What is This Big Strange Circle Seen from Billings’ Rims?
My wife likes to tease me because I enjoy watching that Science Channel TV show called 'What on Earth?'. If you have never seen an episode of the popular show (at one time the most-watched program on SCI), the premise is simple... they scour satellite images for weird stuff and then a panel of "experts" suggest what the strange earth features could be. After lots of commercial breaks, they finally reveal what the landmark/structure/etc. actually is.
The show became fairly predictable, with all of the bizarre discoveries having completely reasonable explanations. That's the case for this giant weird circle I saw for the first time last week in Billings. I had popped by the Rims to enjoy some spring sunshine and a small pizza-to-go before heading back to the office.
The wind was blowing a thousand miles an hour and I kept a tight grip on my pepperoni pizza box as I tiptoed down to the edge of the Rims. Peeking over the edge, I saw the large, flat circle bordering the edge of the bottom of the Rimrocks.
At first I thought it might be a helicopter pad, but that made no sense. Who would put a helipad right next to a giant rock cliff? Poking around the immediate area led to an unidentified utility building. Largely unmarked except for a threatening looking sign reminding me to keep out.
My next thought was perhaps the big, faded green circle was for some kind of wacky sport I'm unfamiliar with. Like a bizarre form of tennis, played in the round?? Then, I noticed a water tower just a few hundred feet from the green circle.
There also appears to be a subterranean water pipe that runs from the top of the Rims by the utility building, down to the water tower and most likely connects to the big green circle thing.
Clearly, this entire setup is to handle the transfer and/or storage of water. Perhaps for the airport and no doubt part of the City of Billings water management systems. If you know exactly what it is, feel free to enlighten me in the Comments.