In 1997, Art Bell, of “Coast to Coast AM,” the popular syndicated late night radio talk show, received a fax from a man named Mel Waters. The fax explained that Mel had what appeared to be a bottomless pit on his property near Manastash, Washington. Soon thereafter, Art booked Mel on his radio show, where Mel explained what would become known as “Mel’s Hole” to the world. Mel was interviewed over the phone, and at the time of the interview he was not at home, but in the town of Ellensburg, WA.

Mel had bought this property a few years earlier, and the previous owners had owned the land for over thirty years prior to that. The neighbors knew of the hole quite well, and would regularly dump their garbage in it, but the hole would never fill.

It was a round pit, with a stone retaining wall surrounding it, and extending down, about 15 feet below the ground surface. Beyond the wall, the hole bore through dirt and bedrock, and from there, darkness as far as the eye could see. Mel had never met anybody who could remember when the hole was not there.

There seemed to be nothing other than reason to indicate that the pit had a bottom either. No matter what you dropped into the hole, you would never hear it hit the end. Not a splash, not a crash, nothing. No noise from the top seemed to echo back, either.

There were other oddities as well. Animals feared the hole. Mel’s dogs would follow him everywhere. They were loyal and trustworthy, but they would never approach the hole. If mel attempted to pull them toward it by the leash, they would dig their paws into the ground, and resist. And it wasn’t just Me’l dogs, either. Nobody’s pets would allow themselves near the hole.

Mel recalled a story told to him by a neighbor. It seems one of this hunter’s dogs had died, and he’d decided to dispose of the animal into the pit. The hunter swore that he saw the same dog, with the same collar, some time later, running through the woods, as though it were fetching a game animal.

Eventually, Mel’s curiosity got the best of him, and he decided to do some experiments. A former shark fisherman, he knew that he could determine whether or not there was water in the pit, provided he had enough fishing line to extend to the water. He simply strung the end of his line through a roll of lifesavers candy, and lowered the line down. Mel let the candy hang at 1,500 feet for long enough to let the candy disolve in the theoretical water, and then he lifted his line back to the top. The candy remained. No water at 1500 feet.

Mel’s next experiment was to lower a one-pound, lead weight down the pit, and when he reached the end of his spool, he simply tied on a new spool of line, and lowered that as well. Spool after spool after spool, Mel lowered into the mysterious cavity, until he had used 80,000 feet of fishing line – over 15 miles worth.

Art’s audience was intrigued but generally skeptical. People called in to give Mel ideas for further experiments. One said that there was a chance the line had already hit bottom, and simply remained taught under the pull of its own weight. Another said that if at any point the total weight of the extended line exceded its own strength, which Mell was sure that it had, then under known physics, the line should have snapped by now, if it had not hit bottom yet. One suggested weighing the used line, and dividing the value by the weight of a single foot of line. Another suggested using radar to determine the pit’s true depth. One gentleman actually suggested throwing a live cat down the pit to listen for it to stop crying out it terror (Art didn’t like that suggestion).

Art had a few ideas of his own. He suggested finding a volunteer to be lowered into the pit, to report on what lay below. Mel expressed concerns that there might be unknown dangers further into the pit, like high temperatures, extreme air pressures, toxic, heavy gases and the like. Nevertheless, despite these concerns one caller quickly volunteered for the job, though no serious plans to allow it were considered by Mel. Mel himself said he wouldn’t want to be lowered down there, because the rope could break.

Art asked Mel if he would jump down the pit if he’d contracted a terminal illness. To that, Mel said yes. In fact, he even stated that instructions to have his body disposed of into the pit were spelled out in his will.

Art also came up with the idea of allowing the government to dispose of radioactive waste into the pit for a fee, provided it really was essentially bottomless.

At one point in the show, Mel claimed he’d dropped more than one Television vaccuum tube into the pit, hoping to hear it implode. Art warned him that after having admitting that, he might get in trouble for poluting the groundwater. Mell assured him that the water in the area remained perfectly pure, despite years of waste disposal.

A strange little episode made for good enertainment for a night, and then it ended as quickly as it had begun, but this was not the last time Coast to Coast AM fans would hear from Mel Waters, and his infamous hole.

