Plane wreckage found in Kite Hollow

SNP plane crash recovery
A helicopter prepares to lift debris from a Sept. 2 plane crash site near mile 33 along Skykline Drive on Monday, Sept. 24. ~ Photo provided by Shenandoah National Park

September 21, 1961 — The dense nature of undergrowth and trees in the Kite Hollow area drained by the East Hawksbill is indicated by the length of time it took searching parties to locate the wreckage of a Civil Air Patrol plane lost in the area on Sept. 9.

It was not until last Saturday that the wreckage was located near the Red Gate road (old Gordonsville turnpike). The wreckage was found by Park Ranger Fred Vest and Major Topping of the Air Patrol.

Major Topping said the plane may be dismantled and most essential parts carried out of the heavy wooded area.

The plane was unable to gain altitude after flying low between ridges. It settled to the earth, crashed into a tree and overturned.

The pilot and his companion walked out by following the headwaters of Little Hawksbill to the Red Gate road to the home of Frank Kiblinger. 

~ From the public archives of the Page News and Courier


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