SAN FRANCISCO, Aug. 24, 1929 (UP) -- Swinging sharply to the south so that storms would not endanger its flight, the Graf Zeppelin was progressing steadily tonight toward the Pacific coast on the third leg of its around-the-world flight.
Heavy winds and storm conditions along the coast of the Aleutian islands was believed responsible for Dr. Eckener's action in piloting the Graf south of the Great Circle, which is the usual land for steamship travel from Yokohama to Seattle.
At present the dirigible is pointed at a Pacific coast point many miles south of Seattle although plans when departing from Tokyo were to fly the Great Circle south to Seattle and thence down the coast to Los Angeles, the end of its third leg journey.
At 5 p.m. Pacific standard time the Zeppelin was approximately 2700 miles from Tokyo and was flying fully 375 miles south of the Great Circles steamship lane.
The radio marine corporation intercepted a message, time 3 p.m., Pacific standard time, which said the position of the Graf at that hour was latitude 45:20 north, longitude 166:20 west.
This position is almost directly south of Dutch Harbor, Alaska, and is at least 375 miles south of the great circle routs from Yokohama to Puget Sound.
It was presume here that Dr. Eckener left the vicinity of the Aleutian islands when radio reports concerning a coastal storm in that region were relayed to him.
He had slight choice in the matter, according to those acquainted with the Alaskan coast. The mountains of the islands prevented him going north of the great circle and a storm was raging directly ahead. To the south there was the open Pacific and, seemingly, fair weather.
So, to avoid bad weather, Dr. Eckener pointed the nose of his huge dirigible almost directly south.
Leaving the customary channel of travel between Japan and Seattle probably will cost the Graf something in time, unless Dr. Eckener decides to head directly toward San Francisco instead of flying over Seattle.
It is possible, however, that the Zeppelin will circle the Alaskan storm area and swing back north until it is on the regular Great Circle route again.
Nothing concerning a change in routing was messaged by Dr. Eckener to the Radio Marine corporation.
The position of the Graf, as given to the radio marine station here, is approximately half way from Tokyo to Los Angles, the distance between those cities being roughly 6,000 statute miles.