Colorado & Wyoming Aircraft Wreckchasing

This site is dedicated to those men and women of the US Armed Forces who lost their lives training to protect us. It has been reported that there were more casualties from training during WWII than there were from combat.

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B-24 wrecked & standing on its nose
[Duke Sumonia found the explanation for this picture in the December 1978 edition of WINGS magazine. This aircraft is B-24M-5-FO S/N 44-50468 belonging to 455th Bomb Group 740th Bomber Squadron, 15th Air Force. "Supposedly the result of inadvertent application of brakes during takeoff run, this wartime accident killed six crewmen almost instantly." Jim Holder added that this occurred at San Giovanni April 12, 1945. Pilot listed as James T. Harris. August 2009 - Andy Kemp contacted me by email reporting that his father, Tech Sgt Andy Kemp of 739 Squadron of 455th Bomb Group was on a crew with the man who took this photo. The photographer was not an official AAF photographer but would run out to take pictures of landing/takeoff accidents. This picture was taken about 5 min after the crash. Andy's father was shot down on his 3rd mission but he and his crew returned to fly 24 more missions. ]

Website Purpose:  This site documents military and historical aircraft crash sites in Colorado and Wyoming. It contains site descriptions, brief descriptions of the accident causes (if known) , locating maps and GPS coordinates of the sites. This site also contains trip reports, narratives, pictures, and a few stories of meetings with  survivors or relatives of victims of these crashes.

This is not a ghoulish search for personal valuables or used airplane parts. This is an adventure in outdoor route-finding, in solving puzzles based on descriptions and it is a reminder of how un-safe aviation was throughout most of its development. It has brought me many, many enjoyable days in the Colorado mountains and it has introduced me to some fascinating 'sea stories.'  On the other hand, it has also brought pain in the form of sympathy for the families of the victims who still feel their losses many decades after the event. If the information gained in this pasttime helps bring closure to the families then I'm very happy that there is an unexpected nobility involved in what started out as casual entertainment.

August 5, 2014 Alan Gionet of KCNT TV 4 Denver aired a good story about wreckchasing and Colorado history of crashes. We visited the Crystal Mountain DC-6 together and he found his way to the Wichita State Martin 404 crash and also too video there. Alan gave me some still photos from the visits which I've added to my webpages. The video is posted on the KCNC CBS Denver website here. (I don't know how long it will stay up though)

CLICKABLE Map of all located sites

Military Sites(20):
Sites with a twist or not yet found (4)
Civilian Sites (8):


Picking up the pieces.

Joe Wilkinson Collection

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Mogbert the Unimog has been sold.

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For those searching for info about trips into Rocky Mountain National Park,  I posted trip reports from email address That address is no longer valid. But I'm the guy. (this note to help search engines find me)


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This page last modified: 11/25/2015. For site changes see What's New section.