'Monoliths' Found In Utah & Elsewhere (2020-2021)

Lobeydosser

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Austin Popper

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The metal sculpture was installed in the Canyon Rims Recreation Area, 100,273 acres of Federal land in Utah, under the authority of the Bureau of Land Management. There are dozens of parks both state and national, national forests and other reserves in the area. The sculpture was pretty close to the border of Canyonlands National Park. If it had been installed in the park, it would likely have been removed immediately after it was discovered and an investigation into who put it there begun. The Park Service has no sense of humor about such things. It would have been, literally and figuratively, a Federal Case.

There are many different agencies in control of various swathes of land out here in the Murrican West. Rules vary and boundaries are not always obvious, so it is up to the traveler to know where they are and who wants what from them. For the most part, you can camp pretty much wherever you want to in a National Forest or on BLM land, for up to two weeks. Other reserves are more like parks. Here's a good rundown of the main categories of places the Department of the Interior is responsible for. Forest Service is Department of Agriculture. Dams and lakes are often controlled by the Bureau of Reclamation. I have seen it claimed that the US Federal government is the largest organization of any sort that has ever existed. Some days, I believe it.

Lots of lovely pictures and some information that is probably accurate.
 

Tanglebones

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Did it originally have a Bishop Vulture sat at its base, saying "I'm sorry, there is bad news"?
 

stu neville

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I wonder where it'll turn up next?
Romania, apparently.
Hmmm... Maybe the owner retrieved it, but took along a leftover part from its construction to fill the hole. Doesn't look like it was deep enough into the rock to stay upright for very long. I suppose the claim it was placed in 2015 or 2016 is likely.
It had to be flat packed. A solid lump of steel that size wouldn't fall over, but would weigh 11 tons (even aluminium would be 4 tons.) That's a big old lump to cart around.
 

Stormkhan

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Perhaps it's a part of the Black Fortress of The Beast from the planet Krull.
 

Austin Popper

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Romania, apparently.

It had to be flat packed. A solid lump of steel that size wouldn't fall over, but would weigh 11 tons (even aluminium would be 4 tons.) That's a big old lump to cart around.
It was made of sheet stainless steel, held together with pop rivets and, according to one report I saw, silicone. So hollow steel box. Still not light, but nothing requiring a crane or anything. Not any kind of high tech "monolith" but a pretty simple sculpture. Depending on the thickness of the sheet, probably a few hundred pounds. The triangle left in the triangular cut appears to be fairly light gauge stuff. I'm sure it was part of the assembly. Could have been aluminum I suppose, but it looks to me like brushed stainless steel, something I have worked with a bit.
 

hunck

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There's a lengthy thread on it at abovetopsecret. Some at the start pronounced it fake news & photoshopped. A lot of jokey 'it's alien' posts. Some people knew the area though & it turns out it was nearer to a road than first thought and more accessible, though in a remote part of Utah.

Several links to videos of it. The more reasoned theory was it was transported already constructed - the rivets were buffed down which could've been done on site but probably not. They'd have had to have used a saw to cut into the sandstone to make a deep enough hole to hold it up. A team of maybe 3 was thought the minimum.

According to one post, the BLM said they hadn't removed it. But maybe they would say that..
 

EnolaGaia

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Local authorities have announced they haven't the time or resources to launch a major probe into the monolith's disappearance. The story resulted in a number of visitors who caused more than enough trouble already.
Disappearance of Utah monolith won’t prompt major probe

Police won’t be opening a major investigation into the disappearance of a mysterious silver-colored monolith that generated international attention and a mess when curious visitors made their way to the site of the discovery in the Utah desert.

The sheriff in San Juan County says the office doesn’t have the resources to devote much time and energy to the taking of the object, which was illegal to begin with because it was placed without permission amid red rocks on a remote section of public land. Its creator also remains a mystery.

Hundreds of people came to see it after the gleaming, almost otherworldly object garnered widespread attention as a literal bright spot in a sea of grim news during the pandemic. Authorities are accepting tips from anyone who saw anything suspicious related to the discovery. ...

Visitors parked vehicles on plants and left behind waste, according to the Bureau of Land Management. The site doesn’t have a parking lot, bathrooms or cellphone coverage, and some passenger cars had to be towed from the remote area after getting stuck. ...
FULL STORY: https://apnews.com/article/utah-monolith-disappearance-no-probe-6fe7aac134abe6439217e8f654c46a2f
 

Ermintruder

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Black Lives Matter? Don't see the connection
Bureau of Land Management

Guerilla installation art at its finest....the trick for this one would've been to get it installed via the same local planning application / zoning process as the Georgia Guidestones, and to have subtly choppered-in as a massive precast obelisk of indeterminately-deep foundations.
 

EnolaGaia

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This Instagram posting is claimed to be a report of the monolith's dismantlement and removal by a witness on the scene.

The removal is claimed to have occurred at circa 2240 local time on Friday (the 27th).

