Launch Control Facility Delta-01 - Tours And Tickets

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Park ranger talks to visitors in a cramped room
A park ranger leads a tour in the underground control center.

NPS/Rob Swanson

Learn what it was like to have the awesome responsibility of thermonuclear war at your fingertips. The ranger-guided tour of Delta-01 begins with a walk through of the grounds and topside support building. Visitors then descend via elevator 31 feet underground to the Launch Control Center to see the electronic consoles used by missileers to control ten Minuteman II missiles.

Built for nuclear war, the control center features a small elevator and a tight underground space. To protect the historic facilities and to provide for visitor safety, each tour is limited to six participants and a park ranger. This tour lasts forty-five minutes, beginning and ending at the entry gate to the Delta-01 compound.
The tour is moderately strenuous and requires a quarter mile round trip walk. All tour participants must be able to walk and stand unassisted; modern seating is limited on the tour.

Delta-01 Tour Fee

All tours of the Delta-01 Launch Control Facility require advanced reservations and an amenity fee. Reservations can be made on-line or by phone at 605-717-7629. Reservations can be made up to 90 days prior to tour date. In the summer season tours fill up to eight weeks in advance. All tour participants must be able to be physically capable of climbing two 15 foot ladders unassisted in the event of an elevator failure.

Delta-01 Tour Fee (Prices effective January 1, 2019)
  • $12.00 - Adult age 17 & over
  • $8.00 - Youth ages 6-16 All youth must be accompanied by an adult.
 

Delta-01 Tour Tickets

All tours of the Delta-01 Launch Control Facility require advanced reservations. Reservations can be made on-line or by phone at 605-717-7629.

Reserve Your Tour Now
 
Metal ladder and safety cage
Metal ladder and safety cage at Delta-01.

NPS Photo

Safety and Physical Requirements

The Delta-01 tour is moderately strenuous and requires a quarter mile round trip walk to and from the Delta-01 compound. All tour participants must be able to climb two 15 foot ladders, walk, and stand unassisted. The underground control center was not designed to accommodate the general public. It is accessed by an elevator and a ladder. In the event of an elevator failure, visitors that are underground will need to be capable of climbing the ladder for a safe and timely exit. Entering the control center also requires passing through a narrow corridor.

Visitors who wish to participate in the underground part of the tour must self-certify that they meet the following requirements:

  1. Be physically capable of climbing two 15 foot ladders unassisted in the event of an elevator failure. These ladders are permanently attached to the wall and are very sturdy.
  2. Children must be at least 40” tall, six years of age, and be able to climb the ladder unassisted.
  3. Be comfortable in a small elevator in close proximity to six other adults. The tour is limited to a maximum of six participants.
  4. Be comfortable with heights of approximately 35 feet or about 3 stories. The elevator door is an open grate, not a solid door.

 

Accessible Topside Tour

Built to execute a nuclear war, the historic Delta-01 compound cannot be made fully accessible. For those visitors unable to safely experience the underground control center, the park offers a tour that focuses on the topside structure and uses accommodations to explore the underground launch control facility. This tour does not enter the elevator or go to the underground control center. In order to ensure staff availability and the best experience possible, this tour must be reserved at least five days in advance online or by calling 605-717-7629. Standard amenity fees apply and the minimum number of participants on the accessible tour is two visitors.

 

What To Do If You Can't Get A Tour

In the summer season especially, demand for tours at Delta-01 exceeds capacity. In addition to visiting the visitor center and Delta-09, a visit to Rapid City's South Dakota Air and Space Museum at Ellsworth Air Force Base offers a number of complimentary features that further explore the Minuteman Missile story. The museum's exhibits include a launch control simulator identical to the control center at Delta-01 and their airpark display includes a Minuteman II missile. During the summer season the base tour includes an opportunity to go inside a missile silo trainer preserved on base.
 

Can I purchase a same-day tour ticket?

Same-day tour tickets may be available in the off-season period (October to April) only. Same-day tickets will be available if there are unsold reservations; if available tours are fully reserved in advance, there will be no same day tickets available. Off-season, same day tour tickets shall be sold by the park’s Eastern National bookstore between 8:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. for unreserved tour tickets for tours offered that day only.

Last updated: September 20, 2019

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24545 Cottonwood Road
Philip, SD 57567

Phone:

(605) 433-5552

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