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Fire Away

March 8, 2010

How do you defend the Bay?

Late 19th/early 20th century – forts with big guns:

1942 – minefields:

1950s-70s: Nike Missiles.

Good fences may not make good neighbors, but rings of supersonic steel vs Soviet bombers are another matter entirely.

Control centers  are squares and launch sites are dots, KML from here. Circles are the Nike’s 25 original mile radius. (Drew them myself, here’s my KMZ. Do you have any idea how annoying it is to generate circles in Google Earth? Come on, Mountain View — they’re freakin’ circles.)

Nike Missiles on Angel Island (SF-91L).  Other launch sites included the Presidio and Ft. Funston, and radar control centers (C on the map above) included Mt. Sutro just about every sizable peak in the area.

And of course there’s the restored Nike missile site in Marin, SF-88L:

So what will we have to defend against in the future? My bet is GIANT ANIMALS.

Sadly I still haven’t seen this one.  Oh, giant shark, can’t you just leave us be?

And I bet the sea lions left Fisherman’s Wharf to start planning with these guys:

As it endlessly scans the horizon for threats to our fair city, I hope our hilltop savior has secret lasers it can deploy.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. March 8, 2010 10:15 pm

    Do check out Buboblog’ fine summary of the wide variety of movie threats to the Golden Gate Bridge.

  2. March 9, 2010 11:07 pm

    Like, whoa.

  3. March 10, 2010 9:52 am

    My dad was an Army Nike missile tech at a few of those sites in the late 50’s early 60’s

    • March 10, 2010 10:05 am

      Cool – which ones? Does he have any pictures?

  4. March 11, 2010 9:05 am

    He worked at a few but mostly at the one in Pacifica and Marin. Unfortunately he doesn’t have any photos!


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