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Baffling Crop Formations Appear


Baffling Crop Formations Appear In Cache For 3rd Year In A Row Pattern Found Near Area's First Crop Circle

By Zack Van Eyck Deseret News staff writer


Unusual crop formations have appeared in the Cache Valley for the third consecutive summer.


A pattern of flattened plants, stretching 316 feet from end to end, was discovered Tuesday in a field in College Ward, a few miles from Providence where the area's first so-called crop circle was found in August 1996.


A second design was observed from the air Wednesday near Cove, close to the Idaho border, by Davis County researcher Ryan Layton. Layton had rented a small plane, along with Cache County residents Con Olsen and Tres Nixon, to get a better look at the College Ward formation.


Layton, who has taken samples from previous Utah crop circles for study by former University of Michigan professor W.C. Levengood, said the Cove formation is particularly intriguing because there were no visible tracks leading into it. He said Thursday he hopes to gain permission from the landowner to enter that field and study the Cove design.


"There is no appearance of human intervention on location there," said Layton, who believes most crop circles likely are the work of "advanced beings of some type of intelligence not known to our realm or dimension."


The College Ward design features a flattened ring 102 feet in diameter and a second ring measuring 46 feet that is encompassed by two half circles, Layton said. The Cove formation has a large central ring surrounded by two more flattened rings and two circles, he said.


Similar formations have been observed in fields of wheat, barley and other crops worldwide, particularly in the 1980s and 1990s. Two prominent formations were discovered in the Cache Valley during the second week of July last year, one in Smithfield and one four miles to the north near Crow Hill.


Layton informed a national radio audience about the new Cache formations Wednesday night on "Coast to Coast with Art Bell," aired locally on KNRS, 570-AM. He was joined on the broadcast by Boise native Linda Moulton Howe, who has investigated crop circles, UFOs and other unexplained phenomena for two decades.


Layton is convinced the formations are some kind of encoded message intended for humans. The hope of discovering just what that message might be is what drives him, and others, to investigate the mystery firsthand.


The Cache County Sheriff's Department took a look at the crop circle formed two years ago in Providence, suspecting pranksters were to blame, but made no arrests. It also speculated the design could be the work of hungry gophers.



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