We had to return to Colorado Springs to take care of some personal business and medical appointments. It seemed to be the perfect time to spend time camping at Cheyenne Mountain State Park. Each roomy site is on the hillside overlooking the city to the east and NORAD to the west. We wake each morning to revelry in the distance from Fort Carson and turkeys in the campground.
This area has received more rain than usual this year. The gambel oak (scrub oak) have an abundance of acorns and plenty of wild turkey to enjoy them. There were 14 in this group.
There are 21 miles of trails to hike or mountain bike in the mornings depending on the weather. The first day we were out by 7:30. The sun was shining and going to heat up. We wanted to get our important stuff, DMV and banking, done in the afternoon before the week got away from us. The next morning, after a stormy night, we got our hike in between rain drops.
|Cheyenne Moutain and NORAD|
The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) is a United States and Canada bi-national organization charged with the missions of aerospace warning and aerospace control for North America. Aerospace warning includes the detection, validation, and warning of attack against North America whether by aircraft, missiles, or space vehicles, through mutual support arrangements with other commands.
There are two 23-ton blast doors between the main tunnel and the office buildings complex. During the cold war, one door was always closed. That meant workers had to enter through the first door, wait in a middle room for the door to be closed and sealed, then wait for the second door to be opened.The doors were permanently opened in 1992. However, they were closed for a few hours during the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11 and they are closed once a day for testing to make sure they still work, just in case.
Aerospace control includes ensuring air sovereignty and air defense of the airspace of Canada and the United States. The renewal of the NORAD Agreement in May 2006 added a maritime warning mission, which entails a shared awareness and understanding of the activities conducted in U.S. and Canadian maritime approaches, maritime areas and internal waterways.
The trails were pretty peaceful in the mornings.
For every climb of 1000 feet of elevation the intensity of the sun increase by 4%. No wonder we both deal with skin cancer.
We tried our hands at some geocaching but the first one was in poison ivy. We left the cache in place but enjoyed using the GPS.
When we were girls, my sisters and I liked to see who could eat the most choke cherries. Aghhhh! I think Patty would win. But she was the tough one.
We missed riding with the Colorado Springs Cycle Club and were glad to have the chance to catch the Monday Dinner Ride and catch up with friends. Fortunately, the afternoon clouds rolled in, cooling us down for the ride.
It was fun to catch up with a few friends and family between appointments. We could have spent much more time and were sad to miss some people we would have loved to spend time with. Colorado Springs has so much to offer.