Alaskan Aerial Survey Expedition  

The first Alaskan Aerial Survey Expedition was conducted between June 6 and September 24, 1926, headed by Lieutenant Ben H. Wyatt of NAS San Diego. The preparations for the expedition were largely made at San Diego, although the staging area was Seattle .The last elements of the Alaskan Aerial Survey Expedition departed Seattle for Alaska. The expedition, under command of Lieutenant B. H. Wyatt, was composed of the tender Gannet (AM 41) the barge YF 88 housing a photo lab and mobile base for the expedition, and three Loening amphibians. Two of the airplanes were OL-4s equipped for aerial photography. The third was an OL-2 which served as a standby plane for searching in case one of the photography planes was forced down. It was also the radio plane for the expedition.


The Gannet!

San Diego, prior to the Alaskan Survey. (Built by Todd, New York. Laid down 1 November 1918, launched 19 March 1919, commissioned 10 July 1919. Assigned to seaplane duties immediately upon completion, but also served in towing, salvage, transport and general support duties. Designated "minesweeper for duty with aircraft" 30 April 1931. Redesignated AVP8 22 January 1936. Torpedoed and sunk by U-653 off Bermuda 7 June 1942 while searching for a torpedoed freighter.)

  The work of the expedition, which extended through the summer and into September, was performed in cooperation with the Department of the Interior for early aerial mapping of Alaska. The purpose of the expedition was survey of Southeast Alaska for the Department of the Interior for use with the investigation of resources of that region. During the summer over 15,000 square miles were mapped.

  The Alaskan Survey which began in 1926 was completed in 1929 under the command of Lieutenant Commander A. H. Radford (Rear Admiral - whose distinguished naval career cumulated in service as Chairman of the Joints Chiefs of Staff l953- of Aircraft Squadrons, Battle Fleet. The winged seal insignia designed by Lieutenant Emile Chourre was painted  was painted on the four Loening Amphibians (four new Wasp powered OL-8As) of the Survey which left San Diego on May 15. Each aircraft bore a name Juneau, Ketchikan,  Petersburg, and Sitka & bore a large Winged Seal Insignia special id.  VJ-1F l957) of Aircraft Squadrons, Battle Fleet. The winged seal insignia operated the Fourth Alaskan Survey - 1934 with OL-9 aircraft. (Note Radford was VJ-1 Squadron Skipper when they embarked on the Yorktown for Pearl 6 Jun 40.)

A U. S. Navy Loening OL-8A called the "Juneau" flown by Lieutenant Commander Arthur W. Radford on the Alaskan Aerial Survey Detachment in Southeast Alaska in 1929. Radford went on to become Admiral Radford, Chairman, Joint Chief of Staff. The USS GANNET with a covered barge in tow left from Puget Sound Navy Yard for the survey. Lieutenant Commander Radford, who commanded the survey, was Operations Officer of NAS.



With getting ready to celebrate 20 years of continuous service as the records of the past years have been getting a Going over. Here we have two photographs taken during the Alaskan survey, which the squadron conducted in 1934. This survey and others similar to it were partly responsible for the Navy being able to establish bases In the Aleutians and Alaska for the war which has just ended.

 In the group photo the chief on the extreme left is Hanson, ACCM, who is still in charge of the carpenter shop of this squadron. The aircraft, which is being hoisted aboard the tender, is an OL-9, which is the forerunner of the present day J2F's which the Navy uses.












Thirty-five years ago, an expedition put out from San Diego to spend the summer making aerial maps of unexplored territory in Alaska.The following story of the adventure was written by Lt. Ben H. Wyatt, senior Naval Aviator and expedition commander. It has been condensed only slightly from the way it appeared in the February 1927 issue of World’s Work magazine.

 The portions appearing in standard type are those which were published in 1927. The paragraphs in hold face were writ ten in this, the Fiftieth Anniversary Year of Naval Aviation, by the same author, now Commodore Ben Wyatt, USN, Retired. The bold face paragraphs may he construed as his afterthoughts of the expedition.

 By Commodore Ben H. Wyatt, USN, (Ret.)


 As THE NOISELESS snows of Time have descended upon the eternal mountains of Alaska, so has the inaudible foot of the Past left imprint upon our memory, which remains as fresh as the newly fallen snows of today on those same Alaskan peaks which challenged our efforts of yesteryear.

 ‘Tis said that "the past is the prologue of Tomorrow." Since we are celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Naval Aviation, we beg your indulgence for a short review of those early years, so that the picture of the future may be better developed.

