Silverthorne/Dillon A-3D

Name Dillon A-3D
CAP data 3943N 10602W 07AUG70,A4,SEE*,*V142252/ON TOP HOGBK IN OPEN/GRY,12.5
GPS coords : 39 deg 43' 20.8" 106 deg 02' 09.8"
GPS decimal 39.72245  106.03604
Datum used NAD 27
County Grand County, CO.

Actual type is EKA-3. 142252 is the BuNo. CAP didn't even get the TYPE right! (but the coords were fairly close)

August 8, 1970

A3D 142256 sister ship later in life
Close relative of the Dillon A-3. Note the Bureau Number is only 4 different.

(Click on the picture to get an enlarged image)
Civil Air Patrol X marking and impact point beyond
CAP red X on the rock, wreck beyond
Details of type at

The wreck cause: Officially- flight into IFR conditions. Unofficially- perhaps this a/c was overlooked for a fleetwide inspection of a bolt holding the entire cable & pulley control system together. 4 crew, all successfully bailed out.

Casualties:   None

Survivors:  Lt. Walter (Denny) Bird, Pilot

                   Lt. Larry Kaiser, Navigator

                ATN2 Don McCord, Crewman

               ATN2 R.M. Newton, Rider

Site Description:. Not on top of anything like the CAP says but smacked up against the base of a northeast facing cliff just at timberline on the south edge of a meadow/cirque. TWO parachutes in the meadow above, gear, burned tires, radios, radar waveguide parts, a melted conglomeration of oxygen mask/sunglasses frame/glasses case/glove, a piece of destroyed flight suit, various blown hydraulic cylinders, the nitrogen gear  lowdown bottle (with some gas in it), aircraft drag chute (melted) with nylon webbing (melted in spots) lots of pieces & parts. Tailhook was removed Sept of 2000 by a former A-3 crewman whose final flight in the Navy was aboard THIS bird. The aircraft fell from the sky carrying 24,000lb of jet fuel aboard and seems to have exploded on impact scattering parts in every direction.

Best route : Forest Rd. 142 runs along the S. Fork of Williams Creek in the Williams Fork Mountains. 4WD is not necessary though this is a rough dirt road. From the trailhead, hike the trail along the creek for approximately one mile until it comes to a meadow and a flat. Cross the creek here and head up the avalanche chute then angle left thru the trees then climb the next avalanche chute then angle thru the trees and follow the margin of forest and rockslide to the site. You WILL need your GPS to find this one and to get back to the proper creek crossing.

Trips to find the A-3 including a hike with Larry Kaiser   (23 pictures. May take awhile to load)

A sea story from Bill Laux about his participation in the accident investigation.

The A3 Association website

Home Moggie!  

Last Modified: 1/1/2008