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National UFO Reporting Center
Sighting Report
Occurred : 8/20/2004 20:00 (Entered as : 08/20/2004 20:00)
Reported: 8/27/2004 8:27:40 PM 20:27
Posted: 9/1/2004
Location: Des Moines, IA
Shape: Triangle
Duration:10m
Triangle sighted on I-35 in Des Moines

My wife and I were traveling south on I-35 from Ankeny to Des Moines, which is approx. a 12 mile drive. As we got onto the interstate I noticed a brightly lit object in the sky about halfway between Ankeny and DSM. I initially thought it was an aircraft approaching the Ankeny Regional Airport, but as I kept driving the object didn't seem to be getting closer. From my early vantage point the object looked to be at a height of around 1500 ft.. The craft was still in plain view when I passed the mixmaster area which is 6 miles from DSM, but considerably lower(1000ft.?). I now was thinking this might be some sort of tower, but I had never seen anything like this and being from that area I'm sure I would have noticed it before. I'm also sure that I wouldn't have been able to see it at the altitude that it was at now when I first saw it in Ankeny. When I finally passed it I could finally rule out a tower. I slowed down to 50mph and rolled down the window to look at it. It was right off the interstate and I was able to look directly up at it. It was only 250 ft up with 3 bright lights in the shape of a triangle with a moving, smooth red light that moved back and forth in a fluid motion. My wife who is an absolute skeptic on things like this pointed out 3 cars on the far side of the road that seemed to be not working. I turned around on Guthrie Ave.(DSM), which is about a mile from where I saw the object, to go back and get some footage with my Digicam. I could tell it was gone though and could now determine that it wasn't a tower because they just don't get up and walk away. I am a former Marine and I know what helicopters look like at night. This was something I'd never seen before. On a side note, I called a friend of mine after I got home to tell him about my sighting. He was at the Iowa State Fair which is approx 5 miles from where I saw the craft. I told him to watch the skies. The next day, he said the only thing he saw that night was a news helicopter get escorted from the area by 2 huey choppers. I thought that was interesting.

Best, ((name deleted))