Saturday, March 03, 2007

A ride to Cheyenne Mountain AFS

Temps in mid-20s to low 30s and Sunny as all get out!

Beautiful, if cold, day today. Took off from the house at 1100 after successful fighting off the urge to buy new gadgets in the form of phones and Internet Tablets. Good decision since the ride cost me just $11 in gas whereas either of the two gadgets I'd been looking at and really not needing was at least $400!

Started off by just reconning the route to work which proved dry and clear. I then headed South on I-25 to Colorado Springs with the initial objective of taking a picture of Pikes Peak and Cheyenne Mountain.

Traffic was medium for the most part and I was able to make good speed to the Springs. Here's a pic of Pikes Peak from a scenic overlook area just off of I-25 Southbound.

After I took the above pic I headed on South until I reached Colorado Springs and the exit to SR115 which is the way to the Cheyenne Mountain Park and Canon City.

As I cruised on SR115, I kept looking around for an exit or pull-off where I could get a good picture of Cheyenne Mountain. Through a stroke of good luck, I happened to pick the one exit which actually led to the Cheyenne Mountain Complex! It's called NORAD Road and it's a winding road which leads you eventually to the actual entrance into the mountain which is now part of the Cheyenne Mountain AFS or Air Force Station.

Yep, for you Stargate SG-1 fans, the entrance pictured in the show is exactly the entrance in real life but with more fencing/barbed wire and some buildings off to the side which they don't show in the program. Before you can get to the parking lot where you can see the actual entrance into the mountain, you must first register and present military ID at an outlying security checkpoint, past which there's no photography permitted so no pics of the entrance to the mountain unfortunately.

Here's a couple of pics from the road leading to the aforementioned security checkpoint. The entrance to the Cheyenne Mountain Complex, is located near that flat area, bordered by snow, to the right and above the small bobcat dozer. I was able to ride all the way to the security gate guarding the complex's entrance. Kind of cool, in a way, even though I could not take pics.

I then rode home via SR83 which took me through the NE suburbs of the Springs, then northward through Franktown, Parker, C-470 superslab and home.

The whole ride was about 150 miles and almost 4 hrs of saddle time, good ride though I was starting to feel the cold near the end of it.

Closeup of map below, showing the road I found to the "mountain"

It's supposed to be in the high 50's tomorrow! Hopefully I'll be able to ride some more.

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