Narrative:N485 was prepared for a flight from Salt Lake City to Albuquerque with an intermediate stop in Provo. Prior to departure the crew requested Provo weather. Since this was not available the pilot then requested Salt Lake City weather information. The 06:00 weather report included 1600 feet overcast, visibility 5 miles in light snow showers. The forecast until 09:00 included sky obscured, 800 feet overcast and a one mile visibility. At 07:02 the flight was cleared for a runway 34 departure and special VFR after departure. The aircraft took off at 07:07 and was under Radar surveillance until 07:11. After that ground witnesses saw the DC-3 pass overhead at low altitude (200-500 feet). It was snowing at that time and visibility was poor. The aircraft headed for sharply rising terrain of Camp Williams Military Reserve. The DC-3 struck the 12-degree upslope of a hill at 5449 feet msl, 11 feet below the crest. The right wing separated the remainder of the aircraft continued 1202 feet over the hill, crashing at an elevation of 5275 feet msl (1608 m) against the 25-degree upslope of another hill.
PROBABLE CAUSE: "Pilot attempted visual flight under unfavourable weather and terrain conditions, resulting in position disorientation and flight at an altitude too low to clear obstructing terrain. Judgement of the pilot in command in initiating a VFR flight operation under existing weather conditions and terrain environment."
This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not
display the exact flight path.
Distance from Salt Lake City International Airport, UT to Provo Airport, UT as the crow flies is 66 km (41 miles).