Cleburne County's X-Files
From: UFO UpDates - Toronto <ufoupdates.nul>
Date: Fri, 12 Jan 2007 09:42:38 -0500
Fwd Date: Fri, 12 Jan 2007 09:42:38 -0500
Subject: Cleburne County's X-Files
Source: The Cleburne News - Heflin, Alabama, USA
Cleburne County's X-Files
Alabama and Cleburne County have not been known for "hotbeds" of
strange activity including UFO and Bigfoot sightings - despite
the fact that National Forests seem to be a big factor in
appearances of the latter.
However, some quick Internet searches turn up some strange
activity over the years right here in Cleburne County including
several sightings of strange lights and one reported incident of
large footprints in the Talladega National Forest.
The "bigfoot" reports comes from the Bigfoot Field Researchers
Organization at www.bfro.net
Dated September, 1994 at Sweetwater Lake in the Talladega
National Forest, the report states, "About seven years ago my
wife and I were at a lake in the middle of the Talladega
National Forest in Alabama. The lake was Sweet water Lake. We
were fishing in a small boat at the end of a slew early in the
morning, we were the only ones at the lake, I think it was on a
Wednesday and we were all alone. We heard something scream, it
started out as a howl and turned into a long high pitched scream
and it was so loud it echoed through the mountains. It made the
hair stand up on the back of our necks. But that is not all.
About a year before that my stepfather and I were hiking around
the same lake, we liked to fish at a spillway way on the
backside of the lake, and about 1/2 mile into the hike we
crossed a fire brake about 20 feet wide, now keep in mind that
we are a pretty good way back in the woods, we have crossed
rocks thorns and briars and all kinds of rough ground. And right
there across the dried mud in the fire brake is a set of foot
prints dried into the mud. They were not huge, they were about
the size of a full grown man but they did look human, I just
couldn't understand why a man would be this far back in the
woods without shoes on. And over the years there is one thing I
have thought about a bigfoot would have to grow up, so maybe it
was a young Bigfoot."
The man had another story which he relates, "I once worked with
a man in Alabama that after we became friends, told me he and
his whole family were picking huckleberries at Sweetwater Lake,
the huckleberries grow wild all over the area.
He and his wife and two children were picking away when they all
heard something in the trees. They all turned around to see a
hairy man standing there. He said it was a little taller than a
man and as soon as it saw them it ran off into the woods. It
scared them so bad that they left."
The National UFO Reporting Center at www.nuforc.org has this
report of a church van being followed by a sphere of light as it
passed through the Hollis Crossroads area in the fall of 1995.
The report states, "The multiple witnesses were all Georgia
residents of that area, and attended the same church. The
occasion leading to the event was a church trip to Anniston
Alabama by this small group of church ladies. They were being
driven in a large van by a male member of the congregation who
was a prominent local businessman, and also known as a trusted
community leader in that African-American neighborhood. Accounts
vary, but there may have been 10+ total witnesses on this trip,
this investigator interviewing six of them. This harrowing
account was held confidential by these witnesses for about two
years, only being discussed among their small group of friends.
PW (one witness) stated that on the night in question, she
and her church friends were riding up to nearby Anniston Alabama
to play bingo. They were seated to the rear of their friend, the
van driver, and as usual talking and having a nice ride,
enjoying the nice clear weather.
"(Note......the driving route was determined as follows; west
out of Lagrange and across the adjacent state line into Alabama,
then turning north on Alabama Hwy 431 which carries them to I-20
which is about 35-40 miles distant to the north.)
"As the van approached the vicinity of Wedowee Alabama on Hwy
431, the witnesses decided to roll up all of the windows because
of the poultry plant located just off the highway (Braswell's
Farms). PW indicated that the odor of the production there was
pretty strong, and this was something they normally did enroute
"As the van approached and passed the plant, PW and some others
noticed what they thought was a large new light over the top of
the building (which is located on a rise). It was large enough
that they commented on it being newly installed. One witness
stated that it was not a light, but some "flying thing".