 The day was gray, the clouds were low, a dead calm prevailed, when on the morning of May 24, 1926, three heavily laden planes attached to the Aircraft Squadrons, Battle Fleet, took the air. Swinging over the Naval Air Station at San Diego, the planes, with their powerful motors thrumming a song, turned, assumed a cruising formation, and headed northward, Alaska bound. They were off, embarked on a photographic mission, the equal of which had not, as far as is known, ever been attempted by the air forces of any nation-to survey from the air America’s last frontier, the hitherto unexplored and almost inaccessible islands and portions of the mainland of southeastern Alaska.

  Alaska has long been famed in fiction and picture as the land of ice and a land of saloons, and gold, and snow-the land, which has for ages stood aloof and ignored the pleas, the struggles, and the conquering aspirations of man. Its towering peaks, covered with the snows of ages, have stood since time immemorial, forbidding man and his science the right to conquer.

Those words-"The Frozen North!" -flashed through my brain when I was notified by the Navy Department that I had been placed in command of an expedition to fly into that land of romance for the purpose of making an aerial photographic map of its topography. At that time, Alaska was to me the Alaska of Robert W. Service, a land of saloons, and gold, and "ladies" known as Lou.

Immediately upon receipt of orders to command the expedition, I set about to organize it. There was much to be done. First and foremost, there were planes to be selected; then cameras to be obtained, a tender to be found, and highly skilled pilots and personnel chosen and trained. Realizing that we should have to fly over foreign territory, we had to obtain permission from the British Embassy for the planes to operate in Canadian waters. Since much of the territory over which the planes would be operating was uninhabited and unexplored, it was necessary for us to gather information as to the location of probable bases as well as to cache supplies, food, gasoline, and oil at selected points. All of this and much more had to be arranged in a limited period of time.  

  The type of plane chosen was the Loening Amphibian, which represents the very latest development in aircraft. This plane was chosen because of its ability to land either on the water or on the land. If the pilot desires to land on the land, he operates a lever, which lowers a pair of wheels, and the plane becomes a landplane. The operation of raising and lowering the wheels reminds one of the folding beds used in apartments.


This type of plane was chosen not with the idea that it would be possible to land in southeastern Alaska as a landplane, but rather with the thought that it could be landed on the water and then by lowering the wheels the plane could be taxied out of the water on to the beach where it could be securely tied down and otherwise protected from the severe storms which sweep up and down the narrow channels with hurricane-like force.

 The wisdom of our selection of this plane was brought forcibly to our attention during our first month’s operations, when a very severe storm caused much damage to fishnets and small boats throughout the entire Alexander Archipelago. No seaplane could have possibly withstood the storm, while moored out.

  As we look back 35 years and review the Loening Amphibian which we used, our present day aviators may scoff at the crudeness of our equipment. Certainly no seaplane of any year could have withstood the storms that swept the seas and inlets during our stay in Alaska. No land areas were available upon which a "landplane" could operate.

  Today with our "push button" practices, with time and effort-saving devices, we are far removed from the hand crank, which lowered and raised the wheels of our planes. Though hand cranks we used, our tempers were not abused-and our wheels were down when they should be down, and up when landing on the sea. The altitudes at which today’s planes fly and the range of the cameras bear the same relationship between the hand crank of yesterday and the push button miracles of today’s marvels. We of the Alaska Survey in our days were pioneers in our field.

 Another new feature of this plane is the fact that it is equipped with an inverted Liberty motor. Instead of the motor being placed in the normal upright position, it is placed upside down. That is, the pilot, instead of looking out over the top rows of cylinders, is looking over the crankcase. The advantages claimed for this motor are additional horsepower, owing to better cooling and lubrication; better vision for the pilot; and a higher application of the thrust, since the propeller is mounted on the crankshaft, which in the inverted motor is near the highest point.

