A viral trend prompted local copycats to install a shiny monolith near Pinawa, Man., over the weekend.
Winnipegger Colin Fast posted photos of the monolith taken at the Old Pinawa Dam in Pinawa Dam Heritage Provincial Park on social media Monday.
The monolith “reportedly attracted quite a crowd” Sunday.
The monolith appears to have been wedged between several rocks near the dam and, like the others, is metal and shiny.
But the Manitoba monolith’s time in the spotlight was short lived. In a tweet Monday afternoon Fast reported the mysterious metal object was gone.
“Word from local residents is the Old Pinawa Monolith was removed today,” reads a tweet from Fast.
“Not sure if it was parks officials or aliens.”
This is the fifth reported structure that has been discovered under mysterious circumstances amid a viral trend that’s looking less alien with each copycat case.
The fourth metal monolith was spotted on Compton Beach on the Isle of Wight on Sunday, BBC News reports. The object appears similar to three-sided monoliths previously found in Utah, Romania and California, though it’s slightly shorter and has a dramatic point at the top.
The monoliths have become a sudden viral fad since the first one was discovered in the Utah desert last month. The objects have frequently been compared to the alien monoliths in 2001: A Space Odyssey, which were used to accelerate the progress of Earth’s civilization.
Unlike the 2001 monoliths, the 2020 ones appear to be designed for capturing attention on social media.
Utah state officials spotted the first object during a helicopter flyover near Moab, where it had apparently been in place for years. The mysterious object sparked wild speculation that it had been built by artists or aliens, and has since spawned a number of copycats.
It was reportedly removed overnight on Nov. 27 by a group of people who wanted to destroy it.
A second monument briefly appeared in Romania in late November. That monolith was similar in general size and shape to the original, although its surface was covered in markings and marred by crude welding mistakes. It also disappeared after a few days.
The third monolith was found in California last week.
–With files from Josh Eliot