The Appalachian Mountains have always been a hotbed for some of America’s best-kept mysteries. Countless reports of bizarre creatures and moving lights have surfaced in the past couple hundreds of years, and they were all ignored or forgotten until new conclusive evidence emerged from the valleys of North Carolina’s Brown Mountain.

Long before white settlers laid claim to the area near the mountain, the Native Americans told stories of luminous entities that had taken up residence inside their holy mountain. When the temperatures dropped during the autumn, the entire tribe would gather on the nearby hill to watch in amazement as massive, glowing orbs of light darted out of the cliffs and hovered in the sky while performing strange dances over the treetops.

The Cherokee people residing at the base of the Brown Mountain were witnessing this anomalous display since at least 1200 A.D. They thought the dancing lights were spirits of ghostly maidens who’d lost their husbands in a great battle with the Catawba tribe.

After the first pioneers established in the area, they too witnessed the plasmatic lights, considering them to be the torches carried by Native Americans. By the 40s, the countless myths behind the Brown Mountain Lights had turned into campfire stories about nomad ghosts with their lanterns, however, the bizarre phenomenon remained the same. Whatever the lights were, they were as real as it could get.


After the Roswell incident back in 1947, the entire ghostly perspective changed into a fresh, and probably more realistic explanation – the peculiar Brown Mountain lights were coming from outer space. But can this hypothesis be trusted in the absence of certain proof? According to different accounts, researchers tried numerous times to debunk the ghostly or alien view of the hovering lights, but without success. Such attempts are broadly discussed in the book The Brown Mountain Lights as it follows:

From Wiseman’s View on Linville Mountain the lights can be seen well. They first appear like a large star coming over the mountain. Sometimes they have a reddish or blue-ish cast. On dark nights they pop up so thick and fast that it is impossible to count them.

The U.S. Geological Survey has conducted two investigations on the lights. The first was in 1913, when the conclusion was reached that the lights were locomotives’ headlights from the Catawba Valley south of Brown Mountain.

However, three years later in 1916 the great flood swept through the Catawba valley knocking out the railroad bridges and keeping locomotives out of the valley for weeks. Roads were also washed out and the power lines were down. But the lights continued to appear as usual, making it appear that they could not be reflections from locomotives or automobile headlights.

So what are these mysterious lights and where do they come from? Since many reports refer to them as appearing from the sky and also from the remote cliffs of Brown Mountain that are out of reach for humans without special equipment, the extraterrestrial explanation seems to be the most likely.

Even more, in 2010 the National Geographic documentary “Paranatural” succeeded in capturing on tape some of the best footage of the phenomenon to date, further puzzling researchers as to their origins.

YouTube user ElitexxRainx describes his experience with these lights, adding up even more to the extraterrestrial possibility.

I saw these aliens when I went camping in the Brown mountains. There were a few of them, then they stopped and scanned the gorge with a sort of beam. Then they focused on my family and I, and they started to strobe at us as if they were trying to communicate.

We flashed flashlights back at them and they continued to flash at us. But, right after we took out a phone to try and record it they disappeared, and that was the end of it. This happened in the summer of 2014. Also, the lights were zipping above the tree tops and along the side of the mountain edges. Not anywhere a human could go, or anyway a human could move.”

Other theories range from campfires, to cars, to people throwing flashlights in the air, but most of these claims have been disproved by the many professional and amateur studies conducted in the area. Could there be a more perplexing explanation for this anomaly? Is it possible that the Brown Mountain harbors a secret alien base? Well, that would explain a good part, if not all the reports coming from the Brown Mountain in North Carolina.