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Skinwalker Ranch, Utah

John Locke

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If you have watched the The Secret of Skinwalker Ranch program on History Channel, you may have seen the episode they tried to fly drone to survey the land. However they had issues. They couldn't connect the drone to the RC. The pilot seemed professional, but they aborted the effort. I think it was an M210, but not sure.

I was able to locate Skinwalker Ranch in Utah, and I just happen to be driving by on the way to Dinosaur National Monument, near Jensen, UT. So I checked B4Ufly and Airmap and confirmed there were no restrictions to fly the area. With that confirmation I decided to fly the ranch to see what I could find. When you get to the locked ranch gate by car, it says no trespassing, video surveillance, and no drones allowed. So I quickly turned around and backtracked on the dirt road about a quarter mile away to a clearing ideal to fly from. Since they don't control the land I was flying from, a public dirt road, and they don't control the airspace, I saw no legal issues flying over the ranch real quick to check it out, like the helicopter landing pad they installed for the TV program, letting the rich owner of the ranch to come and go by helicopter, which I find reckless with all the odd things that occur there.

When I took off, the M2Z worked just fine. Video feed was normal, control was normal. As I approached the ranch property I hit RECORD. Immediately the gimbal went wacky, going up and down uncontrollably. So for safety sake, I immediately returned to home with no problem, and left. The control of the craft seemed solid during the flight. It was only the gimble going bonkers. I had no gimbal control the whole flight. Besides the gimbal uncontrollably going up and down, the SD video looks a little weird at times when the gimbal "seemed" to be still, with sort-of a jello effect, or a strange vertical distortion of the video. I assumed the ranch had some kind of electronic jamming enabled at the time. I tried to fly at least 750ft away from the house and use my zoom, in an effort to mitigate the risk of anyone at the ranch hearing the drone. If they didn't have electronic jamming enabled at the ranch, then there is clearly something strange going on in the area, which is what the TV program is about, with their scientists trying to figure it out.

The next day I flew elsewhere and my M2Z worked just fine, no problem, like normal. I'm curious if it was intentional jamming I experienced, or something else like the film crew experienced.

Here's the video below, unedited. If anyone else has experienced similar interference, let me know.

 
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Phantomrain.org

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If you have watched the The Secret of Skinwalker Ranch program on History Channel, you may have seen the episode they tried to fly drone to survey the land. However they had issues. They couldn't connect the drone to the RC. The pilot seemed professional, but they aborted the effort. I think it was an M210, but not sure.

I was able to locate Skinwalker Ranch in Utah, and I just happen to be driving by on the way to Dinosaur National Monument, near Jensen, UT. So I checked B4Ufly and Airmap and confirmed there were no restrictions to fly the area. With that confirmation I decided to fly the ranch to see what I could find. When you get to the locked ranch gate by car, it says no trespassing, video surveillance, and no drones allowed. So I quickly turned around and backtracked on the dirt road about a quarter mile away to a clearing ideal to fly from. Since they don't control the land I was flying from, a public dirt road, and they don't control the airspace, I saw no legal issues flying over the ranch real quick to check it out, like the helicopter landing pad they installed for the TV program, letting the rich owner of the ranch to come and go by helicopter, which I find reckless with all the odd things that occur there.

When I took off, the M2Z worked just fine. Video feed was normal, control was normal. As I approached the ranch property I hit RECORD. Immediately the gimbal went wacky, going up and down uncontrollably. So for safety sake, I immediately returned to home with no problem, and left. The control of the craft seemed solid during the flight. It was only the gimble going bonkers. I had no gimbal control the whole flight. Besides the gimbal uncontrollably going up and down, the SD video looks a little weird at times when the gimbal "seemed" to be still, with sort-of a jello effect, or a strange vertical distortion of the video. I assumed the ranch had some kind of electronic jamming enabled at the time. I tried to fly at least 750ft away from the house and use my zoom, in an effort to mitigate the risk of anyone at the ranch hearing the drone. If they didn't have electronic jamming enabled at the ranch, then there is clearly something strange going on in the area, which is what the TV program is about, with their scientists trying to figure it out.

The next day I flew elsewhere and my M2Z worked just fine, no problem, like normal. I'm curious if it was intentional jamming I experienced, or something else like the film crew experienced.

Here's the video below, unedited. If anyone else has experienced similar interference, let me know.


