Evidently, there are quite a lot of wreckage sites across the Peak District given it's relatively high ground and location between bases. Many training flights over-flew this area or its periphery. As many were still undergoing training most of the aircrews were relatively inexperienced in flying and the use of navigational equipment which combined with the high ground and regular night flying often in poor weather, made accidents inevitable. Overall just over half of the accidents in the Peak District occurred while crews were on training flights. (reference: Peakdistrictaircrashes)
The B-29 site is one of the better preserved and perhaps easier to find, so we thought we'd have a go.
link). It took about 70 minutes to get there, again choosing the easier (but boring) motorway route via Sheffield.
Parking along the Snake's Pass on A57. Shorts (and a little sunscreen too). Are we in the UK?
I have to admit that I let my guard down on this trip and did not prepare as well as I usually do. It was going to be in the low 20s (70s) in Derby and about 20C in Hathersage in the Peak District so we did not bring enough clothes. It was about 13C and very windy (cold!) when we parked up. I normally throw everything in the "boot" (trunk) for all options (rain gear, warm weather gear, extra shoes, etc.) but not this time. My handheld GPS also ran out of juice and my spare batteries were in my other pack. Argh!
Hills in the distance. I assume that's where we are headed but I wasn't so sure.
link): The Pennine Way is a National Trail in England. The trail runs 268 miles (431 km) from Edale, in the northern Derbyshire Peak District, north through the Yorkshire Dales and the Northumberland National Park and ends at Kirk Yetholm, just inside the Scottish border.
Nicole and I walked a little bit of it when we did Kinder Scout.
the troops carrying on -- we were quite enamored with the cottongrass (?)
best photo of the day -- Nicole flying off the bog; the fastest way down in this instance
after the bog slog and a climb, we see the beginning of a crash site
a stray piece at first
a few impromptu memorials
a bigger piece
more of the wreckage
bigger pieces here
and the memorial
In Memory: Here Lies the Wreckage of B-29 Superfortress "Overexposed" of the 16th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron USAF which tragicially crashed whilst descending through cloud on 3rd November 1948 killing all 13 crewmembers. The Aircraft was on a routine flight from RAF Scrampton to American AFB Burtonwood. It is doubtful the crew ever saw the ground. Memorial laid by the 367 Course of RAF Finningley on 12 November 1988.
my crew by the memorial
back to look at another memorial
and a final shot from a different perspective as we leave
more walking along the little stream
the "root beer" pond that comes with water in the Dark Peak
Heading home (or at least the car). Happy and tired.
I'm quite disappointed that my GPS died and I flubbed up the transfer so I lost the track (breadcrumbs) and the geeky stats that go with it (it lasted to our furthest point so would have been useful). I think we walked about 8 miles based on the 5 or so miles I had on the odometer at Bleaklow. It took about 4.5 hrs. We doubled the length by going out to Bleaklow for those that want to just go out to the site.
The gang all did well and commented that they liked the uniqueness of this particular walk (crash site plus terrain differences).
For those interested in another perspective, here's a write-up on this and some other "close by" sites by a more experience walker (link).
It was pretty amazing to see an aircraft wreckage, particularly from 1948. It's is a touch remote but not incredibly so. Important to remember than 13 men actually lost their lives here.
Photos were taken from my new camera that Kuk got for me for Father's Day. It's a newer, fancier and slightly bigger Nikon Coolpix (point-n-shoot). I'm still figuring it out and I need to learn how to turn some features off and open up others. It was a good trial run though. I needed to put it through some paces before our next big trip.
Kids have one more week of school and then they "break up". That's 2 weeks before the State (public) schools so we will be heading out to beat the masses (and the bridge the gap of unavailable holiday care).
Take care everyone and have a good week.