The cameras chosen were of the type known as the "Tri-Lens" and were invented by Maj. Bagley, formerly of the Interior Department. This camera, as the name implies, has three lenses, which

operate simultaneously, giving three exposures. The center picture is a true vertical; the other two are taken at angles of 35 degree on either side. In order to use the two side pictures, it is necessary first to transform them so as to give a projection in the vertical plane. For this purpose special transformers have to be built for each camera. The camera uses film, which is made in rolls six inches wide, and an average of 380 feet long. Alaska is far removed from an aviation base, so it was necessary to find a tender to serve the planes and pro vide supplies for the base. The USS Gannet, a vessel of the minesweeper class, was designated to do this duty by Adm. Charles F. Hughes, then Commander-in-Chief of the Battle Fleet. Since it was not deemed feasible for the Gannet to quarter the aviation detachment as well as her own crew, some means of quartering these men in the vicinity of the airplane base was necessary. After considerable thought and worry, the plan of quartering them ashore in tents was abandoned because of the torrential rains and cold. Instead of tents we used a floating, covered barge, 110 feet long and 40 feet wide. This barge was fitted with sleeping quarters for the crew, a galley where the food was prepared, a motor over-haul shop for the care of the plane motors, a photographic laboratory where the film was developed immediately upon the return of the planes from a mapping flight, radio equipment for communicating with the planes and tender when they were away from the base, hot and cold showers, a barber shop, and all the necessities of life as well as many of their discomforts.

The opinion that the barge was a fine place to live in was jointly held by the crew and the mosquitoes. The covered barge YP-88 met with much opposition from the marine experts and particularly the marine pilots of Alaska. Having had a limited sea-going experience in World War I aboard destroyers, I shared this concern with our critics. After a thorough investigation, I made my concern known to Admiral Hoogeworth, Commandant of the Bremerton Naval Shipyard where the barge was being prepared. I also secured the services of the man whom I believed to be the best Alaskan pilot available.

 The thorough work of the shipyard and the able handling by our pilot and Captain Spears of the Gannet saw us through to the successful completion of our task without incident. The barge YP-88 was mostly referred to as the "Pigeon Roost-" Although we had radio sets in those days, they were heavy and bulky. Since we had to get as much altitude as possible with our planes, we had to limit their load.


Communication by radio between two points at sea level in mountainous areas was and is very erratic owing to intervening mountains, which trapped the passage of the radio wave. Hence we carried homing pigeons in our planes for release in case of emergency.

The "Pigeon’s Roost" was on the upper after section of the roofline of the barge as shown in the photos. Except for trial flights, the pigeons were used on only one occasion.

We were completing our survey for the day and were on our eastward run. In our Flights we seldom saw any evidence of human beings or habitation. However, as we turned westward to return home we saw someone on the leeward shore of the lake over which we were flying. We landed and taxied to the beach. There on the shore with a canoe snugly moored to her trim waistline was a young lady who presented a picture requiring the talent of a master painter to match her beauty and harmonious setting of the scene before us. Unfortunately at this moment my attention was diverted from the shore by the disembarking movements of the bachelor Lieutenant in the rear seat behind me.

"My name is Whitehead, what’s yours, and what are you doing here?"

"Ketchin foxes or any animals fit to be had . . . - Kin I do much for you folks?" she answered. "Well, we thought maybe you were in trouble and needed our help. Where do you live?" "Over a distance there, five miles or more, t’other side of the lake." Dick, with a twinkle in his eyes, reluctantly said to me, "Ben, could we tow her home if she wishes?" "Sure we could," I said. "Load her in your seat, then you and the traps get into the canoe. Tie it astern, and off we’ll go!"

 And this was the only use of our pigeons; to report our delay.

The organization of the expedition comprised three units-the planes, the tender, and the covered barge. The force was entirely self-supporting as well as a mobile, sea-going unit. With the Gannet as a means of transporting supplies from their permanent source and of towing the barge to

 isolated sections, the only requirements for a suitable base were an anchorage protected from the wind and sea, a sufficient quantity of fresh water for use in photographic work, and a beach upon which to run the planes out of the water.

 The personnel comprised 12 officers and 100 men. The aviation detachment numbered seven officers including five pilots, a flight surgeon, and a supply officer, and 40 enlisted men of various ratings. The Gannet, under command of Lieutenant William K. Spear, carried her regular crew of five officers and 60 men.

 At Seattle, after a 1300-mile journey up the coast, the planes and the Gannet made a rendezvous at the Navy Yard in Puget Sound. Here the covered barge was awaiting the arrival of the expedition. Aviation stores, the 40 men of the aviation detachment with bag and baggage, commissary equipment, fresh water, and provisions were loaded helter-skelter aboard the barge-and the long journey to Alaska began. We were finally headed for Ketchikan, our first operating base. Ketchikan is built on the side of a mountain and on piling over the water. Most of the main thoroughfares are nothing more than docks built up in the manner of streets. The entire business district is on piles with the floor a few feet above high water.

