|Occurred : 8/26/2017 21:00 (Entered as : 08/26/2017 21:00)
Reported: 10/2/2017 8:52:35 AM 08:52
Location: Hilton Head Island, SC
Duration:4 within an hour
|4 individual orange lights seen alone and in line formation high over the ocean (4 sightings in an hour)
My brother and I were fishing in the surf off of the Palmetto Dunes community. I noticed a very bright orange light over the ocean. It was silent, did not move, and was pretty far out.
It's also worth noting that it was high above the horizon, nowhere near the offshore boats that we could see. It stayed lit up for about 10 seconds, then faded out. I thought to myself, "Hmmm... that was weird... whatever." It was very out of place and did not look natural and was definitely not a plane or helicopter (which we had seen many of that night).
The bright orange light returned a few minutes later, in the same area. This time (sure that my mind was not playing tricks on me) I pointed it out my brother. His response was, "What is that?" And I said, "I have no idea... this is the second time I've seen it." It did the same thing as before, fading out after about 10 seconds.
We were still standing in the surf with our fishing pole, but we were looking at that area now and not fishing. Neither of us had our phone (because we didn't want it to get wet or get fish guts on it), but I wish we had been ready to video what happened next. About 5-10 minutes later, the bright light appeared again, but this time it either split up into 4 distinct lights, or it faded to a smaller size and three other lights appeared in the same area. They faded in one by one and seemed to be coming from the same source. So now there was a stationary cluster of 4 independent orange lights where there was previously just one brighter light. What really blew us away was that as soon as all 4 were visible, they immediately arranged themselves into a perfectly straight diagonal line formation. The space between them was precise and orderly, and the line just absolutely straight. The line of lights remained visible for only several seconds, then it faded out.
My brother and I were stunned and excited, and were especially amazed that we had both seen this. We kept watching the sky over the ocean, and about 20-30 minutes later, we saw two orange lights moving rapidly to the north from a more southern position than we had seen the lights before. They were moving about the same speed, and there were no blinking lights. Just two solid orange balls of light flying silently through the sky at an altitude that was probably less than a mile above the ocean. At one point, one seemed to jump up what could have been been hundreds of feet in the blink of an eye. It was hard tell distances without having anything to reference it with in the dark, but it moved like no aircraft we'd ever seen. They continued toward the area we had seen the lights earlier (but at about half as high in the sky as the previous lights) and faded out after about 15 seconds or so. This all happened between the hours of 9-10pm. We kept watching for another hour didn't s! ee anything, plus the bugs were biting pretty bad, so we called it a night.
We came back the next night hoping to catch a glimpse of something again, and we were prepared this time. We had chairs to sit in, fresh coffee, and our phones were fully charged. I even brought my son along. This time we didn't see any sign of strange lights in the 2+ hours we looked. It could be nothing, but the second night (when we saw nothing) we did see fighter jet patrols on the coast in pairs of two (loud noise, blinking red/green/white lights on wingtips, and we could see their silhouette in the moonlight when directly overhead).
They probably flew out of the Marine Corps Air Station in Beaufort, SC. In all honesty, this may just have been a coincidence, but they were deployed right around 9pm and the last pair returned close to 10pm... the same time we had seen the lights the night before. It's also worth noting that a pair flew right through the same general area that we had seen the lights the night before, and then turned in toward land and headed inland toward Beaufort.
Once we got back it was really interesting to find quite a few similar sightings with orange lights off the SC coast with videos on youtube from over the years. Whatever we saw, it was extremely strange, and it was really exciting to see something that was unexplainable.