[ File 1 ] [ File 2 ] [ File 3 ] [ File 4 ]

New Details from
before the 1st

  • Mel looks like Willie Nelson.
  • On air, Mel Swears on the Bible that his story is true.
  • The hole was nine feet wide.
  • Mel had placed a metal “lid” or gate over the hole for safety reasons, and locked it.
  • Mel had a wife.
  • Mel used a mechanical counter to keep track of the number of feet that he lowered into the hole.
  • Mel grew medicinal herbs on his property.
  • Mel had had a hobby of making belt buckles, and selling them at local markets.
  • Mel had once found a P38 nazi gun on his land, and gave it away to a landlord as a deposit.
  • Mel had found a chinese, traditional, new years, “lucky money” envelope containing american dimes, and he used them in some of his homemade belt buckles.
  • There was a whale bone stuck in a tree in Ellensburg.

“They” React:

  • The day after the broadcast, Mel returned to his property, and was blocked by “uniformed people” claiming that there was a plane crash, and Mel could not enter his property for the time being.
  • Mel didn’t believe them, as he saw no smoke or other evidence of a crash.
  • He was then warned that a “drug lab” could easily be “found” on his property, if he didn’t turn around.
  • Mel threatened to go to the press.
  • They offered to lease the property from him for $250,000 per month. Mel accepted.


  •  Mel relocated to Australia, with the help of whoever “they” were.
  • Art confirmed the relocation, and that Mel contacted him, from Australia
  • They let him bring his dogs and some of his plants with him, completely side stepping regulations.
  • They paid him, as promised, regularly, and on time, every month between March of 1997 to December of 1999.
  • Mel worked on Wombat rescue and research, something he’d always wanted to do. and spent most of his money on that.

The Return Home:

  • Mel returned to the US in December of 1999 to visit family, and appear on Coast to Coast AM again
  • The government then served him legal papers implicating him as being in violation of building codes on his property, and his land was seized.
  • After helping his nephew move, Mel got on a bus in Tacoma, WA, headed for Olympia.
  • The was an altercation on the bus, and the police asked Mel to give a statement. Mel said no, and that he had to get back to Olympia. To which the police said they could give him a ride in the van. That was the last thing Mel remembered of that trip.
  • Twelve days later, Mel woke up in an alley in San Francisco.
  • He had been badly beaten
  • His molars (teeth) were missing.
  • There was evidence that Mel had been hooked up to an IV.
  • Mel’s homemade belt buckle had been stolen.
  • Art Bell had his dentist help Mel out.
  • The money was now missing out of Mel’s account.
  • Mel’s Wombat research facility was dismantled, and his employees laid off.
  • Mel’s nephew bought him a bus ticket back to Washington.
  • Mel reappeared on Coast to Coast AM to tell everyone what had happened.

[ File 1 ] [ File 2 ]

Mel then took a trip over to Ellensburg, to look for someone who might have bought a matching belt buckle from him years earlier. Sure enough, he found somebody with one.

While examining these coins, Mel noticed that the dime was minted in 1943, even though there were no dimes in 1943 with Roosevelt’s face on them. Furthermore, every american coin is marked with a letter that indicates the city in which it was minted. This dime was marked with a “B” even though no city which has ever minted US currency has ever begun with the letter “B”. The owner of the buckle, brought the coin to a coin dealer, who could not explain it, but offered to buy the dime for a very large sum of money. The man decised to think about the offer for a while, but a few days later, the treasury department came to confiscate the coin from him.

Richard C. Hoagland, a Hyperdemensional Physics Theorist later suggested that the coins might have come from a parallel universe.

Mel’s former wife has now completely vanished without a trace, and Mel is unaware as to what his former property looks like now, or who’s caring for it.

At this point in the program (about the 16-minute point of 2002 audio file #2) many people, including myself were beginning to get pretty skeptical about the whole story. It appeared as though Mel’s tale had been getting more and more fantastic and unbelievable by the minute. But then he laid this on Art…


He asked Art if he knew anything about the “terraserver.” The terraserver is a database of public domain aerial imagery and satellite imagery. It was made avalable online in December of 1997, eight months after Mel Waters first appeared on the radio. At this point, in the year, 2002, before google earth, Mel waters told Art Bell’s audience live on the Air, that according to his nephew, Mel’s former property had been blotted out, or deleted from public domain imagery.

