Registered: 1225076201 Posts: 442
Was on a day trip to help a friend find a place in Pahrump NV. The trip involved taking Hwy 178 through Shoshone CA. I've known of the SR-71 site there for a long time but have never visited it. Given the site is well documented online with photos it was low hanging fruit for someone aching to get back in the field.
Wasn't expecting much at such a well known site and didn't find much. Did find the broomstrawed powerline cables that were cut off during line repairs. Found a couple nodules and fasteners, fragments of honeycomb. Found some stuff that looked like melted wiring but the strands were solid and too big for aircraft so I figure they were powerline strands melted off by arcing against the ground. Walt
Registered: 1316031359 Posts: 77
Yeah, that site has sure been wiped out. I know there was at least one guy that was encasing pieces in plastic and trying to sell them on eBay at one point.
I've been out there myself, and it took me over an hour to find a dime-size piece that was recognizable as wreckage, in the area where the fuselage landed. Have been over the area a few times where the cockpit section hit, and have never seen a thing. I'm thinking about taking another shot at the Badwater F-100 this spring, but I don't know if I can reach it physically. Tried to come in from the top a couple years ago and that turned out to be a bust.
Registered: 1165121562 Posts: 647
Actually more there than I thought. I too have not been to this site for the exact same reasons you mention Walt. Figure one of theses days when I am passing through I will stop, but it seems each time I am in the area, I don't have the extra time.
__________________ Craig AAIR, Aviation Archaeological Investigation and Research http://www.aviationarchaeology.com
Registered: 1283230440 Posts: 229
I went there in 2011 and found a few pieces, photo of biggest one attached. I brought a metal detector
Registered: 1346951370 Posts: 37
Been there couple weeks ago.
I didn't expected much to find, but hoping find one or two small fragments.... And ends up 40-50 of them in couple of hours with using metal detector. Most fragments were covered with sand/mud and camouflaged, so extremely hard to find. But, if you look very carefully, there are hundreds of pinky nail size fragments everywhere.
I just picked up only larger piece on the ground, then started searching from under ground.
Surprisingly, I found 15 inches long metal rod (looks like connecting rod) from 6 inch under ground. I also stopped by F-4E site several miles North of SR-71 site. And I dug up about one foot wide heavy metal plate from 6 inch under ground near the initial impact site. I put those metal back under the ground.