As we circled the city preparatory to landing in the channel—which was barely wide enough to turn the planes in—it appeared that the entire population of 5,000 inhabitants was lined up on the docks and hillsides to give us a welcome. As soon as we landed, we were met by so many small boats that it was necessary for me to stop my motor and direct one of the boats to clear the way ahead, so that we could go on to the beach. The boat led us into the dock and pointed to an area covered with water and told us that that was the beach. At first we thought that the Commercial Club of Ketchikan, which had written that they had a sand beach, had sold us a gold brick. However, we went in and anchored in about two feet of water. In about an hour we were resting on a firm sand beach, and in two hours there appeared before our eyes a perfect hard sand beach with a baseball diamond laid out ready for play. The range of tide is more than 20 feet.

 On the next day, while awaiting the arrival of the Gannet, I made a reconnaissance flight around the Island of Revillagigedo (pronounced Ra-ve-yahe-ha-tho, according to the Gazetear, and in various other ways, mostly incorrect, by the populace), and over to the International Boundary. I shall not soon forget the feeling of awe that overcame me on this flight. Here we were, ready to begin the aerial mapping. As we climbed upward to 4,000 feet, 6,000, then 8,000 and 10,000 feet, and finally we were more than two miles above sea level, and at times were passing only a few hundred feet above the snow-clad peaks and the next moment looking down from their dizzy heights to sea level, I realized that we had undertaken to assist in conquering America’s last frontier.

At that moment the task seemed hopeless. But on the arrival of the Gannet the next day, we made our first photographic flight, starting at three o’clock in the afternoon and ending at eight-thirty, covering about 400 square miles of territory so rough and at places so inaccessible to man that months or perhaps years would be required for a survey by man on foot,

In fact, because of the ruggedness of the high country and the almost impenetrable, jungle-like forests of the lower country, coupled with the inclement weather, little progress had been made in this region by the ordinary methods of survey. By the old methods of surveying, a base line had to be run with a transit and chain, and much of the area had to be covered on foot. By the aerial method the flyer takes his film and camera aloft, flies over the territory and takes photographs. These are developed and then adjacent prints are matched together and a complete picture is made which shows the entire territory under survey. It is possible to scale this picture as accurately as any chart or, for that matter, blue print.

 In short, an aerial survey is a picture, which shows all objects in their exact position and size in relation to one another. The cameras are mounted in the bottom of the plane and kept in the vertical position, so that the photographs are taken looking straight downward. The exposures of the films are timed so that the objects on the ground overlap on the print about 40 per cent.

In other words, aerial mapping is nothing but a motion picture reversed the camera does the moving while the objects photographed are stationary. The rapidity with which an aerial survey can be made is astounding. A plane flying at 10,000 feet above sea level making 100 miles an hour can survey a strip seven miles wide and 100 miles long—that is, 700 square miles, in an hour.


The aerial survey of Alaska aroused worldwide interest in the use of the airplane for topographical survey covering rugged and inaccessible areas. By reason of the variation in the heights of mountains, the scale of the photographs is constantly changing. It was therefore necessary to work out a "transforming scale" to cover all land areas.

During the summer of 1925, we made a survey of the U.S. Naval oil shale reserves bordering on the Colorado River in the vicinity of Rifle, Colorado. The variation of the land heights there ranges from 3800 to 8800 feet. By using the negatives obtained, we were able to develop a satisfactory transforming scale to meet the requirements of Alaska. As a result of this survey we were asked to attend and present a report on our work to the International Photogrammetric Conferences in Switzerland and Germany.

 Only two of the planes were used for mapping. The third was equipped with a radio and, with a pilot, was kept on the beach, in readiness to institute search for any plane that might fail to return to the base within 45 minutes of its schedule. Prior to the departure of a plane for a flight, the exact area, courses, and routes were laid down on flight lines over the chart so that the position of a missing plane could be fairly well approximated, in the event it became necessary to search for it. All planes carried emergency rations for five days, guns, ammunition, fishing tackle, smoke flares and homing pigeons in case of a forced landing. Fortunately, it was not necessary to resort to any of our emergency kits since no forced landing from any cause whatsoever occurred.