So you just gave some real validity to what the Owner was saying. o_O

In some cases, it was because the ranch affected the camera equipment and caused them to fail,” he says. “I know that's hard to believe, but it happens all the time out there for no reason we've been able to find yet. Just ask Matt where that balloon went once it reached a mile high? As far as we can tell, it just disappeared!”

poltergeist phenomena and crop circles, to UFO sightings, dangerous electromagnetic forces, dancing fireballs, and cattle mutilations and than there is you flying your drone with a Gimbal Flip :)


Screenshot 09-17-2020 01.36.27.jpg
 

dirkclod

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Ive had my gimbal just go crazy at times and was no reason and came in only to go right back up snd not have no problems.
Figured it was just a glitch.
I suspect that was John’s experience .Though knowing it was a private Helo pad there I would never had flew to snoop and see what
i could and that is what you said you were doing John. They did have the sign saying no drones and even though they don’t own the air space there was a reason for it. Maybe being the Helo comes and goes that was the reason for the sign.
As far as jamming i don’t think it would have just caused your gimbal
to do that.
They did not want drones there and just because you could fly legally
there knowing what you did don’t mean you should have.
Had they had any jamming devices there it would have stopped
your drone videoing or not. I say it was just a glitch.
Or was it.😳
 

John Locke

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Not to argue the morality of flying this mission, but yes, I knew they landed helicopters on that slab of cement. They also launched rockets from it. There's no H painted on it, hence it's not registered as a helicopter pad, nor is it listed. As far as I was concerned it was technically a multi-use outdoor patio, likely not even permitted, given the remote location. As for the no-drone sign, I could put one of those in front of my house, but that doesn't change the FAA rules, only a property owner's expressed desire, if it's seen. I also knew they aren't in production right now, so expected no air or land activity. Lastly, I had full VLOS of the airspace I planned to fly, and I did stay my distance, using my M2zoom, not flying up close. Do I get credit for that? ;)
 

Reginald E Johnson

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I’m guessing that you don’t also know how one of the Guys there had some kind of Brain damage when they tried to dig on that Property! They have had Drone Malfunctions, Balloons disappearing, Drills damaging but you wanted to fly there? I just thank God that you got your Drone back-in one piece!
 

dirkclod

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Not to argue the morality of flying this mission, but yes, I knew they landed helicopters on that slab of cement. They also launched rockets from it. There's no H painted on it, hence it's not registered as a helicopter pad, nor is it listed. As far as I was concerned it was technically a multi-use outdoor patio, likely not even permitted, given the remote location. As for the no-drone sign, I could put one of those in front of my house, but that doesn't change the FAA rules, only a property owner's expressed desire, if it's seen. I also knew they aren't in production right now, so expected no air or land activity. Lastly, I had full VLOS of the airspace I planned to fly, and I did stay my distance, using my M2zoom, not flying up close. Do I get credit for that? ;)

But you knew.
No.
You were spying/snooping man you know thats not cool.

But lets get away from that your gimbal just had a glitch.
Happens.
Now you guys can talk about ..some kind of electronic jamming..poltergeist phenomena and crop circles, to UFO sightings, dangerous electromagnetic forces, dancing fireballs, and cattle mutilations but i don't buy it and i'm out.

I'll just read what everyone else thinks about this. ;)
 

John Locke

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I’m guessing that you don’t also know how one of the Guys there had some kind of Brain damage when they tried to dig on that Property! They have had Drone Malfunctions, Balloons disappearing, Drills damaging but you wanted to fly there? I just thank God that you got your Drone back-in one piece!
I've seen all the episodes. You can see the whole series online at Historychannel.com. I knew there was an element of risk, but I knew they were not in production. Since I was driving by, just 2mi from the dirt road to the ranch, I had to fly it. I'm not sure I would try it again though, I'm now convinced something is weird with that area. You never know if the things you see on TV are true, or fake for sensationalism, for an audience. I'm a skeptic, had to see for myself. Now I know. o_O
 

Capt KO

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Most unusual gimble. 🤔 If you try again, I promise not to tell, just pm me. 😃 love this spooky 💩

Cool flight, would love to go there myself. Looks like you were possibly in that high microwave radiation area above the rocket launching pad. Try the ridge line next time, strange stuff. And isolated.

