On October 22, at approximately 7:40PM Central standard time, we saw an unidentified flying object (UFO) over our home in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin.
We were having a campfire in our backyard and I was looking up at the clear, starry sky as we often do. I stood up to warm myself by the fire and continued to look up at the sky. About a minute after I stood up I noticed something strange coming from the west over the trees in our neighbors yard. When it went over the pine tree in our yard I said something like “what is that?“, and my wife Jamie and daughter Liberty began to look for it. Jamie suggested it might be a meteoroid as there was a shower expected, but then she saw it as well and knew it wasn’t a meteoroid. Shortly thereafter, Liberty saw it as well, and they both saw it long enough to identify it in a way similar to what I was seeing.
The best way I’ve come up with to describe it is like this: Imagine the night sky reflected in a still, dark pond. Now imagine dropping a single pebble into this pond and how the waves created alter the reflection of the sky. The UFO looked like a single one of these waves, but cut into an arc of about 1⁄4 of a circle, slightly pointed at the center of the leading edge. As it moved across the sky, it obscured the stars causing a small amount of refraction, with only the leading edge clearly visible. I’m not sure if the leading edges visibility was due to it emitting or reflecting light, or if it was just a more intense distortion of the night sky.
The objects speed and direction was constant, and it moved silently.
It’s hard to judge the altitude and therefore the size of the object, but it was at least 200 feet above the ground because it was above the trees. If it was only that high up, then it was approximately 16 feet across from wingtip to wingtip. The total time the object was visible to me was about 8-10 seconds, in which time it traveled from behind my neighbors trees to behind our house as it moved west to east. This is a distance of about 50 yards. Jamie and Libby picked up the object as it was about half-way through this path.
At first I thought it was an optical illusion, a problem with my vision or perhaps due to me standing up too fast. I also considered that it could be related to smoke or heat from the campfire. However Jamie and Liberty’s observations, and in particular their descriptions matching what I saw (before I described it myself) ruled-out a problem with my vision as the explanation. The other explanations (smoke, heat) didn’t make sense as we continued to see the object long after it was beyond the range of these local effects.
Other possibilities we considered were animals. The general shape was not unlike the V formation birds fly in, but you don’t usually see flocks of birds flying at night, and the shape was too smooth to be made up of group of birds. Also the effect it had on the starlight isn’t something that would be created by flying animals that I’m familiar with.
I’m familiar with most civil and military aircraft, and the shape, speed and translucency of the object was unfamiliar to me. The fact that it was silent would indicate that it was either unpowered, or so far away as to be unheard (which would indicate that the object was of gigantic proportions). Experimental aircraft may be an explanation as we frequently spot military aircraft flying nearby, and we also live less than an hour from the Oshkosh airport, home of the Experimental Aircraft Association.
At this point a clear identification or explanation isn’t available. The most rational explanation I can come up with is that it was some kind of cloaked/stealth glider, using one of the recently described optical cloaking mechanisms. This would explain the shape, motion and visible signature of the object as well as its silent flight. That said I’ve never heard of such a vehicle, and if it were a glider it would have had to have been dropped from an aircraft as there are no natural high elevation points nearby. It would have also presumably landed within a few square miles, and so far I haven’t heard any other reports of the object being sighted in the city of Beaver Dam.
There may be other environmental explanations as well. Being a clear, cold night I’m not aware of any such explanation but I’m hoping that by sharing this story others with more knowledge of the subject can contribute additional possible explanations.