Ground Report – Hackpen Hill (3), Wiltshire, 26/08/12
The size and complexity of a formation like this are surely enough to make even the most sceptical of visitors question how it would be possible to achieve with planks and rope. Standing anywhere in the design, which measures 159ft from the centre to the corner of the cube (excluding outer ring) it is impossible to make out any part. Indeed, getting lost within the formation is very possible everywhere but in the larger laid sections!
The outer laid sections forming the circle within which the cube sits, are a striking example of the ‘basket weave’ as seen in previous formations (notably Etchilhampton in 2011). The small sections of crop overlapping each other create a stunning effect at ground level, as well as from an aerial perspective.
The laid crop is generally very neatly laid, with a distinct flow, especially within the inner, triangular parts of the design. Those examined (there are 120 in total!) showed examples of multi-layering, where the crop appears to sit well above the ground as a result of swathes of stems laying beneath the surface.
The vast majority of these inner triangles are not accessible on the ground, sealed by a wall of standing crop. In most cases this is undamaged and there is no evidence that anyone has walked through.
Of course, underpinning the whole design are the narrow, straight pathways which criss-cross, parallel to the edges of the cube. These are only a few inches wide and at times it can be difficult to stay balanced when walking through such a narrow strip of crop.
The narrow pathways overlap at every point they meet from different directions. Where these pathways run towards the three corners of the cube, the direction of flow is outwards towards the perimeter. From here, the direction of flow alternates towards and then from the centre of the design.
An equally narrow ring of laid crop, within the ring of standing crop around the inner part of the design means that these appear as two nested crescents. The intricacy and execution of this aspect of the design is clear to see from an aerial perspective. At ground level, the tip of each crescent is only a few stems wide.
In the centre of this amazing design is a small, twisted nest of crop, standing above the laid stems around it. It seems well placed in marking the centre of the design, which otherwise would not be easy, given the complexity especially at ground level.
Crop Circle Summary