By the end of the following commercial break, Art’s listeners had found the satellite image (shown below) which suddenly made Mel’s crazy story seem like it might not be so imaginary after all.

Art then testifies that after an earlier interview, a TV camera crew went up to the Ellensburg area and saw a lot of evidence that the military had indeed been there.

Now Mel relates another piece of the puzzle. According to him, he’d talked to a lot of people at a truck stop near that property, and people had told him that they had seen a black beam of what can only be described as “anti-light” shooting up into the sky periodically, from the area where the hole was located.

Another trucker friend of his recalled delivering a huge quantity of fiberoptic equipment to a warehouse in Ellensburg, to a group of Isrealis, and another trucker claimed to have delivered large, “crated instruments” from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in San Francisco, California to the same warehouse. LLNL works on projects for the US military, and lets not forget that San Francisco is where Mel turned up after being abducted. Mel was unsure whether or not that was related, but in case it is, I think I should report it.

[ File 3 ]

At this point, a fan asks Art a very good question: what are the odds of a single person finding two bottomless pits in a single lifetime? They have to be too low to calculate. But Mel says he found a second one, and here’s how:

Coast to Coast AM was a hugely popular program. It still is, but back then, it was especially popular in the western half of the United States. That part of the country has a lot of unused public land, and Native American reservations. Given the subject matter of the show, people (not unlike me) who are very interested in bizarre phenomenon are regular listeners. Well, it just so happened that a group of Native Americans in Nevada heard Mel on the show, and contacted him through e-mail, inviting him down to their reservation to discuss his arts, crafts, and knowledge about wild plants.

Mel went down to Nevada to visit these impoverished people in early September, 2001. They had done a lot of work with plants, and natural medicine, and were interested in Mel’s research. Mel said that the plants that worked the best were the ones he grew on the land with the Hole. He described the plants to them, and asked if they were familiar with the variety.

They then brought him to an area of land, where another hole was located. It was in the middle of a village on public land where Basque families had settled. The Basques, by the way, are a small and generally isolate ehtnic group of people who originate from a small region in Europe. These Basques were raising sheep in Nevada. The Basques say that this hole had been there at least as long as them, and they’d been there since the 1800’s. They considered the pit a spiritual point.

This hole, like Mel’s Hole, is nine feet wide. Only this one has a metal collar around it, rather than a stone retaining wall, and the metal lining extends down as far as the eye can see. The metal rim also produced a field of warmth, though not heat as we normally know it, around it.

This hole also had strange sound-canceling properties. You’ll recall how you could never heard an echo or objects hit the bottom of Mel’s original hole. Well, this new hole would cancel out all sound made directly above it. Further, if you struck the metal rim with any object, it would produce not a single sound.

Animals were also afraid of this hole, and a black beam had been seen coming from this hole, just as some had witnessed around Mel’s Hole in Washington.
Mel and the villagers decided to experiment.
The first experiment they tried, was to lower a bucket of store-bought ice down into the pit as far as they could, 1500 feet. Meanwhile, they kept another bucket of ice with them on the surface as control, and waited for the control ice to melt half way. Then they hoisted the pit ice back up, to see how the two compare.

The ice in the pit did not melt. However, the ice was now lukewarm, and even stranger, it continued to remain solid, even while sitting in Mel’s hands.

They decided to try harder to melt the ice, by cooking it over a fire pit. Rather than melting, the lukewarm ice caught on fire. It was a heat-producing flame, but not a large, yellow flame. More like a light flicker. Mel says the bucket of ice continued to burn for months, and he presumed that it was still burning at the moment he was telling the story on the air. One guy even took some of the burning ice home to put into his stove. And it’s been keeping his cabin warm in the winter.

They repeated the bucket experiment, and it only worked about 1/3 of the time. They got mixed results, trying the same experiment.

One of the Basques wanted to be lowered into the hole himself. They talked him out of that, because of what happened to the ice. Instead… they lowered a sheep into the pit.

