era.
"After that some military personnel got on our radio frequency and instructed us to leave the area immediately, when our crew chief asked who it was and why they signed off and the Incident Commander (the guy in charge of managing the entire situation) came on the radios and said we were evacuating the area. They sent us to a completely different fire about a hundred miles to the south and never told us why except that it was higher priority which was bullshit, it was already out when we got there and we just assisted crews in the mop up operation.
Sometimes there are strange UFO crafts without the government follow-up. Here’s one of those stories:
“I walked out of my buddy's place at exactly 4 AM to a bright starry night. When I walked out something caught my eye to the left of me. I looked over and saw a bright blue, yellow, green, white, red, orange strobing flashing light floating silently to the left. I stood in awe at it and did not want to go grab anyone because I didn't want to miss anything. I watched as it passed in front of the moon behind my friend's place and I saw the outline of the craft. It was a teardrop, sunflower seed type shape, and the craft seemed to have the lights being transmitted from the top half of it. It was almost as if it was transmitting some type of light pattern upward. It also had a dark, thin, smooth line of exhaust that disappeared 50-75 feet behind it. This all occurred no less than 400 yards away from me. After it passed the moon I ran inside and grabbed someone. He saw it but it was too far away to make out what it was.
“I went home which was only a few blocks away and looked out from the driveway the same direction the first craft had come from. I saw two dim white lights slowly coming over the horizon at a slow pace heading towards me. I then ran inside and grabbed my mother out of bed. We stood there for about 20 minutes while 5 separate crafts flew over us, first came two, then two, then one, about 6-7 minutes apart from each other, maybe 20 mph, maybe 200 feet up, completely silent. The way that they looked from underneath was each one had two huge bright white lights which were maybe 30-40 feet across each but they were so bright it was hard to get a good estimate. They also had a pulsating red one between the white lights that dimmed and re-lit. I would estimate from the size of the white lights that each craft was maybe between 150-200 feet wide.”
There are a few more like that, and then entire other categories, such as the floating orb or mysterious light that looks like a shooting star but then takes a sudden turn. Here are two UFO orb sighting stories:
“There was this guy named Adam that I was hanging out with for a while. I took him home from a friend's apartment one night at around 3-4 AM, which was normal for that time period since I was sleeping until 4 in the afternoon. I had been trying to talk to people about this stuff non-stop, and when I took him to his house, we chilled and smoked in the driveway for a minute. All of a sudden, an intensely bright light appeared over the hill that was less than a mile from his house and we were both immediately drawn to it. I started looking around seeing if there was anything else happening, and I looked up. Above us were two orbs pivoting around and I drew his attention to them. I told him that I felt like they showed us that bright light to try and gauge our responses, and we just looked up and waved at the orbs. Then, all of a sudden, the sky came to life. There must have been 3 dozen orbs flying around in every which direction and over the horizon streaks started taking off. It was definitely a spiritual experience.”
These UFO stories are just a small selection from the thread, and even these are just the most relevant chunks (cut for relative brevity). Many people had multiple stories of seeing UFOs, mysterious orbs or other paranormal sightings (there’s a whole section on mysterious nocturnal visitors, and possible non-paranormal explanations for them).
Many TV shows, and countless books, documentaries and websites are devoted to UFOs and the paranormal. Some of them are clearly ridiculous. The most compelling stories are personal accounts from UFO witnesses. Even for those that probably don’t actually involve a UFO or anything paranormal, it’s undeniable that these people had powerful experiences. For some of them the UFO sighting was the most meaningful experience of their lives.