Historic Posts, Camps, Stations and Airfields
Bishop Gap Filler Annex SM-164D
Typical AN/FPS-14 Gap Filler Radar
"During the late 1950s another area of progress was the development and deployment of AN/FPS-14 and AN/FPS-18 gap-filler radars. Having a range of around sixty-five miles, these radars were placed in areas where it was thought enemy aircraft could fly low to avoid detection by the longer-range radars of the permanent and mobile radar networks. Gap-filler radar deployment peaked in December 1960 at 131 sites throughout the continental United States. Because the introduction of gap-filler radars alleviated the need for civilians to scan the skies for enemy bombers, the ADC disestablished the Ground Observer Corps on January 31, 1959."
Searching The Skies
USAF Air Combat Command
June, 1997
Typical floorplan of a Gap Filler Annex

The Bishop Gap Filler radar facility, SM-164D, was to be located on 0.37 acres of land five miles north of Bishop, Inyo County, California. Its mission was to support Tonapah Air Force Station (Site SM-164) in Nevada.

The site and an appurtenant 6.38 acres for an access road were acquired from the Bureau of Land Management by appropriation of right of way. A total of 6.75 acres were transferred from the Department of Interior, Public Lands Records (withdrawal of public lands), on 14 May 1957, for use in siting the facility.

The acquired acreage was to be used as follows: 0.37 acres for construction of Gap Filler Radar Station, and 6.38 acres for an access road to the station. The facility and the access road were never constructed. A site inspection on 31 August 1987 with a Bureau of Land Management representative indicated no improvements had been made to the site.

In 1960, the Air Force declared the site was no longer needed and the right of way was terminated.

Source: Los Angeles District, US Army Corps of Engineers

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Updated 23 June 2017