|Occurred : 7/29/2006 03:00 (Entered as : 07/29/06 3:00)
Reported: 7/29/2006 2:38:20 PM 14:38
Location: Sonoma, CA
|An extremelly bright circular orange/amber light traveled NW to SW pausing for 20 sec. 3x. Not far away
I was working in the grocery store while my co-workers were outside the store, taking a break. One of my co-workers yelled from the door for me to come outside, quickly. I ran, suspecting some altercation or car accident.
As I got outside, my co-workers were standing in the parking lot looking north east. I imidiatly saw a bright orange/amber light about 30-40 deg. above the horrizon.
I then ran due east to the edge of the parking lot to gain darker skies. There is a field direcly east of the store, with less light pollution.
We stood for about 10 minutes, facing east and watching this "object" move from left to right. It paralleled the horizon in that its over all altitude with respect to our location deviated only slightly as it stopped and remained motionless for up to 20 seconds. It stopped 3 times. Each time the object began to move again, its altitude remained some what stable. It did not appear to move on an exactly strait path but the deviation in alltitude was minimal.
When I first saw the object, it was large compared to regular air traffic. If I tried to "pinch" the object with my thumb and index finger, arm strait, the object would be 1/8" to 1/4". I am 6'1" tall. The distance from my eye to my thumb, held in this manner is 2' 6".
About half way along the objects path, it encountered the marine layer of fog that is common this time of year here. The object lost some brightness and some size, but it still apeared larger and brighter than any normal air traffic.
also, I did not see the object "pause" until it had encountered the marine layer. This is where the object lost some of it's disk like appearance. I mean disk like the sun, and not like a frisbee.
Before the fog there was a slight whiteness to the center of the object, but it remained mostly dark orange, not red, but a rich orange that I have never seen on any air craft. I have seen orange in many air craft lights, but never that rich and intense a color.
The only noise we could hear was our own conversation and speculation with respect to the object.
The object gradually began to deminish in size and brightness and did look like commom air craft in the last minute and then dissapeared. In the last quarter of our observations, the object looked very much like Mars did the last time Mars was at it's brightest.
The object seemed to cut a path between the Sonoma Valley and the Napa Valley. This would put it about 5 to 10 miles away from me.
I must add that I have eaten lunch in the same location for 7+ years. I am very aware of the normal air traffic attributes here. Sitting in the same spot in the dark for 7 years, you would think that I might have seen something sooner. I am an amature astronomer and have made several sundials. I have seen many "Life Flight" Helicopters and Sherrif helicopters. I have watched the air traffic surrounding the Sonoma Valley from home and to work, and I have never seen any thing like this. I know what it isn't.