Posted Under UFOs & Aliens

Close Encounter of the First Kind: Red Rocks, December, 2000

UFO in the Sky

Excerpted from Messages, by Stan Romanek

...[M]y wife Lisa and I met online in the summer of 2000 and soon struck up an Internet friendship, swapping near daily e- mails. Eventually, I wanted to take our friendship to its next step and meet in person, but as she was then living in Nebraska and I was in Colorado, such a get-together appeared most unlikely. However, I was determined to meet her and once I worked up the courage, I decided to ask her to come and visit me. Now this is quite a big step for someone who knows you only via Internet posts, so she was not initially keen on the idea. Additionally, she had only been to Colorado once before, and during that visit it had rained almost the entire time, giving her a less than favorable impression of the state (which, curiously enough, boasts an average of three hundred days of sunshine a year. So much for Chamber of Commerce propaganda). Not surprisingly then, she was not eager to repeat the experience—or at least, that was her excuse.

So how would I convince Lisa to come to Colorado for a visit? A number of possibilities occurred to me before I finally settled upon the bright idea of videotaping some of the spectacular local scenery and sending it to her. Once she saw how pretty the mountains were—and that the state was usually bathed in sunshine—she couldn’t help but say yes. I thought it was a brilliant plan and a few days after Christmas of 2000, I set out with camcorder in hand.

In my mind, the best place to start filming was Red Rocks Amphitheater near Morrison, Colorado—a well-known landmark nestled at the base of the majestic Rocky Mountains just west of Denver. I thought this exhilarating panoramic view of the city would be the perfect beginning for my homemade video.

Taking one of the back roads to Red Rocks Park, I was soon on the outskirts of the city and just beginning to make my way into the foothills. No sooner had I reached the road that would take me into Red Rocks when I observed a number of cars pulled over to the shoulder and people looking up toward the power lines that ran alongside the road. Of course, people standing by their cars pointing skyward is always irresistible and I looked up to see what all the excitement was about. When I did, I was startled to spot a shiny object hovering above the power lines, no more than fifty feet or so above the ground. My first thought was that it was some kind of hot air balloon, but the more I watched it, the less certain I became. Rolling down the window of my van, I slowed as I tried to get a better view of the thing.

Studying the object closely, I soon determined that it was some sort of oddly shaped, metallic craft, segmented into multiple spheres with the main body being rounded on the top and with six smaller spheres rotating slowly counterclockwise along its bottom. It was highly reflective, like burnished aluminum, and was tilting slightly in the direction in which it was moving, but perhaps the most peculiar thing about the craft was the inky black area between the rotating lower spheres. It was the blackest black I had ever seen in my life, as though it were somehow capable of sucking up all of the light around it. It struck me that if somebody were to throw a stone into this void, it would simply continue into it for infinity.

I was becoming a little unnerved as I drove slowly past, but that was nothing until I began to notice that the damned thing appeared to be pacing my van! I got so frightened, I stepped on the gas and tried to speed away before suddenly remembering that I had my video camera with me. Resisting the temptation to flee, I grabbed my camera and pulled over to the shoulder.

Almost immediately I noticed the strangest sensation in my skin. It felt like the air was filled with static electricity, making the hair on my arms stand on end. It was as though the atmosphere itself was pregnant with a powerful electromagnetic charge. Undeterred by the strange sensation, I pointed my camcorder at the object and for the next few seconds stood there on the road, filming the thing.

Curiously, it seemed that when I did so, the craft reacted by reorienting itself until it was perfectly vertical. Then, with a "pop," it suddenly flew straight up, creating a small sonic boom that made my shirt flutter against my skin. Even more remarkable, it stopped just as quickly as it had jetted upward, forcing me to doubt my senses. I'm not an aviation expert, but even I knew that no manned object was capable of such a maneuver, nor was there a person in the world who could survive the sort of G-forces such a maneuver would create if there were. I was awestruck.

After a few more seconds, the craft finally spiraled away and disappeared in the bright blue sky, leaving me standing by the edge of the road with a sense that I had just seen something more surreal than real. Still badly shaken, I got back into my van and drove about a hundred yards to where some more people were pulled over near a small dog- walking park. As we talked among ourselves, everybody looked up and saw a pair of F-16 jet fighters speeding in the direction of where the UFO had last been seen. There was laughter when one of the witnesses said, "Good luck chasing that thing!" The fact that I had just witnessed this exotic craft was especially ironic, due to the fact that just days before I had been making fun of my friend Mark for believing in this crazy UFO stuff and now I had my own experience to deal with! All I knew for sure was that I was glad that I had my camcorder with me.

When I got home that afternoon, I immediately hooked up my camcorder to the VCR to see if I had managed to capture the bizarre object on tape. It was a bit fuzzy and the object darted precariously about as I tried to steady my camera on it, but I had caught it! It wasn't the sort of crisp, clear, incontrovertible sort of image I was hoping for, but it was definitely something unusual—a "something" that couldn't be either easily explained or dismissed. Or ignored.

Even then, moments after the sighting, my mind didn't seem to want me to believe what had just happened, but after viewing the tape over and over, I finally decided that I had seen something most remarkable. I called Lisa in Nebraska to let her know that I never made it to Red Rocks and why.

I suppose I should have known she'd be a little skeptical, as I would have been had she called me out of the blue and told me a similar story. Additionally, as we had only known each other for a few months and she was not yet quite sure about me, the sound of apprehension in her voice was understandable; I'm sure she wasn't excited about possibly getting involved with a nut! Her disbelief made me regret the many times I dismissed or ridiculed similar reports of UFOs made by others and thought, "Now I know how people must have felt when I made fun of them."

Somehow I had to prove it to her. I quickly downloaded the video file to my computer and sent her a copy to play on her end. The plan worked and I was relieved when she finally believed that I was telling the truth. Unfortunately, even though I'd managed to convince Lisa, how was I going to convince myself?

Months later, after I had a chance to think about what I'd seen, I sat down and drew a pencil sketch of the object. Of course, trying to estimate size and distance of an object overhead in the sky is never an easy thing to do, but this was the general appearance and dimensions as best I recall.


I'll probably never know what the object was, nor have I seen any- thing even similar to it since. All I know is that the mysterious silver object was the harbinger of a chain of events which were to dramatically alter my life over the next few years, in ways both good and bad.

To this day I still get a little nervous when I drive by the area where I saw the object, realizing with a sense of dismay that this was the spot where it all started.

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