Filed with the RCMP at Whitehorse is a report of a UFO sighting that must rate as something of a classic because of the proximity of the object, the details given by the two observers and the apparent interest of the object in what they were doing.
The incident occurred under a cloudless sky late in the afternoon, with temperatures a few degrees above 0°F. The observers were Tommy Banks, 15, and Errol Smythe 17, both of Whitehorse.
Errol was not available at the time of the interview, but Tommy was. Tommy told of how the two boys had spent the afternoon touring the lower slopes of Grey's Mountain on their Skidoos. These slopes on the northwest outskirts of Whitehorse are studded with spruce trees and, with 2' or 3' of snow in the winter, are ideal for this kind of sport. The woods are not too dense and the slopes are gradual.
It was just beginning to get dark and we had our lights on, though it was still clear enough to see everything, when we decided to start for home. Errol went first and I was following close enough to see him all the time until we came to a small knell and for a few seconds I lost sight of him. As I went up the knell I felt a sort of heat, and when I got to the top I saw this bright thing moving just over the trees slightly behind Errol. It seemed to be following him.
Just then Errol looked back, he thought it was my light at first, and he saw it, too.
Tommy drew a sketch of what he saw. It was an egg shaped object with two distinct bands of luminous color following the, lines of its circumference. The outside band was red and inside this was one of yellowish/orange. In the center the two colors seemed to blend and move in what Tommy described as a pulsating manner. The object, about 10' by 20' and flying horizontally, was noiseless.
Although bright, its glow was not sufficient to penetrate the darkness under the trees.
I saw it for about 10 seconds before it disappeared over the trees, and I guess Errol saw it for a little less than that, Tommy said. When I felt the heat, it seemed to me that my Skidoo was slowing down a bit. Maybe it was just because I was excited but it definitely felt that way.
After they had sped home and reported their experience, Errol's father and a friend, a clergyman, went to examine the spot where the sighting occurred. But the object had left no visible evidence. In that frigid temperature its heat apparently was not sufficient to affect the surface of the snow.
On Errol, however, the effect was more definite. Unlike Tommy he had no previous interest in the subject of UFOs and understandably was perhaps the more upset of the two, with the result he missed the following day of school. For Tommy the experience was also disturbing, but interesting. He had read numerous accounts of UFOs, written about them for school work and now had a unique personal encounter to add to his material.