Mysterious Light Seen in Night Sky Over Northern California

A strange light and formation of smoke had many people wondering what they were seeing in the skies over Northern California.

Posted: Dec 20, 2018 11:43 AM
Updated: Dec 20, 2018 11:54 AM

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- At a time when the Bay Area is blanketed in Christmas lights, Wednesday night's sky stole the show.

Bryan Louie told ABC7 News, "It was brighter than a normal cloud, especially at this time of night."

A mysterious light was spotted in the sky after 5:30 p.m., a time when most are making their way home from work.

"It looked kind of like a key almost," Louie went on to describe.

Dathao Becker was visiting the Bay Area from San Diego. She told ABC7 News, "I just thought it was a kind of weird formation."

"I thought somebody was trying to spell something out in the sky, but I couldn't read what it was," Aparna Sarma told ABC7 News. "So, I just moved on with the rest of my night."

However, the mystery light lingered on the minds of others.

Sky7 was flying above San Francisco when it captured this bright light.

Palo Alto resident, Ransom Soderberg told ABC7 News, "I saw a moving cloud, then it formed into a question mark. I don't know, maybe it's a sign."

A sign from where? Or rather, from whom?

"I'm definitely a big believer in UFO phenomenon," Elizabeth Matuzak said. "I definitely think it's a UFO."

While we're working to learn exactly what was visiting, or shall we say, visual, ABC7 can rule a few things out: A rocket launch planned at Vandenberg Air Force Base near Santa Barbara was scrubbed and did not happen. Also, a planned Space X launch didn't take off either.

According to the Lick Observatory-- a bright meteor was visible in the skies over the Bay Area shortly after sunset this evening, leaving a bright trail that was visible for many minutes in the western sky.

KABC, our sister station in Southern California, reports the director of the Griffith Observatory, Dr. Edwin Krupp, confirmed the light was a bolide meteor that entered the Earth's atmosphere. Krupp said the meteor can likely fit in your hand but what people saw was the compressed air around it.

Article Comments

88° wxIcon
Hi: 94° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 88°
70° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 70°
Crater Lake
83° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 83°
Grants Pass
90° wxIcon
Hi: 91° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 90°
Klamath Falls
83° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 83°
Hot and Sunny Weekend
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events

Latest Video


Vision and it's Impact on Learning


Friday, August 23 afternoon weather


Friday, August 23 morning weather


Cancer survivors wear purple at Relay For Life


Relay honors caregivers


Relay For Life happening tomorrow


Retired couple and divers recover drowning victim's body from Lost Creek Lake


Curry County turns away from Tsunami sirens


Take a Hike: Bandersnatch Trail


A quite hero