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search lights at Freedom Ridge

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posted on May, 27 2006 @ 09:12 PM
Lights that I saw last Memorial Day still baffle me. Unfortunately they don't have anything to do with UFO's or secret aircraft but I would still like to know if anyone else has seen them or knows what they were.

There was a campout of Area 51 buffs friday and saturday night commemorating the 50th anniversary of flight testing at Area 51 but I was delayed and when I arrived sunday pm, only one lady remained in her camper. I assume this was the Freedom Ridge site, I turned at the white mailbox and drove to the end of the road and set up camp on the plateau where the road descends to the gate. On the opposite hill to the right was a white truck observing the site and minutes later another one appeared on the hill to the left, across the small canyon that separates it from the plateau. The guards were as good as their reputation, apparently watching everything, it was kind of flattering and somewhat spooky too to have the personal attention of the legendary Camo Dudes. (I assume that they were cursing the stupid tourists who made them spend several nights in their trucks; sorry, Dudes!)

Since it was memorial Day I did not expect any flight activity, and I was right. But when I woke up sometime after dark I wanted to take a look outside anyway. I reached to open the fly and only then realized that the side of the tent facing towards the gate was brightly illuminated by a beam of light. My first thought was that there was a guard standing on the road shining a flashlight but the beam was much too large, 5-6 feet across. I looked out but the light was too bright to allow me to determine its source. However, in maybe 30 seconds the light started to fade and in a second or so it gradually died, the way a searchlight does. But as it did, another beam came on and that one shone on the lady's trailer, about a hundred feet away across the road. Very weird! That lasted half a minute or so, then faded and the first one again came on, fixed on my tent. This back and forth went on for 10-15 minutes, then stopped. I waited a while, then went back to sleep but first I took a fix on the spot where the lights originated, with the help of one of the larger trees (Joshua tree?) that sat in between. (It was dark, I don't believe that the moon was up yet, but there were enough stars to make out some of the larger shapes.)

I woke up once more and by then the moon was up but no more search lights. I don't wear a watch so I can't tell what time it was but it looked like the moon had been up an hour or two and it was still dark so I figure by then it was 2-3 am. The ferocious wind had also died. In the morning I used my binoculars to search the hillside where I estimated the source of the beams to be but there was nothing. By my estimate the lights came from about halfway up the opposite hill and to the right of the gate area but I could not make out any roads or structures anywhere near that spot. And they had not come from anywhere near the various posts with listening devices, antennae etc. So do they have fixtures that are hidden during the day? These could not have been truck-mounted lights because the road leading from the gate past that spot is so far below that they would need a very long pole, 100 feet or more, to get the lights to approximately where I saw them.

I am interested to know if anyone else has seen this, or if anyone has an explanation. None of the explanations I can come up make sense:

- if they wanted to see if anyone sneaked out at night, they would need to have both lights on all night (and just a hunch but they have probably heard of night vision equipment)
- if this was to send a message that we were being watched, a random period during the night does not guarantee results, and we obviously had already gotten the message during the day

This is not an earth-shattering puzzle but I am curious and until an alien abduction or something similar, it's the best I can offer!

posted on May, 27 2006 @ 10:33 PM
Very interesting. It may have been an attempt to light-blind you; after being hit with a bright light light at night, your eyes take 20-30 minutes to regain normal nighttime sensitivity. The first shot would be to wake you up and get you to step outside for a better look, then, *zap* you can't see into the shadows anymore. Did it work?

Next time, if there is one, take red goggles (red light doesn't have the same effect), sleep in a red tent, and if it happens again, find a shadow to hide in and watch the skies.

posted on May, 28 2006 @ 07:41 PM
The light was not that intense, clearly not a laser, and I did not lose that much night vision. The source was clearly so far away that it was not like looking directly at it and being partially blinded, like looking into a flashlight from a few feet. I would estimate the distance to the source somewhere around +/- 1/2 mile, and the brightness of the beam at my tent was maybe around that of a 25 w bulb. And the beams remained completely still and fixed on the side of my tent and the trailer so there was no attempt to shine into my eyes.
I took closeups with my Magpix binoculars hoping to examine the landscape more closely but by the time I got home the batteries had died. Next time I will be better prepared.

posted on May, 31 2006 @ 06:53 PM
As previously mentioned, they may have had to land aircraft and had used the light to blind your eyes so you were unable to see any aircraft.

posted on Jun, 3 2006 @ 01:05 PM
I don't have any better theory either but I am not sure that using the light as a diversionary tactic makes much sense either.

1) Would it not be more like an advertisement: "Come out, something exciting is happening at Area 51!" Note that the light was already on when I woke up and they would have been able to use night vision equipment to verify that nobody was out, so would it not be better to hold the lights until someone actually came out?
2) The light was not blinding; when I stuck my head out, it covered the side of the tent but did not shift to me and I could still see the stars and faint landscape features. And each time that the beam came back, it returned to exactly the same spot, there was no attempt to shift it by 15 inches so that it would also cover my face.
3) Before the Air Force took over Freedom Ridge, it was possible to see right into Area 51 15 or so miles away and witness and photograph aircraft take-offs and landings but it is now off limits and all you could see from this campsite would be lights in the sky, the same as from any other spot in that general area of Nevada, thus no apparent reason to fool with the lights.

My best hope right now is that someone else will see these lights and will be able to glean some more clues.

By the way, I believe that many experiences like this get twisted into UFO encounters, aliens, mysteries and conspiracies by people who know better but WANT to believe otherwise. We want to believe there is something other-worldly out there to make our ho-hum lives a little more exciting. That's why I dismiss 99% of that kind of stuff out of hand. The other 1% still keeps the hope alive!

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