Artists Take Credit for Monolith Atop Calif. Mountain as Yet Another Pops Up in England

The mysterious monolith popped up on Pine Mountain in Atascadero last week

California monolith
Monolith in California. Photo: gazlyons58/Instagram

A group of California artists and fabricators are claiming they're the ones behind a mysterious monolith that appeared atop Pine Mountain in Atascadero last week.

The four men revealed themselves in a YouTube video that showed them erecting a replacement of the stainless steel structure after another group toppled their original creation, according to The New York Times.

"We intended for it to be a piece of guerrilla art. But when it was taken down in such a malicious manner, we decided we needed to replace it," Wade McKenzie, one of the monolith’s creators, told the Times on Sunday.

McKenzie told the outlet that he built the 10-foot-long piece with his pal Travis Kenney, Kenney’s father Randall, and Kenney's cousin, Jared Riddle.

Its sudden existence last week came after two other monoliths appeared, then disappeared, garnering international headlines, first in a remote Utah desert, and then again in Romania.

"After the second one popped up in Romania, we were like, 'There needs to be a third,'" McKenzie said. "And then we were like 'Screw it, why not us?'"

McKenzie said it took him and the others just a few hours to build the original structure, which they then lugged up a two-mile trail to place it atop the mountain.

"Not to boast, but we motored up that thing," McKenzie said. "We’re all nearly 50 years old, and it proved we were all in pretty good shape to be able to carry a 200-pound piece up a mountain in a relatively short period of time."

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"We had no idea this would go viral," he added. "People were driving from four hours away from L.A. or San Francisco to see it."

When it was torn down, McKenzie said he reached out to Mayor Heather Moreno, suggesting that they install a permanent structure elsewhere in the city. "But she said no, the best spot would be back up on the hill," he said.

So the men created a new structure that they are sure will stay in place this time.

"It’s got about 500 pounds of concrete in there. No joke," McKenzie revealed, while Kenney added that its structural steel subsection is about four feet deep into the ground.

Meanwhile, more monoliths are appearing elsewhere in the world. According to BBC News, another structure was found on the Isle of Wight, an island off the south coast of England, over the weekend.

Isle of Wight monolith
Isle of Wight monolith. Rob da Bank/Twitter

A resident of the Isle, Alexia Fishwick, told the outlet she was "dumbstruck" when she came across the mirrored piece on Sunday.

"I'd read about the one in Utah and then Romania, so I knew the significance," she said. "[It was] really quite magical."

The Times also reported two other monoliths appeared in the United States, one in downtown Las Vegas and another in Los Padres National Forest in Goleta, California.

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