Two Mount Union students, Agusta Fisher and Joseph Higginbotham, made the four hour flight to Nevada in search of one thing: aliens. Earlier this week, I caught up with them to learn more about their adventure. The two had made pre-trip preparations by purchasing a couple of sub-zero sleeping bags and a tent before beginning their journey. After traveling to Columbus, the two caught their flight over to Nevada where they would start their mission on Wednesday. After facing complications with car rentals and finding legal camping locations, the duo finally found a smaller location an hour out from their destination. It lacked running water and other amenities and was located where Augusta had described as “the middle of nowhere”. Over the next couple days, they explored Nevada. There, they would hike through the mountains, visit the strip and see the Hoover Dam. They raved about the spicy McChicken that the local McDonalds and gas station was offering, and they visited it quite often during their time there.
On Thursday, the two made the three hour trip to Rachel, Nevada, which they described as a pretty intense drive due to the terrain and the desolate atmosphere. Upon finally arriving, they were greeted with blow up aliens and the sight of camper vans. They were also welcomed by the mass of people who all came for the same reason. They had told me that security was quite heavy at their location, with plenty of police cars. Even SWAT made an appearance. According to Augusta, there were a couple thousand participants in attendance. When prompted with the question of what their motives were, they responded with, “We did it for the memes.” They were also interested in making a small exploration vacation and thought Nevada was perfect for a weekend getaway.
Surprisingly, over the night of the raid, nobody had actually attempted to invade the military base at 3:00 A.M. Friday morning— the scheduled time for the storming. However, there was an incident involving two women who were detained for taking a Snapchat video too close to the gate of Area 51. Not to mention, some individuals were setting off fireworks near the base. The campsite had a couple food trucks, performance stages and DJs themed for the raid. They described the event area as quite somber and relaxed. After the event, the two returned back to Las Vegas to explore the strip one last time before making the trip home. They told me that all in all, their favorite experience was hiking the cavernous Red Rock Mountain. They returned home with a sense of accomplishment and fulfillment, as an event like this happens only once in a lifetime.