A mysterious monolith found in the Utah desert has made headlines around the world and set social media into a frenzy this past week. The strange, sleek metal structure is estimated to be around 10 feet tall, though don’t be deceived by its sturdy look – reports suggest the structure is hollow and potentially formed of a strong but lightweight cardboard like material.
An unusual discovery
The monolith was found by a public safety crew in a routine flyover inspection of the desert. A statement released by the Utah Department of Public Safety (DPS) on Monday 23rd November 2020, describes how the report came from wildlife resource officers who were counting populations of bighorn sheep in an area of Red Rock Country when they came across the unusual object. The team landed their plane nearby and two officers went on to investigate the unknown object, which was filmed by a crew member and resulted in the video going viral around the world on news channels such as CBS and the Guardian. The exact location of the find was not released to the public for fears it may encourage inexperienced hikers to go searching for it.
Initial thoughts surrounding the discovery suggested it could be everything from art installation, social media prank, or alien intervention. Using satellite aerial images from Google maps, the object’s arrival in the desert has been dated to roughly 2016 when it first appears in an image from October, but is absent from earlier images dated to August 2015.
What’s found is then lost
Even more mysteriously the the lack on claimant for the structure, is its disappearance within a week of its discovery. The Bureau of Land Management has now reported the monolith’s disappearance: “[We] did not remove the structure which is considered private property. The structure has received international and national attention and we received reports that a person or group removed it on the evening of 27 Nov”. According to the Bureau the case is in the department of the local sheriff’s office, so for the time being the mystery continues.