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Ripley, New York (United States)

Sighted on Friday 03. October 2014
Reported on
Shape: Sphere | Duration: Undisclosed
Source:

The sighting occurred on either Friday, October 3 or Saturday, October 4 at approximately 7:45 p.m. The sun had already set, still light enough to see, but getting dark fast. There was a slight breeze coming from the west. My wife Teresa and I both saw the object, although I saw it first. We were walking our dog in the hay field heading east. I observed a light rising to the east over the tree tops. It was climbing fast and my first thought was that it was a small, private airplane that had just taken off from some nearby airfield. Yet, I know of no known airfields in the area; a fact I later verified while talking with a local resident. The object was very bright, as if a large spot light was affixed to the front of it. I could not hear it. I could not see any flashing lights. Nor could I see any features such as wings. The object was just big, bright and round. As the object climbed I was not viewing it straight-on, but at a slight angle. It did not seem to climb very high and then leveled off. It turned and headed northwest. I could not tell you what its altitude was as I had no frame of reference. It seemed twice as high as the nearby treetops and perhaps one mile away. It was at this point I drew my wife's attention to the object.As my wife and I watched, it was traveling northwest, more or less paralleling the nearby road. We were now viewing it "side-on" of the object. However, it struck me because it was still equally bright; in other words, there was no change in illumination even though we were now seeing its side. It traveled slowly. Then it did a maneuver that startled us. A very fast, very sharp "V" like maneuver. Angling sharply down to the left, changing altitude to about one-half its cruising altitude relative to the tops of the trees. When it reached the bottom of the V it immediately moved sharply up, continuing its V-shaped flight path until it returned to its previous cruising altitude. It traveled a short distant and then did another "V" maneuver, but this one smaller in overall change of altitude. It continue to travel northwest and by now we were viewing its side and back; yet, it was still as bright as when I first saw it. When it had flown about one-half mile it changed direction following the path of the road that makes 45 degree turn to the north. We were now viewing it back-on; yet it was still very bright, no change in illumination. As it flew further I caught sight of a solid red light from the underside of the object, but this was fleeting. The object was now too far away and we quickly lost sight of it.The total sighting lasted about five minutes. By the time it was out of sight it was dark. During our observation I thought that it may be a radio controlled plane or a drone. My son is a member of the Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA). So, I know a little about radio controlled planes. During our observation, the thought crossed my mind that it was such a thing. But, this object was too large, too bright, and the operator would certainly have lost the plane because it had easily flown out of radio range. Could it be a drone? That too crossed my mind, and I know little to nothing of drones. A friend suggested it could have been a government controlled drone. Perhaps, but I have no way to check this out. Can a drone make such maneuvers?

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