Maine Day 6 – B-52 Crash Site
Elephant Mountain, Maine
Today was a bad day. It rained off and on making some places we wanted to go to nearly impossible.
Originally we went out looking for Moose. We have done this many times before and have yet to see one in the wild. We did make it to a park and got close to some deer but still no Moose.
So with no luck again we move on to another spot to see something different.
The next stop was not to look for Moose but to see a crash site of a B-52 Bomber from 1963. The crash site is located on Elephant Mountain.
I’ll warn you that the road is really rough and a car or van without really good suspension should think twice about going up it. We were able to manage in a van but it took us a long time to get to the site.
There are signs pointing to the crash site on the road but they are very spread out. The road you will need to find will be marked B-52 Road.
On January 24, 1963, a B-52 Bomber was doing a Terrain Avoidance Flight to practice getting under the radar of the Soviet Air Defence. During the flight, they dropped to about 500 feet and with the bad weather ran into some turbulence.
The pilot tried to bring the plane back up above the turbulence, but the plane’s vertical stabilizer came off causing the plane to nose dive.
You can read more about the crash here.
Now the site stands as a memorial to the 7 men who died on that night. The pilot and navigator were the only ones to survive the crash.
When you find the site there is a small parking lot across from the entrance. When you enter you see signs telling you not to take or touch anything but a usual people have gone in and put their names on the tires and other items.
You have to walk back to the site through a gate. Once inside you see a few parts of the plane along the sides of the path. The farther you walk in the more debris you see.
You will get to see full-size tires from the craft and parts of the fuselage. There are many big parts of the plane lying around. You have to be careful since some might be covered by leaves and you can trip on them plus the metal is extremely sharp and can cut you easily.
You do not want to get seriously hurt in this area due to no cell phone reception and it will take awhile for someone to be able to make it out to the site to help you.
If you are in the area and have the vehicle and time I would say to go check this out. You get to see some history that you do not hear much about. I did not know anything about this crash until we were trying to find something to do.
This is a neat little hidden history of Maine.
Also published on Medium.