The Truth Is Out There...........🙄
 

John Locke

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Looks like you were possibly in that high microwave radiation area above the rocket launching pad. Try the ridge line next time, strange stuff. And isolated.
Like I said, I don't think I'd fly it again. However your idea is good, approach from the north instead of the south like I did. I never got very close to the multi-use outdoor patio where they launched rockets and landed helicopters. You can see the pad in beginning of the video. I was zoomed in 2X with my camera.

In the last Skinwalker episode this season, episode 8, starting around minute 27, it showed microwave energy appearing to be shooting out of the ground vertically in a straight line, OR... coming from space and shooting down. To me, it appears to be originating from space, because of the straight line on the ground. I don't think nature would create such a straight line. If I recall correctly, the microwave energy data was gathered from a US geological survey from a science satellite with some special sensors. I don't think I was close to the line of vertical energy. I would estimate I was about 750 to 1000' away, but I could be wrong.

Below is the photo of the sensor data.

1600398103334.png

Using a Google satellite image, below I have marked a double yellow line where the energy line appears to be located in relation to the ranch house. The yellow circle is about where I was when I stopped to turn around, 400' AGL. I've noted where the house and pad are located, where I launched from, and where the ranch gate is.

1600399548325.png
 
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Phantomrain.org

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Like I said, I don't think I'd fly it again. However your idea is good, approach from the north instead of the south like I did. I never got very close to the multi-use outdoor patio where they launched rockets and landed helicopters. You can see the pad in beginning of the video. I was zoomed in 2X with my camera.

In the last Skinwalker episode this season, episode 8, starting around minute 27, it showed microwave energy appearing to be shooting out of the ground vertically in a straight line, OR... coming from space and shooting down. To me, it appears to be originating from space, because of the straight line on the ground. I don't think nature would create such a straight line. If I recall correctly, the microwave energy data was gathered from a US geological survey from a science satellite with some special sensors. I don't think I was close to the line of vertical energy. I would estimate I was about 750 to 1000' away, but I could be wrong.

Below is the photo of the sensor data.

View attachment 113257

Using a Google satellite image, below I have marked a double yellow line where the energy line appears to be located in relation to the ranch house. The yellow circle is about where I was when I stopped to turn around, 400' AGL. I've noted where the house and pad are located, where I launched from, and where the ranch gate is.

View attachment 113259


I did not watch the series yet but im wondering did they fly a drone over the area , or was it just the balloon. Also im wondering if you would have flown at 400 ft if the incident would have occurred since your thinking air space and not land interference.
 

John Locke

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I did not watch the series yet but im wondering did they fly a drone over the area , or was it just the balloon. Also im wondering if you would have flown at 400 ft if the incident would have occurred since your thinking air space and not land interference.
As first mentioned, they tried to fly a commercial drone over the property to survey the area, but it wouldn't work. The craft wouldn't connect with the RC.

I was at 400ft AGL by the time I got 2300' out. I flew that high to mitigate sound detection, if someone happen to be around the ranch, like property security guy, Dragon. I estimate that I was about 1000' from the house when the interference hit my gimbal. I immediately stopped, waited maybe 10 seconds in a hover and tried to control the gimbal, but I had absolutely no gimbal control. It simply went up and down randomly, as you see in the video. Only the first 3 or 4 seconds at the beginning of the clip had no interference. It started almost immediately when I started to record, which was probably about 2200' out. The flight to the yellow circle noted was about 2300', taking about 90 seconds. The flight during that 90 seconds had no interference, my gimbal worked just fine to fly FPV. However, once I turned on the camera to record, it went wacky, and it was wacky the whole return flight, until it landed. Once it was on the ground, I got back gimbal control again. Really strange sequence of events.
 

Cyber3xpert

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If it was electronic jamming, I think you would have lost connection between the drone and RC, due to being unable to send or receive any signals. Wonder what would happen if you brought an acoustic receiver for jamming tech and see if you could hear anything?? Another theory is, there was electronic jamming, but it only targeted camera systems and feed, so no one could get a good video of the place. Did you try taking pictures? Maybe you could zoom in all the way and take a pic?
 

