A mysterious red glow photographed by a pilot as he passed over clouds above the Atlantic Ocean has baffled not only the pilot but also others who have seen the photos.
The three eerie images taken Friday, July 22, were posted on Reddit with the hopes of uncovering the mystery. The post included a note from the pilot, saying that he’s never seen anything like it.
And it has already created a frenzy of theories and comments from comparisons to scenes from Netflix’s hit show “Stranger Things” to a suggestion that it was probably a fishing boat using large panels of red LED lights to attract schools of saury fish. (Related: California residents see mysterious lights flash in the sky during earthquake)
“Maybe fishing vessels have never clustered so much to concentrate so much light? Three possible scenarios: 1. Fish populations down to small concentrations. 2. Chinese fishing boats have fished out the Pacific and are now factory fishing in the Atlantic. 3. Atlantic-based fishing boats have adopted China’s factory fishing strategy. None of these are good outcomes. Good luck to those fish,” stated one Redditor.
Still Redditors made the most of the opportunity to propose theories ranging from the end of times to aliens. Among the most popular was the “Stranger Things” comparison where a portal opens in Hawkins’ Lover’s Lake.
“Dustin’s trying to open up a portal to the upside down – It is literally a watergate,” a Redditor said, referring to one of the scenes in the series.
Another one believes the red glow could mean the end of days: “Don’t worry, it’s just the pits of hell staring back at you.”
“If I’m not wrong, the first DOOM game was set in 2022, so this is it. There comes the demons. There is the end,” added another Redditor.
“It’s so hot the ocean is getting wildfires now,” said an insightful commenter.
Nevertheless, without a close inspection, the cause of this phenomenon cannot be known for sure. The pilot remains anonymous.
Saury fishing employs hundreds of large LED lights on fishing boats’ perimeters to attract fish, enabling them to be easily picked up in nets. It is most frequently seen in the Pacific Ocean but the Atlantic saury is spotted from the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, Canada to Bermuda.
Although LED is the favored option for fishing boats because of its higher efficiency and lower weight, the fishing boat could be using another lighting solution like high-intensity discharge (HID). This vivid glow through the clouds indicates the use of HID, which could explain the volume of light escaping upwards in the photos.
Saury fish are attracted to bright, red lights and these large ships are then able to lure in thousands of fish that it plainly vacuums up. And when lights are placed under the water, they mirror off particles in the water. These small particles increase a natural food source for bait.
This is not the first time pilots have reported strange sightings similar to it. In 2014, Dutch pilot JPC van Heijst said he and his co-pilot flew over glowing clouds south of the Russian peninsula Kamchatka five hours into a 10-hour flight from Hong Kong to Anchorage, Alaska in a Boeing 747-8.
According to Van Heijst, they saw a strong flash of light like a lightning bolt directed vertically upwards, which was followed by a deep red and orange glow 20 minutes later.
There were no thunderstorms on their route or weather radar indicating the lightning did not emerge in a storm and the following glow was also a mystery. Identical lights have been seen from squid fishing boats, but van Heijst said this “would not make sense in this area.”
“The closer we got, the more intense the glow became, illuminating the clouds and sky below us in a scary orange glow, in a part of the world where there was supposed to be nothing but water,” van Heijst said.
The only cause the pilots could think of was a volcano eruption under the surface of the ocean 30 minutes before, but no ash clouds followed and regardless of there being a few volcanoes on their route, they had not been alerted to any activity.
A more recent incident was photographed in 2020 by a pilot flying over the Pacific Ocean. The images were taken as the plane was southeast of the Sea of Okhotsk.
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