 Not all of our time was spent in work. There were fishing and hunting trips. The mountains of Alaska abound in big game and constitute a hunter’s paradise. The Alaska Brown Bear is said to be the fiercest flesh-eating animal in North America. This, no doubt, would be a pleasant thought to the pilot and crew as they were plodding their weary way homeward after having been forced to land by motor failure on a snow-clad mountain peak a hundred miles or so from their base. Our contact with the bears, however, was not limited to the stories told us by the natives. The sentry standing watch on the planes one night looked up from his fishing and suddenly discovered a husky fellow making inroads on his catch. When questioned later he was unable to state whether the intruder was a black or a brown bear. He didn’t wait to see.

 Of fish there were plenty. Captain Spear on his last fishing party brought back 300 good-sized trout. For my part, however, I felt that if some local Burbank should cross the fish with the mosquitoes I should stand a better chance of getting a bite.

 The Alaskan mosquitoes are industrious, ambitious, and successful. There is also another pest, in the nature of a gnat, which inhabits the woods and is so small that the Indians call them "No See ‘Ems." Many of my shipmates, being men of intelligence and reason, believe only what they see, but I, intelligent or not, believe in them.

  Little did I know that my encounter with the mosquitoes and gnats in Alaska was merely a training course for the experiences to follow. Soon and operation of their aviation activities we engaged in photographic surveys extending from the Pacific coast across the Andes and to the upper headwaters of the Amazon River and along the river to Iquito’s. Throughout all this region, the steaming tropical jungles were infested by the malarial mosquito and every pest that flew, ran, crawled or swain.

 Then, during WW II with our Pacific carrier groups in the Guadalcanal area and later as Commander of the Central Pacific Islands, I engaged in a combination mosquito and pest contest—in which, despite the advent of DDT and all its allies, the mosquitoes emerged victorious. So, today, as we did in Alaska, I reaffirm my belief in the might of the mosquito.

 Much time was lost owing to low clouds and rain. An aerologist attached to the expedition kept a weather log, prepared a daily weather chart, and issued forecasts. However, the aerologist met with keen competition in the matter of forecasting weather. The native Indians have considerable weather lore, which they fall back upon when forecasting. One of the old Indians who frequented the operating beach was very accurate in his estimates. He claimed that the ravens change the tone of their cry with a change of the weather. Another one told us that when the sea gulls come in and hover over the mountain the winds are going to be strong from the southeast and will bring rain.

 Many of the steamship captains have given up the hope of forecasting the weather and close the question by saving "You never can tell." Experience with the weather chart, however, has indicated that it is just as easy to forecast weather along the southeastern section of Alaska as it is elsewhere along the Pacific Coast. Certainly the forecaster will make a far better record than the average, should he forecast daily, "Rain today and tomorrow."

 From Ketchikan we worked our way northward, shifting our bases as the necessity arose, taking in the entire area from the International Boundary on the south to the Canadian Boundary on the east and the Pacific on the west. At times the weather was discouraging - it seemed that it would never stop raining. When the weather was clear much progress could be made. Our average day’s work for two planes was better than 1000 square miles. On two successive days, 1600 square miles each day were surveyed.

 As one area was finished the Gannet would tow the barge and supplies to our next base. The planes as a rule would proceed with mapping and, upon completion of the work, fly to the newly selected base. Obtaining gas and supplies was quite a problem. While engaged in mapping, the planes consumed more than 600 gallons of gasoline per day. When the good weather did arrive, it usually lasted for about ten days, so that our plans had to be laid well in advance to prevent any delay in mapping operations.

We were fortunate that not one day of mapping weather was lost for any cause whatsoever—nor was any plane out of commission when it could have been used for mapping.

 During our summer’s work many new lakes were discovered—the power of which no doubt will be used to turn the wheels of industry when the time comes to develop the tremendous resources of Alaska. Millions of acres of invaluable timber were brought to light—timber for the manufacture of pulp and paper—and much airplane spruce. The famous and treacherous waters of the Chickamin River, down whose shores have washed the richest and most valuable gold deposits in America, were thoroughly explored and mapped.

 We surveyed the chain of glaciers throughout the northern rim of the Alexander Archipelago whose great ice caps tower upward to heights as great as 15,000 feet and end abruptly in great precipices miles in width and hundreds of feet high at the water’s edge. These great glaciers are remnants of the Glacial Age. Some are still alive today—moving slowly but surely a few feet a day, throwing off huge icebergs, which fall into the sea with the roar of thunder.

In our crew we were fortunate to have Mr. Sargent, a representative the Department of the Interior. He was a gentle, quiet man of wisdom and understanding. Being the oldest in Our Crew, he was our counselor and advisor; in return lie received our thanks and respect.

