Posts Tagged ‘missile’

Know Your Mt. Tam: West Peak, Middle Peak, East Peak

Friday, July 5th, 2013

Tæməlˈpaɪ.is

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San Francisco’s Connection to the North Korean Crisis: Pier 80, USS Tripoli, and THAAD Ballistic Missile Defense

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013

1. Here’s the news of the day:

Anti-missile systems sent to Guam to counter North Korean threat

2. Those systems are called Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD).

3. THAAD was developed using the former USS Tripoli (LPH-10), an Iwo Jima-class amphibious assault ship that’s basically a mini aircraft carrier.

4. The USS Tripoli was based at Pier 80 in Dogpatch as recently as last year and it’s still there right now, for all I know.

That’s the connection.

That’s San Francisco’s contribution to the war effort.

(And, just saying, THAAD could come in handy when dealing with NK’s big buddy China…)

All the deets:

“She was decommissioned in 1995 and as of 2004, she was on loan to the Army, but remained laid up at Mare Island Naval Shipyard. In December 2006, the ship was towed to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, where it now has a high-tech role as a launch platform with the nation’s developing ballistic missile defense program. Three times the ship was towed some 100 miles off shore and used to launch small ballistic missiles, which are then intercepted by Terminal High Altitude Area Defense Missiles, test-fired from the Pacific Missile Range Facility. The last test in the series was performed 26 October, when the ship fired a “Scud-like” missile, which was successfully intercepted. The ship will be towed back to the San Francisco Bay Area for the winter. Kaua’i lacks a suitable land-based launch site, and the costs of building one would far exceed the approximately $600,000 per year it costs to use the old warship, so the vessel returned to Pearl Harbor for a second series of tests in late spring 2008.[1] As of 16 June 2012 she berthed at Pier 80 in San Francisco, CA.”

From 2008:

Well, look what just got towed in from Hawaii. Fresh from testing of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system, San Francisco’s favorite former helicopter carrier, the former U.S.S. Tripoli (LPH-10), had its ups and downs in the Aloha State.

Read all about the post-retirement adventures of the USS Tripoli at Telstar Logistics.

Under the Golden Gate Bridge:

Who knows what the future will be for this old ship. Probably more missile launching.

And from 2010:

Now I could tell you all about the supr sekrt USS Tripoli (LPH-10 (Landing Platform, Helicopter)) but that would be MUY PRO HI BI DA DO (I say that in Spanish because that’s how not allowed it would be).

Suffice to say the old girl has been chilling in the Dogpatch lately, right next to ridiculously hilly Potrero Hill. See?

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Where, oh where, will it get towed to next?

What, oh what, will it next launch into the Heav’ns Above?

Courage.

The Trip as seen off of Kauai in the 808 State (or somewhere else in the wide Pacific) during the sum, sum, summertime. Whoosh:

E komo mai. Nou ka hale, USS Tripoli

Know Better Your Marin County: Nuclear-Capable Hill 88 Plus the West, Middle, and East Peaks of Mount Tamalpais

Tuesday, September 6th, 2011

How many hills do you know of what come with their own Yelp entry?

You ought to get on up there sometime to check it out:

Hill 88 is a wild ghost town in the sky, hidden way up high in the Marin Headlands. It’s on Wolf Ridge, between Fort Cronkhite/Rodeo Beach and Tennessee Valley. You can barely see it from below, and it’s nothing like most of the old little rusty lifeless bunker sites. This is a crazy Cold War mega-complex teeming with tons of crows dancing in the whipping wind above huge expanses of the bay and SF. It’s part of the old Nike Missile program, officially SF-88C. Was apparently the radar and control center (aka the IFC, or Integrated Fire Control area) of the Nike Missile launch site that’s further down the hill to the east.”

So, those are some of the remnants of Project Nike on top of now-flattened Hill 88 in the foreground along with the three peaks of Mount Tam (with the West Peak also flattened by the Air Force) in the background.

As seen from San Francisco:

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Now, you Know Better Your Marin County.

