Grant County International Airport

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
For the United States Air Force use of this facility, see Larson Air Force Base.
Grant County International Airport
Airport type Public
Owner Port of Moses Lake
Serves Grant County, Washington (Primarily Moses Lake)
Elevation AMSL 1,189 ft / 362 m
Coordinates 47°12′31″N 119°19′09″W / 47.20861°N 119.31917°W / 47.20861; -119.31917Coordinates: 47°12′31″N 119°19′09″W / 47.20861°N 119.31917°W / 47.20861; -119.31917
MWH is located in Washington (state)
Location of airport in Washington
Direction Length Surface
ft m
14L/32R 13,503 4,116 Asphalt/Concrete
4/22 10,000 3,048 Asphalt/Concrete
9/27 3,500 1,067 Concrete
18/36 3,327 1,014 Asphalt
14R/32L 2,936 895 Concrete
Statistics (2010)
Aircraft operations 63,315
Based aircraft 37

Grant County International Airport (IATA: MWHICAO: KMWHFAA LID: MWH) is a public use airport located 6 mi (9.7 km) northwest of the central business district of Moses Lake, a city in Grant County, Washington, United States. The airport is owned by the Port of Moses Lake.[1] Its 13,500-foot (4,100 m) runway is one of the longest in the world.

As per Federal Aviation Administration records, the airport had 1,369 passenger boardings (enplanements) in calendar year 2008,[2] 2,920 enplanements in 2009, and 1,442 in 2010.[3] It is included in the National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2011–2015, which categorized it as a general aviation airport.[4]


Opened as a training airfield during World War II, the facility was operated by the U.S. Air Force as Larson Air Force Base until 1966.[5] Passenger air service to and from Moses Lake ended on June 8, 2010.[6]


With 4,650 acres (1,880 ha) and a main runway 13,500 feet (4,100 m) in length, it is one of the largest airports in the United States. Moses Lake is famous for good flying weather, as it is located on the east side of the Cascade Range, in the semi-arid desert of central Washington state.

Grant County International Airport was an alternate landing site for the NASA Space Shuttle.[7]

Scheduled passenger flights on Big Sky Airlines to Boise and Portland were discontinued on September 1, 2006. The service was subsidized by the Essential Air Service program. United Express, operated by SkyWest Airlines offered nonstop flights to Seattle from June 2009 until June 2010. The airport currently has no commercial air service.

The airport was used for heavy jet training by Japan Air Lines for over 40 years, until the closing of their training offices in March 2009.[8][9][10][11][12][13][14]

In November 1974, the airport hosted a new supersonic transport (SST) Concorde for a month during FAA certification testing.[15][16][17]

It is also utilized by the U.S. Air Force and Boeing as a testing facility. Most of the traffic at the airport is general and military aviation.

In 2011, the 92nd Air Refueling Wing at Fairchild AFB in Spokane temporarily moved its KC-135 R/T fleet and operations to Moses Lake while Fairchild's runway underwent reconstruction and other infrastructure improvements, to include an upgrade to the base's aviation fuel distribution system.[18][19]

The main campus for Big Bend Community College is also located on the grounds of the airport.

Facilities and aircraft[edit]

Grant Co. International Airport covers an area of 4,650 acres (1,880 ha) at an elevation of 1,189 feet (362 m) above sea level. It has five runways:[1]

  • Runway 14L/32R is 13,503 by 200 feet (4,116 by 61 m), with an asphalt/concrete surface
  • Runway 4/22 is 10,000 by 100 feet (3,048 by 30 m), with an asphalt/concrete surface
  • Runway 9/27 is 3,500 by 90 feet (1,067 by 27 m), with a concrete surface
  • Runway 18/36 is 3,327 by 75 feet (1,014 by 23 m), with an asphalt surface
  • Runway 14R/32L is 2,936 by 75 feet (895 by 23 m), with a concrete surface

