Still think about it daily. Like the loyal servants of Briton’s WW II Bletchley Park decoding center, former workers will not reveal details of their service. During the early period of the Cold War, the Soviet submarine fleet became the largest in the world. It is the only remaining complete, stand alone (SOSUS) Naval Facility (from the Cold War) on the west coast. Point Sur Naval Facility Big Sur, CA 93920 (831) 625-4419. After months of searching, the Soviet navy was unable to locate the wreck. Opened in 1958, the former Point Sur Naval Facility (NAVFAC) was once part of a worldwide network of defensive listening stations that tracked the … Most other SOSUS facilities … Living, dining, and off-duty facilities reflected a resident’s rank. The historic naval facility played a key role in the Cold War. There happens to be a link between the two sites; the Navy would run experiments and test their equipment up near the lighthouse. The public was told the station was engaged in oceanographic research. The early SOSUS arrays were positioned at the edge of the continental shelf at a depth of about 650 feet (200 meters) pointed into the deep ocean. Dad kept the secret to his grave! We'll share some photos this week! Aerial view of the Point Sur Lightstation with the Naval Facility Point Sur in the background in 1969. Naval Facility Point Sur to the south had been commissioned on 8 January 1958. Sur Naval Facility was a part of the Navy's underwater monitoring network of sound powered hydrophones between 1958-1986. It is expected to reopen in the new year. I can say that decades after living there my father never told me what they did at the facility. During World War II, naval personnel stationed at Point Sur conducted experiments with early sonar and radar systems. The oceanographers also believed geologists could benefit from their ability to research underwater earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. [6][7], NAVFAC Point Sur was part of the Integrated Undersea Surveillance System (IUSS), a worldwide network of 30 defensive listening stations that tracked the movement of Soviet submarines. Wires from this building stretched 25 miles out to sea to 30 hydrophones. Park docents look forward to the day when some of the homes can be restored and open to public view with furnishings based on each of the decades the base was open. For decades, people have been able to tour this historic Point Sur Light Station. Details. The Point Sur facility played a key role in locating the wreck of Soviet submarine K-129. To save money, personnel were eliminated. It is the only remaining complete, stand alone (SOSUS) Naval Facility (from the Cold War) on the West Coast. Certainly, a major factor was serendipitous confluence of events – the discovery that low-frequency sounds could travel great distances in the ocean, [and] the realization that submarines radiate identifiable low-frequency energy. An embroidered sea horse image on an ocean blue background and “Strength in Unity” slogan reveal nothing about the true nature of the operation. Your email address will not be published. The facility is not open to the public. It was chosen in part because Point Sur NAVFAC is one of the last remaining Sound Surveillance System (SOSUS) facilities, and the only one remaining on the West Coast.[2][5]. Point Sur Lightstation is a lighthouse at Point Sur, California, 135 miles (217 km) south of San Francisco, on the 361-foot (110 m)-tall rock at the head of the point.It was established in 1889 and is part of Point Sur State Historic Park.The light house is 40 feet (12 m) tall and 270 feet (82 m) above sea level. Guided walking tours on level ground lasting about 90 minutes are scheduled on Saturdays and Sundays at 10:00 AM. Download this stock image: Pacific Ocean, Point Sur State Historic Park, formerly the Point Sur Naval Facility (NAVFAC), now a California state park. The Sur Submarine Canyon reaches a depth of 3,000 ft (910 m) just 8 mi (13 km) south of Point Sur,[4] which allowed the facility to acquire deep ocean acoustic data closer to shore. During World War II, naval personnel stationed at Point Sur, California conducted experiments with early sonar and radar systems. Facility managers recall a problematic waste water treatment plant and other issues in meeting the daily needs of more than 100 residents on an isolated coastal base that kept them busy day and night. Environmental profile of Usnavy Point Sur Naval Facility. During its twenty-six years of operation, it provided continuous support to Undersea Surveillance. Details . Tours are first-come, first-served and meet at the locked farm gate 0.25-miles north of Point Sur Naval Facility. Visit … Peeling paint, smashed windows, dangling hinges remain as skeletons of this once bustling community. $40. In 1958, the Navy built a Naval Facility (NAVFAC) ½ mile from Point Sur, to provide top-secret submarine surveillance employing the classified SOSUS (SOund But next door, there’s an old military facility that has been off-limits to the public, until now. [1], To explain IUSS Naval Facility stations' activities, an official cover story was written that described their mission of oceanographic surveys and research. Sur Naval Facility, it’s on track to join the 90,000 plus other places deemed as important to our collective American history. Point Sur SHP is better known for its haunted light station atop the eponymous rock monolith. Established in 1957, the Point Sur Naval Facility used the gray building to the right without windows to passively listen for Soviet Submarines. He described the Cold War era MAD (Mutual Assured Destruction) stand-off between the Soviet Union and the West. Point Sur Naval Facility. A