Ground Report – Aldbourne, 15/07/06
This is a really stunning crop circle. The design itself is instantly pleasing to the eye, and its location on a gently sloping hillside provides a nice angle to view the formation from. It is, however, hidden away behind a thick hedge which encloses the field and gives a secluded feel to the whole scene even though a busy road runs alongside.
This formation is based around what is becoming a common theme for this years crop circles, that of multiple nested crescents. The design here takes this theme further, incorporating three sets of crescents rather than two seen in some others. On the ground this is visible, but the scale of the formation does make it difficult to decipher from the inside. The overall diameter of the crop circle is 209ft.
The crescents are made up of pathways of laid and standing crop. The overall lay is very neat and precise. The edges of each of the laid pathways are clear cut, and where the standing crop which forms the shape of each crescent reaches its narrowest point at the tip often there is only one stem left standing. This is really exact.
In most areas the crop is fairly well flattened to the ground. There is still some give under foot, but no areas where the crop is visibly raised off the ground. Apart from in one area of wind damage which I will discuss later, the crop is all in very good condition. There is occasional evidence of crimped stems, but this is infrequent. Both this and an example of the undamaged stems can be seen in the images below.
As with all formations located on hills, I check whether the crop is laid flatter on the downward slope than it is on the upward slope. In here there is no evidence whatsoever of more pressure having been exerted on the crop as it flowed downhill.
In some parts, more so on the Eastern side of the formation, there appears to be a slight herringbone effect to the lay. This is not particularly prominent as in previous crop circles such as Shalbourne in 2004, but it is there.
Also in the Eastern most part of the formation, towards the top of the hill, both my friend Steve and I experienced some unusual camera malfunctions. Whilst raising and lowering the pole my digital camera kept switching itself off about half way up. When brought down and turned back on the battery level indicator showed full. This did not happen every time I tried to take a shot, but frequently enough to test my patience and the strength of my arms! At exactly the same time as I was puzzling over this, Steve’s camera was refusing to take any photos in colour, preferring black and white even when set on normal colour mode! Later Steve’s camera was fine, mine however seemed to continue to perform differently for the rest of the day!
Finally another important feature. Towards the western edge of the formation is an area where the lay of the crop is very messy. It appears from the aerial photos that this is caused by some wind damage which was probably already present in the field before the formation arrived.
Where the flow of the crop meets this wind damaged crop, it is going in the opposite direction. The effect created looks a mess but is actually quite a tight weaving of stems in places. Once again a feature which does not occur that frequently.
This is a very pleasing crop circle. The design is stunning and it is carefully placed to provide a view of this from the ground. Although the lay is neat, there are very few striking features, however, this does not reduce the overall beauty of the formation on the ground.
Crop Circle Summary