This depot houses many of the 3,700 Abrams in storage that the US has

Sierra Army Depot, a huge United States base with hundreds of Abrams tanks stored

Since the beginning of serial production in 1979, the United States has manufactured more than 10,000 M-1 Abrams tanks in its different variants.

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Today, the oldest tanks are stored at a huge military base located near Herlong, California, in a desert area that has an ideal climate for the preservation of these vehicles. That base is called Sierra Army Depot (SIAD) and is the largest depot for military vehicles in the US Army.

A photo posted in 2022 on Reddit showing M1 Abrams tanks stored at the Sierra Army Depot (Photo: Trackerbuddy).

This base was created in 1942, after the entry of the United States into World War II, in order to have a weapons warehouse away from possible attacks in case the Japanese reached the West Coast of the USA. The depot has its own airfield, Amedee, located north of the base and equipped with a 3,048-meter runway, where the largest transport planes of the US Air Force can land, the C-5M Super Galaxy.

Tanques M-1A1 Abrams en el Sierra Army Depot en 2006. Por entonces había más de 1.000 Abrams almacenados en esta base (Foto: Ann Scott Tyson/The Washington Post).

There are hundreds of Abrams in storage at the Sierra Army Depot. Some are in hangars, but most of the tanks are out in the open. In addition to the older Abrams tanks, the depot also houses a portion of the Marines' Abrams after its complete withdrawal from service in 2021. It must be taken into account that The US is the largest operator of the Abrams, with more than 8,100 tanks of this type.

M-1A1 Abrams tanks loaded onto a train at the Sierra Army Depot (Photo: Sierra Army Depot).

It is estimated that the US Army has about 3,700 Abrams in storage, belonging to the oldest variants (M1A1 and M1A2). Most of them are distributed in this depot and in the Anniston Army Depot, in Alabama. Surely the 31 Abrams donated by the US to Ukraine will have come from these warehouses, after a fine-tuning process.

Five rows of M-1 Abrams tanks at Sierra Army Depot in 2023 (Photo: Google Maps).

In December 2022, Jeff2146, a Belgian Twitter user, made the following account of some of the vehicles stored outdoors at the Sierra Army Depot (they are visible at Google Maps): 1,440 M-1 Abrams tanks, 503 M-2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles, 738 M-113 armored personnel carriers and M-577 command vehicles , 98 M-109 155 mm self-propelled howitzers, 209 M-119 105 mm towed howitzers, and 110 M-198 155 mm towed howitzers.

M-1 Abrams tanks at Sierra Army Depot in 2023. Some of the tanks are without their 120 mm main gun (Photo: Google Maps).

In addition to military vehicles, Sierra Army Depot also has explosives and ammunition warehouses. In the central and eastern area of the base there are 8 large warehouses with 190 trenches each to store ammunition, separated from each other to prevent an explosion from spreading to the rest of the warehouses.

Two rows of M-577 command vehicles at the Sierra Army Depot in 2023 (Photo: Google Maps).

The base has a total area of more than 145,000 square meters, a figure equivalent to 35 football fields. The distance between the southern part of the base and its northern end exceeds 9 kilometers.


Main photo: Sierra Army Depot. M-1A1 Abrams tanks loaded onto a train at the Sierra Army Depot.

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