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National UFO Reporting Center Sighting Report
Occurred : 7/18/1999 04:10 (Entered as : 07/18/99 04:10)
Reported: 7/18/1999 21:34
Posted: 8/10/1999
Location: Escondido, CA
Shape: Fireball
Duration: 5 minutes
A large circular orange light which moved to the north, then south, north again the up until it dissapeared.

My name is ((name deleted)). On the early morning of 07/18/99 at about 4:10am I was on a dark rural road very near my home when I noticed a lighted object from my drivers side window (See house.jpg). My first thought was that someone was launching a hot air balloon from the back of a house. The object I saw was clearly very near to the ground because I could easily see the outline or black silhouette of the roof of the house in front of the object. The weather was warm and visibility was good. There was overcast and you could not see any stars nor the moon. I was heading North East on a street called North Iris Lane when I noticed this well lit orange circle of light from behind a house which was no more than 300 yards away from my vantage point. Again, my first thought was a hot air balloon and the glow from someone filling it with hot air. I kept looking out my drivers side window but as I drove I lost sight of the object as my sight was now obscured by homes and trees to my left. When I reached the stop sign about 150 yards from where I first noticed the object, I made a left turn and saw that the object was no longer at ground level but now was clearly in the sky and heading in a North West direction. I never leave the house without my digital camera and when I turned the corner I stopped my car and grabbed it. The camera I used was an Olympus D-400 Digital Zoom camera. It took a few seconds to open the lens cover, when I looked through the viewfinder I feared that the light from the street lamp in front of me would not allow for a good shot. I therefore waited till the object was just above the lamp post and took a picture (see pic1.jpg). I waited all of an additional 3 seconds and took another picture pointing in the same direction (see pic2.jpg). The object I saw was not bright, the best way to describe it was if you've seen Close Encounters of the Third Kind, the blue light that followed the space ships except that this light was a dull orange in color instead of blue. After I took two pictures I s! aw the object stop moving up and to the North and changed directions to up and South. It stopped about 3 seconds later then started to head back North and to the West. About 3 seconds later the object just starting heading straight up at a consistent rate of speed. Rather than just stand there I got back in truck made a right turn into our town home complex and stopped my car in front of my house. When I got out I could still see the object still heading up and getting farther away. I went inside grabbed my wife out of bed and insisted she come outside NOW! When we got outside I pointed to the sky and said "look do you see that?" she said yes and asked what it was. At this point it looked like a very bright star and was very far away. We both stood there for the next 5 to 10 seconds and watched as it passed through the overcast. It got smaller and smaller when finally we could no longer see it. We both looked around and you could not see any stars in the sky. I pulled my car into my driveway and immediately called the Escondido Police Department. The woman who answered the phone listened , chuckled and told me to call an 800 number. When I did, I got a recording for the TV show "Unsolved Mystery's". I called her back, gave her a sarcastic thanks and asked her to take my name and number in the event anyone else reported anything. I went out this morning during daylight and took a couple of pictures from the road where I first saw the object behind a house (house.jpg). Using PhotoShop I made a orange circle which represents the size and color of what I first thought was a hot air balloon (house-ufo.jpg). I also took a couple of pictures of where the object was just above the lamp post on the street adjacent to my home (see pic1-day.jpg). Again using PhotoShop I made a circle to show you the size and color of the object prior to it moving South, then NW and up (pic1-day-ufo.jpg). On a side note my wife had mentioned that our neighbor had approached her only 2 or 3 days before and asked her if she had seen anything strange in the skies. I have given our neighbor your number and she said she would call you as apparently she claims to have seen a UFO as well. My apologies for such a long winded description but I get excited every time I think about what I saw. I am very open minded and would be stupid to think that we are alone in the universe. However I have never really believed in us being visited by something outside of our planet. In other words I was a true skeptic until last night. I have gone over the encounter many times in my head and cannot find any reasonable explanation for what I saw. Now man made object that I'm aware of could do what I saw this thing do. In the event you are wondering let me answer a few questions that others have asked me. There was no sound at all. This orange circle was consistent in color and did not change. There were no other colors present and there was no blinking. It was not a blinding bright but rather a dull fiery orange. I saw no background objects (no spaceships or anything like that) I do not do drugs. Thanks for allowing me to share this incident. I do not care what others think since I know what I saw and that is all that matters to me. You have my full permission to use what I have just written and make available my email address should anyone want to contact me.