Sunday, January 29, 2012

Strategic Book Depository

I thought I would take a walk around the old military bunker near Amherst/Hadley that belonged to the Strategic Air Command back in the 50s and 60s. When my Dad was in the Navy in the 60s he once gave a fellow serviceman a ride up to the Notch. Although Dad was in the Navy, he could only go as far as the gate, where he bid adieu to his fellow serviceman. This area was supposedly classified (although everyone in the area knew about it.) Left, Dad in his Navy photo from the early 60s.

I parked at the Notch Visitor Center on Rt. 116 and crossed the street and walked north a bit to Military Rd.

A fence restricts access to the site, but there is a well blazed path around the perimeter.

From the Center of Land Use Interpretation: This 44,000 square-foot underground bunker, in the rolling hills next to Hampshire College, was built in 1956 as a regional control center by the Strategic Air Command (SAC), which operated a bomber base nearby in Westover. The three story building features a self-contained water supply and electrical generation system, a cavernous "war room" with a glassed-in balcony, and accommodations for up to 300 people. In 1973, as SAC centralized its command centers in Nebraska and Colorado.

The Federal Reserve Bank of Boston moved in and used it as an emergency back-up facility, and for records storage, along with New England Telephone and the New York Federal Reserve. The bunker was put up for sale for $250,000 in 1992, and was bought by nearby Amherst College, which uses it as a book depository and for archival storage.

Close by, there are concrete access areas that I assume are tunnels leading to the bunker.

There are several of these concrete structures nearby.

Waking north, there are several paths that lead away from the bunker.

The paths lead to what I believe to be Amherst Reservoir, which appears to be offline.

Hornets know how to build.

Looks like some ice fisherman left their marks.

As we've had some rain lately, this small brook was making some noise.

This is another pond a bit further north.

Author takes notes. "Good place for a hot summer dip."

Path eventually leads out to W. Bay Road.

Not much ice. Yay!

A trailer next to the Dept. of Conservation and Recreation building. We like Smokey. Gotta light?

I'm sure this "Big Boy" has seem some action.

1 comment:

zogness said...

Looks like a fun place to explore. Catch me some fish, uh huh.