666 Submarine in the Desert - Arco ID
Posted by: nomadwillie
N 43° 38.051 W 113° 17.810
12T E 314723 N 4833806
Quick Description: The conning tower of the fast-attack nuclear submarine USS Hawkbill (SSN-666), aka "The Devil Boat," sticks up out of the ground in a roadside park.
Location: Idaho, United States
Date Posted: 9/23/2011 8:49:43 AM
Waymark Code: WMCN0G
Folks passing through this rural Idaho town of mountains and sagebrush have stopped for months simply to ask: What on earth is a submarine sail doing in the middle of the desert?
After more than two years of preparations, the explanation came when the tall sail, or conning tower, of USS Hawkbill (SSN 666) was officially dedicated to Arco during its “Atomic Days” celebration July 19.
On hand were some two dozen Reservists from the Pocatello Naval Reserve Center, many of whom spent the last year and a half laying the foundation, putting down conduits for lighting and welding the sail in place.
It was no small task establishing Hawkbill's sail as the only known “Submarine in the Desert.” But because of Arco’s history in nuclear power development, town enthusiasts latched onto the idea, and when Hawkbill was decommissioned in 2001, the Naval Historical Society donated it to them.
Arco, with a population of 1,023, was the site where nuclear propulsion for submarines began. During the Cold War, all of southeast Idaho was a hotbed of nuclear testing and advancements – but because their studies were classified, no one knew about it.
Over the last several decades, some 40,000 Sailors trained in nuclear operations at three prototype nuclear power plants in the Arco region.
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