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UER Mobile > US: Pacific Southwest > Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal (Viewed 1353 times)

post by TobaColwyn   |  | 
Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
< on 8/4/2023 8:26 AM >

I decided to check out a spot I had my eye on for a bit but never worked up the courage to check out until recently. An old ATC tower for a former Army now NASA airfield. I wanted to explore more of the complex but I drove past a camera entering the complex and shortly after I did a vehicle was waiting at the only way in or out so instead of exploring I kept an eye on him and once he left I got out of there. I guess I shall return sometime soon to finish up checking this place out.







Abandoned ATC Tower by Toba Colwyn, on Flickr


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post by gorgonzola   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 1 on 8/4/2023 1:45 PM >

Awesome find! I'm glad you avoided getting caught. Looking forward to seeing your future posts about this place.


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post by Aran   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 2 on 8/4/2023 3:45 PM >

That's pretty cool! What did NASA do with it, land the space shuttles there?


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post by sunlight   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 3 on 8/4/2023 3:50 PM >

Great find--I'm used to military stuff like this being badly torn and painted, so this is refreshing. Good luck on future explores of this place!

I am also curious about the uses of the airfield and will be interested to see your answer to Aran


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post by Goste   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 4 on 8/5/2023 3:02 AM >

Glad to see you didn't get caught here and got to check out a pretty cool historic spot. This was one of my very first real explores back in the day. Sadly it looks like it has suffered from more graffiti since then. Do be careful going back tho, I have been there 3 times and 2 of those times cops showed up to bust people doing stupid stuff on the airstrip, thankfully they didn't see me. Keep up the good work!

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post by Goste   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 5 on 8/5/2023 3:09 AM >

Posted by Aran
That's pretty cool! What did NASA do with it, land the space shuttles there?


Nasa used this location to test experimental aircraft, unfortunately I don't think that entails space shuttle's. Still very cool history and long before that the navy used it to teach new pilots.


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post by TobaColwyn   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 6 on 8/5/2023 7:03 AM >

From its start in 1942 to 1946 it was mainly used as a training field for new Navy pilots. Then from 1946 to 1993 It was used by both the Navy and then NASA as what is called an Outlying field, so basically it was just an extra runway to land on if things went wrong and they needed a place slightly better than a road to land on. From 1993 onward it was transferred to be an airfield for NASA Ames Research Center but it isn't clear what its purpose for them is, the most recent sat images on google maps show a twin engine plane parked at the end of one of the runways so it may still be used as an outlying field.


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post by /-/ooligan   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 7 on 8/8/2023 1:14 AM >

NASA-Ames Research Center inherited the property in-question as part of the transfer of NAS Moffett Field over to NASA. While it was a nice, remote facility not too terribly far away from Moffett, it was expensive for NASA to have to maintain (electricity, airfield maintenance, security & fire/crash preparedness, etc.) and NASA Ames got stuck with it. For over 20 years, there's been talk and slow action to eventually turn-over the entire facility to the county.

County has grandiose ideas (fantasies?) for it to be developed into a county-owned airport/air park, reutilizing some of the still-intact basic infrastructure but on the other hand, is taking their time, so that the federal gov't has to remove HAZMAT accumulated during all the prior history of the site. I expect any LE/Security there would simply be rare County Sheriff patrols, & I thought I'd heard a long time ago the county was using some of the airfield & ramp areas for public safety emergency vehicle operators course.


I'm obviously not revealing the site/property name, but for those that know it, there's plenty of good info available via Google.




/-/ooligan


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post by basegrinder   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 8 on 8/8/2023 3:55 AM >

CHP and Count Sheriffs used to have a high speed driving course out there. Sheriff had a a quonset hut out there for a while, and there was a leftover bar. For a while it was a station for USMC Corpsmen. There used to be a gutted medical trailer out there.












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post by basegrinder   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 9 on 8/9/2023 7:10 AM >



2011


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post by TobaColwyn   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 10 on 8/9/2023 7:30 AM >

It looked so good in 2011, I wonder if the other buildings had anything cool to discover


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post by basegrinder   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 11 on 8/11/2023 6:38 AM >

Posted by TobaColwyn
It looked so good in 2011, I wonder if the other buildings had anything cool to discover


There were some cool trailers out there with equipment for tracking missiles -from what I could guess.

There was a kitchen in what appeared to be the firehouse/base offices.



There was a big ring made of tires and full of skid marks. I assume it was part of the high speed driving course. I thought I had a picture of it, but can't find it ATM.


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post by /-/ooligan   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 12 on 9/2/2023 12:34 AM >

Posted by basegrinder


There were some cool trailers out there with equipment for tracking missiles -from what I could guess.



Yes, rather ancient Nike Missile-type fire control missile/target tracking RADARs, along with a RADAR van:







While some museums may have been happy to have them, NASA probably paid a contractor to haul them away & scrap them (I'd love to be proven wrong about this...).

/-/oolie



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post by big dave   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 13 on 10/18/2023 9:09 PM >

There's no reason to be frightened about being at this location. We've stopped halfway between LA and Sonoma and dropped drift cars out of the trailer for shakedowns here. There's been drift and SCCA sanctioned autocross events here for years. There have been several events this year, one being just a few days ago on Oct 7-8, and there's a San Francisco Region SCCA Autocross event scheduled for Nov 4-5.

Seriously nevermind anyone who looks like security or the cops lol.

https://www.scca.c...vent-crows-landing


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post by MATT3   |  | 
Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 14 on 10/23/2023 12:06 AM >

cool , glad u didnt get caught lol


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post by Jimmy224   |  | This member has been banned. See the banlist for more information.

Re: Abandoned Air Traffic Control tower in NorCal
<Reply # 15 on 2/27/2024 1:12 PM >

What a fascinating discovery!
Just make sure to stay discreet and avoid getting caught


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