The past year has been dominated by weird news and the stories of monoliths popping up across the globe is just the latest addition to the madness.
But now finally the monoliths may have been explained.
Keep scrolling to learn all about it...
The mystery of the flagship monolith in Utah started almost two weeks ago during a routine wildlife check that took an extraterrestrial turn...And it really got the internet talking.
Officers spotted the mysterious monolith right in the middle of rural Utah.The Utah Department of Public Safety took a helicopter over the desert when the strange sighting took place earlier this week.
They were helping the Division of Wildlife Resources do a routine count bighorn sheep...When they suddenly noticed a strange-looking object on the ground.
The object appeared to come straight out of 2001: A Space Odyssey."One of the biologists spotted it, and we just happened to fly directly over the top of it," pilot Bret 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!'"And there it was.
Right in the middle of a clearing in the rock stood the strange object.Hutchings said it was easily "between ten and twelve feet high."
Although he admitted it didn't look like it had fallen to the ground...But instead, placed there on purpose.
"We were kind of joking around that if one of us suddenly disappears, then the rest of us make a run for it."Still, Hutchings thought the object was more than likely placed there by a human, rather than an extraterrestrial.
"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...
In reference to the 1968 film where a large black monolith appears to study early civilization.
A mysterious Monolith has been discovered deep in the Utah desert 👽 (via @CNN) https://t.co/KqgGFUnEha— Culture Crave 🍿 (@Culture Crave 🍿)1606187423.0
Although it was all pretty exciting, the DPS quickly confirmed that it is illegal for any forms of artwork to be placed without permission...
"No matter what planet you're from," they said in a statement released last week.
Who put the metal monolith in the Utah wilderness #IWouldGladlyPayToSee https://t.co/x7ttyaCV3w— Sydney Kravetz (@Sydney Kravetz)1606179808.0
Well, this didn't stop people from visiting the eerie monument.Tourists were quick to track down the monolith to investigate themselves and, of course, some wild theories were born as a result.
Speculation was rife as to what the monolith could be...
Or where it even came from in the first place. Let's take a look at some of the best theories born on the internet...
Based on Satellite images: the #utahmonolith was placed between Aug 2015 & Oct 2016. https://t.co/roDL9ws1oa— Austin Grant (@Austin Grant)1606234953.0
Firstly, it could be an art structure.
One of the more popular theories - and one supported by officials themselves - is that the monolith could have been made and placed by an artist.
physically i’m at my house, but mentally i’m at the utah monolith https://t.co/2PIL4822W5— shane (@shane)1606333268.0
Which artist though?A gallery owner recently claimed the work may be a tribute to the art of the late artist John McCracken, who created similar-looking objects before he died in 2011.
A second theory was that it could be alien evolutionary device.
Thanks to its resemblance to the famous object from Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, many can't help but jump to a science-fiction conclusion.
Thinking about aliens <3 #utahmonolith https://t.co/pWjeOgtssq— ᴍᴀᴅɴᴇss ᴋᴇᴇᴘᴇʀ (@ᴍᴀᴅɴᴇss ᴋᴇᴇᴘᴇʀ)1606199404.0
Thirdly, it could be an alien probe.
Besides having some specific impact on the inhabitants of planet Earth, the monolith could "just" be an extraterrestrial probe, sent here to learn about our ways. But would placing it in the middle of the Utah desert be the best place to probe humanity?
We could just leave the Utah monolith alone and mind our business. And not summon an alien or demon or whatever du… https://t.co/gPuaq3AV5k— Tinu Abayomi-Paul (@Tinu Abayomi-Paul)1606203998.0
However, others believe that it could be a Kubrick fan installation.The visionary director left a profound legacy, garnering millions of fans around the world. As the monolith he devised for 2001: A Space Odyssey is one of the most famous objects in movie history, it's not out of the question that one of the director's followers decided to recreate it.
And, lastly, some believed that it could be a government "control device."
Because of course, they did. The American Southwest is rife with government military installations and mysterious bases like Area 51. Having the monolith be a part of some government experiment is a connection that's easy to make for any conspiracy-minded Internet dweller.
@nowthisnews The truth is around us 👽— Vic (@Vic)1606412930.0
Of course, the actual government didn't confirm any of this.But the DPS did warn people against trying to find it: "It is in a very remote area and if individuals were to attempt to visit the area, there is a significant possibility they may become stranded and require rescue."
But last weekend, things became even more mysterious...
Because the monolith suddenly vanished!
What started as a routine flyover suddenly took a turn after Utah officers stumbled upon a shiny, mysterious monoli… https://t.co/ue2PnTCevb— CNN (@CNN)1606633265.0
According to the New York Times, the monolith disappeared into thin air.
The Times reported over the weekend that the monolith had been removed - and Utah authorities said they had no idea who removed it.
