WHEN WE WERE VOYEURS.
Our flight was on schedule and we landed in Salt Lake City around lunch time and after dealing with a rather annoying passive aggressive round little man at the rental car counter, Steve Murillo and myself were off to Skinwalker. It wasn’t long before we experienced our first electronic type issue as our rental car in the Arby’s parking lot took a while to start. No big deal and we were off to a non stop drive to the ranch.
The Ranch itself is near three small towns. The first is Roosevelt which turns into Ballard, and the last is Fort Duchesne which is on the Ute reservation and about a mile from the 480 acres that make up Skinwalker ranch. Fort Duchesne consists of small houses, trailers, a bowling alley/restaurant, a gas station/convenience store and one grocery store. We ended up spending quite a bit of time in that convenience store. partly because Steve was obsessed with Diet Mountain Dew, but also because it was a great source of info, both on paranormal happenings in the region and for logistics.
Before all that, we decided to head straight for the gates of the Ranch. I was anxious to take a look at it. We parked in front of the cement pile-ons that served as a semi security barriers in front of the gate and walked up to the front.
There was no sign of life. Just an overkill of trespassing signs, a few cameras, including motion censored ones on both side of the gate. The only indication that anyone was ever there was this white truck parked in the distance right in front of the ranch house. It was there all four days that we were there and perhaps belonged to the guard that I would later on have an encounter with. But my thinking was that it was just parked in view in order to make it seem like someone was there in order to discourage trespassers.
Personally, the sign that said $10,000 fine for trespassing scared me plenty. Originally, it sounded like we were going to get permission to stay on the actual property, but that never happened. I’m okay with trespassing at times. You’ve got to do what you’ve got to do. But, only if it isn’t a private residence where people are living their day to day lives. Rules and laws are meant to be broken, but respecting people’s privacy comes first. Especially on Indigenous land, where they deserve even more consideration for all the obvious reasons. So, for now, we were just voyeurs.
After a little while we got back in the car, pushed on the button starter and it refused to start. A message said it doesn’t recognize the electronic key and we no cell reception at all, we thought we might be stranded, which I secretly relished. But, it was not to be as a few minutes later the car started. We probably should have thanked the Trickster at this point, just in case, but we didn’t. Fortunately, we would have other chances.
We took the only road out and took a left towards Fort Duchesne. A Halliburton truck passed by, so we followed it. As it turned out, there was nothing nefarious about Halliburton’s presence here. They were here for the oil. Oil is pretty much the only thing that keeps those nearby communities afloat.
We had planned on gong back that night to the Ranch, but after dinner at the bowling alley our car refused to start and it took all night for us to get a replacement from Salt Lake City. This is a desolate place.