Camp Hale Site - Leadville, CO
Posted by: 94RedRover
N 39° 26.584 W 106° 19.366
13S E 386174 N 4366781
Quick Description: Northwest of Leadville, along Highway 24, the historic site of Camp Hale, a military training installation for extreme weather rescue is now a vast recreation area.
Location: Colorado, United States
Date Posted: 8/9/2009 7:21:20 PM
Waymark Code: WM6ZC2
In 1942, during World War II, it became necessary to train specialized military personnel in rock-climbing, skiing and cold weather rescue and survival. Eagle Park, off Highway 24 between Leadville and Redcliff, Colorado offered enough flat-bottom land with adjacent peaks for training to establish such a training base. With permission from Government services, such as the US Department of Agriculture and Forest Service, and the acquisition of private lands, Camp Hale soon became an active military installation, of up to 247,243 acres.
From 1942 until 1965, specialized mountain training prepared the 10th Mountain Division (activated in 1943 for combat in the rugged mountains in Italy and reactivated in 1985 for Operation Desert Storm), the 38th Regimental Combat Team, 99th Infantry Battalion, and soldiers from nearby Fort Carson for extreme weather survival and rescue.
Many weapons, such as anti-tank rockets, recoilless rifles, rifle grenades, hand grenades, high explosive and illumination mortars, artillery, practice antitank land mines, and small arms were tested and trained with in this valley. For this reason, one should be careful if visiting the area.
From 1959 through 1965, Tibetan soldiers were secretly trained here by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). Camp Hale was deactivated for use in 1965 and returned to the Forest Service in 1966.
In 1992, Camp Hale was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. An overlook on Highway 24 has numerous informational plaques about Camp Hale, and a journey through the site offers additional informational plaques. Now, the area is heavily used for camping, hiking, ATV and off-road driving and winter sports.
Northwest of leadville on Hwy 24
Leadville, CO USA
County / Borough / Parish: Eagle County/Colorado
Year listed: 1992
Historic (Areas of) Significance: Event
Periods of significance: 1925-1949
Historic function: Defense
Current function: Recreation And Culture
Privately owned?: no
Primary Web Site: [Web Link]
Secondary Website 1: [Web Link]
Season start / Season finish: Not listed
Hours of operation: Not listed
Secondary Website 2: Not listed
National Historic Landmark Link: Not listed
Please give the date and brief account of your visit. Include any additional observations or information that you may have, particularly about the current condition of the site. Additional photos are highly encouraged, but not mandatory.