Saucer Basin

Ryon sent me this link last week: Hack your OnStar box and gain access to its GPS data (not that I would ever own a Chevy). You can hook up your laptop and track your position using whatever software you want.
These are the first comprehensive pictures I’ve seen of the Wilcox Ranch on Range Creek (here’s the MSNBC article if you’ve never heard of the place). They say that someday the area will be open to the public (probably several years from now, if not decades), but I hope to someday visit.
While I was researching my route to Moonshine Wash last week, I came across these circles in the TerraServer aerial photos of the area. I wanted to see what in the hell they were, so I marked waypoints for all of them (six that I could find) so I could locate them while I was out there. Each of the circles is about 375 feet in diameter. Because of a screw up with my GPS (ExpertGPS will allow multiple waypoints with the same name, while my Garmin eTrex Legend will not), I only ended up with just one of the waypoints stored in my GPS, and it was just too far away from the road to hike to. I did, however, manage to see the semi-circle inset in the upper-right corner of the image. Here is the picture I took of that area. The rock looked completely natural (well, not influenced by man, anyway)–it was uplifted toward the outside of the circle, and the ring is the same thickness and diameter as the other whole circles. It appeared to be half-buried by a sand dune, whereas the others were on completely flat ground. I can’t explain the straight lines running through the other whole circles, but the partial circle I saw in person sure looked like it could have been a meteor impact crater.
I did a lot of searching online and couldn’t find any mention of impact craters in that area, so I’m not entirely certain that’s what they are. I’m hoping to go back there for some hiking in Horseshoe Canyon in another month or so, and I’ll definitely visit the other circles to try and explain them.

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