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Hi All,

 

This weekend I was able to visit and photograph former Nike Missile Site DF-50 near Alvarado, Texas. The former IFC Site serves as a home for the current owner.

 

The guard shack at the entrance to the IFC Site:

 

ifc_guardshack.jpg

 

 

A few of the buildings there, showing some of the changes and improvements the owner as made over the years:

 

ifc_messhall.jpg

 

ifc_barracks.jpg

 

 

Here's the LOPAR tower still at the site:

 

ifc_radartower.jpg

 

 

This is a view from the top of the LOPAR tower looking at the four remaining buildings. Note the concrete pad for the HIPAR set and the foundation for the radar control building/van pad to the left:

 

ifc_overallview.jpg

 

 

This tile Nike Missile silhouette was still located on the foundation of the radar control building/van pad which I though was pretty cool:

 

ifc_radarpadnike.jpg

 

-Derek

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The former launch site was located about ½ mile down the road. While it was overgrown, I believe all the original buildings are still there as well as the three underground magazines.

 

The front gate and overgrown guard shack:

 

Launchsitefrontgate.jpg

 

 

Here’s some of the buildings closet to the road, giving you an idea of the weed/grass height:

 

Launchsitereadybuildg.jpg

 

Launchsitebldgs.jpg

 

 

Here’s a shot of the warhead assembly building:

 

Launchsitewarheadbldg.jpg

 

 

The guard dog kennel is still there along with the kennel storage building. I wanted to look inside the building but with a missing doorknob and poison oak growing on the door, I didn’t:

 

Launchsitekennelstoragebldg.jpg

 

Launchsitekennel.jpg

 

 

The former generator building had lots of great original markings (the breaker panel) and another Nike Missile painted on the outside corner along with what looks like a US Army ARAACOM crest:

 

 

Launchsitebreakerbox.jpg

 

Launchsitegeneratorbldg.jpg

 

Launchsitegeneratorartaraacom.jpg

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The last stop at the lunch site was the three underground magazines. One still has working lights and all three have pumps to keep them dry. This was amazing to see. Here’s the overgrown guard shack leading into the former exclusion area:

 

Launchsiteexclusionguardshack.jpg

 

 

Some above ground shots showing an entry door, escape hatch, missile doors, and some of the remaining missile rail hardware:

 

Launchsitemagoutside3.jpg

 

Launchsitemagoutside2.jpg

 

Launchsitemagoutside1.jpg

 

Launchsitemagoutside4.jpg

 

 

And below, some shots inside of one of the magazines. I went into the magazine with power and also one of the magazines without power.

 

Looking up from the entry stairs:

 

Launchsitemaginside5.jpg

 

 

Neat stencil still on the metal entry door:

 

Launchsitemaginside4.jpg

 

 

A few interior shots:

 

Launchsitemaginside1.jpg

 

Launchsitemaginside3.jpg

 

 

This is the door in the control panel room that leads to the escape hatch ladder. It was heavy and the hinges were so rusted I couldn’t move it. My flashlight found a little black snake along the floor so I made a hasty exit after I snapped the photo:

 

Launchsitemaginside2.jpg

 

 

I want to thank Jim for his time showing a military history nut like myself around both properties. It was very nice of him to do so and I realty appreciate it. This was a great experience. I had a blast exploring this former Nike site – it was a great way to spend a Saturday morning in my opinion. Hope you enjoy the pictures.

 

-Derek

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Major cool! I grew up in the shadow of these sites both in Philadelphia and upstate New York. Actually visited one as a Cub Scout (which was a bit intimidating for a young kid).

 

This one actually looks to be in fairly decent shape Hopefully the owner can keep it maintained. The original markings with the missile profiles are something I had not seen before and may have been unique to the unit that was stationed there.

 

Unfortunately most of these have been fully abandoned and have completely degraded. Many of the buildings just did not seem to be designed for decades long use.

 

Thanks for sharing!


Gil Burket
Omaha, NE
Specializing in Fakes and Reproductions
of the Vietnam War

burkcats@hotmail.com

 

"One is easily fooled by that which one loves."