It's unclear whether the people who removed it were the same as its creators / installers.

rossbernard
If you’re interested in what exactly happened to the monolith keep reading because I was literally there. On Friday, 3 friends and myself drove the 6 hours down to the middle of nowhere in Utah and got to the “trailhead” around 7 PM after passing a sea of cars on our way in.

We passed one group as we hiked towards the mysterious monolith, while another group was there when we arrived, and they left pretty quick after we got there. For the next hour and 40 minutes we had the place to ourselves.

I had just finished taking some photos of the monolith under the moonlight and was taking a break, thinking about settings I needed to change for my last battery of drone flight when we heard some voices coming up the canyon. We were contemplating packing up our things as they walked up, so they could enjoy it for themselves like we did. At this point I looked down at my watch and it was 8:40 PM.

4 guys rounded the corner and 2 of them walked forward. They gave a couple of pushes on the monolith and one of them said “You better have got your pictures.” He then gave it a big push, and it went over, leaning to one side. He yelled back to his other friends that they didn’t need the tools. The other guy with him at the monolith then said “this is why you don’t leave trash in the desert.” Then all four of them came up and pushed it almost to the ground on one side, before they decided push it back the other when it then popped out and landed on the ground with a loud bang. They quickly broke it apart and as they were carrying to the wheelbarrow that they had brought one of them looked back at us all and said “Leave no trace.” That was at 8:48.

If you’re asking why we didn’t stop them well, they were right to take it out. We stayed the night and the next day hiked to a hill top overlooking the area where we saw at least 70 different cars (and a plane) in and out. Cars parking everywhere in the delicate desert landscape. Nobody following a path or each other. We could literally see people trying to approach it from every direction to try and reach it, permanently altering the untouched landscape. Mother Nature is an artist, it’s best to leave the art in the wild to her.
http://instagr.am/p/CIOOkwMBkAS/
 

Kondoru

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You might think something so delightfully Fortean would make everyone smile.
 

hunck

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This report says that it was removed by Utah adventure tour guides who uploaded a video of themselves taking down the monolith under the cover of darkness.

The video was posted to TikTok by Sylvan Christensen and shows him and three others pushing over the metal sculpture and strapping it to a wheelbarrow before taking it away.

The tour guides said they took the obelisk down because they were worried that the sudden interest would ruin the area with people driving, biking and flying to the location.
Which, when you read reports of people flocking there in vehicles, leaving rubbish etc & damaging the delicate desert landscape, seems a legit response. It attracted people who otherwise probably would never consider going there for the scenery & landscape alone.
 

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EnolaGaia

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This AP article provides a concise overview of the end game ... In case you hadn't noticed in the Daily Mail article Stormkhan cited above, the similar metal 'monolith' in Romania has also disappeared.
Athletes say they removed Utah monolith, legal case unclear

A gleaming monolith found deep in the Utah desert was striking ...

Revealed publicly shortly before Thanksgiving, it drew hundreds of people to remote, red-rock country to see and touch the otherworldly edifice ...

But the newcomers also flattened plants with their cars and left behind human waste in the bathroom-free backcountry. Now, two men known for extreme sports in Utah’s sweeping outdoor landscapes say it was that kind of damage that made them step in late at night and tear it down.

Sylvan Christensen and Andy Lewis have large online followings for their posts about skydiving-like BASE jumping and slacklining ... In videos posted on Instagram and YouTube, they said they were part of a group that pushed down the hollow stainless-steel structure and took it away in a wheelbarrow. ...

“The mystery was the infatuation and we want to use this time to unite people behind the real issues here— we are losing our public lands— things like this don’t help,” he wrote.

He said the group supports art and artists but said it was an “ethical failure” to cut into the rock to erect the monolith, and the damage caused by the “internet sensationalism” was worse. ...

The group’s action left plenty of disappointed people who had traveled long distances to see the gleaming silver structure, only to find the site empty aside from a triangular sheet of metal over a hole in the ground.

But the removal may not have broken the law. San Juan County sheriff Jason Torgerson said Wednesday that they can’t investigate it as a stolen property case because no one has stepped forward to claim the structure as their own. The original creator remains a mystery.

“The monolith was abandoned on public property,” Torgerson said in an email to The Associated Press. Since it was put there without permission in the first place, the original installation is also under investigation, he said.

A similar structure that appeared last week in Romania has also subsequently disappeared.
FULL STORY: https://apnews.com/article/athletes-say-removed-utah-monolith-e1bfbe0360c1a77b751c19b3b92ac28c
 

hunck

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More Monolith Mania - another one, found by hikers at the top of Pine Mountain, California.

‘The three-sided obelisk appeared to be made of stainless steel, 10-feet tall and 18 inches wide. The object was welded together at each corner, with rivets attaching the side panels to a likely steel frame inside

Unlike the first monolith found in the Utah desert, this latest one appears slightly more unstable.

While the Utah monolith was firmly buried in the dirt, the local reports suggest the California monolith is merely standing on the ground and could be pushed over.
1606995837668.png
 
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