A large monolith- similar to the metal pillars found in California, Utah, and Romania- popped up in Fayette County’s Wolf Creek Park sometime last week.
The silver apparatus known as a monolith was first discovered in the middle of a Utah desert in November. The pillar stood between 10 to 12 feet high and seemed to show up overnight with no word as to who was responsible.
Those on social media immediately started creating conspiracy theories, stating that the monolith was the work of extra-terrestrials or some other “unexplained source.” As similar structures appeared in California and Romania, people began to wonder if it was the work of some collaborative artistic movement.
While watching the monoliths appear and disappear across the globe, people wondered where the next one would be located. Then, one was sighted in West Virginia.
When Gabe Pena, Fayette Resource Coordinator for Fayette County, marched into Wolf Creek Park on Thursday to see the structure for himself, he couldn’t believe it.
Pena is currently part of the Fayette County Urban Renewal Authority, which works to develop Wolf Creek Park.
“It definitely was a wow moment,” he said. “It was eerie because we went out at 11 p.m. but considering these things are coming and going quickly we got our headlamps and dogs and checked it out.”
According to Pena, the monolith, which was positioned directly off the Blue Trail in Wolf Creek Park, was at least seven feet tall.
It is unknown if this monolith is connected to the others.
Pena says the structure doesn’t look as shiny and metallic as the first three, but that he could tell it was constructed well.
“I didn’t see the Utah monolith in person, but it looked shiny. This one almost looked like it was spray-painted silver or chrome. That shouldn’t take away from it, though. The work on fabricating this thing and the tight welding would require someone to spend a lot of time on it. It’s definitely really cool.”
The resource coordinator hopes that the monolith, which has already brought some attention to Wolf Creek Park, will continue to bring awareness to the work being done there.
What is currently a 15-mile trail system developed by SCResources will hopefully become a 40-mile trail-system in the next two years.
“The anything else, this statue is bringing out the Wolf Creek trails. The trails out here are second to none and I think this kind of goes to show that the recreational resources we have in Fayette County and the New River Gorge River are on par with Moab, Utah. New River Gorge is a world-class place, so I think as far as outdoor recreation goes, the type of people that would hang out and mountain bike and climb in Utah are a similar demographic to those here.”
Considering the size of the monolith, Pena says he believes erecting it was a collaborative effort.
It is unknown if Fayette County’s monolith is connected to the others, but, on Dec. 5, a community of artists called The Most Famous Artist credited themselves as creating the original structure. The collective, whose founder is an artist known as Matty Mo, also took credit for the monolith in Romania and California.
Later that day, the group posted pictures of social media pictures about their work before adding a post of their newest monolith in Joshua Tree Park.
The monolith was still in Wolf Creek Park as of Thursday, Dec. 3.