The abandoned rocket engine test site in Boron, CA that may have been used to conduct classified research for a high-altitude hydrogen fuel between 1956-1958.

The abandoned ruins sit just west of Rio Tinto’s U.S. Borox western boundary in Boron, CA, where the company’s six boric acid tailings ponds and six reclamation ponds are located.

After exiting Hwy 58, it’s just a 2.8 mile drive down Gephart Road to the former site of AiResearch Company, a division of the Garret Corporation, which allegedly was a cryogenic research facility.

From above, the area near the top of this photo does kind of look like a rocket and/or a jet testing complex.

Once you get closer to it, it’s pretty easy to figure out what roads to take to get to the actual ruins.

“His grandmother had witnessed some strange goings-on firsthand during the 1950s at the southern side of the hill where the present-day remains of the Garrett Corporation’s Boron facility lay in ruins along the access road we used. Garrett — a contractor involved with the Air Force’s top-secret Suntan Project — was conducting classified research for a high-altitude fuel using hydrogen during 1956-1958. Although considered largely unsuccessful, after millions were spent on its development, Suntan “led directly to the first rocket engine that flew using liquid hydrogen.” Supposedly this abandoned site is where engine and cryogenic component tests were conducted. Existence of this project remained secret until 1973.”

Whether you believe his story or not, something was definitely going on and it wouldn’t be out of the ordinary for a test facility, like the one described above, to be located here. In fact, one of the largest rocket test sites in the country is located less than 8 miles away.

“The Air Force Research Lab’s Aerospace Systems Directorate has its primary field lab at the remote northeast corner of Edwards AFB, on and around Leuhman Ridge, with additional test facilities on Haystack Butte, covering a total of 65 square miles of the base. The Air Force Research Lab (used to be called Phillips Lab) is one of the primary Air Force labs, concerned with directed energy weapons, space-related defense, propulsion systems, unmanned vehicles, hypersonic vehicles, and space-based surveillance.”   – Source


These photos were taken nearly four years ago, so there’s no telling what the site looks like now.

Dick Face

Flower Power

A sled track used to move large objects perhaps?

Kind of looks similar to this: Edwards Air Force Base, South Base Sled Track

Evidence of target shooting was everywhere.

Heavy Duty

Not so Happy

All small towns need a local party hangout and this place looks like it’s seen plenty of action over the years.


Memorial Wall

Heavy Equipment


No we don’t Glenda.

Burned Out


I wonder if they ever got divorced?

This ruin is brought to you by…

Wasted Creativity


Spring was in the air when I visited.

Window Watch

A little further to the east is a whole other set of crumbling buildings.

Was this the observation block house…

…or just another target?

It seemed like a fairly safe place to observe whatever they were testing.

Hmmm, this looks interesting.

Not the safest place for a kid to play in…

…and a little creepy to, don’t you think?

Something fairly big was bolted down here.

Does anyone know what this is?

This kind of gives you a good idea of the distance in between the two areas.

More bolts.


They’re here!

I do.

The Wisdom Tree


So can anyone add any insight as to what was going on here?