The mysterious “moving rocks” or “sailing stones” of Racetrack Playa in Death Valley, California are a popular topic for blogs, online communities, and various other websites. Photographs of the moving rocks also circulate via email along with numerous explanations for the phenomenon.
The rocks have generated a great deal of debate. Some commentators claim that photographs of the rocks and their tracks are digital fakes. Some observers put forward super-natural or other-worldly explanations. And others suggest that the moving rocks are part of an elaborate hoax with prankster-power being the real rock mover rather than any natural or supernatural influence.
However, the phenomenon is certainly real and has been well documented over many years. And the circulating photographs of the moving stones are perfectly genuine.
To date, no one has been present when the rocks have actually moved. However, scientists have studied the sailing stones for decades and clear and compelling evidence indicates that the rocks do indeed move without human or animal interference.
Examination of the tracks left by the moving rocks shows that they are created when the playa’s surface is covered with soft mud. Thus it seems highly improbable that human pranksters or animals could shift the rocks without leaving clear signs of their interference along with the rock “trails”. Cases of moving rocks have been recorded many times since the 1940′s and the phenomenon occurs in other playas in the region as well as the Racetrack, so the “hoax” theory also seems highly improbable.
That said, scientists still are not certain exactly how the rocks move. The general consensus is that wind is the primary factor. This theory is supported by the fact that most of the rock tracks run in the same general direction as the prevailing winds that blow across the playa.
One popular theory is that during wet conditions, strong wind gusts on the playa get the rocks sliding across the soft slippery mud. Experts speculate that, once a rock starts sliding, even more gentle winds may then be enough to keep the rocks moving for considerable distances. An alternative theory is that the rocks become embedded in a thin layer of ice and are subsequently dragged along as the wind propels the enclosing ice sheet across the playa surface.
62 Notes/ Hide
- hellopiercetheveillover reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- hellopiercetheveillover likes this
- triggerm0rtis likes this
- sailingtrails reblogged this from sailingtrails
- imaginations-master reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- acefish reblogged this from greensweatshirtgal
- adeptosceola likes this
- irrelevant-apparition likes this
- mint-flavored-steph likes this
- tmcb likes this
- greensweatshirtgal likes this
- curiousandinterestingthings reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- im-captain-of-this-ship likes this
- vladimirfibonacci reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- mosscarpet likes this
- thatchroof likes this
- julia-aax likes this
- jnanakimeriyatra reblogged this from i-can-see-it-all
- squeeezemylemon likes this
- i-can-see-it-all reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- magicalvoltage likes this
- dont-look-its-behind-you reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- oceanparalysis reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- oceanparalysis likes this
- mayonaka000 reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- lokitongue reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- sonijahoushi likes this
- iamvictor-roth likes this
- lazarusholmes reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- sailinqstars likes this
- lunarblue21 likes this
- u-n-explained reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- tealmon likes this
- the-great-deku-scrub likes this
- sorry-not-sorryyyyy likes this
- red-liquid reblogged this from kingofdisease and added:
- kingofdisease reblogged this from paranormalexpresso
- paranormalexpresso reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- paranormalexpresso likes this
- thevogz likes this
- mirrormaskcamera likes this
- maura-labingi likes this
- avatar-redpanda reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- oncecolourful likes this
- k-42 likes this
- toudoufukawa reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- agradoce reblogged this from strangeaccounts
- agradoce likes this
- avatar-redpanda likes this
- draughtofliving-death likes this