NNSS Tour and Tikaboo Peak, July 24-27, 2018
by Chris

7-24-18--we toured the NNSS thru Mercury. This is a must do as it was very interesting. Too bad pictures were not allowed. We hit the gate and they checked our badges and the it was on to the facility. Its pretty spread out so you spend a lot of time on the bus. We toured the Waste Disposal Facility while the manager explained what they did. This was very interesting and several truck were there unloading dirt from the Tonopah clean up. This is strictly a government disposal site. We drove by Ice Cap but could not go in due to some endangered Owl occupying the building. They were set to use this on October 1, ( I forget the year) but President Bush stopped it on September 30th. We were initially told that we would not be going to Sedan Crater as there was road construction going on. But, while we were eating lunch one of the tour guides came in and said that they just finished the "experiment" and that if we wanted to see it we had to leave now. No idea what the meant exactly but we left and got to see it. Pretty impressive. 1280 feet across and 375 feet deep. 12 million cubic feet of dirt was displaced. Has a sign as you come to it that indicates there is still some radiation. The it was off to Apple 2, which is the house that was built to see how it does during the detonation. I'm sure we have all seen the video footage. There was some slight radiation there as well. Dreamland was mentioned a couple of times during the tour but not much was said. The only thing that was really said was by the tour guide who advised us that if we kept going on Mercury Highway we would run into a vacant guard shack. 300 yards up from that one is another guard shack where guys have automatic weapons. That was the end of that discussion. That was it really. They took our temp badges from us at the gate and off to the DRI/Atomic Testing Museum we went, passing by Creech Air Force Base. There was a few drones out on the runway.

7-25 thru 7-27-18 we spent in Alamo, Rachel and Tonopah. We did the usual Groom Lake Road Gate, the back gate, Rock Springs gate, Wilson Rd gate. Parked on Camp Fire Hill and took a few pics. Looked for ground sensors but found none. On Thursday we hiked Tikaboo Peak. I read up on how to get there from other people and it was fairly easy. From Alamo we drove down Hwy 93 about 6 miles until we got close to LN32. Took a right off the highway and that was Badger Rd, according to my GPS as there are no road signs. Followed it to a fork in the road. Left was Old Corn Rd and to the right was Badger. We took Badger and got to a place were a serious 4x4 is needed. Finished that up and came to another fork. Continued right on Badger and followed it 20 miles give or take. They had a lot of rain as some of the road was washed out. The last half mile to the trailhead was really washed out and a 4x4 was pretty much needed as well. We parked where the trail ended. At this point I had no idea which peak was Tikaboo so we climbed the ridge to out right so I could get some elevation. About half way up I used my binoculars to scan the mountain tops and saw the "weather station". About 100 yards to the left of where we parked was the trailhead. The trail is marked really well with streamers, tin foil and little rock towers. Again the trail was pretty washed out. The climb was harder then I thought and we made it in about 2 hours. It was around 12 noon so the heat waves were not too bad but a storm was brewing but I could still see pretty well. I took pics with my 250 zoom lens and was able to make out a few hangers etc. Thought we better take the hike before they come in with another land grab. I highly recommend doing this as it was great to see. Also, to the east of Tikaboo, high on another ridge was another tower, with a white ball and a solar panel. Not sure what it was for but I assume its to watch the lower part of Badger Rd. The camera on the weather station cannot see all the way to the trailhead, but I am just speculating.

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