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Vile Vortices

Maybe you are asking, “What is a vile vortex?”  You’ve heard the chilling stories about the Bermuda Triangle, right? Well, there are several other mysterious places where ships and planes seem to vanish.  In fact, there are 12 places collectively called the Vile Vortices, and like their more famous sibling, they all hold some rather creepy secrets. There are smaller vortices, too. For this article, though, I’ll concentrate on the 12 identified vortices and give an example of one of the smaller vortices.

But, first, some background.

To this day, scientists are not exactly sure how vile vortices work or why they happen. We know that there are areas in which strange, possibly even paranormal phenomena, disappearances, and disturbing tales seem to be commonplace. The Bermuda Triangle most likely being the most famous of the vortexes.

The Vile Vortices are twelve equidistant vertex points on a planetary grid.  Ivan T. Sanderson, a naturalist, and paranormal investigator, originally plotted these anomalies. Sanderson first coined the term “Vile Vortices” in his article “The Twelve Devil’s Graveyards Around the World,” published in Saga magazine in 1972.

Sanderson is the founder of the Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained and was avidly interested in investigating ship and plane disappearances linked to the paranormal. So, in the late 60’s he focused his attention on ten areas that were approximately equidistant and were the subjects of reported unexplained incidents and/or electromagnetic distortions.

These ten Vile Vortices are located in the Earth’s tropical climates; five of them fall within the Tropic of Cancer and the other five within the Tropic of Capricorn. The remaining two Vile Vortices are located at the North and South Poles. Together the Vile Vortices form the vertices of an icosahedron, which is a 20-faced polyhedron.

Sanderson theorized that hot and cold air and sea currents crossing these saucer-shaped areas might create the electromagnetic anomalies responsible for the disappearances of planes and sea-going vessels and the reported mechanical and instrument malfunctions in these areas.

Half of the vortices reside above the equator and half below it. They are also evenly spread out on the Earth, which investigators suggest prove there is something logical and mathematical to the chaos. 

Here’s a list of the vile vortices: Bermuda Triangle, the Algerian Megaliths, the city of Mohenjo Daro, the Hamakulia Volcano east of Hawaii, the Dragon’s Triangle in the “Devil’s Sea,” the South Atlantic Anomaly, the Wharton Basin, the Easter Island megaliths, East of Rio de Janeiro, the Loyalty Islands, the North Pole, and the South Pole.

Today, I’ll share the three best-known of these Vile Vortices: the Bermuda Triangle, the Dragon’s Triangle (Devil’s Sea), and the South Atlantic Anomaly. However, all 12 geographic areas have reported instances of magnetic anomalies and other unexplained phenomena.

The Bermuda Triangle has a long and sordid history.  Whole fleets of torpedo bombers, spy planes, navy ships, the infamous Mary Celeste, and others have all come to mysterious calamity in this ocean area near the tip of Florida. Glowing water, spinning compasses, random malfunctions, and strange sightings while passing through are reported by the lucky ones who weren’t lost.  The other thing we know for sure is that people are dying here. In the last 100 years, over 1000 people have lost their lives to the Bermuda Triangle. Whether or not you believe something paranormal is happening, you must admit that those are some pretty scary numbers.

This South Atlantic Anomaly is particularly interesting because NASA has extensively studied the area itself. 

An inner and outer radiation belt surrounds the Earth. In the South Atlantic, the inner radiation belt comes closest to the Earth’s surface than anywhere else, creating an area where the Earth’s magnetic field is weaker, and there’s a flux of energetic particles. Many times, satellites who go through this belt experience malfunctions and glitches, and astronauts see strange shooting star-like lights. 

This place also causes severe problems for aircraft. Planes disappear mysteriously here, which probably has something to do with navigational and electronic malfunctions. 

The Dragon’s Triangle is located in the sea the Japanese call Ma-no Umi which loosely translated as the Sea of the Devil. Often compared to the Bermuda Triangle, the Dragon’s Triangle is an area where sea-going vessels and aircraft allegedly mysteriously disappear. Besides vanishing planes and ships, phenomena linked to the Dragon’s Triangle include ghost ships, UFOs, lapses in time, and electronic equipment malfunctions. Some writers, including Charles Berlitz, even link the Dragon’s Triangle to the disappearance of Amelia Earhart.

In the USA are the Bridgewater Triangle in Massachusetts, and the Alaska Triangle is, well, in Alaska.

Although not an ‘official’ Vile Vortex, the inland Bridgewater Triangle is likely one of the world’s most concentrated areas of various paranormal reports. Located just 30 miles south of Boston, this 200-square mile area has the Massachusetts towns of Abington, Freetown, and Rehoboth at its angles. Located nearly dead center within the triangle is the town of Bridgewater, and the area also encompasses six other Massachusetts towns: Raynham, Taunton, Brockton, Mansfield, Norton, and Easton.

Aside from the number and diversity of paranormal reports, what is phenomenal about the Bridgewater Triangle is that the first report of paranormal activity was made almost three centuries ago, in 1760.

At 10 am on May 10, 1760, a “sphere of fire” was reported to hover over New England and emit light so brightly it cast shadows in the morning sun. Reportedly, people saw the light in both Bridgewater and Roxbury. Since then, the area has spawned diverse reports, including paranormal events ranging from ghost dancers to UFOs to Cryptozoological sightings.

Sources: Marine; Article by Laura Allan,

Until Next Time,

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