News & Opinion | November 24, 2020 12:09 pm

Mysterious Kubrickian Monolith Found in Utah Desert

The metal structure calls to mind "2001: A Space Odyssey"

Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah, USA. Hiking trail in the canyon. (Photo by: Andia/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
Andia/Universal Images Group via

It’s a sight that should be familiar to Stanley Kubrick fans: a mysterious metal monolith has been discovered in a remote part of the desert in Utah by state employees who were counting sheep from a helicopter.

As The Guardian reports, the metal structure was estimated to be between 10 and 12 feet tall, and it was planted in the ground. As helicopter pilot Bret Hutchings described it, “That’s been about the strangest thing that I’ve come across out there in all my years of flying.”

“One of the biologists is the one who spotted it and we just happened to fly directly over the top of it,” Hutchings said. “He was like, ‘Whoa, whoa, whoa, turn around, turn around!’ And I was like, ‘What?’ And he’s like, ‘There’s this thing back there — we’ve got to go look at it!’”

The Utah highway patrol shared images of the monolith to its Instagram page (along with some pictures of the sheep they were counting as well), writing, “Inquiring minds want to know, what the heck is it? Anyone?”

Hutchings offered a guess, saying that it appeared to be manmade and was likely some sort of art installation.

“I’m assuming it’s some new-wave artist or something or, you know, somebody that was a big 2001: A Space Odyssey fan,” he said.

Let’s hope that’s all it was.