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World's strangest: The road where cars roll uphill

'World's Strangest': The Road Where Cars Roll Uphill

It may look normal at first, but something very odd is happening on a scenic road in Ayrshire, Scotland. The Electric Brae is a road on which cyclists pedal hard to ride downhill, then rest while coasting uphill. Even a car in neutral will look like it's starting to roll up the hill.


Conspiracy theories range from magnetic forces to supernatural beings. One thing locals agree on? This road is confusing.

Surveyor Chris English investigated using a theodolite, a sophisticated piece of equipment used for measuring angles in horizontal and vertical planes. In this case, Chris was able to confirm that the apparent top of the hill is actually 292 feet above sea level, while the apparent bottom of the hill is 303 feet above sea level.

The answer? Sorry, conspiracy theorists ... it's all just an optical illusion.

Psychologist Dr. Rob McIntosh explains that the illusion is a product of the surrounding landscape. "If we could get a wide enough perspective on this we'd see that we're standing within a tilted land mass. The whole landscape tilts this way and the road tilts in the same direction but by a smaller amount," McIntosh explains. The "relative slope," he points out, is the illusion.

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