From the very first moment it became operational, the military base most of us know as “Area 51” has been associated with aliens and UFOs. Rumors and conspiracy theories have floated around for decades. For this reason, separating fact from myth isn’t the easiest thing to do when thinking of Area 51.
The American government didn’t even publicly acknowledge its existence until recently. This makes the whole area even more mysterious. Many people believe that the government has hidden evidence of alien visitors. However, no one knows for sure what is going on in Area 51.
With today’s list of the 25 Most Bizarre Area 51 Stories and Facts we will try to enlighten you about one of America’s most secretive locations. Like Fox Mulder from the X-Files would say, the truth is out there.
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Homey Airport or Groom Lake?
Everyone has heard crazy stories and conspiracy theories about “Area 51” but have you ever heard of Groom Lake? Or Homey Airport? No? We didn’t think so.
In reality, the facility we all know as Area 51 is officially called Homey Airport (KXTA) or Groom Lake, named after the salt flat situated next to its airfield.
Why Area 51?
The origin of the name “Area 51” is unclear. It’s speculated that the nickname derived from an Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) numbering grid. Although Area 51 is not part of this system, it’s adjacent to Area 15.
Another theory suggests that 51 was used because it was unlikely that the AEC would use the number.
Regardless, the CIA has claimed before that the name Area 51 comes from its map designation. It was also previously known as “Paradise Ranch” … probably to make the facility sound more attractive to those who would be working there.
How It All Started
Area 51 gained fame overnight back in July 1947, when the Roswell Daily Record’s front-page headline announced, “RAAF Captures Flying Saucer On Ranch in Roswell Region.”
The US military claimed that the unidentified crashing object was just a weather balloon. Conspiracy theorists weren’t convinced, though. They suggested that it was an alien spacecraft that was then taken from the Roswell ranch property to Area 51 for further examination and experimentation.
Area 51 Goes Viral
Despite the headline-making balloon crash in 1947, the area wouldn’t become widely known for another forty years.
Conspiracy theories gained support in the late 1980s when a man alleging to have worked at the installation claimed that the government was examining recovered alien spacecraft.
No Visitors Allowed
It’s also illegal to fly over Area 51, although the site is now visible on satellite images.
What we learned from these images is that the base has runways up to 12,000 feet long.
The "Mecca" for Hardcore UFO Believers
Because of the prohibition of access to Area 51, the nearby town of Rachel has literally become a “sacred” place for inquisitive UFO believers.
Rachel is an unincorporated portion of Lincoln County in Nevada. The tiny town is the closest habitation to Area 51.
Business in Rachel
A restaurant/ bar called Little A’Le’Inn is one of the few thriving businesses in Rachel, Nevada.
It will occasionally organize live music events for the dedicated “Area 51” visitors who may spend a night or two there.
The "Extraterrestrial Highway"
The town of Rachel is a three-hour drive north of Las Vegas. To get there, however, you will have to drive on the legendary Nevada Highway 375, also known as the “Extraterrestrial Highway.”
Many visitors have claimed to see UFOs and other alien activity along this road. Such claims led the state to officially designate the route as the Extraterrestrial Highway in 1996.
A Second "El Dorado" (kind of)
What most people may not know is that before World War II, the area near Groom Lake was used for silver and lead mining.
Once the war began, the military took over the remote area and began conducting research, mainly nuclear and weapons testing.
Exotic Energy Weapons
Other than secret meetings with aliens and the storage, examination, and reverse engineering of crashed alien spacecraft, some conspiracy theorists have suggested that Area 51 is also used for the development of exotic energy weapons for the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI).
Time Travel Testing?
You also may have heard a few theories implying that Area 51 is systematically used for the development of weather control.
Or if you want to get even more imaginative: for the development of time travel and teleportation technology.
Do you know anything about the Majestic 12? Allegedly, this is the code name of a secret committee created in 1947 by then-president Harry S. Truman to facilitate recovery and examination of alien spacecraft.
The committee apparently consists of politicians, military leaders, and decorated scientists. And you probably guessed that all the activities related to this spooky organization took place in Area 51.
Not the Only Restricted Area
If you thought that Area 51 is the only restricted area in Nevada, you’re mistaken. It just happens to be the most famous one.
