Sunday we trekked to Green Valley and visited the Titan Missile Museum. This is the only publicly accessible Titan II missile site in the nation; all others were decommissioned and destroyed in the 1980s.
We took the one-hour guided tour, which the guys found it quite interesting. They also have a “top to bottom” tour which is almost five hours long. I don’t think I could do that one, as I had some issues with being in the underground missile complex, reminiscent of my visit years ago to Ruby Falls. The air felt too close, too humid and I had to find a place to sit for a bit. I didn’t get light-headed or feel faint, but I definitely felt like that might have been an eventual possibility if I had stayed there for a longer period of time. Once we moved on to the silo area and where there was more fresh air movement, I did better. And I definitely would not want to do their “Titan Overnight Experience”!!
The view from the parking lot of the Titan Missile Museum, looking east to the Santa Rita Mountains.
Here is another view of the Santa Rita Mountains, panning just slightly north of the previous picture. I’m not sure what the white is, whether it’s a mining area or just the natural color of the stone.
Bill and David ready to being the tour. Anyone 5 foot 10 inches or taller had to wear a hard hat. There were definitely some very low hanging pipes, tubes, etc., down in the underground area, so hard hats were needed.
Many areas in the complex were designated at “no lone zones” when the missile complex was operational. This meant that, for safety as well as security reason, one always had to be accompanied by another person. Sometimes it also meant the other person had to be an officer, depending upon the specific area of the complex you were in. The only area where one did not need to be with another person was the crews quarters.
The missile silo doors, which are permanently half open. In order to use this as a museum and prove to the Russians that this silo was not operational, the silo doors must be left half open. As such, the missile cannot be launched.
The actual missile or at least the top of it!