We can log this one into our file of “firsts,” FighterSweep Fans: the Moose has gone where no Moose has gone before! Well, at least the winged variety of Moose. A U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster III from the 517th Airlift Squadron landed at Bryant Army Air Field on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, on 7 March 2016.
The event marked the first time the Boeing design has taken off from or landed at the airfield since the facility’s construction. The runway is a smaller one: 4,088 feet in length and only 100 feet wide, as the facility has been used predominantly by Blackhawks and C-23 Sherpa transports in recent years.
Back in the 1950s, Alaska was still a pretty untouched and developing territory–as it still is–and aviation was at the forefront of transportation there at the time.
Fort Richardson was established in 1939 and, following the National Security Act of 1947, the installation split into two military bases in 1950. Elmendorf Field was handed off to the newly-created U.S. Air Force.
With no airfield of its own, the U.S. Army on Fort Richardson established Bryant Army Airfield in 1958 to provide logistical support to remote areas across Alaska. At the time, it consisted of only one hangar, a landing strip, and a few small support buildings. The primary mission was to deliver supplies.
(Featured photo courtesy of U.S. Air Force)