Know Your Aging, SCUD-Missile Launching, Marine Aircraft Carriers of the Bay Area – The USS Tripoli Winters in Dogpatch

Thursday, December 2nd, 2010

Now I could tell you all about the supr sekrt USS Tripoli (LPH-10 (Landing Platform, Helicopter)) but that would be MUY PRO HI BI DA DO (I say that in Spanish because that’s how not allowed it would be).

Suffice to say the old girl has been chilling in the Dogpatch lately, right next to ridiculously hilly Potrero Hill. See?

Click to expand

Where, oh where, will it get towed to next?

What, oh what, will it next launch into the Heav’ns Above?

Courage.

The Trip as seen off of Kauai in the 808 State (or somewhere else in the wide Pacific) during the sum, sum, summertime. Whoosh:

E komo mai. Nou ka hale, USS Tripoli

Compost Now Inundating San Francisco’s Cold War Missile Base up at the Presidio

Friday, July 30th, 2010

The way things are going, the old missile magazines (horizontal silos, basically) up at the Presidio will soon be covered over with mulch or something.

The scene today at the former SF-89 Nike Ajax missile launch complex:

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A closer look:

Sic transit gloria mundi…

Marin County’s Hill 88: A Wild Ghost Town in the Sky, and Former Home to Nuclear Bombs

Thursday, November 12th, 2009

This is the view from San Francisco over the Golden Gate – can you see the defunct buildings of Hill 88 in front of the East Peak of Mount Tamalpais? Those buildings were the eyes and ears of SF-88, southern Marin’s very own Nike Hercules missile complex.

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IMG_9870 copy

The actual nuclear warheads and missiles were stored at another facility down the hill – you can visit that place Wednesday through Saturday.

What’s shown in this photo above is the radar station part of the base, on the summit, where they had German shepherd guard dogs, machine guns, the whole magilla until the 1970′s. San Francisco also had a similar setup back in the day using the Presidio and Mount Sutro, but that was the smaller, non-nuclear Nike Ajax system and there’s really nothing left to visit anymore.

But in Marin, you can climb up to the hilltop facility of SF-88 whenever you want - you’ll get nice views and you’ll have a chance to see the graffiti.

Come visit Marin’s Wild Ghost Town in the Sky.

Old Missile Sites of San Francisco – The Presidio and Mount Sutro

Thursday, April 2nd, 2009

Here’s what’s just north of the old Public Health Service Hospital in the Presidio – San Francisco’s very own  SF-89 Nike missile launch complex. Of course the bay area has other similar sites, such as Marin County’s preserved SF-88 location captured in photographs from Telstar Logistics here (it’s a “must-see“), but San Francisco’s old missile bases are not as well-known.

Look below to see a missile magazine at SF-89L Presidio (the “L” stands for “launch”). The bay doors used to open downwards to reveal an elevator shaft. The complementary Site SF-89C Mount Sutro (the “C” stands for “control”) can be seen near Sutro Tower on the right, two and a half miles to the south. Click to expand:

And here’s all that’s left of the the Mount Sutro site near UCSF:

Now don’t go exploring around, the way you used to at the PHSH before restoration got started.

C – Mount Sutro (Twin Peaks) ((P) TV tower)
Jef Poskanzer’s detailed web page

L – Battery Caulfield Rd. ((P) Golden Gate NRA (National Recreation Area))
the pads abandoned and used for open air storage. The adjacent buildings are used by an EOD unit. An Ajax site featured in Nike promotional photos, it closed in 1963 (07 May 89). ]
You can almost make out the words “Nike Facility” next to the big red area in the upper right.

Ballistic Missile Defense Ship, the Former U.S.S. Tripoli, Comes Home

Friday, October 17th, 2008

Well, look what just got towed in from Hawaii. Fresh from testing of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system, San Francisco’s favorite former helicopter carrier, the former U.S.S. Tripoli (LPH-10), had its ups and downs in the Aloha State.

Read all about the post-retirement adventures of the USS Tripoli at Telstar Logistics.

Under the Golden Gate Bridge:

Who knows what the future will be for this old ship. Probably more missile launching.