United States

North Carolina Man Discovers Strange Object Believed To Be Space Junk

A North Carolina man, Justin Clontz, was astonished to find a massive, mysterious object on a remote hiking trail.

The object, standing nearly 4 feet tall, showed no signs of damaging the surrounding area. Photo: Twitter

A man in North Carolina was left in awe after discovering a massive, mysterious object on a remote hiking trail. Justin Clontz, a groundskeeper at a luxury campsite called The Glamping Collective, was "shocked" to find the huge object covered in dense metal sheets held together by strange-looking bolts.

According to the New York Post, the debris, appearing to be covered in burnt carbon fibre, is at least 3 feet wide, about an inch thick, and nearly 4 feet tall. Despite the object's burned appearance, the surrounding area showed no signs of damage.

"It's once in a lifetime, you know, it doesn't happen every day. We don't know what it is. We just know that it's not from up here," Clontz told a local TV station.

He explained, "I just tied a rope to it and dragged it out with a lawn mower. It's a one-in-a-million chance that it lands, especially if it landed somewhere off the trail in the woods you'd have never found it, but it just happened to land on the trail."

Experts speculate that the object could have fallen to earth from SpaceX's Crew Dragon spacecraft, according to Space.com. Astronomer Jonathon McDowell added on X that the debris "definitely looks consistent with being a bit of the Crew-7 Dragon's trunk which reentered on a path right over this location on Tuesday."

The Dragon spacecraft consists of two main parts: the capsule and the trunk. The trunk supports the spacecraft during ascent and carries unpressurized cargo. Typically, the trunk burns up in the atmosphere during reentry, but occasionally, parts can survive and fall back to Earth.

Matt Bare, the owner of The Glamping Collective, said they plan to reach out to aerospace experts to determine what the object is and where it came from.

"Space debris was not on our list of things we expected to be having conversations about. The only thing we've been able to come up with is that it's some type of space debris that fell. It doesn't look like anything off of an airplane," said Bare.