Occurred: 2002-02-09 19:45 Local
Reported: 2002-02-21 10:44 Pacific
Duration: <5 seconds
No of observers: 1

Location: Boulder, MT, USA

Shape: Oval
Characteristics: Aura or haze around object

Glimpse of large bright object low to horizon in trajectory disappearing behind ridge.

On February 9th, between 7:30 and 7:45 pm I was in the pool at Boulder Hot Springs, looking at Orion, Taurus, Sirius, Saturn, and watching strobe lights of a plane headed north. I wore my glasses out to the pool specifically to skywatch. While watching the plane, I caught sight of a large lighted object fairly near the horizon and in my right peripheral field of view. As I focused on the object, it followed a curved trajectory right and down and disappeared behind a ridge. The object was very bright, white or maybe slightly yellow/gold, and roundish, though not a perfect orb. It was only in my sight for a couple of seconds, yet the impression was that it was wider than tall. At least there was some shading that kept it from being a perfect orb. It was definitely not a meteor or a star, as it was too large, its length about 2/3 of the distance between the stars on Orion's belt. Had it been a meteorite of that size hitting the earth, I think we would have heard or felt it, and the trajectory would have been different.

The next day we drove south on the highway and noticed a number of drainages cutting back into the ridge behind Boulder Hot Springs. There have been a few reported sightings in the Elkhorns and Townsend area, but this was a little south of the Elkhorns.

Posted 2002-03-19

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