The mysterious metal monolith that was found last week in the Utah desert has vanished. https://t.co/tUFYRCfhe0— The New York Times (@The New York Times)1606620551.0
Utah's Bureau of Land Management confirmed the news.In a statement, they revealed that the structure was removed last Friday evening by "an unknown party."
Posting to Facebook, the Bureau of Land Management wrote: "We have received credible reports that the illegally installed structure, referred to as the “monolith" has been removed from Bureau of Land Management (BLM) public lands by an unknown party. The BLM did not remove the structure which is considered private property. We do not investigate crimes involving private property which are handled by the local sheriff’s office."
And then, to make things even weirder...A monolith suddenly showed up at the Petrodava Dacian Fortress in Romania. "We have started looking into the strange appearance of the monolith," said Neamt Culture and Heritage official Rocsana Josanu.
"It is on private property, but we still don't know who the monolith's owner is yet. It is in a protected area on an archaeological site."
What does it all mean?
So the #Monolith first appeared in #Utah and then disappeared yesterday. Then seemingly instantly appeared on the o… https://t.co/fczbd2syB4— David Vox Mullen (@David Vox Mullen)1606730853.0
And then, just when you thought there couldn't be more twists in the tale, a couple came forward claiming that they witnessed the monolith being escorted away.In a lengthy Instagram post, monolith-hunter, Riccardo Marino, wrote: "All that was left in its place was a message written in the dirt that said 'bye b***h' with a fresh pee stain right next to it."
"Someone had just stolen the statue, and we were the first to arrive at the scene.""We arrived at the location to see nothing but the foul markings left and we realized we must have been the first people to see it removed."
And even weirder?"At about 10:45pm roughly 4 miles into Lockhart Basin we passed a truck that was hauling a large object strapped down In the bed with the hatch open. I thought for a second that it was the monolith but after driving 8 hours to get here we ignored it and convinced ourselves they were hauling off-road vehicles. We continued 30 minutes down the bumpy dirt road and arrived at 11:11 pm to the pinpoint I selected for us to start hiking from."
"Unsurprisingly there were other campers in the area that all seemed to be asleep. Right before leaving the car we heard voices in the distance, they were coming from the trucks we had just passed.""We didn’t acknowledge them and continued minding our own business. Our short hike under the moonlight was easy to navigate by just using google maps."
"We made the best of the situation and created a more fitting exit for this otherworldly piece of artwork. Our rendition of the monolith returning back to space. Sadly some rando’s now posses it instead of our alien friends."
And if you thought you'd seen the last of the mystery monoliths...Think again.
A third monolith was soon discovered...But this time in California.
The strange silver column was found on Pine Mountain by a group of hikers.
And since the discovery, many have made the trip to see for themselves.
🚨 🚨 BREAKING NEWS 🚨 🚨 There is currently a monolith at the top of Pine Mountain in Atascadero!! (Photos by… https://t.co/CweJZdhocM— Connor Allen (@Connor Allen)1606946371.0
According to local newspaper Atascadero News, this monolith isn’t cemented in the ground as firmly as the one Utah was.
"The 3-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."
A third monolith found. Pine Mountain California...😨 https://t.co/XyIJga7P0y— LANGD⊙N (@LANGD⊙N)1606968056.0
But, before the monolith had the chance to mysteriously disappear, it was destroyed.
Video footage shared on DLive by the user CultureWarCriminal shows a group of men making their way to the monolith and tearing it down... all while chanting "Christ is king."
@ConnorCAllen @Atownreporter We absolutely need to mark these 3 monoliths on map before they are being destroyed to… https://t.co/T1tPySzaIL— #HKforTrump HKer のぞみ (@#HKforTrump HKer のぞみ)1606971209.0
One man then addresses the camera directly:
"Christ is king in this country. We don't want illegal aliens from Mexico or outer space, so let's tear this b**ch down."
@PoRiverJamBand Update: the california monolith has already been destroyed by white supremacists (this isn’t a joke)— Borwin (@Borwin)1607029998.0
The group streamed their efforts for a whopping 5 hours...
And, after finally managing to topple the structure, they replace it with a wooden cross near the site.
A group of men shouting "Christ is King" and "America First" destroyed a new monolith and replaced it with a wooden… https://t.co/3p4AA2FexK— VICE (@VICE)1607018414.0
They even stop to pose and take photos with the new statue.
As per Vice, a male voice in the video can be heard saying: "It was a learning experience. Nobody got arrested... It was fine because it was funny."
Those weird monolith things popping up lately in Utah, Romania, and California..."Xtian" nutjobs apparently destroy… https://t.co/B3451bNSLi— Akabanes_vaccinenuggets (@Akabanes_vaccinenuggets)1607060386.0