Sputnik News reported in 2017

An unusual object of surprising size was spotted potentially crawling across the floor of the Pacific Ocean, some 3,000 feet below the surface. The object has a 2.5-mile diameter and some have speculated that it seems artificial.

The object has apparently left a 41-mile track behind it, as it rolls along the seabed, offshore of the California coast. The tracks almost resemble those left by tank treads.

The object was found on Google Maps by alien hunting and conspiracy-theory group SecureTeam10. "As you're seeing here, we have some very strange lines that almost look like a large vehicle was moving on the bottom of the ocean," said SecureTeam10 member Tyler in a Youtube video.

The article goes on to quote commenters dismissing the claim.

Was a large 2.5 mi (4km) wide object found moving on the floor of the Pacific ocean?

  • 9
    The article makes it very obvious that there was no object found, only patterns in elevation data that can be interpreted as — but that have not been positively identified as — "tracks". So — still — no, there has not been any 2.5 mile wide object found. Also I claim that "Sputnik News" is not notable.
    – user32299
    Commented Jan 6, 2019 at 13:20
  • This was also reported on by the Daily Mail. Despite their reputation, they are a notable source, so the claim is notable.
    – Laurel
    Commented Jan 13, 2019 at 0:39
  • Boy, talk about your fake news!! The track is only 2.3 miles wide! Commented Jan 15, 2019 at 2:50

1 Answer 1


The article does not identify the precise location, but there are plenty of apparent subsea tracks resembling those left by tank treads easily identifiable on Google maps. To take an arbitrary example with round co-ordinates, try 35N, 132W between California and Hawaii

These are artefacts cause by high resolution scanning by ships (so typically linear following the ship's course) superimposed on wider low resolution scans using other methods

Google blogged about this in 2009, saying that Atlantis had not been discovered in a case where the tracks appeared to have a particularly regular pattern

Added: It seems that the mystery object in the claim may be near 50N, 140W and the image can be zoomed-in without being any more persuasive, especially if you contrast it with the Badlands Guardian in Alberta

  • 13
    So people looking for stuff left tracks that looked like evidence for stuff. How ... delicious that is.
    – RedSonja
    Commented Jan 6, 2019 at 13:39
  • 6
    No, the tracking does not affect the ocean floor. The difference is caused when combining high and low resolution maps. This is a common resampling issue in computer graphics.
    – Dúthomhas
    Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 18:44
  • @Dúthomhas - I do not know who you are saying "No" to, as neither I nor RedSonja disagree with you
    – Henry
    Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 18:47
  • 9
    @Henry, I am responding to RedSonja's phrasing that suggests that scanning ships are leaving something behind, that is, changing the ocean floor. The intent was to clarify that the tracks are not physical, but in the maps.
    – Dúthomhas
    Commented Jan 8, 2019 at 18:52

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