 

Moliere: Tartuffe

 

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Really cool, thanks for the post. Its amazing the amount of stuff Uncle Sam has built and moved on. When I was stationed in Wy you could wander around old Atlas missile sites.


donation2013.gif

 

 

 

GOD Bless Texas And All That Serve Her

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Great place to ride out the Zombie Apocalypse. Just needs to start stocking :lol: Really was neat of the owner to let you walk around.

 

There was one of these sites close to where I grew up. Was the local High School party hangout due to its secluded locale. Fond memories from there, especially as it was where I crashed my first car. Damn gravel roads and inexperienced young drivers dont mix to well :pinch:


Learn to ride hard, shoot straight, dance well and so live that you can, if necessary, look any man in the eye and tell him to go to Hell! US Cavalry Manual, 1923

 

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Outstanding! I bet none of us have ever seen the inside of a Nike magazine like that. Thanks for sharing! Definately, a vanishing sign of the Cold War....

 

-Ski


In Memory Of......
Pte Harold Griffiths, 1805, 1/6th Manchester Regt, KIA June 4th, 1915 in Gallipoli
Cpl Isaac Judges, 40494, 6th East Yorkshire Regt, KIA October 3rd, 1917 in Ypres
May they rest in peace.....

MSgt - USAF Retired

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Look up my face book page for pictures of site 50 when it was in operation. My name is Brooks McAfee.

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Outstanding! I bet none of us have ever seen the inside of a Nike magazine like that. Thanks for sharing! Definately, a vanishing sign of the Cold War....

 

-Ski

I Have! and it was in working order!! I was absolutely stunned to see how fast the the roof drops open and the missile platform raises.

The site I visited is nearly identical to the one shown by the OP.

 

CB

 

Oh yea, I have it all on video somewhere. I should try to find that footage.


Seeking anything attributed to General Clifford Bluemel

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I Have! and it was in working order!! I was absolutely stunned to see how fast the the roof drops open and the missile platform raises.

The site I visited is nearly identical to the one shown by the OP.

 

CB

 

Oh yea, I have it all on video somewhere. I should try to find that footage.

 

Back in the late 1970's, I was lucky enough to see a live missile brought from underground to a launch position.... very, very rapidly. It was awesome and intimidating at the same time.


Gil Burket
Omaha, NE
Specializing in Fakes and Reproductions
of the Vietnam War

burkcats@hotmail.com

 

"One is easily fooled by that which one loves."

 

Moliere: Tartuffe

 

donation2017.gif

donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif
donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif

donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif


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Where I live we are literally surrounded by these. One site in particular near Newport MI. is really well preserved and I have been trying to get it saved. The problem is the Army says the National Guard owns it and the Guard says the feds own it... It is gated and locked but apparently no one knows who has the keys. I also contains a hexagonal airstrip from WWII when it was part of NAS Grosse Ile. The metro Detroit area has many of these sites in various stages of disrepair. Scott


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Thanks for the notes on this old post of mine.

 

Do you have any photos of the site you are talking about Scott (despite the locked gates)?

 

Brooks McAfee - I sent you a PM and e-mail.

 

Luckily, I've been back to site DF-50 since my post here. I got to inspect all three magazines with my flashlight this past trip. Here's some more photos of the launch site.

 

Here we are, atop the magazines:

IMG_0399_crop_zps7f239002.jpg

 

 

I was really shocked to see these:

 

IMG_0409_crop_zpsd240c220.jpg

 

 

IMG_0415_crop_zps4b1e3a7c.jpg

 

 

Pretty crazy those things were still in place so many years after this place was shut down...

 

 

This sign was up against the wall in one of the magazines:

 

IMG_0357_crop_zpsc6ebf332.jpg

 

 

And here are just a few more random shots from inside the magazines:

 

IMG_0429_crop_zps4d53e92e.jpg

 

 

IMG_0406_crop_zps96bab607.jpg

 

 

IMG_0419_crop_zps1ca4ea54.jpg

 

 

IMG_0428_crop_zps3f2ce6bf.jpg

 

 

Thanks again for reviving this old thread. Makes me want to go back again and also re-attempt entry to DF-70...

 

-Derek

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I don't have any pics but a search of Nike sites D57-58 will usually bring up some links with current pictures. It was a double site so is quite large and prior to it being a missile site it was NAS Newport where there was and is a hexagonal runway. George H.W. Bush did some training here and most of the German POWs in Michigan were repatriated from here in 1946. Scott.


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