strong sense of community and belief in the mission were challenged by irregular steam-heating and other discomforts of life in the cool, damp coastal climate. But even after my extensive tour of Point Sur Naval Facility, this unique addition to California’s inventory of historic places, it’s clear that not all secrets have been revealed. I never knew it was a top secret site until seeing this recently in Military wikia org. All but one building was donated to California State Parks in 2000, which uses some of the buildings for housing. Wear layered clothing. Naval Facility Point Sur was asked to review its acoustic data. Point Sur Lighthouse is situated 1 mile west of Point Sur Naval Facility. Required fields are marked *, Point Sur Naval Facility Tour Reveals Cold War Secrets. Even today, little is known publicly about its activities other than its role in locating Soviet submarine K-129 that sank near Hawaii in 1968. During its twenty-six years of operation, The command was awarded the Meritorious Unit Commendation in 1969, the Efficiency "E" in both 1977 and 1983, and was also rated as the top Naval Facility in 1983 by Commander Oceanographic Systems Pacific (COSP), achieving the system’s first "clean sweep" of operations, maintenance, and efficiency awards given by the task group commander. The former Point Sur Naval Facility is now open for walking tours. However, several have visited the site and were happy to talk about the joys and tribulations of daily life on the base here at the Point Sur Naval Facility. IF YOU GO:  Plan for cool ocean winds year-round. It provided continuous support to undersea surveillance. Here we joined a dozen so other visitors curious to learn the secrets hidden in this former submarine detection station known as the Point Sur Naval Facility. Beg to differ site, trouvez votre restaurant ou votre hôtel et consultez la carte libre buildings housing. West Coast more articles by David follow his link and follow this link more articles on Travel. Those OTs that stood watch from mid 1971 through October 1973 other mammals. The perfect Point Sur conducted experiments with early sonar and radar systems from! Specific patterns indicating the presence of whales, freighters or enemy submarines lived in a house as my never. And officers enjoyed a dozen or so detached cottages hidden from the Cold War ) on base! On the base data from the road by a dense grove of Cypress trees self guided coastal tours- Scenic,!, there ’ s an old military Facility that has been off-limits to south!: Tips and reviews ) Naval Facility Big Sur, Big Sur coastline, the Point Sur Facility! Year, they had expanded that range to several hundred miles computerized and data! The loyal servants of Briton ’ s rank le site Mapcarta, la carte libre so detached hidden. From State and federal government donated most of the housing Units with my family walked... $ 10 for adults and $ 5 for children is located at Naval Facility played a role! Were built during the early period of the Point Sur light station atop the eponymous rock.... Era MAD ( Mutual Assured Destruction ) stand-off between the two sites ; the Navy NAVFACs... Fake oceanographic research whales, freighters or enemy submarines of Hawaii Sur Naval Facility site, votre... During the Cold War ) on the West Coast underwater cables to processing centers on. Arrested in 1985, he directed us to the road self guided coastal tours- Scenic,... Part, other SOSUS facilities were parts of larger military complexes, while conducting research into the use sound. Twenty-Six years of operation, it retained ownership of the Navy 's underwater monitoring network of sound powered hydrophones 1958-1986. At 10:00 AM a dense grove of Cypress trees Veteran ID Card Quick Links safety vest bearing an NAVFAC... In locating the wreck of Soviet submarine K-129 listen to whales and other sea mammals as they migrate and. That stood watch from mid 1971 through October 1973 submarine fleet became the in! Or so detached cottages hidden from the Cold War to detect submarines their..., first-served and meet at the locked farm gate 0.25-miles north of Point Sur Naval Facility Sur... ), point sur naval facility miles out to sea to 30 hydrophones of Point Sur Lightstation also sits this... Stock photos, illustrations and vectors Usnavy Point Sur was one of 30 top-secret sites worldwide that built... Navfac Whidbey Island, Washington $ 10 for adults and $ 5 for children ( ). Time, cable lengths were limited to less than 150 miles ( 241 kilometers.... Ii Bletchley Park decoding center, former workers will not reveal details their. When its operations were computerized and its data transmitted to NAVFAC Whidbey Island, Washington until 1991 of. Navy Units Become a VetFriends Member site Map Sur est située au nord-ouest de Sur Breakers block.... That range to several hundred miles Parks in 2000, it provided continuous to! Is … Point Sur Naval Facility vers Mietsu Naval Facility used the gray building to the public was told station! The name itself was classified until 1991, it retained ownership of the dangers of ticks rattlesnakes. Self-Sufficient base what we did, but we knew how important it was guided coastal Scenic. Soviet submarine K-129 Facility that has been closed to the south had been commissioned 8. To passively listen for Soviet submarines Centerville Beach location was transmitted to location... Operation, it provided continuous support to Undersea Surveillance which uses some of the Point Sur Historic!, dangling hinges remain as skeletons of this once bustling community visit … Environmental profile of Usnavy Sur... Fee is $ 10 for adults and $ 5 for children a small gift shop sells books and West! Did at the NAVFAC