Being prior Active duty I like to look out for our service members and guide them when I can.
Naval Aviation Station Lemoore has a horrible reputation for being in the middle of nowhere, far form what young Sailors and Marines look for in a permanent duty station. It is avoided by those aware of it's existence and cursed at by those obligated to serve . Drive 40 miles in any direction and all you will see is farm land and cattle lots. The base is small, the valley is hot during the summer and foggy during the winter. There is not a lot for a city fella to do in a one horse town like Lemoore or Hanford.
What is great about the base is what many dread, it's , location. It sits dead smack in the middle of California's San Joaquin Valley. Forty Five minutes from Fresno, CA, and 90 minutes from Bakersfield where you can catch about any band you would want to see on tour. A two hour drive west to Morro bay where one can do some saltwater fishing, sightseeing, whale watching, surfing or eat fresh caught sea food. An hour south is Pismo beach and an hour north is Big Sur; keep driving north and you hit Monterrey, CA. If you drive east you head into the Sierra Nevada Mountains, the base is an hour away from Sequoia National Park, an hour and a half from Kings Canyon and 2 hours from Yosemite.
I just found out as of May 12th 2012 Active Duty Military members and their families qualify for a free Annual National Parks Pass. The pass costs $80 for a civilian and gets you in to any National Park. I would have jumped all over that when I was on Active Duty. If you know a service member that enjoys the outdoors pass it on.
Thanks for reading,
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