Historic California Posts, Camps, Stations and Airfields
Furnace Creek Airport
(Furnace Creek Emergency Landing Field, Death Valley Airport)
Furnace Creek Airport, 1943
LOCATION: The old Furnace Creek Airport was located one mile northwest of Furnace Creek Inn, adjacent to state Highway 190, in Death Valley National Park, Death Valley, California.

SITE HISTORY: Furnace Creek Airport was established in 1926 by the Pacific Coast Borax Company (PCB), which had mining interests in Death Valley. The airport comprised two gravel runways, and later a hangar, parking apron, and fueling station, all erected by PCB across the road from the runways. The airport, of which the runways were on public land, and the hangar and appurtenances on land owned by PCB, was operated by PCB and maintained by the National Park Service. Throughout its history until closure in 1953, the airport was used by both the public and military.

Military use is well documented in the monthly reports of the National Park superintendents. Prior to establishment of the National Park in 1933, the airport was extensively used by the Army Air Corps for practicing take-off and landing maneuvers, and in administration of the Death Valley Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) from the CCC administrative headquarters in Riverside.

During World War II, both Army and Navy planes from nearby military installations used the airport as a landing field. No improvements were made to the airport by either the War or Navy Departments, nor was there any evidence of the use or storage of explosives. The site is now used as overflow parking for visitors arriving in Death Valley National Park in campers.
Extract, Army Air Forces Airfield Directory, December 1945
Search our Site!
Search the Web Search California Military History Online
Questions and comments concerning this site should be directed to the Webmaster
Updated 8 February 2016