Who did they belong to? Why were they abandoned? When we’re they abandoned? Are they really abandoned? Is there a story here?
Technically I am sure we were trespassing, but there were no signs, or at least none in the field we entered the area from. And we respected the signs on the buildings themselves, though it was obvious that others had not. One may perhaps have been occupied, if the new lock and well-fed and collared cat in the upper window are anything to go by.
Times change, and there is no longer a radar station in Foymount , Ontario, keeping watch for Russian bombers coming over the North Pole to attack Canada and the United States. It closed in the early 1970s. But the base is what drew us there.
Some of the buildings are gone. Some have been put to other uses (municipal fire hall for example) but others are just sitting there abandoned. We probably missed a few also – there were quite a few trails along the mountain top that we didn’t have time to explore. Not to mention that it was the first day of hunting season and none of us were wearing orange. Too close to Thanksgiving to take the chance on being mistaken for a turkey. We could hear the gunshots occasionally in the distance.
The apartment buildings are still there, places I suspect were once quarters for married personnel. They look too nice for enlisted men (and they would pretty much have all been men back then, except possibly for a nurse or two). The buildings, looking to me to have been built in the 1950s, do show signs of neglect. Many of the balconies have either fallen down or been torn off. Vegetation has grown up around them and in front of the doors. Access is not impossible. There are a few places I can see that people have made their way inside. One of the buildings has a ladder placed on the outside. Third story or roof access would be an option.
I didn’t try it. I have a healthy respect for the dangers an abandoned building can pose, and on this day that respect outweighed my curiosity.
However, one of the buildings has a hole on the ground floor big enough for a person to squeeze through. I was tempted. In the end I just peered in to see what it looked like. That’s when I saw the cars. Covered in dust, as if they had been there a long time. My friend Peter, who knows more about cars than I do (that’s not hard – my cat knows more about cars than I do) said it looked to him like the closer one might be a Chevy Nova. That would fit the vintage and the time the base was abandoned. I wonder if the cars have been here that long. I assume they have some value, or why drive them into the building? Not to mention making the effort to make part of the building into a garage – that’s not the original design. It looked to me like they were in the kitchen.
Sometimes there are questions in life destined to remain unanswered. I suspect this is one of those.
I wonder if any thought was given to repurposing these buildings when the military moved out? Foymount is too far from civilization for a seniors’ complex, but it would have been ideal I think for a drug and alcohol residential rehabilitation and treatment centre. The nearest bar would have been too far to walk. But maybe they didn’t need such things back then.
If I did the research I could probably find the answers to that question. I could probably find out of the federal government still owns the land. But I probably wouldn’t find out who owns those cars. Some things are destined to remain a mystery.