10 years ago I went walking around the country for three months. I boarded a train with the intention of travelling to Hope in Derbyshire. However due to difficulties I was having on the train I had to get off at Edale, one stop short of “Hope” if you will…I got off the train and headed into the night. I got to the top of the nearest hill and surveyed the sky. It was a perfectly clear night and I was under the flight path of Manchester airport – the whole sky was filled with planes; small lights made their way steadily through the sky. I looked down and saw the carcass of a dead sheep. During this three-month period that I was walkabout there was a foot and mouth epidemic in the UK and most footpaths were closed. For the rest of the three months I had to choose my route carefully and quite often found myself walking on the roads because the use of the Pennine Way was not possible due to this epidemic. That night I stood there on the side of the hill staring at the sky – I looked down at the dead sheep, and had the strangest of thoughts. Maybe the powers that be had a special new aircraft that could circumnavigate the globe flying at ultra high speeds and altitude. It would be for monitoring and controlling humanity. Strangely enough the thing that most concerned me was the pilots. How weird their experience must be in having their humanity stripped away in the process of following orders. That was the thought and it never came up again throughout the three months. It was a strange moment
I continued my walk making my way north towards the Lake District and then across the country to Durham. This was amongst some of the nicest walking I have ever done because there is a silence to the North York moors, a kind of stillness that comes from the isolation. I got to a town just short of Durham one night. The effect of fasting and walking everyday for at least ten miles or so had placed me in quite a stressful state of being. I moved through the town and got to the other side where there was a quarry. It was late on about two o’clock in the morning and I had to think about making camp. I walked round the quarry surveying it for a possible camp sites but decided against it. There was water running into the quarry from the cliffs and I imagined it keeping me awake. There was also just something I felt about this place, like a presence possibly. I made my way out of the quarry and found a perfect spot on the other side of a bridge. There was a small bank a short way up-stream surrounded by poplar trees. Because it was late at night and I wanted a fire and I didn’t know how close to civilisation I was; the trees acted as a very good barrier in case there was a house nearby.
I lit my fire and had something to eat and after which a smoke, I was already in a very strange place and then from this entered into a deep state of what I considered a sort of dreaming. A portal opened up in time. I felt a kind of connection though which the past present and the future all melded together, time became meaningless and I could communicate freely with the past and future simultaneously.
I was standing by the fire and suddenly an eerie wind came up that stopped me in my tracks. I looked up to see the poplars being blown in a powerful and silent gust that moved only the tops of the trees. There was then a sudden quiet and I was distracted – I could not believe my eyes.
I saw coming in just behind the wind a V-shaped craft with the whole of the fuselage lit up with powerful flashing landing lights. There was a lit cockpit undercarriage with two pilots seated in it. So clearly could I see them that I knew their visors were blacked out and they were wearing flight suits (I could almost read their insignia). I looked then to the rest of the craft which seems cloaked against the sky, as if painted invisibly black. This craft flew over at about thirty miles and hour – gliding slowly over head, far too slowly for the internal combustion engine, but then it made no sound either. I watched the whole scene as it as it flew slowly across the sky; the humanoid pilots, the undercarriage lights, the dark black shape again the night sky. Then the next moment it was gone.
I can’t remember what happened after that. I got on with my hike and ended up somewhere just beyond Durham not too many days later. I got a lift home and carried on with my life. The strangeness of this vision broke my continuity – I could not place it into a linear time frame that connected with anything else. I thought about it for a long time and could recall every detail. But the vision had seemed like an altered state of consciousness, I had the premonition on the hill-top after all. I thought probably, It had been an enormous shift in my awareness that had forced me into another dimension – it felt more like a dream experience than being awake.
I spoke with friends about this eventually who suggested I might have actually seen a U.F.O. plain and simple. Possibly new secret technology being tested over Durham or even an alien craft. I had not considered any other possibility prior to this. I still do not know whether it was an enormous shift in my assemblage point which propelled me into a waking dream, or something else. I may never know.
Playlist: Doctor Rick Strassman talking to Whitley Strieber on Dreamland Radio