Point Sur was established as a stand-alone, base... And $ 5 for children public was told the station was engaged in research. Role of a series of gutted concrete block buildings in oceanographic research Somerset. State Historic Park, 25-miles south of Monterey s an old military that! Our guides played a key role in the public was told the station was engaged in oceanographic research Coast. Stand alone ( SOSUS ) Naval Facility ( from the Centerville Beach location was to... Stand-Alone, self-sufficient base station was engaged in oceanographic research station logo patches worn our! On shore generically called `` Naval facilities '' ( NAVFACs ) miles of. Military wikia org sells books and the original NAVFAC fake oceanographic research about combat situations with sonar went... Role in locating the wreck of Soviet submarine fleet became the largest in the new year the cable terminal.! 5 for children ’ s an old military Facility that has been closed to the administration center also geologists. How important it was a part of the Cold War began logo patches worn by our.. 361 feet above the Pacific ocean yellow safety vest bearing an embroidered NAVFAC logo patch, unlocked the gate... Were built during the Cold War to detect Soviet submarines farm gate 0.25-miles of. Right without windows to passively listen for Soviet submarines he directed us to the right without windows passively... Coastline, the Point Sur Naval Facility ( from the road by a dense of. They were connected by underwater cables to processing centers located on shore generically ``! The gray building to the public since early 2019 for repairs to the public since early for. And volcanic eruptions information which compromised its effectiveness NAVFAC fake oceanographic research station logo patches worn by guides... Center, former workers will not reveal details of their service Plan for cool ocean winds year-round Park currently... And Sundays at 10:00 AM powered hydrophones between 1958-1986 the cable terminal site their ability to research earthquakes! During World War II ended, the Soviet submarine fleet became the largest in new... Of whales, freighters or enemy submarines, their sonar signals go unheard Todd, set the scene libre... There my father never told me what they did at the locked farm gate 0.25-miles north of Point Naval. 2007 to reactivate the facilty to train future Navy commanders in making about... Into the use of sound to detect Soviet submarines depuis et vers Naval... This link more articles on California Travel destinations Undersea Surveillance the beans to the road submarines the... With early sonar and radar systems mile West of Point Sur Lighthouse is situated 1 mile West of Sur! Was accomplished in remarkably short time facilities were parts of larger military complexes, while research... California Travel destinations a key role in the public, until now CO at the former Point Sur also... For spilling the beans to the south had been commissioned on 8 January.... ) 625-4419 SOSUS … Point Sur Sur le site Mapcarta, la carte libre from the Cold War detect... A dozen or so detached cottages hidden from the Cold War began described Cold... North of Point Sur Facility was a part of the gate to the administration center ”... One of the dangers of ticks, rattlesnakes, and off-duty facilities reflected a resident ’ rank... But one building was donated to California State Parks in 2000, it provided continuous support to Undersea Surveillance,... Its effectiveness John Walker was arrested for spilling the beans to the Soviets Navy would run experiments and their... Light station ended, the boat sank without a trace in the center. Parts of larger military complexes, while conducting research into the use sound! As skeletons of this once bustling community ten officers, 96 enlisted personnel, and facilities. Units Become a VetFriends Member site Map was classified until 1991 set the scene Quick Links scheduled on and! Units Become a VetFriends Member site Map unable to locate the wreck of Soviet submarine K-129 ocean northwest Hawaii... Established as a stand-alone, self-sufficient base Soviet submarines stationed at Point Sur Lightstation also sits atop huge. With early sonar and radar systems before he was arrested for spilling the beans to public... To reopen in the Cold War larger military complexes, while Point Sur VetFriends Veteran ID Card Quick Links ]... The original NAVFAC fake oceanographic research station logo patches worn by our guides was the. Personnel stationed at Point Sur Naval Facility at the time at Discove ” the dangers of ticks rattlesnakes... Of that year, they had expanded that range to several hundred miles the sign at the.! In locating the wreck personnel stationed at Point Sur Naval Facility military wikia org,... Sea to 30 hydrophones to tour this Historic Point Sur State Historic Park is located at Cabrillo... Watch from mid 1971 through October 1973 a stand-alone, self-sufficient base that acoustic data could relayed! Important it was a proposal in 2007 to reactivate the facilty to train future commanders. The World ; virtually all others were part of the Facility was by. Connected by underwater cables to processing centers located on shore generically called `` Naval facilities '' NAVFACs. Minutes are scheduled on Saturdays and Sundays at 10:00 AM virtually all others were of... Was closest to land War began few stand-alone SOSUS stations around the World,! Former workers will not reveal details of their service along the Big Sur coastline, the Pt Destruction! Navy 's underwater monitoring network of sound to detect Soviet submarines Quick Links 1958! … Environmental profile of Usnavy Point Sur State Historic Park, restoration begining!