Utah monolith: Difference between revisions

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In November 2020, a metallic pillar {{convert|9.5|ft}} tall was discovered in the red canyons of southeast [[Utah]] by state biologists.<ref name="height"/><ref name="width"/> Widely described as a monolith,<ref>{{cite news |last1=Scribner |first1=Herb |title=What is the Utah monolith? |url=https://www.deseret.com/u-s-world/2020/11/25/21719419/utah-monolith-explained-explainer-details-viewo-coordinates |access-date=November 25, 2020 |work=Deseret News |date=November 25, 2020}}</ref><ref name=cnn-utah-monolith-art-trnd>{{Cite news|title=Utah helicopter crew discovers mysterious metal monolith deep in the desert|url=https://edition.cnn.com/style/article/utah-monolith-art-trnd/index.html|last=Asmelash|first=Leah|date=24 November 2020|access-date=24 November 2020|publisher=[[CNN]]}}</ref> it appears to be made of [[stainless steel]] riveted together into the shape of a [[triangular prism]].<ref name="A Weird Monolith Is Found"/><ref name="Mysterious shiny monolith found"/> Dating to some time between August &nbsp;2015 and October &nbsp;2016, its origin remains unknown.
Public officials announced the discovery but withheld its location to prevent people gettingbecoming lost while trying to find it. Within hours, the public found it on [[Google Earth]] and began visiting the structure where it has been erected on public land.
On November 18, 2020, state biologists of the [[Utah Division of Wildlife Resources]] were carrying out a survey of [[bighorn sheep]] from a helicopter<ref name=cnn-utah-monolith-art-trnd/> when one of the biologists spotted the structure and told pilot Bret Hutchings to fly over the location again. Hutchings described the moment of discovery:<ref name=guardian-helicopter-pilot-finds-strange-monolith-in-remote-part-of-utah>{{Cite news|title=Helicopter pilot finds 'strange' monolith in remote part of Utah|url=https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/nov/23/helicopter-pilot-finds-strange-monolith-in-remote-part-of-utah|last=Holpuch|first=Amanda|date=24 November 2020|access-date=24 November 2020|work=[[The Guardian]]}}</ref>
{{Quote|text=“OneOne of the biologists is the one who spotted it and we just happened to fly directly over the top of it. He was like, ‘Whoa"Whoa, whoa, whoa, turn around, turn around!" And I was like, ‘What"What?" And he’she's like, ‘There’s"There's this thing back there – we’vewe've got to go look at it!’”"}}
Hutchings said the object appeared manmade and was planted in the ground, not dropped from the sky.<ref name=guardian-helicopter-pilot-finds-strange-monolith-in-remote-part-of-utah/>
==Location and dating==
The location of the monolith was not disclosed by the flight crew to prevent people gettingbecoming lost while trying to find it.<ref name="guardian-helicopter-pilot-finds-strange-monolith-in-remote-part-of-utah" /> The monolith is not present in Google Earth photos from August &nbsp;2015 but appears in an October &nbsp;2016 satellite image.<ref>{{cite web | last=Robertson | first=Adi | title=Even Utah’s mysterious monolith may be no match for Google Earth | website=The Verge | date=2020-11-24 | url=https://www.theverge.com/2020/11/24/21656223/mysterious-utah-monolith-osint-google-earth-tracking | access-date=2020-11-25}}</ref><ref>{{cite news |last1=Panecasio |first1=Steph |title=Mysterious monolith puzzle has been solved by internet sleuths |url=https://www.cnet.com/news/mysterious-monolith-puzzle-has-been-solved-by-internet-sleuths/ |access-date=November 26, 2020 |work=CNET |date=November 25, 2020}}</ref> It is in Lockhart Basin in [[San Juan County, Utah|San Juan County]], on land that President Donald Trump removed from [[Bears Ears National Monument]] in 2017.<ref name="Mysterious shiny monolith found">{{cite news|last1=Maffly|first1=Brian|date=November 24, 2020|title=Mysterious shiny monolith found in otherworldly Utah desert|work=The Salt Lake Tribune|url=https://www.sltrib.com/news/environment/2020/11/24/mysterious-shiny-monolith/|access-date=November 24, 2020|archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20201125181451/https://www.sltrib.com/news/environment/2020/11/24/mysterious-shiny-monolith/|archive-date=November 25, 2020|url-status=live}}</ref>
PeopleWithin foundhours of the locationdiscovery andannouncement, showedpeople upvisited the site to take pictures within hours of the discovery announcement. The owner of a nearby repair shop said that a surge in traffic could damage local Native American sites and artefacts.<ref>{{cite news |title=Utah monolith already attracting crowds – locals worried about people’s safety and damage to the land |url=https://www.ksn.com/news/utah-monolith-already-attracting-crowds-locals-worried-about-peoples-safety-and-damage-to-the-land/ |access-date=November 25, 2020 |work=3 KSN |agency=Nexstar |date=November 25, 2020}}</ref>
The metal structure is 9.5 feet (2.90 meters) tall and is located in a slot canyon in an area of red rocks.<ref name="height"/><ref name="width"/> It has three sides and appears to be made of [[stainless steel]], put togetherjoined with rivets.<ref name="A Weird Monolith Is Found">{{cite news |last1=Yuhas |first1=Alan |title=A Weird Monolith Is Found in the Utah Desert |url=https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/24/us/Utah-monolith-red-rock-country.html?searchResultPosition=2 |access-date=November 25, 2020 |work=The New York Times |date=November 24, 2020}}</ref>
Although the word ''[[wikt:monolith|monolith]]'' refers to a single great stone, the word has become closely associated with [[Monolith (Space Odyssey)|the monolith]] from the film ''[[2001: A Space Odyssey (film)|2001: A Space Odyssey]]'', which the Utah monolith resembles.<ref>[https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/monolith-found-utah/ Was a Mysterious Monolith Found in Utah?] DAN EVON, ''Snopes'', 24 NOVEMBER 2020 </ref> It has also been compared to works by artist [[John McCracken (artist)|John McCracken]], who died in 2011. There was speculation that the monolith was the work of Petecia Le Fawnhawk, who has installed sculptures in desert locations and lived in Utah, but she said it was not one of her works.<ref name=bbc-utah-monolith-internet-sleuths>{{Cite news|title=Utah monolith: Internet sleuths got there, but its origins are still a mystery|url=https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-55071058|last=Ponniah|first=Kevin|date=27 November 2020|access-date=27 November 2020|publisher=[[BBC News]]|last2=Nagesh|first2=Ashitha}}</ref> The [[Salt Lake City Council Hall|Utah Film Commission]] said that to their knowledge the monolith is not from a film production.<ref name="A Weird Monolith Is Found"/>