John Locke

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If it was electronic jamming, I think you would have lost connection between the drone and RC, due to being unable to send or receive any signals. Wonder what would happen if you brought an acoustic receiver for jamming tech and see if you could hear anything?? Another theory is, there was electronic jamming, but it only targeted camera systems and feed, so no one could get a good video of the place. Did you try taking pictures? Maybe you could zoom in all the way and take a pic?
Yes, I think jamming just the camera is doable, but unsure. If it is doable, that would be the logical thing to do by the property owner. That's just enough to scare the crap out of you and leave, not knowing the cause of the malfunction. There was no time to do anything else when my primary concern was RTH asap. The camera was zoomed in all the way when it went bonkers.

This place is very remote in northeast Utah. There are no Interstate highways nearby, little reason to travel through this area, unless you're going to the Dinosaur Monument, or Flaming Gorge recreation area. I know I'll never return to the area. Is there anyone else brave enough to try a flight there?
 
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Phantomrain.org

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If it was electronic jamming, I think you would have lost connection between the drone and RC, due to being unable to send or receive any signals. Wonder what would happen if you brought an acoustic receiver for jamming tech and see if you could hear anything?? Another theory is, there was electronic jamming, but it only targeted camera systems and feed, so no one could get a good video of the place. Did you try taking pictures? Maybe you could zoom in all the way and take a pic?

I agree , I went back and watched some video of when we Submerged the Phantom 4 camera under water what happens is the Camera signal continues but we loose control of the gimbal and it starts to flip up and down very similar to what happened here but also the camera also looses signal soon after.

The only way to fix is the restart , than all is good. I dont think anyone was jamming , i think its something else.
 
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dronerdave

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I've had my MP gimbal go nuts a couple of times. Each time the conditions and locations were different. The first time I was way out over a lake where a bridge crossed. I thought a bird hit me. I hit full up and saw my strobes heading upward. It was a bit far to tell if a bird was after me, so I started to manually high tail it back. After regaining my whits I checked the telemetry which looked fine. A few seconds into the flight back, the video suddenly stabilized so I did a RTH. The ordeal freaked me out enough that I packed it up and left.
The next time this happened my quad was close by and as I was starting a video of some rolling hills, this gimbal shake started again. I was only a few hundred feet away this time and it was visually obvious nothing was physically messing with the drone. The gimbal never stopped jumping around so I quickly brought it back and landed. Fired it back up and all was fine.

Even though the first spot I was flying from was the location of a horrendous event perpetrated by Cary Stayner in years past, I think it was a glitch making the gimbal jump. If not, it scares me to think what is at the other spot o_O
 

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My thoughts are that all UFOs are manipulating the magnetic field around them. Hence, the anomalies concicidetal with UFOs in the area.
 

Conservative Nihilist

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As first mentioned, they tried to fly a commercial drone over the property to survey the area, but it wouldn't work. The craft wouldn't connect with the RC.

I was at 400ft AGL by the time I got 2300' out. I flew that high to mitigate sound detection, if someone happen to be around the ranch, like property security guy, Dragon. I estimate that I was about 1000' from the house when the interference hit my gimbal. I immediately stopped, waited maybe 10 seconds in a hover and tried to control the gimbal, but I had absolutely no gimbal control. It simply went up and down randomly, as you see in the video. Only the first 3 or 4 seconds at the beginning of the clip had no interference. It started almost immediately when I started to record, which was probably about 2200' out. The flight to the yellow circle noted was about 2300', taking about 90 seconds. The flight during that 90 seconds had no interference, my gimbal worked just fine to fly FPV. However, once I turned on the camera to record, it went wacky, and it was wacky the whole return flight, until it landed. Once it was on the ground, I got back gimbal control again. Really strange sequence of events.
It took considerable chutzpah to launch a drone over posted private property way out the sticks where every Chevy truck is fitted with a rifle rack in the window, but John evidently researched the legality of the sortie, before attempting to traverse a flight path tailored for maximum stealth. That spontaneous break-dancing gimbal syndrome that thwarted the adventure is odd, to say the least, but not unexpected at a spooky location like Skinwalker Ranch.

My hat is off to John the renegade drone pilot from Orange County. With my luck, I'd still be hoping for bail in the pokey holding cell after being collared by the local sheriff for attempting an aerial foray like that while also suspected of being a city slicker. On a serious note, I've also watched a few episodes of the History Channel program about that UAP travel hub known as Skinwalker Ranch. Now there is one mystery I'd love to see unfold, if I may steal the lyrics of an old song.
 
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