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John Prytz (John Prytz)
Crop Circles: The Julia Set Near Stonehenge: July 1996

While crop circles have been reported from around the world, in the main they tend to be associated with the English countryside in the warmer months when crops are high and agricultural graffiti artists can strut their stuff. Just who these ‘artists’ are hasn't been proven in any sort of scientific (or legal) court, but just like we all know ‘the butler did it’, well it’s obvious the whodunit here is from the same species as the butler. We have to believe that, because if the butler didn't do it, we got a major mystery on our collective hands that most of us would rather not acknowledge. Here’s part of the reason the butler didn't do it.

Apart from a few deluded New Age hippy types, everyone just knows that crop circles are human made hoaxes. That’s despite all the obvious logistical problems in creating perfect, yet massive geometric patterns in near total darkness. That’s despite the fact that hardly anyone has ever been caught in the act. That’s despite the fact that sometimes the overnight weather was wet with rain (this is England after all). Still, what else could they be? But even one exception breaks the ‘everyone knows it’s a hoax’ rule. Consider the 1996 Julia Set.

Most crop circles are discovered in the morning by farmers or farm hands that are up early and out and about to start their day’s work in the field(s), though some discoveries are by motorists, passers-by, sometimes pilots. Still, the discoveries tend to be made sooner in the day rather than later in the day. 900 foot crop circle formations are rather hard to miss, even from the ground, and some are way bigger than that.

Translated, that suggests that this agricultural graffiti was constructed and produced overnight, under cover of darkness, the obvious implication being human hoaxers operating in the dark thus avoiding detection.

Despite the fact there are massive problems with that theory – it’s like trying to make then assemble a one thousand piece jigsaw puzzle using just starlight and complete it perfectly in a few hours; no flash-lights allowed giving your position away. What isn't reported to the police isn't of concern to the hoaxer(s). Still, you’d have to have a few screws loose, tramping around in a muddy field in the dark of night, carting around all sorts of equipment, planks and rollers and ropes for hours on end, just to produce something for which you can’t ever receive public recognition for – least you get paid a visit by the police for trespassing and wilful criminal damage.

Let’s accept the universally accepted basic logic anyway. Crop circles are human hoaxes. But could a hoaxer(s) do a crop circle pattern or formation in broad daylight, of a size demanding many hours of labour, with eyewitnesses around, and escape detection? Or could a massive crop circle avoid being seen in broad daylight in a heavily trafficked area? I suggest that’s highly unlikely on both counts.

It’s late afternoon on a sunny English summer Sunday – July 7th 1996 to be exact. The location, a farmer’s (identity known) field within a stone’s throw of a major tourist attraction – Stonehenge (you may have heard of it). A major highway, the A303 separates the field from the Stonehenge site - Lots of motorists passing by. Security guards are present at Stonehenge 24/7 as tourists aren't allowed any more to wander within the standing stones. Stonehenge is strictly a look from the outside and don’t touch attraction now.

There’s usually a lot of aerial traffic too – lots of private planes operating out of nearby Thruxton Airport, often giving tourists an aerial view of Stonehenge. Now one such pilot (identity known) with one passenger taking off out of Exeter, passing over Stonehenge late that Sunday afternoon, while glancing downwards, sees nothing out of the ordinary. That same pilot, on the return flight, again passing over Stonehenge just 45 minutes later, sees a massive centipede-like geometric pattern (a Julia Set fractal pattern) comprising 149* individual circles (ranging from 50 feet to 14 inches in diameter) spanning 915 feet in length tip-to-tail and 500 feet in width in the farmer’s field, well within the view of passing motorists and the Stonehenge security guards (and tourists).

Needless to say, prior to the pilot’s return flight and his subsequent sighting, nobody (tourists, motorists, farm hands, security guards) saw a thing. That suggests that, in broad daylight, the entire Julia Set complex was constructed in actually less than 45 minutes. That’s unaltered by a few motorists, over a decade later, who have claimed to have seen at that time and place a strange mist. Whether they did or didn’t isn’t relevant to the basic facts that human hoaxers aren't in the running as culprits in this specific crop circle episode.

But if they (hoaxers) are, in the running, how did the hoaxers do it? One person (identity known) has claimed that he along with two other people created the Julia Set complex in under three hours early that Sunday morning while it was still dark. One notes by the way that security guards are present at Stonehenge around the clock, so clearly the hoaxers, if they really existed, didn't use any lighting. That further suggests that this massive formation went unnoticed and unseen in broad daylight for nearly 12 hours within sight of the top tourist attraction in England and a major motorway! Check out the photographs on the WWW and tell me how they done it! Could you and any two of your friends produce that complex geometric formation in darkness in less than three hours? It’s yet another case of someone claiming to be a bank robber for the publicity because that’s easier than actually being a bank robber which results in not only getting publicity but a prison sentence as well. The other alternative is that this person has so flown his anti-crop circle flag up the flagpole and publicly saluted it that he can’t back down now, no matter what!

Over 14,000 tourists visited the Julia Set formation before the farmer had to do what farmers do and harvest what was left of his crop; there are lots of photographs available in post 1996 crop circle books and on the Internet that verify the proximity of the Julia Set to Stonehenge with the A303 Motorway bisecting. It’s easy to plug in something like “Julia Set” plus “Stonehenge” into Google’s search engines, like Google Web and Google Images and judge for yourself the bona-fides.

Now I don’t know how the Julia Set near Stonehenge in July of 1996 was created; or what intelligence created it. I am (along with those New Age hippy types and other open minded people) convinced the intelligence wasn't human. I’ll just leave it at that.

*Some sources originally gave the set as containing 151 individual circles, not 149, but 149 is the correct number.