Six years ago, the Yukon’s UFO organization
held the first-ever conference in the territory to discuss and share
stories about the unexplained, as part of the millennium
Early on in the planning, organizers estimated the
gathering would attract 50 or 60 people. Then it was up to 80 or so,
A month of two beforehand, it was as high as an
In the end, it was standing room only as more
than 300 people jammed the conference room at the Westmark
Whitehorse, listening to world-renowned ufologists and locals who
shared their experiences and research from across North
Among the guest speakers was Stan Friedmann, seen by
many as a leading authority on the Roswell, N.M. incident that
involved reports of flying saucers in 1947. The U.S. Army went to
great lengths to explain away the incident, and Friedmann remains
convinced it was a cover-up.
There were first-hand accounts of
UFO sightings in the Yukon, including the Dec. 11, 1996 sighting of
a spacecraft that was first seen on the Klondike Highway near Fox
Lake, but later witnessed by several others, from Carmacks to Pelly
Crossing, to Mayo.
Thirty-one in all have given eyewitness
testimony from that night, describing essentially the same size and
shape of craft.
There was a first-hand account from a woman who
was followed by a spacecraft from the Takhini Hot Springs Road, then
abducted as she travelled up Hamilton Boulevard toward
Martin Jasek, a nine-year resident of the Yukon and founder
of the local organization, was among those who organized the
As a professional engineer continuing his career studying
ice and river flows in B.C., Jasek returned to Whitehorse as the
guest speaker for the 2002 conference. He is back again to host
tomorrow’s conference, beginning at 7 p.m. at the Alpine
Whether the stigma that was attached to anyone who spoke
of close encounters has lessened over the years is something hard to
gauge, Jasek said in an interiew Thursday.
“I just hope to bring
about more witnesses,” he said. “I would like to see in my lifetime
these possibilities getting accepted.”
If not accepted, he added,
at least treated some probability.
For Kevin Brumm, a former
Yukon resident of Ross River and Whitehorse who is now living in
Calgary, it was many years after his experience on the North Canol
Road that he dared speak of it.
It wasn’t until four years ago
when he attended a UFO conference in St. Paul, Alta., where he met
Jasek by coincidence, that he went public with his story, which is
laid out on the UFOBC website.
Brumm recalls then he was driving
up the road on his motorbike during a moose hunting trip, a couple
of days ahead of others in his hunting party, when he pulled over to
have scope out the countryside.
He saw a UFO, was mesmorized by
the moment but a few minutes later heard a something like a car door
slam around the corner.
Thinking it may be the early arrival of
his hunting partners, he went to have a look and saw two aliens
standing side by side in the grassy shoulder of the road, he notes
in his published recollection.
One of the aliens shone a
flashlight object at him, and the next thing he knew he was standing
on the road somewhat bewildered, with the keys to his motorcycle in
He always left the keys in his bike, for fear of
losing them while crawling through the bush. His bike was parked on
the opposite side of the road from where he’d left it.
evening, he noticed small, scoop-like scars on the palm of each hand
that were not there before the experience, but remain
Gradually, he began to piece together his memory of the
encounter, and the recollection of how he was abducted. He remembers
the friendly treatment by his alien abductors, who invited him to
the window of the spacecraft to look far off into the distance at a
planet – Earth.
“I think it was a really good experience,
actually,” Brumm said in a telephone interview Wednesday. “It was
the most scariest thing at the time.
“But after you experience
it, and work through it, you realize it really was a beautiful
thing. It opened my eyes.”
Recollection of the expierence did not
fully unfold until years later when he was working as a lathe
operator at a shop in New Zealand, but unfold it did.
as a naturally shy guy, it’s not his mission to tell his story. He
doesn’t jump if he overhears a UFO discussion.
But when he does
share his experience, the reaction among those listening is
everything from acceptance to fright.
“It’s amazing how many
people tell me they have had something similar happen to them,” said
Brumm, who worked as a civilian for the RCMP while in the Yukon.
“And I think the more it gets out, the more open it will
“I think a lot of people do see things that are
Jasek also believes gatherings like tomorrow’s
conference are important as a means of allowing those with similar
experiences to hear other talk about their own sightings or
There are people who are drawn to UFO conferences
because of pure curiousity, and then there are those like
“People want to validate their own experience, and share
their experience with others that will take them seriously, that
won’t laugh at them.”
He is hoping, for instance, that one of
those who’ve provided eyewitness accounts to the UFO over Mary Lake
in Febuary 2005 will agree to describe their experience.
It was a
cold, clear night when one resident was outside looking to check out
if conditions were right for his visiting inlaws to see the northern
He witnessed two round objects in the sky, and, together
with his wife and inlaws, watched the objects.
“We went outside
of our house and we watched them for maybe five minutes, as they
just seem to hang around slowly moving away,” reads the account
published on the UFOBC website.
“The lights then came really
close to each other, then one went up, the other went down, and
vice-versa. Then the right light slowly appeared to move farther
away with the other light following the first light. The lights
didn’t go further away but rather straight up. Then one just
disappeared completely and the last one just sat there way up in the
sky and appeared to have some additional colours flashing. I went
upstairs to grab my digital camera but when I ran back downstairs
the other one had disappeared.”
Days later, they learned of
others who’d witnessed the same thing, including a couple of
building contractors who had been out looking at their house project
with children when they saw the two objects.
The builders and
children took refuge under the house. As the objects appeared so
close, they thought they were going to land on top of the
Jasek said he’ll be speaking for a couple of house,
discussing recent UFO reports, and then will provide a couple of
more hours for questions and an open microphone for anyone who might
want to share his or her experience.