Wee Hope Mine / Radium King | Utah Back Country Pilots Association

Wee Hope Mine / Radium King

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Airstrip Info

Frequency 122.90
Elevation 5476 ft
Lat/Long 37.5715, -110.224
37° 34.29' , -110° 13.44'
Runway 4/22 1908 ft x 40 ft
Rwy 4 Uphill 2.3%
Ownership BLM



See more at the National Weather Center

Description: Visit a time capsule when you fly into Wee Hope Mine. The desert has preserved this forgotten mine for us to explore today. It is not hard to imagine the day it closed and the ensuing shenanigans that must have included launching a now collectable sedan off a cliff. Still standing are a bunk house, kitchen, outhouse, animal corral, mining shack, and other scattered antiquities.  

This airstrip is at the bottom of Red Canyon, a very large bowl with an opening to the south. This can cause significant wind variations. Descending below the canyon rim, the swirling winds and turbulence may force a discontinued approach. Crosswinds are very common here and may have negative consequences due to steep drop-offs on either side of the runway. The best chance of a successful approach and landing likely would be accomplished in the early morning. 

The mine is located south of the airstrip, about a five-minute walk. The kitchen is visible from the runway with most of the other structures hidden below the hill. As you explore, keep this place an enjoyable museum for everyone and do not to disturb or remove any of the treasures.  


Runway: This airstrip is open to most aircraft types given favorable density altitude and weight. It is long and smooth by backcountry standards with most of the runway covered in pea size gravel. The east end is more of a dirt/grass mix. Use caution for sharp drop offs on all sides of the runway especially towards the west end. Use caution as the airstrip is accessible by road and on occasion cars, UTVs, or campers may be parked on the runway. 


Approach considerations: Landing west requires a dogleg to clear an overburden hill left from mining. Landing east is clear with a sharp drop off at the threshold. Takeoff and landing can be accomplished in either direction.  


Parking: Not adequate room for parking multiple aircraft unless at the east end of the airstrip. Plenty of flat ground for camping. No cell phone coverage. 

William Lipscomb
1 month ago in a PA-18 with 31" tires

Everything looks good, seeing significant overlanding traffic. Dismantled a rock cairn at the beginning of runway. Defiantly can be windy here with wind that normally favors a downhill landing. Here is video first approach to a go around and the successful landing and takeoff. Enjoy. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xGyooHnA0oQ

3 Likes , 0 Comments

Regan Richmond
10 months ago in a C-185 with 8 tires

Loose dirt with minor small growth. East 1/3 has a bit of a rise in the center with very small ruts the width of mains. Overall good condition and great place to explore.

2 Likes , 0 Comments

Karen Larson
1 year ago in a Super Cub with 31” tires

Here’s an aerial shot of the strip.

1 Like , 0 Comments

Karen Larson
1 year ago in a Super Cub with 31” tires

Strip in good shape. This one can be tricky with winds. Today was nice. Walked down over the hill to snoop around the mine camp. Lots of stuff strewn about. Our favorites...on old upside down car and a lone light bulb still hanging in the middle of the shack. A fun place to explore...just go early as the wind can swirl in there.

0 Likes , 0 Comments

Paul Barry
2 years ago in a Maule M-5 with 26" tires

The strip is in good shape. Not a very big area for camping but pretty nice views from the NE end. A nice quiet valley to camp at.

0 Likes , 0 Comments

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