See caption
The road that appears to be running downhill is actually running uphill, and vice versa. Photographs taken from the middle of the brae. Google map
Source: Wikimedia Commons

The Electric Brae, known locally as Croy Brae, is an antigravity hill on the A719, between Drumshrang and Knoweside, on the south-west coast of Scotland.[a]Brae is a Lowland Scots word for the slope or brow of a hill. It is an optical illusion caused by the layout of the land through which it runs, making it seem as if a freewheeling vehicle is drawn uphill by some mysterious “magnetic” attraction.[1] A key element of the illusion at the Electric Brae appears to be a misperception of the horizon by the observer, caused in part by the hills in the background.[2]

Similar antigravity hills, also known as spook hills or magnetic hills, are found across the world. Most are relatively narrow, short stretches of road, 50–90 metres in length, set in a hilly landscape with no surrounding buildings;[2] the Electric Brae is relatively long, at about a quarter of a mile (400 m) in length.

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Bibliography


Alexander, Marc. A Companion to the Folklore, Myths & Customs of Britain. Sutton Publishing, 2002.
Bressan, Paolo, et al. “Antigravity Hills Are Visual Illusions.” Psychological Science, vol. 14, no. 5, 2003, pp. 441–449, https://www-jstor-org.libezproxy.open.ac.uk/stable/40064165.