For the 12-month period ending December 31, 2010, the airport had 54,470 aircraft operations, an average of 149 per day: 28% general aviation, 56% military, 11% scheduled commercial and 4% air taxi. At that time there were 37 aircraft based at this airport: 74% single-engine, 19% multi-engine and 7% jet.[1]

Cargo Carriers[edit]

Airlines Destinations
Ameriflight Burlington/Mount Vernon, Seattle–Boeing
FedEx Feeder Spokane

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d FAA Airport Master Record for MWH (Form 5010 PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. Effective April 5, 2012.
  2. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2008" (PDF, 1.0 MB). Federal Aviation Administration. December 18, 2009. 
  3. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2010" (PDF, 189 KB). Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2011. 
  4. ^ "2011–2015 NPIAS Report, Appendix A" (PDF, 2.03 MB). Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2010. 
  5. ^ "Larson AFB". 
  6. ^
  8. ^ "Japan Airlines: fuel too pricey for Moses Lake". KOMO TV (Associated Press). November 20, 2008. Retrieved October 22, 2009. 
  9. ^ "Japan Air Lines welcomed". Spokane Daily Chronicle. November 22, 1968. p. 5. 
  10. ^ Geranios, Nicholas K. (December 26, 1988). "Baseless existence". Spokane Chronicle. Associated Press. p. A3. 
  11. ^ Lynch, Lynne (November 10, 2008). "JAL marks 40th anniversary". Columbia Basin Herald. Retrieved June 21, 2013. 
  12. ^ Crowell, Todd (February 4, 1980). "An honorable match". Spokesman-Review. p. 9. 
  13. ^ "Japan Air Lines trains 747 pilots at U.S. facility". Pittsburgh Press. UPI. August 10, 1982. p. C-10. 
  14. ^ Hansen, Dan (November 23, 2008). "JAL ends Moses Lake stay". Seattle Times. (Spokesman-Review). Retrieved June 21, 2013. 
  15. ^ "Concorde will undergo testing in Washington". Bend Bulletin. (Oregon). Associated Press. September 25, 1974. p. 15. 
  16. ^ "Supersonic jet dazzles Inland Empire". Spokane Daily Chronicle. (Washington). (photo). November 8, 1974. p. 3. 
  17. ^ Cowles, Cheney (November 8, 1974). "SST streaks in for basin tests". Spokane Daily Chronicle. (Washington). p. 6. 
  18. ^ Wasson, David (January 20, 2011). "Work relocates Fairchild tankers". Spokesman-Review. Retrieved June 21, 2013. 
  19. ^ King, Scott (January 24, 2011). "Fairchild relocates KC-135 flying OPS". United States Air Force. 92nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs. Retrieved June 21, 2013. 

Other sources[edit]

  • Essential Air Service documents (Docket OST-1998-3344) from the U.S. Department of Transportation:
    • Order 2001-6-22 (June 28, 2001): selecting Big Sky Airlines, to provide essential air service at Ephrata/Moses Lake, Washington, for a two-year period at an annual subsidy of $479,702.
    • Order 2004-12-18 (December 30, 2004): selecting Big Sky Transportation Company, Inc., to continue providing essential air service (EAS) at Ephrata/Moses Lake, Washington, for a new two-year period. This order establishes a subsidy of $1,698,922 per year for service consisting of twelve nonstop round trips to Portland and six nonstop round trip to Boise each week.
    • Order 2006-6-8 (June 12, 2006): directing interested persons to show cause why the Department should not terminate the subsidy eligibility of Ephrata/Moses Lake, Washington, under the essential air service (EAS) program and allow Big Sky Transportation Company, Inc., d/b/a Big Sky Airlines (Big Sky) to suspend service there as of August 1, 2006.
    • Order 2006-8-16 (August 22, 2006): terminating the subsidy eligibility of Ephrata/Moses Lake, Washington, under the essential air service (EAS) program and allowing Big Sky Transportation Company, Inc., d.b.a. Big Sky Airlines to suspend service, if it chooses.

External links[edit]