From a small child I wanted to fly. I dreamed
of flying many nights in a canoe with wings! It later became a reality when
in 1959 I started a diagonal dirt strip runway oriented NW-SE (11-29) and
2,150 feet long.
We bought a Cessna 170 in January 1959, and a
pilot from Sterling gave me lessons.
I earned my Pilot’s license. Shortly thereafter, the East–West (8-26) 3,000
foot runway was started.
We bought 8,000 feet of heavy underground
cable from the old original airport southeast of
and plowed a furrow to bury the cable. In 1960, we added dusk to dawn
lighting. Unfortunately, the lights are no longer functional.
A metal hangar 28x60 was built with friends
helping to pour the cement floor in sections that took us until the wee
hours of the morning to complete. This was in the fall of 1960. A 3,000
gallon gas tank was buried and a 50 foot gas hose was installed in front of
the hangar and sealed with a cap. Gas was available all hours of the day or
night with landing at your own risk.
was fogged in, planes would land at the Gebauer airport. In November, 1962,
my wife, Betty, got her private pilot license. She took lessons at McAllen, Texas and
completed her training in Akron.
We had a bit of excitement on January 21,
1972, when a Hijacker robbed a bank in
Nevada. He planned to parachute to
the Gebauer airport where a small plane was to pick him up. He hijacked a
DC7 (the model type is not confirmed). He found he could not get out the
stairs so he jumped from a window. Missing our airstrip by about six miles
and breaking an ankle. He was not dressed for Colorado January weather.
The FBI merged on the ranch from all
directions. The military at Las
had picked up the plane and followed it. They saw the hijacker jump from the
plane. He was caught.
We had gone to
Nebraska. When we returned home,
the FBI accompanied us into our house. Immediately the telephone rang. It
was the London Daily News calling
for information on the hijacker. News travels quickly around the world! The
Rocky Mountain News wrote an
article with the headline, “He jumped for the airport on the rolling hills
of the Gebauer Ranch.”
Over the years many crop dusters have used
the airport. Also, lots of flight instructors have used Gebauer airport for
“touch and go” training for students. We have flown many friends and
neighbors on emergency flights to ill relatives from the airport.
Another community service over the years was
providing flights to boys on the high school track team to track meets so
that they could return in time to
for alumni festivities.
The Gebauer family is an aviation family with
both sons and daughters learning to fly. One son has earned his multi-engine
rating. A son-in-law is a retired Air Force pilot. The flying legacy
continues with a granddaughter pursuing her commercial license. Our grandson
in the Air Force is flying the C-17. At present he is in Qatar, flying daily.
Over the years the Gebauers have owned a Cessna 170B,
Tripacer 160, Seneca II, and a Comanche 250 with tip tanks.
Airport at Akron-5V6
airport identifier is listed in the Colorado Airport Directory. The airport
is still available to land at your own risk.
Additional information from
AOPA Airports Directories found
in the archive of the Wings Over the Rockies Museum Library, Denver Public
Library Government Section, and AOPA Library Archive, Penny Hamilton,
volunteer Director, Colorado Airport History Preservation Project.
1965 Entry Akron-Gebauer’s Ranch. Cheyenne Sectional. Lat: 40-15, Long: 103.06.
Elev: 4550; 9 mi NE of city; Tel: 345-2482. Runways: 8-26/3100, turf &
gravel; 11-29/2000 turf & gravel. Fuel: 100/130 (octane) emergency only.
Lights: runway (hours of darkness). Hours attended: none. CAUTION: Private
airport. Use at own risk.
1967 Entry Same as 1965.
1979 Entry Akron-Gebauer (5V6) FSS Akron. VFR. Cheyenne Sectional. Lat: 40-15, Long: 103.06.
Elev: 4509; 9 mi NE. Tel: (303) 345-2482. Runways: 8-26/3100x90, gravel;
11-29/2000x90, gravel. Obstructions: fence N side. Fuel: 100/130. Lights:
runway. Weather: (FSS) 345-2271. Note: Private. Use at own risk.
1987. Akron-Gebauer (5V6) location: 8 mi NE of City.
Coordinates N40-14.7; W103-05.6. Elevation 4,509. Runways: 8-26 3,000 x 90
gravel, treated; lights sunset to sunrise, road rwy 8 / 11-19 2,000 x 90
gravel, treated. Approaches (VFR) Frequencies: CTAF 122.9. Charts: Cheyenne sectional.
The 1998 AOPA
Directory added the Mag var: 10E. Runway information was updated 11-29
2,150 150x70 turf, gravel; road rwy 11 8-26 3,000 x 70, turf, gravel. Notes:
Runways not maintained.