|Occurred : 8/15/2011 00:30 (Entered as : 08/15/11 0:30)
Reported: 11/15/2011 8:55:11 AM 08:55
Location: Dinkey Lakes Wilderness, CA
Duration:< 5 seconds
|Dinkey Lakes Wilderness, CA- Backpacker observes a light enter into the artmosphere and high speed acceleration to the southeast
I was backpacking with my dog during the evening of August 14-15 in the Dinkey Lakes Wilderness in the Western Sierra Nevada Mountains of California. This is a relatively benign wilderness for evening travel with a headlamp and I was enjoying the mosquito free journey through the lodge pole pine and fir forest with the many spectacular meadow rimmed lakes providing wonderful opportunities to see an occasional shooting star or rather (meteorites) from the Persid Meteor Shower. I usually schedule a trip during this period specifically to see this shower, yet this year, the waning gibbous moon phase eliminated all but the brightest meteorites from visibility. Upon reaching Second Dinkey Lake at approximately 12:25 a.m., I skirted the west side of the lake, heading south away from the South Lake to First Dinkey Lake connector trail and sat down on the southwest shoreline to take a rest. Looking up in the general direction of the Andromeda Constellation (northe! ast), I observed a red/orange flicker of light that appeared to resemble a meteorite on vertical entry into the atmosphere. At arm’s length, the length of this flicker appeared to be at least 3/4 inch when compared to the width of my thumb. As soon as the light faded away, an object, white in color, accelerated at an incredible rate of speed crossing the sky in a southeast direction from the exact location of the flicker. I immediately checked my watch and found it was 12:30 a.m. Having seen hundreds of satellites cross the sky at fixed rates of speed, this object clearly showed acceleration from the point of origin. This was not a satellite crossing the sky as I would have seen the approach heading toward the location of the original flicker. I immediately stood up, called my resting dog and within twenty feet we were back into the dense forest on the last ascent to Island Lake.