The notorious facility is next to two other restricted military areas: the Nevada Test Site, where US nuclear weapons were tested from the 1950s to the 1990s, and the Nevada Test and Training Range.
Obama and Area 51
During the 36th annual Kennedy Center Honors (2013), former president Barack Obama became the first president to ever publicly mention Area 51.
“What’s really going on in Area 51? When I wanted to know, I’d call Shirley MacLaine,” Obama jokingly said. He added, “I think I just became the first president to ever publicly mention Area 51. How’s that, Shirley?”
CIA Confirms Area 51's Existence
A few months before Obama joked about it, however, the CIA had officially confirmed the existence of Area 51. In August of 2013, a newly declassified history provided the first official acknowledgment that Area 51 exists.
According to the seven-chapter history, Area 51 was used as an aerial testing ground for US government projects. The released documents specifically refer to the U-2 and Oxcart aerial surveillance programs.
The Carson Sink Case
On July 24, 1952, two Air Force colonels saw three unusual Delta wing aircraft flying in a V-formation over Carson Sink in Nevada.
This was one of the very first UFO sightings near Area 51, reported from the mouths of two decorated American pilots and not some crazy conspiracy theorist.
Aliens Love Gambling
According to Charles Hall, a man who worked at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada from 1965 to 1967, aliens look like tall white men and they love gambling.
How does he know that? He claimed to see them often visiting the area in order to travel with CIA agents to Las Vegas casinos for entertainment.
The Alien Mailbox
According to Bob Lazar, a man who claims to have worked in Area 51 and to have seen alien activity there, there’s one particular spot where he would bring people to see scheduled UFO flights: the Black Mailbox.
It’s located 12 miles from Area 51 and has become a hot spot for UFO enthusiasts who frequently visit it to send their questions and other messages to aliens.
In case you’re wondering who Bob Lazar is and why he’s so important to “Area 51 mythology,” this is the man who claimed that he was hired to reverse-engineer alien technology back in the 1980s.
Yep, Bob Lazar is one of those people who fuel the Area 51 stories and make it the legendary location it is today.
The US Navy's "Confirmations"
In September of 2019, the US Navy pretty much confirmed the existence of footage purported to show UFOs hurtling through the air.
Well, to be 100% accurate, the officials didn’t admit that those flying objects are of extraterrestrial origin, but they didn’t deny it either.
Bob Lazar's Descriptions
Bob Lazar hasn’t been considered (by the media mainly) the most credible person out there. Actually, even some of his fellow conspiracy theorists have accused him of vanity and self-promoting.
One way or another, his claims seem to be more credible than ever before now, as his description of one of the alien UFOs apparently matched one of the three whose presence was confirmed by the navy.
Despite being the most restricted location in America, Area 51 isn’t fenced … or to be more precise, isn’t properly fenced. This is because the geography of the area acts as a natural deterrent against trespassers. Just like a lake, Area 51 situates at the bottom of a wide pit with steep hills surrounding it on all sides.
Furthermore, the fact that it sits in a gigantic barren desert in the middle of nowhere means that a fence isn’t all that necessary to protect Area 51 from invaders or thrill-seekers.
Storm Area 51
On June 20, 2019, the podcaster Joe Rogan released an interview with Bob Lazar. Millions listened to the interview, with one of them being Matty Roberts, a 21-year-old college student and die-hard video gamer from California.
Inspired by the interview, Roberts created a Facebook meeting called “Storm Area 51, They Can’t Stop All of Us.” According to the plan, people would meet in Rachel in the early morning of September 20 and swarm the defenses in order to find out if the government is indeed hiding aliens there.
Even though more than 2 million people responded “going” and 1.5 million “interested” on the event’s page, only 6,000 of them actually made it out. What’s worse is that they weren’t exactly welcomed by Rachel’s 54 residents, who mostly wanted to be left alone.
The Alien Cathouse
And when we say “most” of them wanted to be left alone, we totally mean it. See, there’s a place near Rachel that welcomes guests: the Alien Cathouse.
What’s this place exactly? A legal brothel which includes rooms for sex, living spaces for prostitutes, and a convenience store that sells alien merchandise.
There’s a fetish for everyone, and at the Alien Cathouse Brothel, prostitutes probably know that better than anyone on this planet … or in this solar system.