Aircraft Wrecks in the Mountains and Deserts of the American West
At 8 pm on August 22, 1962, Boeing B-47E Stratojet #52-0553
departed Davis-Monthan AFB, AZ, for a night-time refueling and low-level radar
bombing practice flight. The aircraft, with the 359th Bomb Squadron, 303rd
Bomb Wing, was to drop a practice bomb on a target near Emmett, ID. At
approximately 11 pm the aircraft hit trees, bounced, then crashed on a ridge
near Smith's Ferry, ID. All three crewmen were killed. The crash and
resulting fire destroyed most of the aircraft except for the wing tips and
tail section, which were removed in 1962. Today, engine parts, small pieces
from the cockpit, and a few shards of aluminum fuselage are all that remain.
At the time of the accident, the crew was considered one of the best bombing
teams in the Strategic Air Command. The aircraft was not equipped with
instrumentation which would alert the crew to approaching terrain, and an
accident review board found that they had been supplied with charts that did
not accurately show mountain elevations in the area. Special thanks to Dave
McCurry for help with locating this crash site. Site visited 7/25/16.