Peterson Air Force Base has a long history, despite only being officially established in 1975. Since the early 40s, Colorado Springs has had a strong military presence, with bases like Ent Air Force Base and Fort Carson being established in response to the Second World War. Peterson AFB was established as Ent AFB was being retired, and much of the land that still forms Peterson was requisitioned from the old base.
Modern-day Peterson houses two important national security defense centers: NORAD and NORTHCOM have their main offices on Peterson’s grounds. The base also boasts the Peterson Air and Space Museum, which originated as a starting point for visitors to NORAD’s Cheyenne Mountain Complex. The museum has since become a popular tourist attraction for military families visiting the area. Civilian guests are allowed inside of the museum, but there are strict procedures to reserve your appointment for a free tour.
This active Air Force base is not generally open to the public or civilian visitors without a visitor’s pass, which can only be obtained by a few complicated methods. However, if you know someone who lives or works at Peterson Air Force Base, it’s possible to obtain a visitor’s pass and spend a day touring the facilities. Be sure to bring ear protection–the jets are incredibly loud when they take off, and they can be heard across the city.
Peterson Air Force Base is located right next to the Colorado Springs Airport and has two entrances. Take Powers Road south to Stewart Avenue to reach the west entrance as well as the visitor’s center.
Address: Platte Avenue &, N Powers Blvd, Colorado Springs, CO 80916