That '2001: A Space Odyssey' Monolith Now Mysteriously Disappeared

Someone removed the structure from a Utah desert
That '2001: A Space Odyssey' Monolith Now Mysteriously Disappeared
Photo: Utah Highway Patrol
Earlier this month, Utah's Department of Public Safety had discovered an otherworldly object in the desert, which has since been affectionately named the "monolith" after the large black rectangular structure in Stanley Kubrick's 1968 classic, 2001: A Space Odyssey. After recently puzzling minds across the world, the Utah monolith has now mysteriously vanished.

The U.S. Department of the Interior Bureau of Land Management Utah confirmed on Saturday (November 28) that "an unknown party or parties" removed the monolith sometime on Friday evening (November 27).

The organization shared further information in a Facebook post on Sunday (November 29). "We may not know if an #extraterrestrial or earthling installed the 'monolith' structure, but we can confirm that it has been taken by an unknown party or parties," reads the post.

"We recognize the incredible interest the 'monolith' has generated world-wide. Many people have been enjoying the mystery and view it as a welcome distraction from the 2020 news cycle," said Monticello field manager Amber Denton Johnson.

"Even so, it was installed without authorization on public lands and the site is in a remote area without services for the large number of people who now want to see it. Whenever you visit public lands please follow Leave No Trace principles and Federal and local laws and guidance."

Since its discovery, visitors have been flocking to the area to see the mysterious object in person, despite warnings from the bureau and the Department of Public Safety to stay away. The organization notes that passenger vehicles have already had to be towed from the area and that human waste has been left behind at the site where no washroom facilities exist. 

The 12-foot structure was originally discovered by helicopter pilot Bret Hutchings who was assisting the Division of Wildlife Resource's search for bighorn sheep in the area.

At the time, Hutchings called it the strangest thing he'd ever come across.

"We were kind of joking around that if one of us suddenly disappears, then the rest of us make a run for it," told KSL5 News.

See the Bureau of Land Management's posts below.