"Another witness commenting that no, it was just a new light.
Then the other witness replying something to effect of "Well if
that's so, here it comes"! The light flew down from over the
plant and approached the moving van and then began to pace it as
it drove north. The light was described as being round like a
globe, about the size of a "dishpan" in diameter (bigger than a
basketball). The light was described as being "yellowish", with
the brightness of a lightbulb or street light. It continued to
pace the van, with descriptions of the light varying it's
distance and altitude to as low as about 12 feet and then back
up to 100 feet or treetop level; ...sometimes over the van,
sometimes beside it, but always pacing it. This episode began
near Wedowee on Hwy 431... During this wild ride, the ladies
became frightened, trying to get down below the window level and
still taking an occasional peek. The driver stated that he was
trying to drive and look at the same time which he found
difficult. He verified that the light appeared to be about 100
feet over the poultry plant before it swooped down and began
following them... During this ride up to I-20, the PW at one
time saw what she described as a shape within the light, a shape
very similar to a "human embryo", which she indicated in her
sketch. Further that it seemed to be "moving around" within the
light. At another point, she recalled something like a beam
projecting out that hurt her eyes, and those of her friend.
Adding that they both later developed watery and sore eyes.
Another witness did not describe a beam, but told of a
"sparkling effect. Another witness described a "bad glare" that
beamed through the window.....just suddenly clicking on.
"This activity continued as the van moved northwards closer to
I-20, passing through the small Alabama "hill country". At one
point, the vehicle drove through an underpass, finding the globe
of light waiting on the other side.
"This light also demonstrated terrain avoidance maneuvers and
continuously adjusted it's speed to that of the van.
"As this group finally reached the area of the intersection of
Hwy 431 and I-20, the light flew off over a field, then
accelerated steeply upwards, leaving a streak, then became the
size of a star and vanished." Thus ends Toms Sheets, State
Director MUFON of Georgia's report.
This reporter has discovered that in the summer of 2003 two
Cleburne County Sheriff's deputies were out shortly after
midnight along Alabama 46 in the Trickum Valley area when their
patrol car was suddenly bathed in bright light as if they were
parked inside a well-lit football stadium.
The officer driving attempted to outrun the light but it
continued to hover over them and finally they pulled off the
road to get a better look. After a few minutes the UFO departed
but all of the electronics in the car were fouled.
The vehicle would crank and run but the lights and other
electrical equipment would not work. In the process of leaving
the scene the two officers ran upon some teenagers who were out
camping and they also saw the mysterious light.
The previous year, around the same time period, on of the
officer and his son saw some type of object fly over them
leaving a lot of wind in it's wake but no sound.
A year prior, all in the Trickum area, the officer had seen a
strange looking object move slowly from behind some trees, stop,
back up as if trying to hide and then swiftly moving forward,
rising, banking and flying off toward a nearby mountain.
When the odd shaped object moved from behind the trees the first
time, the officer saw what appeared to be a man sitting inside a
I later interviewed a resident of the area who said there has
been a lot of large "cargo-type" planes which regularly fly
through the area at almost treetop level (you can see the pilots
in them he said). He said there had always been reports of
"unusual lights" and visible sightings of a lot of helicopters
suspected of "hunting dope".
Another Ranburne resident said an unusual aircraft began flying
over their home in 1997 and continued for many months - always
at the same time. She said she assumed the aircraft was involved
in drug interdiction work or practicing low level flying. She
said the craft was very unusual looking with what appeared to be
a massive wide-screen television in the middle of its underside.
She said the craft made an extremely loud noise - far louder
than any jet, bomber or cargo plane.
The National UFO Reporting Center has this report of a sighting
in the Talladega National Forest near Oak Level which lasted
about three hours.