[ File 4 ]

The sheep wouldn’t have it. It kicked, it screamed, it panicked, and like all animals, refused to go near the hole. It put up such a valient fight, to the point that it successfully stopped it’s captors from succeeding with the plan as expected. But, the Basques were determined, so they knocked the sheep between the eyes, and stunned it enough to put it in a crate with a cable attached for lowering, and then brought it over to the hole. The sheep came to, just before they got it to the hole, and it went berserk inside of the crate, knowing what was about to happen. It was producing the sort of blood-curdling lamb scream that you couldn’t tell Hannibal Lecter about.

Once the crate with the lamb inside was positioned directly over the pit, all noise stopped. The lamb was still shaking the box violently, but over the hole, not a sound could be heard.

The decending sheep struggled inside the box as the curious amateur scientists lowered it down but by the half-way point on the length of the cable, further movement, if there was any had ceased to be obvious or noticable.

At the end of the line, 1500 feet, Mel and the villagers felt a strange and fuzzy vibration in the metal rim. They left the sheep below for a half hour, and then began to hoist it back to the top. The box was definately not moving anymore.

Everything looked good from the outside of the box, but inside, the sheep is now dead. It too looked normal on the outside. So a Basque butcher decided to disect the animal on a near-by table.

Inside, it looked like the sheep had been cooked. The Villager notices a strange gel surounding an enormous, tumorous growth inside the sheep.

They removed the tumor, which appeared to be moving like a pulsing fleshy sack. He cut open the tumor, and a fleshy creature emerged that looked like an 18-inch-long cross between a fetus and a seal. Flippers and all. But the eyes looked human. It was alive and connected to the tumor with an umbilical cord.

The creature observed its human fathers with reverence, disconnected itself from the cord, and gave Mel a feeling of being in the presence of a miracle. One of the Basques suggested killing it. They did not. The thing crawled to the edge of the table. It looked up at Mel, who seemed to feel connected to it, in some way. Mel felt compelled to pick it up, and put it on the ground. The goo left on Mel’s hands smelled like ozone.

As the tiny miracle laid on its belly, it looked up at the humans surrounding it, and studied each of them each in turn, as though it had intelligence. They stood there staring at this being for two hours as though hypnotized.

Mel describes this being’s gaze as the most compassionate look he’s ever witnessed. The creature makes its way toward the hole, and Mel feels compelled to help it to the top of the metal rim. The creature then gave the men a slow nod. It then turned around, and plunged itself back into the hole.

The witnesses were deeply moved, and emotionally drained by the experience. They ultimately decided to dump the remains of the sheep back into the hole.

Mel claims that in late August, prior to going to Nevada, he had been diagnosed with a lethal form of esophogial cancer. They gave him six months to live. After returning home from Nevada, the cancer was gone. Mel believes the creature had healed him.

Before leaving Nevada, Mel says a Basque elder told him that he had always believed the hole to be spiritual in nature. The man seemed to not be surprised about the story of the creature.

This Basque elder, before going off to bed, closed an object in Mel’s hand, and told him to put it away. Mel put it in his pocket without looking at it. Later, Mel reached into his pocket, and pulled out something that this old man had once found in the area, stuffed in a little red envelope.

It was a 1943 Roosevelt dime.

[ File 5 ] [ File 6 ]

In December of 2002, Mel Waters appeared again on Coast to Coast AM for an interesting update.

Helicopters had been flying over the village with the hole, regularly. Mel has since been informed that the metalic collar around the new hole becomes invisible, when an observer reaches a particular distance away from it.

Now it seems that the mysterious 1943 dime disappears from view at 15 feet away, and does not show up on film, nor digital scanner.

Mel updates us about the strange burning ice. He lets us know that the man who began using a can of ever-burning ice as a heat source in his wood stove for the cooler months.

This Basque guy was noticing that in his house he was always thirsty, and the air was always dry, and even his skin began getting very dry. He would place a kettle of water on top of the stove to humidify the air, but one day he noticed that it looked like the steam from the stove was lingering around the stove, and even being absorbed by it.

One day, this man came home and found that the stove had crashed through the hearth and floor boards of his cabin, and was sunken a foot into the ground below.