 To him there was no task too difficult, no mountain too high to climb, no glacier too slippery to scale. As we worked northward in our survey he constantly reminded me that we should "cover Glacier Bay and get some scaled photos of Muir Glacier and Mount Fairweather," which rose at the base of Muir Glacier at the head of Glacier Bay and continued on to the westward slope where it sank into the Pacific.

 Mount Fairweather is the southern extremity of the northwestern mountain range extending from Glacier Bay in the south to the Seward Peninsula in the north. This range forms the western barrier of the North American continent where the storms that sweep with violence out of the Bering Sea set their course en route to the United States mainland.

Mount Fairweather rises to a height about 15,000 feet. Our planes, lightly loaded, could reach 15,000 feet at most. "how, then, Mr. Sargent, can we make a scaled photo of Mt. Fair-weather?" we asked.

 "Let us go to the laboratory and work out a method," lie said. "At any rate, let us try it." And try it we did. Our efforts repaid its by the results obtained. They incidentally led to the discovery of what was later termed ‘‘the Preglacial Forest.’’ I believe it of sufficient interest to describe briefly its discovery.

 Our interest in the survey was the Glacier and the upper slopes of the mountain on the southern exposure. The normal wind, which brings fair weather in that area, was from the northwest. What we needed was a southeast wind to give us the upward flow of air on the south side. A southeast wind, however, brought clouds, which prevented photography.

 A detailed study of the weather conditions indicated that a period of five hours of clear weather might well prevail after the reversal of the wind currents from northwest to southeast. With the weatherman embarked on our tender, the Gannet, anchored in Glacier Bay, we were lucky in our calculations and arrived on location with a fair southeast wind and clear skies.

 We flew a carefully measured zigzag course from the end of the glacier at the head of the bay and gradually role upward on the rising air currents until we had covered the entire southern section.

When we developed the negatives, an examination of our prints showed occasional black spots at irregular intervals along the entire lower section of the glacier. This interested all of us. 

Mr. Sargent, after studying many pictures, said to us: "These are trees, that’s what they are!" "Well, let’s say they are trees, what of it ?" I countered. "I’ve seen igloos covered with snow and ice." "But, Ben, you don’t realize that the snow and ice of that glacier have been there for a million years or more—and those trees, if trees they are, were there growing before the glacier was formed.

 "These glaciers are remnants of the second Glacial Age. Most are dormant as this one and gradually disintegrated - and maybe we have discovered a forest, which, if so, is a ‘Pre-Glacial Forest.’ " "All right, Mr. Sargent—what do we do about it?"

"We send an expedition in there to examine it and find out about it."

"O.K., it’s your project. Name your leader, pick your men, outfit them, and we’ll settle this argument."

 We did. Mr. Sargent led a group of hale and hearty young men (he was, I presume, around 50), and returned with sections of logs from the "PreGlacial Forest of Glacier Bay" which are "more than one million years old."

 The trees are not petrified; but preserved in their natural form with the snow and ice that fell and froze during the "second glacial age." My souvenir is a small section of a log said to be of the pine family, and it is still well preserved.It is my understanding that the Smithsonian Institution has some of Sargent’s samples and that lie turned a report of the "Pre-Glacial Forest" into the Institution.

 On the island of Revillagigedo, a valley and low pass were discovered which in the opinion of Charles H. Florey, the Alaskan District Forester, will permit the linking up of all the important water power sites of Revillagigedo with the mainland and deliver more than 85,000 horsepower to the city of Ketchikan.

 Our work, aside from proving the feasibility of surveying by aircraft, was an acid test on the airplane itself, and it proved its ability to operate for long periods of time away from the home base under the most severe climatic conditions and with little or no protection from rains, storms, and seas. After the completion of the summer’s work, the planes were flown back to San Diego and were ready to begin operations with the Fleet on the day of their arrival.

 The dramatic, eternal landscape of Alaska, the rugged, forbidding, snowcapped mountains, suddenly and abruptly turning to the calm and glistening emerald of an ocean inlet, the furious and fast moving billowing clouds that suddenly burst with torrential rain or snows, followed by the rainbow that reveals the landscape in all its glories of ageless ice and snow - all of these we well remember. However, indelibly engraved upon our thoughts is the cordial friendship we received a comforting and enduring gift of the people of Alaska.

In September, 1935 the second Alaskan Aerial Survey expedition was sent to Dutch Harbor in the Aleutians to do Additional aerial mapping of un­charted areas.