USAF Boeing B-29 Superfortress, Beinn Tharsuinn/Stob na Boine Druim-fhinn, crash date 17/01/49

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Full list of OS 10-figure grid refs (GPS)

Google Maps display showing wreckage locations

This is probably the most well-known aircraft wreckage site in Scotland. The crash in 1949 was a major tragedy at the time with twenty people losing their lives. The aircraft involved was a large four-engined B-29 Superfortress bomber, the type that was used to drop the atomic bombs on Japan at the end of the Second World War.

The site lies at the head of Succoth Glen in the Argyll hills, between Strachur and Lochgoilhead, near a stream below the summits of Beinn Tharsuinn and Stob na Boine Druim-fhinn. It is only about 5km from the site of a RN Grumman Martlet that crashed in 1940 (see my page about this site here).

There is still a lot of wreckage left at the site today, and the debris field is about 450m across with the altitude of the wreckage area being from about 440m to about 475m. The main debris area is in a shallow crater that contains most of the wreckage, but various parts of the fuselage and wings lay scattered around the site in amongst a recent plantation of fir trees and in the river to the north of the site. A memorial cairn stands at the main site with some messages from relatives of those who died in the crash.

The fir tree plantation surrounding the site has grown at a very fast rate and photographs of the site from only a decade ago show these trees to be quite small, but now they conceal some of the wreckage and shield the main debris field from view, making it difficult to locate. Although the site is at a relatively low elevation, there are no easy approaches to it. This may make the site more secretive in future years which will hopefully ensure it stays in its current state, providing a fitting memorial to those who died, as well as an interesting piece of aviation archaeology in the hills of Argyll. It is certainly a sombre location.

There are some large pieces of interesting wreckage at the main debris site including one complete section of the enormous undercarrage mechanism, and the tail gun housing (3rd photo from October 2009 below). I could only find the remains of two of the Superfortress's four engines at the site, the other two may have been removed at some point in the past or perhaps still lie at the site but fragmented beyond recognition.

The TFDACSS website has some pictures of the site here. The PDAAR website has some pictures of the site here. The NBSAB website has one picture of the site here, showing the tail gunner section as it used to be before the arrival of the fir tree plantation and in a slightly better condition than it is now. The AWUK&I website has some pictures of the site from before the plantation and information about the crash here. The ACSS website has a large amount of information about the crash and lots of pictures of the site here.

Other websites with information and pictures of the crash site:

There are some photos of the site on Flickr:

These pictures were taken in October 2009.