January 8, 2014 – Coburg, Oregon – 5:15 PM PST

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Description: You said to contact you if anybody saw the glowing orange lights. I saw something tonight on the way home from Albany (heading towards Eugene on 1-5 South) that I can’t, and don’t want to try to explain. And in agreement with you, it COULD have been an optical illusion. Having said that I have driven up and down 1-5 for years (corporate sales) and have even worked in the woods for a number of years fighting forest fires (college years).

So here is what happened. I was about 4 or 5 miles north of the Coburg Exit, heading south. It was about 5:15 PM and just getting dark. As I was heading south towards Eugene (it was lightly raining) I saw what I thought was a fire at the top of the Coburg hills. The clouds were just touching the top of the mountains, so I couldn’t get a good view of what I was looking at. As I drove directly in front of the hills, the “fire” wasn’t a fire at all, but a bright, orange glow (like hot orange lava) and much larger and brighter than a fire. The closest description I could give was like a pool of hot lava (the hot glowing orange) sitting on top of the mountain with the clouds just barely covering enough that I could never see clearly. The glow was probably about 1/4 mile long and went from the top of the mountain to about 200 feet into the clouds. As I stated earlier, I have fought a number of forest fires, and know what they look like, even behind clouds. And it was definitely not a fire. What it was I have no idea. I have never seen like it in 20 years of driving up and down 1-5 and I imagine (and to be honest, hope) I never see it again.

Note: Sunset was at 4:52 PM so the witness did not see the Sun peeking through the overcast or reflecting off of the clouds. In nearby Eugene a few clouds were measured at 1,300 feet skies were mostly cloudy at 2,400 feet. Therefore whatever caused the orange glow was fairly low in the sky.

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