Explosive ordnance is what keeps the savages at a distance. Except you! There’s something special about you, child, and it was the howitzers that gave you a chance to show it.Mother Pearl
As you approach the Nellis area, don’t be totally scared like me at the planes flying overhead. They are super loud. I carefully avoided what sounded like a bombardment and arrived at Nellis Air Force Base.
# 59 – Nellis Air Force Base
# 57 – Nellis hangars
# 34 – Fields’ shack
# 58 – Nellis array
# 278 – Nellis Boomer museum
# 254 – Train tunnel
# 288 – Nellis’ Area II
# 332 – Munitions storage
# 333 – 337 – Nellis barracks
# 342 – Nellis medical station
# 343 – Nellis schoolhouse
# 344 – Nellis workshop
# 59 – Nellis Air Force Base – In our world, Nellis Air Force Base is located in the same area of North Vegas as the location in game. The website describes itself as “the largest and most demanding advanced air combat training center in the world” which is cool, thinking back to how Pete told us in game that there were virtual training pods only available to Boomers. It is a very interesting and exciting place.
Just look at the welcome signs, how similar they are – from the graphics, to the font, even saying “testing, tactics, training” at the bottom. So awesome.
The most “immersive” and annoying part is the fact that, similarly to the game, the base is not open to the public. This was amusing and annoying to me. Unlike the game, tours are available but only in groups of 10 or more, who have to be in the same vehicle and not in July or August.
I had to convince a friend of a friend of a friend to sponsor me for entry and it was a massive hassle. It would have been faster and easier to try to outrun artillery – but I am so grateful for you, amazing sponsor who I promised I would not identify, you are my hero!
My exceptionally wonderful sponsor told me that we could not go to every place I wanted to, because there are some people who are planning to “Storm Area 51” in a few weeks and that has made for some sort of increased security. Thanks guys.
Locations included here if they existed in our world are # 342 – Nellis medical station, # 343 – Nellis schoolhouse, and # 344 – Nellis workshop. There are several doctor offices, a hospital, schools, and mechanics around base, but none that have any resemblance other than the type of business.
# 57 – Nellis hangars – The hangars exist in the real world location and look very similar. This location doubles with the museum location, as they are both in the same place. The hangars are even in the same part of Nellis in our world and the game. Very cool. I went to an ordnance museum later in my trip that really made me think everything they had on display would have been collected by the Boomers years ago.
I also noticed the air control tower, present in both the real world and in game and in approximately the same spot on the base.
# 34 – Fields’ shack – Although there was no shack in the location, I did see some similarities in the area. Below you can see the comparison of warning signs which look pretty close to one another. Below that is a location west of here that looks as if it has been shelled to shit, similar to the in game buildings surrounding Nellis.
# 58 – Nellis array -The air force base features a solar panel array, installed in 2007, which was very exciting for me to find. I am thankful they were in working condition, lest I have to drag panels taller than myself from HELIOS One, roughly 36 miles away.
# 278 – Nellis Boomer museum – The museum in our world is called the US Air Force Thunderbirds Museum. And yes, they have … a huge mural !! It even had a little table in front of it. This was by far the highlight find of my day. How incredible. A developer had to have taken a tour of this place, there are just too many coincidences.
And I now own another incredible patch for my Boomer jacket since they do not have any snowglobes available for sale.
# 254 – Train tunnel – A little ways from Nellis, there is a location that fits the bill called the Historic Railroad hiking trail, which as you would guess, has a tunnel that was formerly used for a train. Now it is a walking trail, located southeast of Nellis. It also looks like the Rainbow railroad tunnel.
# 288 – Nellis’ Area II – This is a real world place, only mentioned in game, located a few miles north of the main base, consisting of munitions storage and a federal prison. It is also referred to as Hawthorne Army Depot. In our world, there is also a Hawthorne Army Depot, about five hours northwest of Nellis, which features the Hawthorne Ordnance Museum.
# 333 – 337 – Nellis barracks – I was not allowed to go over to this area, but I thought I would include this because it looks so much like the barracks – of which there were many, including Pearl’s, Loyal’s, men, women, and children’s varieties. It also really looked like a huge airplane hangar located in Tonopah (which I learned is where Howard Hughes married his second wife, Jean Peters, in 1957).
# 332 – Munitions storage – This area was also not accessible, nor marked on any maps except, strangely, the map I used for locating mines. From Frenchman Mine, you can see into the valley to see this location if you strain your eyes really hard. Can’t tell if there is a mess hall, though.
Anywho, if you don’t have a sponsor, Nellis is open to the public a few times a year. The biggest event is called Aviation Nation, an air show every November. You could potentially pretend to be interested in airplanes and get in for the New Vegas tour and no one will be the wiser!