The single most unexpected image I shot during my two weekends in Carrizo Plain National Monument is this one. As some lights passed over my head I scrambled to point the camera in the way they were going, clicking the shutter into an aperture-priority mode shot 15 seconds long. As it moved away, a beam turned on shining down on the road ahead. In Carrizo Plain’s most remote corner in Elkhorn Valley, this was quite an unusual sight on a Saturday night. Moments later the beam turned off and the lights faded into the distance. In the foreground the grass is illuminated by the dome light of my Xterra.
Saw this on Reddit UFOs it's clearly a long exposure of a helicopter with a tongue in cheek description by the photographer (whom I actually know and was already following on Flickr) and Reddit as usual with the easy ones had already worked it out.
Here's the admission of the joke:
"I got this and other shots of the brand new helicopter (or UFO, wink)."
It's a good example of how people joke around the subject and some UFO people still pick it up and also a good example of a long exposure of a helicopter with EXIF data for comparisons with other long exposures of helicopters we may encounter.
We may also encounter this image in the future removed of context so posting for posterity. It was taken in 2017 but now has been on Reddit so I am sure this photographer is going to be looking at his Flickr stats with some interest.