|ICAO Code:||/MMT||Info Last Validated:||11-2011|
|Runway(s):||05/23, 14/32||Elevation:||254 ft|
The United States Army began construction on an airfield on land north of Congaree to be an outlying base to the Columbia Army Airbase. The original designation of the airfield was Congaree Army Airport, then Fort Jackson Airdrome, and finally Congree Army Airfield. Construction was completed on January 31, 1943 with the completion of three 4,500 ft runways. In September 1945, after World War II, the only remaining Marine units were VMF-523 and Air Warning Squadron 14. By November 1945, all Marine aviation units had moved to MCAS Cherry Point, North Carolina. The base was eventually turned over to the South Carolina Air National Guard and re-named McEntire ANG Base in October 1961. It was re-named McEntire Joint National Guard Station in 2005 to reflect the joint presence of Army and Air National Guard units. (source: wikipedia)
The airport has one main runway, 14/32, which is the preferential runway for the fighters and visitors. The other, smaller runway is only used by the army units. The aprons in the south are for the SC ANG fighters, while the apron in the west is used by the SC ArmyNG helicopters.
The base is located about 15 km southeast of city of Columbia. From Columbia take Highway 378 towards Oakland, Eastover and Shaw AFB. When passing the very small town of Horrel Hill, take a right onto Route 769. At the next T junction take a left onto Congaree Road and pass the ANG base at the south.
On Congaree Road, when you see one of the gates of this base at your left, take the next left onto Gus Lane and drive along the fence to the corner. Here you are positioned along the runway for take-off and landing shots, although you will need a large lens, think 400mm. You will need some steps to picture above the NATO standard fence as well. Early morning, without heat waves, you will be able to spot some Vipers under their sun sheds as well as the preserved F-4. Standing at the fence will alert the various security departments. If needed, a more laid back approach slightly back at Gus Lane, or in the tree line, will increase your chances here.
From spot 1, drive back onto Congaree Road and take a left. Follow it until there is a T Junction with Old Congaree Run at your left. Take this road, until there is a crossing with N Bellewood Lane to the left and US State Road S-40-68 at your right. Take a left and follow N Bellewood Lane, via a dirt road to the fence. Take your steps and get your shots. Only best in early morning.
- 125.400/385.600Shaw Arr/Dep
- 75-0746F-16A, preserved at spot 3
- 51-6915/TR-915T-33A, preserved on ANG base
- 53-1064/FU-064F-86L, preserved on ANG base
- 53-1386F-86H, preserved on ANG base
- 56-0985F-102A, preserved on ANG base
- 70-1035/SCA-7D, preserved on ANG base
- 63-7455F-4C, preserved on ANG base
- 57-0920/FG-920F-104C, preserved on ANG base