"On the morning of January 31,1996 my husband was unable to get
back to sleep and left home shortly after 1 a.m. He arrived at
his preferred hunting spot in the Oak Level area of Cleburne Co.
... He planned to sleep in the truck until daybreak. When
parked at the top of the mountain and facing west the glow of
lights from the cities of Anniston (S.W.), Jacksonville (due
west) and Piedmont (N.W.) are visible on a clear night which
this was. Shortly after arriving he reclined the seat to nap but
noticed a bright light over the city of Jacksonville. This he
passed off as a bright star or the planet Venus. That is until
the "star" started to move. He passed this off as a helicopter
training flight from Ft. McClellan which lay just to the south
of Jacksonville in the Anniston glow of lights. His assumption
of a training flight was suddenly changed when this light darted
at a humanly impossible speed to the north toward Piedmont. In
less than a second the light hovered in the glow of Piedmont's
lights having covered a distance of about 15 miles almost
instantaneously. After a few minutes the craft darted back so
that it was again over Jacksonville. This time he witnessed a
beam flash downward... He observed the movements of this
light for quite some time and in fact became bored and
eventually drifted off to sleep. After dozing for and an hour or
so he awoke to the same activity in the skies to the west This
soon after changed when the light was approached by a larger and
brighter one which came from the west. The smaller began moving
around it in a way that is most easily compared to insects
flitting around a light. This seemed to have served to convey
some type of message because at that point the smaller light
headed straight in my husband's direction. The larger light
faded backward! in the direction from which it had come (that of
Sand Mtn. approx. 40 miles WNW of Jacksonville.) As the craft
continued in his direction my husband chambered a shell into his
deer rifle. This done the light almost instantly began backing
away in the same direction taken by the larger as if it sensed
And another report from NUFORC files concerning a huge ball of
light observed for half an hour near Sweetwater Lake in the TNF.
"The exact location of the sighting was across from a dirt boat
ramp on Sweetwater Lake, which our hiking trail passed by. As we
broke into the field that runs along the lake and watershed, the
fog was very thick. This is when we first noticed flashing that
we assumed to be heat lighting or something similar. By the time
we reached the boat ramp, we were away from the field and
completely out of the fog.
The flashes were coming from three points. Two points were far
away enough that the source could not be seen. The 3rd flashing
was across the lake and only a short distance inland (I guessed
around 100 yards at the most). The light was flashing at various
intensity, length, and time. Ranging from a very small fraction
of a second to nearly a second. The intensity also ranged from:
just enough of a flash to see the low level clouds light up with
a white ambient light, to a bizarre ball of light that peaked
over the tree line by many feet. When the ball of light was
large enough, it resembled plasma. The colors were red, yellow,
white, purple, etc. The ball also appeared to move around, by
maybe 30 yards to the left or right.
"I should also note that the "ball of light" as I've called it,
was only 300 yards away at most, and completely silent. We
watched the three flashes for about 30 minutes until they became
And a third NUFORC report from Hollis concerning a triangle
shaped object. "Me and three friends were on our way to Anniston
in two seperate vehicles. It was around 6 and it was dusk. There
was still light in the sky and we could see an outline of the
object we saw soon after. We had just turned at Hollis
Crossroads and were driving down the road when we saw what was
either a very low flying object, or an enormous object at a
higher altitude. It was trianglular with a flashing green light
on it. It moved slowly, or slower than a plane would, across our
field of vision, which was the windshield since it was almost
directly above us. We called our friends in the other vehicle to
ask them if they saw it, and they said they had and described it
like we did."
About Wayne Ruple
Cleburne News editor Wayne Ruple is a native of Ashville. Before
coming to Heflin, he worked for three years as a computer
systems manager in Birmingham. Ruple has worked for The Sand
Mountain Reporter in Albertville, and was the editor of The
Independent in Robertsdale. He has also worked for the Shades
Valley Sun, the St. Clair News-Aegis and The Daily Home in
[Thanks to Stuart Miller of http://uforeview.net/]