NUFORC Home Page
Web Report Indexes : by Event Date | by Location | by Shape | by Posting Date

National UFO Reporting Center
Sighting Report
Occurred : 7/5/1973 20:00 (Entered as : 07/05/1973)
Reported: 1/28/2008 1:56:27 AM 01:56
Posted: 2/14/2008
Location: Stockton (intersection of I-5 and I-580), CA
Shape: Changing
Duration:3hrs
Witnessed numerous UFO's along I-5 from Stockton south to Tehachipi on busy holiday weekend.

This event took place in 1973. I was 21 years old and traveled from San Diego County to Portland Ore with my brother and his wife on 4th of July weekend.

My brother was in army aviation at the time and I was a student pilot. Another brother was an air controller for the SAC, a close cousin an army pilot and his brother an Air Force kicker. We grew up adjacent to air bases: Kirkland, Biggs, Mira Mar and Camp Pendleton. We are very familiar with aircraft and their abilities.

On the return trip from Portland we were at the cloverleaf of I-5 and I-580 in the Stockton California area at dusk. (perhaps 8PM). The freeways were very busy. My brother and I saw a craft coming from our 10 o'clock position very low. Our first assumption was that it was a crop duster as they are common in that vicinity and they prefer to work right up to sunset. The craft had three lights, red, green and amber, not unlike any aircraft except that they were in the wrong positions and the anti-collision lamp did not blink.

The craft came in right over our windshield at about 60 -100 ft AGL! We looked directly up at it but only saw a blur. It appeared to be transparent. It past over us to our 2 o'clock position and only about 300 ft lateral and 100 ft altitude. I got a good look at it. It was tubular with a simple frame for a fuselage. The craft was transparent as if made from see through covering. It had short stubs protruding from its sides that were not sufficient to be wings or airfoils. It had no engines.

It immediately, without turning, returned in our direction while descending. An impossible maneuver for any aircraft that I know of. It's speed was slow, perhaps 45mph. The stubs turned out to have bright lamps attached and they were activated nearly blinding us. The craft flew down to the deck illuminating the field of wheat (or rice) and pushing it aside as it moved a few feet above it. I again got a close look and the craft was not a duster or helicopter. I have never known dusters to use lights as dusting is too dangerous at night.

We looked at other motorists at they seemed not to notice. We followed the progress of the crafts as it continued to crisscrossed I-5 in a similar fashion as we moved south at about 80 mph. Complete darkness fell swiftly. We then saw many craft with two lights performing the same maneuvers amongst the fields. They were acting as if they were looking for something on the ground by "strafing" it with their lights which were too close together to be mistaken as autos in the distance. We also noticed that at times they would stop and hover over the California Aqueduct and shine their beams downward. We stopped several times to witness the events. Though many times the hovering objects were close they made no sound.

Again other motorists seemed to notice nothing. There were usually three in sight at all times. We tried to rationalize that it was helicopters, agricultural machinery or autos in the distance. However, in the following years i made that same trip many times at night and never saw anything like it again. Our only rational thought was that it was police looking for someone. We listened to the radio in ernest hoping for a news announcement. Of course there was none.

The object(s) began following us at fence top level along the opposite side of the freeway, about 100 yards behind. We tested them several times by speeding up to 140 mph and then slowing to about 20mph. The craft(s) kept pace with us! When they seemed to be bored with this game they would fly off laterally at high speed but still stay within sight. Often they would be replaced by another in their former position.

After the initial first sighting near Stockton, my sister-in-law fell asleep in the back seat. We attempted several times over the next few hours to awake her to witness the show but were unable to. She was clearly alive but slapping and shaking could not wake her.

We were totally confused and decided to stop in at a truck stop a few miles off the freeway near the bottom of the Grapevine. We had witnessed this phenomenon for about three hours at this point. We made casual inquiries in the restaurant of the staff and truckers but no one saw anything. My sister-in-law remained unconscious. We continued on our trip south and had no more sightings.

Upon awaking the next day my brother and I went over what had transpired. We discovered that we were missing somewhere between 90 and 180 minutes of time. We checked our gas receipts which were dated and time stamped and new our speed averaged 80 mph except for the few times we stopped which we accounted for. We had no sensation that we were abducted then or since and suffered no ill effects.

Many years later I read a book by a UFO investigator that stated that 1973 was a big "flap" year in California and the Central Valley in general.