Faced with the dangers of the frigid air, the cabin owner patches up his stove pipe and continues to use the stove, as it sits below his floor, to heat his home.

A week or two later, the man returns home to find that his entire cabin has desentigrated into piles of dry wood dust. So he leaves the pile behind, and moves in with his brothers. A month later, he returns to find that the stove has now sunken five feet into the ground, leaving a glassy-smooth surface to the hole it creates.

At this point, the man contacts Mel and tells him the story. Mel decides that the best course of action is to contact one of the mysterious officials who was one of his contacts when he was in Australia. That acts deeply troubled and concerned, and insists with great urgency that Mel explain to him where the cabin was and how to get to it. The cabin owner gets in contact with them, and shows them where it is.

The Basque gentleman then decides to hide somewhere in the hills near by, and watch what is done about this sinking stove. A team is dispatched to deal with it. He can’t tell whether they are military, or scientists, or what, but they brought out a lot of heavy duty construction equipment to the site, including cranes. It never seems to be enough. They continue to bring heavier and heavier equipment in their attempts to extract this stove and its contents. They’re having trouble lifting it even with multiple cranes.

Eventually, they drop some chains into the ground, and pour water over them. With multiple cranes they were then able to hoist the stove out of the ground, and load it onto what was described as the biggest truck he’d ever seen in his life. Then they hauled it away.

This ice reminds Mel of the fictional substance Ice Nine, described in Kurt Vonagut’s book, Cat’s Cradle. Ice nine was a form of water molecule that freezes at a high temperature, and converts surrounding water to the same form of molecule. It’s a theoretical substance that could freeze all the water on earth, and turn people into statues. Vonegut got the idea from a scientist he’d worked with, and there are scientists today who think it isn’t impossible.

Mel has since been under the impression that he was being followed. Saying that people he wanted to talk to ended up finding him, even though he’s not easy to find. Therefore he has decided not to return to the hole, fearing that somebody might find their way to it through him.

The Basques have informed Mel that the creature that had emerged from the dead sheep had returned multiple time, since it dove back into the hole the first time. The Basques say that they have found a way to communicate with the creature. It speaks to them through one of their boomboxes. The Basques tried recording the dialogue, but the only thing that showed up on the tape was not dialogue, but a series of random and pulsating tones.

Mel theorizes that the creature may be a Rock Flyer, a creature legendary to native Americans, which live beneath the earth and can travel between multiple earths.

The Creature warned the basques about the burning ice, too. It told them that the ice “can and would” destroy the earth in a very short amount of time if improperly used. They anticipate that “greedy and undisciplined use of the ice” would probably occur in this world.

The Creature says that there are intelligent beings on other worlds who anticipate that the human race will destroy itself through nuclear war, and they plan to move in once we’re gone, and use the ice on this planet. Mel is told that when the burning ice is discovered in the universe, it’s almost always improperly used.

With that, the interview ended, and nobody has heard from Mel Waters since.

[ File 7 ] [ File 8 ]

Comparing the two Holes

Feature Mel’s Hole Basque Hole
Nine Feet Wide Yes Yes
Appears Bottomless Yes Yes
Retaining Wall Stone Metal
Periodically Emmits Black “Anti-Light” Beam Yes Yes
No Echo Yes Yes
Cancels Sound No Yes
Animals fear it Yes Yes
Retaining Wall Extends as far as the Eye can see No Yes
Of emmense concern to the government Yes Yes
Red Chinese envelope containing impossible 1943 roosevelt dimes found in the vacinity Yes Yes

Independent Investigations

Several people have gone out in search of Mel’s hole, but none have succeeded. Some speculate that the real reason for the missing section of the aerial imagery is the presence of the Yakima Military Training Center.

According to Wikipedia,

“In 1997 the local newspaper, the “Tri City Herald”, reported that Waters was not listed in the Kittitas County telephone directory or the register of taxpayers, and that authorities in Ellensburg were unable to find any evidence that he was a resident, thus calling into question whether he existed.”

However, it’s not beyond the realm of possibility for an unknown but powerful wing of the government to erase evidence of Mel’s life.

[ Source ]