Quite some time ago, I undertook a project I called "Project Newsprint." I contacted dozens of newspapers in Western Australia and Victoria, and asked readers to let me know of any past or current sightings they knew of. I was pleasantly surprised at the large response I received. I wrote a number of blog posts based on the details of sightings sent in to me. For example; to read about a spectacular Western Australian case,click here; and for details of three Victorian vehicular close encounters, click here.
A recent email
Just a few days ago I received an email from an individual, about an incident near Wangaratta, Victoria, around June 1990. His account reads:
"...shifted out to Wangaratta at the start of 1990 to do a cooking course at their TAFE. Towards the end of the course (around June 1990) I got a job cooking counter meals at a pub in the Whitfield/Cheshunt area.
|Image courtesy of Google maps|
I was at a loose end on a Sunday night and decided to drive down there, just to check out how long it would take to drive from Wangaratta ( I did not want to be late for the first shift.)
I drove down to the pub and saw that it took around 30 minutes or so and so I headed back. When you drive from Wangaratta to Whitfield it is along a winding country road and with no lights at all. On both sides of the road you have flat fields, mostly used as cow pasture, but to your right you have the occasional hills which are heavily wooded, set far back at the end of the pasture.
As I was driving back, with the hills to my right, I noticed a cluster of lights high up on a hill in the distance. As I got closer, more details became clearer. The light seemed to be almost at the top of a hill and nestled amongst the trees. I parked parallel to it, stopped the car and got out to take a closer look at it. The actual description of it now is a little vague, given that it was nearly thirty years ago.
|Image courtesy of Google maps|
It seemed to be a large white light/cluster of lights, very white and bright, with possibly a peak at the top of it, imagine something like a carousel/merry go round/circus tent top in appearance.
I honestly could not give you an accurate idea of its size, but it might have been as high as the trees in the area, maybe around 20 or so metres high.
I stood there for a few minutes, just looking at it and debating what to do. I thought of walking towards it but then some common sense kicked in. It was around midnight, in the middle of nowhere, no torch, nothing. I would have to park the car, on the side of the road, no one to watch over it, if someone passing along decided to break into it (a bit unlikely but you never know.) Also, to get to the light I would have to walk ten minutes across a large paddock, to reach the base of the hill, plus another twenty minutes to walk up the hill. Once again, with no torch and up a heavily wooded hill in the midnight dark. At that stage I decided to play it safe and move on.
Even today,when recalling it, I know I was not looking at just a cluster of lights like a farmhouse lit up or a string of decorative lights in someone's backyard, or someone going out spotlight shooting. This was something else and it unnerved me something bad. I got in the car and drove back to Wangaratta, seeing the light recede in the distance.
The next Friday I did my first shift at the pub and got on well with a couple of the ladies working in the kitchen, so I thought it safe to raise the subject with them at the end of the shift. I started off by asking them if they had seen any strange lights in the area or up in the hills around the area. They got quiet, looked at each other, smiled and asked me what I had seen. I recounted what I had experienced and they told me a couple of stories they had been told by the locals.
1. Some of the locals had been diving back to Wangaratta when a disk like pinwheel hovered over their a while, and then vanished.
2. A couple of the local men were on the back roads late at night, doing some spotlight shooting. Their lights went dead and a large silvery disk flew over them and over the forest without making a sound. They reported to others that it scared the you-know-what out of them and the two locals were not known for lying or exaggerating.
This was all they could tell me in regards to local sightings and the like. I worked at the pub for another month and drove there and back at night for around a dozen times, but no sign of anything again, not even house lights in the hills. The last time I went back there would have been 1993 or 1994. I drove up there at night and went up and down the road but still nothing. I slept for a few hours in the car and then spent some time carefully going over the road during daylight looking into the hills for any sign of houses that might have been lit up back in 1990, but nothing. To his day, I still do not know what it was, but,to the best of my knowledge, I doubt it was houselights or something similar. The size, location, timing and the like just do not point in that direction."
I looked through the 1989, 1990 and 1991 issues of the Victorian UFO Bulletin, published by the Victorian UFO Research Society, but found nothing about sightings in this area. However, it is nice to know that, several years later, Project Newprint is still bringing in anomalous sightings.
I would appreciate hearing from anyone who may have any details about sightings in this general area, via firstname.lastname@example.org.