Seems like I am getting into the ‘tour’ business, starting with the Queen Mine tour in Bisbee last time.
After a few days camping in the National forest near Parker Canyon Lake with friends from the area, we headed further west and toured the Titan Missile Museum south of Tucson. It is a cold-war relic, and the only preserved missile location. Almost the entire facility is deep underground to protect it from attack in the era of ‘mutually assured destruction’.
Here, the huge concrete cover is pulled back to reveal the top of the Titan rocket.
Radar sensors on the surface to detect intrusions; and missile silo cover.
This elevator disappeared completely underground when not in use. Most of us used the stairs. There was an elaborate security system in place during crew changes including video surveillance, secret codes, and burning the code paper in front of the camera! You have to pass through multiple ‘blast doors’ to get inside – each weighing about 6 tons! .
Despite being buried deep underground and behind multiple blast doors, the entire control room complex was mounted on these huge springs to absorb shock. All equipment is bolted to the floor, and the floor is not attached to the walls. The red cabinet held the launch keys, and could only be opened by two individuals, each with their own combination! The tour includes a simulated launch!
A view of one of the huge ‘blast doors’, viewed from above.
Outside, these various compartments held back-up communications antennas that could be deployed out of their secure compartments in the event that the regular antennas were, um vapourized in a hostile nuclear attack. Scary times back then for sure. Luckily, this missile site was never used, nor were any of the many others, except for test purposes. This one was designed to be used once, and once only.
Since Hailey is just approaching her first birthday, she appeared to be quite unconcerned about nuclear holocaust, and the whole concept of cold war.
She was much more concerned about chasing butterflies and leaves around the campsite.
Hailey; high-centered on the head-rest.