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Petaluma, CA

Sighted on Saturday 22. September 2012
Reported on
Shape: Light | Duration: 5 minutes

8 twinkling orangish-light reddish starlike lights, starting at low altitude-climbing to 5k-10k and wink outPetaluma Sonoma county California Sept 22, 2012 7:46pm My girlfriend and I were traveling south on 101, just past the truck pull off area on the hill between Petaluma and Rhonert Park just after dark. On the Petaluma side. We pulled off the highway and stopped, facing in a southerly direction.Red Honda Civic in case anybody saw us.We saw 5 lights, in a generally straight line and roughly equidistant. Slowly traveling east and ascending.They were a light, muddy red color, 2-3x larger than a planet in the sky and noticeably twinkling. Twinkling a bit too much for a lower altitude "light".When we first noticed them, the furthest away and lowest light was at our right and just above the hills on the coast hills on the west side of the north Petaluma farmland, about 6 miles away, perhaps near and above the Two Rock Coast Guard station/Tracon Petaluma (707) 765-7000. Maybe at 500-1000 ft above the ground.The closest light to us was to our south, in front of us and higher than the one to the right.Then, 3 formed a loose group up high in front of us and winked out. The other 2 traveled towards where the loose group was and winked out, one by one, in about the same area, at maybe 6000 to 10,000 ft. They stayed about the same size, maybe a little larger as they traveled from our right, to right ahead of and above us.After the first 3 disappeared and the other two started traveling in the same direction, 2-3 other new identical "lights" winked into existence low over the hills to our right, roughly equally spaced and followed the others to the same general area and winked out.We tried to call Petaluma Coast Guard Tracen. Not open.It wasn't airplanes or helicopters - no red beacon or red/green nav lights.They moved too quickly to be balloons and too slow for jets and who ever heard of jets forming a sloppy 3 unit group in 6 miles? No matter which direction these objects were traveling (it seemed that their direction varied slightly), their brightness remained consistent.The surface winds were light and from the west.It wasn't high altitude objects with the setting sun reflecting on it, because we were on the wrong side of the object for a reflection.The objects were to far away to hear if they made any sound.Literally, 300-500 people must have passed us on the highway.Accompanying is a Google Earth kmz file showing where we were stopped on the highway and aprox where we determined that the objects appeared to the west.

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