Boron Air Force Station was a United States Air Force General Surveillance Radar station, perched on a mountainous outcrop, 7 miles northeast of Boron, California. From the peak you can see the lights of both Barstow and Lancaster 30-40 miles away . . . while highways 395 and 58 feed their never ending stream of semis in the near-distance, yet still miles away. The location is spectacular, exceptional.
The Boron AFS was closed in 1975 and the radome was turned over to, and is still operated by, the Federal Aviation Administration. The site was converted into a minimum security Federal Prison in 1979. A 25-house subdivision was built for the guards and their families, and the barracks and dorms housed about 540 male inmates. Through a company called Unicor, the prisoners assembled parts for military vehicles and rebuilt forklifts for the army in the site’s many industrial buildings. The prison had virtually no security–no locks on the dorm room doors, no fence, and no guard towers. In most cases the site’s remoteness served as deterrent enough, but occasionally an inmate would hike out to highway 395 after dark, meet an accomplice, and drive away.
Due to budget cutbacks, the prison closed in April, 2000.
If I was the bad guy in a James Bond movie, I’d buy this amazing mountain top complex and make it my lair.