In Oregon, United States
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This is the site of the first “official” airport in Grants Pass. The airport was here from 1919 until 1959. The building you see near here was the airport administration building and housed flight operations. That was actually the “second life” for this building. I believe it was first built as a Richfield Beacon service station. There were a string of them all along the highway which would become Highway 99. Just west of the cache there was a tall metal tower with a beacon light on top and the word “Richfield” down its side. In 1940 the “Richfield” sign was removed from the tower and it was given to the city. (I don’t know when it was taken down).
The runway for the airport began just above what is today Midland Avenue and ran up what is now Washington Boulevard to a spot above the restaurant (“third life of this building”). The original requirements for acquiring property for the airport were that it would provide an area “800 feet by 3000 feet and smooth enough to drive an automobile 25 to 30 miles per hour. That would suffice.” (Quoted from Daily Courier, October 20, 1984) The original runway was gravel and only 2000 feet long, but later lengthened to almost 3000.
This was not the first place airplanes landed in Grants Pass. On July 11, 1913 the first landing took place near what is now Grants Pass High School. However it was not a very successful demonstration of the new technology of aviation. The pilot could not get the plane airborne again and up to an altitude that would clear the buildings. It actually got off the ground three times but never higher than 30 feet. There are various reports as to the problems. Some say he blamed the “light, still air” in the valley” others say he blamed “down drafts.” He made a statement that airplanes would never be able to fly in the Rogue Valley because of the conditions. Some of the spectators believed the real problem was his engine was not running right. (Daily Courier July 10, 11, 1913). I believe the first successful landing and takeoff from Grants Pass happened in 1915. The plane landed and took off from an area along the railroad tracks approximately were the downtown Safeway sits today.
Finding the cache will take you less time than reading this history. Thanks for your patience.
This can be a busy place so please be aware of muggles and rehide carefully.
Congratulations to Yukatah ("he who finds quicly") on the FTF it only took 36 hours.
Last Updated: on 4/28/2013 3:13:48 PM Pacific Daylight Time (10:13 PM GMT)
Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum