Every night I see a helicopter light above the reservation sitting in a spot above my house, but way up that I can't see it closely, just the light. Has to be a helicopter since it sits in one spot.

  • $\begingroup$ If it stays in one place every single night it's probably a tower of some kind. Towers have anti-collision lights so that pilots can see them at night. $\endgroup$ – GdD Mar 20 at 20:38
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    $\begingroup$ PS if you meant "every single night" please edit as it appears you may be referencing some sort tribal ceremony or something. $\endgroup$ – quiet flyer Mar 20 at 20:46
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    $\begingroup$ Also you might consider editing the question to address some of the questions in my answer. $\endgroup$ – quiet flyer Mar 20 at 21:02
  • $\begingroup$ @quietflyer Typo in title edited (you could have easily done so yourself BTW). If you have clarifying questions for the OP, please add them as comments to the question, not as an answer. $\endgroup$ – expeditedescent Mar 28 at 10:41
  • $\begingroup$ @ J.Hougaard I didn't want to rule out the possibility that the title really did refer to a periodically-occurring, maybe weekly, tribal ceremony. $\endgroup$ – quiet flyer Mar 28 at 14:46

If you are looking up at a bright thing in the southwestern or western sky before 11 PM in March 2020 and you aren't also able to locate the planet Venus at the same time, then the bright thing is the planet Venus.

Venus is very high and bright in southwestern or western sky in the evenings these days. Unless it is very near the horizon, it appears to shine with a white steady light. With a clear distant horizon, it will set in the west about 23:30 PDT at your location. (Calculated via this on-line tool.)

The star Sirius is also still prominent in the evening sky. It can appear to flicker quite dramatically, flashing from red to blue, especially when near the horizon, but is nowhere near as bright as Venus. With a clear distant horizon it will set in the southwest at about 2:50 AM PDT at your location. (Calculated via this on-line tool.)

Does the object make a helicopter sound, or some other sound, or no sound?

Is the light steady, or is it definitely blinking completely off and then back on? What color(s)? What direction is the light from you? Does it stay in the same direction from you if you drive 10 miles down a road and look at again? (I.e. does it appear to "follow" you as some observers have often said about such things?) Is it so high that it could not be a tower? Does it get nearer to the western horizon over the course of several hours? Can you establish what time it "sets" below the horizon, if it does? Is it still visible at midnight? Is it still visible in the pre-dawn twilight? If you have access to binoculars, does it look like a tiny round circle that is not flashing or flickering when seen through the binoculars?

Odds seem good that it is Venus, but the answers to these questions should confirm or reject this hypothesis. Due to the path of the ecliptic, Venus may be well north of due west even near the spring equinox when the sun is setting nearly due west.

If it is definitely a flying vehicle, which seems unlikely, you can't assume it is not an unmanned drone/ UAV.

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  • $\begingroup$ Future edit- opening paragraph should reference PDT specifically; also could double-check that Venus setting time is after 11 PDT throughout entire month of March 2020 and if not adjust stated time accordingly. $\endgroup$ – quiet flyer Mar 20 at 22:53
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    $\begingroup$ in the words of Yoda, "edit or do not..." The rest of us derive no benefit from your notes to self. $\endgroup$ – Michael Hall Mar 21 at 1:01
  • $\begingroup$ @MichaelHall -- I guess I'll wait till the moderators tell me that, or until they start deleting my notes to myself. The reason they are there is to facilitate collecting multiple edits into one single batch. I've been specifically asked (warned really) to edit less, and a potential edit that might sit waiting for weeks or months tends to get lost if it is just filed away as a wordpad document or something, perhaps on some different device than the one I will be using at some future time. I take note of your comment all the same. $\endgroup$ – quiet flyer Mar 21 at 1:21

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