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Pilot Reports Sighting over Blairstown, New Jersey

Published: 5:51 AM 1/19/2010

New Jersey - 01-18-10

I just walked out of my parent's house in Blairstown, NJ, into their driveway and noticed the Pleiades (seven sisters) star cluster and the Orion Constellation were clear in the night sky. When I got into my vehicle and departed for home, I continued to look out my driver side window up at the stars every few seconds.

When I was on Gaisler Road approaching Millbrook Road in Hardwick Township, I noticed three very bright white lights at my 12 O'clock high position. These lights had the appearance of the landing lights on a commercial aircraft.

They were in a upside down triangle formation. I could not tell whether or not they were connected, however they moved together. There were no visible position lights or anti-collision lights.

At first, my 19 year aviation background told me it was a commercial aircraft headed in my direction with its landing lights on. When I realized it seemed to be moving away from my direction, I pulled my van over to the right shoulder and rolled down my driver side window to get both a better look and listen.

The object was to my amazement moving away from my position, like as if it was a commercial aircraft flying backwards! There were several other private/ commercial aircraft in the sky at the same time. Some of these aircraft had landing lights on and all of them had position lights and anti-collision lights visible.

The object I saw made no sound that I could hear from my location. In my opinion, this object was in violation of FAA regulations.

I was not an ultralight, helicopter, or blimp due to its higher rate of speed and lack of sound (aircraft can be very difficult to ID from the ground, particularly at night).

The object was only in view to me for a few seconds. It was traveling in what appeared to be a line from Hardwick Township to Stillwater Township.

I do not know how fast or at what altitude the object was. I wanted to follow/chase the object, but that was impossible to do.

I cannot be sure what this object / aircraft was, and this may be a misidentification on my part. I am a private pilot. No further action taken.

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