Mysterious Solar Panel-Powered Antennas Keep Popping Up in the Foothills of Utah

For about a year now, authorities in Salt Lake City have been trying to solve the mystery of a series of solar-powered antennas that keep popping up in the foothills around the city.

The first devices were discovered around a year ago. There was just a couple of them, but since then about a dozen have been reportedly located and disabled. According to the city’s recreational trails manager, the devices consist of a locked battery box, a solar panel, and an antenna. No one knows who keeps planting them and for what purpose, so for now all anyone can do is speculate and attempt to dismantle them, because they are installed on public land without a permit.

Photo: Salt Lake City Public Lands

“We just don’t leave things on public lands anymore. You have to ask for permission,” recreational trails manager, Tyler Fonarow, said. “It might be related to cryptocurrency and relaying networks and being able to make money off that, so that’s another reason we want to stop it now before it becomes a dumping ground for dozens and dozens of more antennas.”

Fonarow’s assumption about the devices being related to cryptocurrency is only a theory, but authorities hope to learn more about the purpose of the antennas when the locked boxes are opened.


For now, all we know is that around a dozen of such antennas have been located and dismantled so far, some located on property managed by the Forest Service and the University of Utah, and others on the steep trails near Twin Peaks.

Interestingly, this isn’t the first mystery to puzzle the people of Utah in recent years. Back in 2020, a mysterious metal monolith was discovered deep in the state’s desert, fueling all kinds of alien-related theories.

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