Monday, September 27, 2010

How 'Alien Gap' Got It's Name

Well, because of the interest shown in 'Alien Gap' mentioned in my previous post, I'll tell the story:

As you can make out from the pic above, the area is very rocky and at this spot the road inclines steeply to the top of a hill which has a narrow cutting through which only one car can safely pass at a time.

Late one moonless night I was traveling this Orange River road, my daughter Megan in the passenger seat and a Fox Terrier named 'Boo' sitting on the backseat.

The Corolla was functioning normally but Megan and I were both feeling tired after a day-long journey.

As we approached Alien Gap and were about to drive up the incline, the car suddenly lost power and stopped dead in the middle of the road. The engine was still running but I couldn't get the car to move, it was as if there was no connection between the wheels and the engine.

All of a sudden Boo jumped up and started snarling and barking furiously at 'something' outside the window behind me - I've never in my life seen a dog so terrified, he was in a state of total panic - the whole 'atmosphere' was highly charged and the hair on the back of my neck was probably standing straight up.

It was pitch-dark outside and the whole episode felt like one of those dreams where you're trying to escape from something but, despite all your efforts, you just can't move or make progress ... it was as if a 'force' was holding us there.

After what seemed like ages but was probably only about minute and a half, I finally got the car to edge forward slowly up the hill and, having passed through the cutting we continued on our journey without further incident.

Both Megan and I were baffled by the incident and the way the dog had gone completely crazy. Having no rational answer we jokingly speculated that we'd had an "Alien Encounter" ...

... but that's not the end of the story ...

A few weeks later I was traveling with three passengers in a DIFFERENT car, (a four-wheel drive vehicle), on a flat stretch of the same road in broad daylight. All of a sudden the same thing happened - with the engine still running, the car suddenly lost power and started slowing down ... this lasted about 20 seconds before the wheels seemed to 'engage' again and we continued driving.

The funny side of this second incident is that everyone was aware of the 'Alien Gap' story and, when the vehicle lost power, we all looked out the windows and up at the skies as if in search of 'flying saucers' - and then looked sheepishly at each other when we realized what we'd just done ...

As for Boo, he was never the same after Alien Gap ... one day, at my home in the north, he disappeared and, after a search, I found him standing in a patch of long grass, stiff-legged and staring blankly straight ahead. He was unresponsive to my calls and appeared to be looking right through me. Far from any vet and afraid that he had rabies, I had no choice but to put him down - the test results showed that he didn't have the dreaded disease ... so what made him lose his mind?

So there you have it, the story of Alien Gap ... do you have a possible explanation for these incidents, was it just a coincidence of two mechanical failures?



  1. What a strange story and yes I would have also looked around if I had been in the car when it stopped the second time. LOL Have you travelled up this road since?

    What a sad ending to Boo, though but I can inderstand your fear of possible rabies. I worked for a spell in the rabies laboratory at the Reaseach Station in Harare and it is not to be messed around with!! Diane

  2. Hehe yes, I travelled the road only last week Diane, and a few times before that but I've not had a repeat "experience" ...

    Yeah, ... Boo was the first dog I'd connected with in many years and it was a tough decision to make - I'm terrified of rabies. After the test results I began to suspect that he may have been poisoned but I'm don't know what the symptoms of poisoning are ...

  3. I don't believe in aliens but I have also experienced and heard of many strange happenings in the Malaysian rainforest. There are things that we do not fully understand.

    Your story certainly is very creepy. I am sorry about Boo but am glad you and Megan are okay. Thanks for sharing the story.

  4. Thanks lgsqurrel, ... someone speculated that it may be some kind of 'magnetic' force in the Earth but I don't know if this may be a possibility ... besides, why doesn't it affect all cars every time they pass these spots?

  5. Aliens do so much;

    Sorry about the dog though. I recall being onduty in an English A+E dept when a man arrived having flown back from France that evening having been bitten a dog. He was odd and the panic was ?rabies? I had to phone the Brit embassy in Paris and get them to track down the dog (!"£$%^&*) whilst we started the chap on the huge injections of antiserum... teach him not to do it again if nothing else!


  6. Interesting link Dave - I can't help but wonder why, if the superpowers do have evidence of 'aliens' in our midst, why would they suppress such information? Would it signal the end of religion as we know it?

    Yes, rabies is scary - I don't know if it is still the same today but I believe that, in the past, the antiserum was injected into the spinal column which, to me, is almost as scary as rabies itself ...

  7. Enjoyed the story and the having the stopping happen twice makes it even weirder. Maybe there is a huge magnetic rock in those hills.

    Boo - now that's seems like a appropriate name for the dog in the story.

  8. Yeah lisleman, I've scratched my head about these two incidents but to no avail - having no evidence to the contrary I guess I must just accept it as coincidence ...

  9. Thanks so much for sharing this story with us (after we all nagged you to !) It must have been a scary experience. Do you still drive here from time to time, & when/if you do, are you always holding your breath, waiting to see if it will happen again ? I know I would ! Sorry to hear about little Boo though - I guess you'll never know ? I've read books/seen documentaries on alien encounters/presence and the cutting of the engine and physical feelings you felt, seem to fit right in .....

  10. Thanks for reading Lynda - yeah, I travel this road often but I don't worry about it happening again ... I just hope that if it does happen again I'll be more alert and pay attention to detail ... but, these strange experiences have a habit of catching one by surprise ... I wonder if Boo 'saw' something that we couldn't see?

  11. Very strange, isn't it? I'm wondering if there is some kind of magnetic field there where the cars stopped? Although I guess that wouldn't explain why the poor dog went crazy. Dogs seem to sense so much more than we humans. I'm sad that your pet was so traumatized. I guess it is a good thing that you, Megan and your other friends were not able to see what was "out there".

  12. LOL, I just read through the comments and see I'm not the only one to put forward the idea of some kind of magnetic or "force field". Though personally, I don't discount the presence of "spirits", especially it being Africa and all.

  13. yeah Penny, I have no rational explanation but, you're right, animals do sense things that we don't, I see this often when observing animals, birds and insects - there are also documented cases of animals who are aware of an earthquake before it happens ...

    ... but this 'sense' is not only confined to animals, I can often sense subtle changes in the weather and I surprise people by predicting when snakes will make an appearance ...

  14. Poor little Boo, that's so weird. I have had terrified dogs at times for reasons I could not understand, but it never affected them after the incident was over. That's the really strange and sad part of your story, I think.--Inger

  15. Yeah Inger - when I was a kid I had a sausage dog named 'Hans' ... I cried for days after he died and never really connected with a dog after that - Boo was the first dog that I'd started getting close to ...

  16. Yes, I can sense some changes in the weather too but not through any superhuman power :-)) I have arthritis and can usually tell when the weather turns to rain. I do believe in the supernatural realm however as I believe I've mentioned before. Some people are more attuned to it than others and no doubt animals have different degrees of "seeing" also. Poor Boo. I feel sorry that he was so frightened.

  17. It's not because I'd instantly dismiss the idea of some alien element. But an engine running but the car doesn't move? This isn't physically possible without the drive mechanism being severed, which it clearly wasn't as you'd headed off afterward.

    I'd actually suspect some sort of gas build up and what's happened is that it's numbed the drivers foot, making him think he's pressing on the accelerator when he's actually eased off. And your poor dog was actually poisoned by the gas.

    It's a theory, anyway. It might be worth alerting authorities as to a possible gas problem there.

  18. Thanks for your input Callan, your theory sounds more plausible than aliens - perhaps the steep incline also had something to do with the first incident ...