oregon vortex

Can anyone out there shed some light on the so-called ‘oregon vortex’? Supposedly, the area contains so many oddities (things rolling uphill and generally defying gravity, inexplicable compression or expansion of various things, including people, just for starters) that it would require some fundamental revision of our understanding of physical laws. The only explanation I have heard sounds more like star trek than science. It looks real enough, doesn’t appear to be a hoax (they have a website at oregonvortex.com if you want to see for yourself), but I got somewhat suspicious when I learned they have a gift shop.

Someone please tell me why I don’t have to throw away my college physics text. I paid $85.00 for it.

Greg in New Orleans

You can go to a lot of places in the world where the laws of physics seem to be violated. I’ve done that in Moncton, New Brunswick.

However, I didn’t have to pay to get in.

The reasons for the Oregon Vortex are included in the third secret of Fatima I believe.

Didn’t the Vatican reveal the 3rd secret of Fatima already? I thought it had something to do with WWII.

Have a look at oregon vortex debunk.

sorry–it’s about the pope’s near-assassination and Communism. But judging by the text, there’s definitely room for Oregon vortices in that jumbled mess.

http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20000626_message-fatima_en.html

OK… so why hasn’t this been given proper study? There should be teams of research scientists (or should we now call them scienticians) out with beeping gizmos to measure and catalog this stuff.

More importantly, why haven’t gravitation, relativity and the rest of those pesky ‘laws’ of physics, which are apparently contradicted by observable and measurable phenomema, been duly downgraded to the level of voodoo, alchemy, bloodletting and other superstitious claptrap? Not to dis those practioners of voodoo out there…

The Oregon Vortex one of several known (and marketed) Mystery Spots, as chronicled here in the ever-entertaining RoadsideAmerica.com (second time I’ve linked to it today). I’m sure they can be debunked, but isn’t it more fun to feel like you should’ve had a V8?

I am still unconvinced about this. The debunking page deals with the height differential issue, something I had thought of, but according to people who go there you can actually feel the effect. There are many other effects that the page doesn’t even touch on; such as balls, bottles, etc rolling uphill, which engineers have apparently observed and are unable to explain.

I am sure this thing has to be b.s., I just wish someone would prove it. Eh, rats. Guess I will have to just head out there and do it myself.

Greg

You can also go to Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Park California where they built a mystery spot called the “Haunted Shack.” It is all optical illusion. Things do not roll uphill. It only looks like it is uphill because the usual clues you use to determine slope are skewed.

It is a hoax. The cabin is not built with right angles. You perception of horizontal is thrown off. Just try walking in there with surveying equipment, or even a siomple carpenter’s square. I’m sure they would not be very happy.

Speaking as an Engineer…

A lot of the time you don’t want Engineers to try and explain things that “defy nature”. You want magicians. If someone shows me a “perpetual motion” machine, or a car that rolls uphill, or a photo of a real, live, monkapotamus, I want someone like the Amazing Randii to examine it - not a scientist or Engineer like myself. Why? Because in most cases, there is either just a perception problem, or sleight-of-hand involved.

Here, I’ll save you a trip: http://www.illusionworks.com/html/mystery_spot.html (BTW, that is one :cool: site)

By the way, do you really think that someone who is making money off of a “Mystery Spot/Vortext/UFO landing site” is going to admit that what’s going on is easily explained by a first year psychology student?

Sidenote: Six Flags used to have one of these. The last time I went through it, they had hid a VanDerGraff generator with a fake “Mayan” statue (or maybe it was a Tiki god) then swirled a flourescent bulb near the statue and proclaimed that the bulb was lit by the “mystical” energy that the god had imbued the statue with. :rolleyes:

I’ve been to a few of the mystery houses with the slanting floor, but I’ve never been to the Oregon Vortex, so I know not directly of which I speak. With that disclaimer aside, while I’m sure there’s a slanting floor house at the Oregon Vortex, I was under the impression there’s more to it than that. I don’t have the book with me, but IIRC, James Randi mentions the vortex, at least in passing, in his book Flim-Flam. The impression the book gave me was that there’s a natural occuring area there where the laws of gravity seem to be violated. Randi’s explanation was that it was probably due to a few factors (possibly due to some past earthquake), such as sloping ground, along with trees growing at a slant, the combination of which throws off your visual perception of up and down. I was also under the impression that the result of this is so profound as to actually affect your sense of balance.

What, you don’t think the people who run the site would lie, claim it’s mysterious and unexplained, and charge you 6 bucks (or whatever it is now)? What do they get out of saying “Hey, come look at our optical illusion. Don’t worry, it’s all completely explained by natural forces, but it’s a curious thing to look at.” That’s going to sell a lot of tickets.

Six Flag’s Astroworld built one of these. Notice in the link by Zyada that the pictures are first displayed with the house sitting level, but if you actually go to any of these places that’s the first thing wrong - the house is always tilted.

The walls are tilted, the ceiling is tilted, the floor is tilted, the “uphill” ramps are tilted - everything is skewed, so your mind fills in the gaps by expectation. And then it doesn’t add up.

As for the effects outside, it’s a combination of the landscape in the area being tilted yet again (nice steep slope, trees that are angled) and suggestion - they stand there telling you how strange it is and don’t you feel a little mystical power in the air?

Scientists aren’t racing out there to study the effect and throw out physics because it’s a carnival trick.

You need to visit the mystery house at blackrock canyon, not far from Glacier Park in Montana. Very similar. They used to make claims about gravity vortexes, etc. but lately they dropped those claims, I suspect they were forced to.

As my brother told my dad (a true believer) “its a good thing it’s right by the road in a heavy tourist area or they wouldn’t make much money”.

Well…what a coincidence. I just talked to a client today from Oregon who is a pretty shrap Engineer, who says she has been to see the “Oregon Vortex” herself. She claims that it all depends on how you look at it. She says she has seen the demonstration of the car “rolling uphill”, and says that she can tell it’s an optical illusion if she looks at it hard enough.

There is also a place where people line up from tallest to shortest, and then move themselves around to switch places, and then are surprised to find that everyone is the same height. She also says it is a clear optical illusion, and she cannot believe people don’t see it. She suspects that people are focusing on too few visual clues - that perhaps one or more items in the landscape or field of view stand out to make it appear that the ground is sloped the wrong direction.

Of course, I have no cite to give here. Just a second-hand testimonial.