Ontario Abandoned Places

Documenting Canada's Abandoned Structures


CFS Armstrong


CFS Armstrong was one of the many radar stations along the Pinetree Line (located near the 50th parallel), which operated under NORAD control. CFS Armstrong stood at a location 18 miles west of Windigo Bay close to the north shore of Lake Nipigon.

The station, which opened in 1952, was home to the 914th Aircraft Control and Warning (AC&W) Squadron of the United States Air Force. Ten years later the station was transferred to the Royal Canadian Air Force where the name was changed to RCAF Station Armstrong. The station maintained that name until 1967 when it joined forces with the Canadian Armed Forces and became known as Canadian Forces Station Armstrong (CFS Armstrong).

Stations such as the one at Armstrong were strategically placed across North America to monitor any air threats from the Soviet Union. The station contained two search radars and one height-finder radar. These radars were housed in radomes (radar domes) and resembled large white globes.

A small radio station began broadcasting from the station on June 8, 1964 under the call-sign of CFAO (1450 AM).

As radar technology advanced to the point where long-range radar was available, the site became redundant and was closed on October 1, 1974. At that time the DND sought to find an interested buyer, as they were concerned about the decline in property value due to vandalism, etc. The property was sold to a private owner from Kitchener for $105,467.

CFS Armstrong can be found in Armstrong Station. It lies approximately 242 kilometres north up the winding Highway 527. It will be a right hand turn (North) as you are heading West across the Trans Canada Highway 11-17.

The station is now called D&L Estates, a village which includes a hotel, laundromat, residences and a restaurant. The Estates are described as "Your Host of the North" on a small search radar antenna by the station's entrance. (Source: Paul Ozorack)

* In the middle of the 1900's other ghost towns listed on this site also had a Department of Lands and Forests' fire tower lookout located on a nearby hill. These include: Pakesley, Key Junction, Key Harbour, Dufferin Bridge, Bummer's Roost, Pickerel Landing, Lost Channel, Byng Inlet, Moon River, Cheddar, Germania, Ormsby, Uphill, Biscostasing, Renabie Mine, Milnet, Armstrong, Metagama, Cheminis, Wavell and Pineal Lake . For more info. on Ontario's Fire Tower Lookouts go to this link: Ontario's Fire Tower Lookouts.

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Suburbex says:
11/13/2014 7:59:06 PM

Boy I'd love to check out this Pinetree station. Fairly complete, similar to Ramore. The more remote the better:)

sinkourswim says:
3/26/2012 10:39:21 PM

I live in Thunder Bay and I'm interested in checking this place out. Anyone know if this place still exists and is worth checking out?

oldwino says:
11/22/2009 3:13:03 PM

I was stationed at CFS Armstrong from March, 1971 to Sept. 1974. I was one of the last 2 military personnel to leave this site. I visited the site again in 1999 and some of the buildings were occupied at that time. The site has really deteriorated over the last 10 years.

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On 4/10/2012 5:24:49 PM user clay70 changed the following: city, description
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On 4/5/2012 2:54:31 PM user iain86 created gallery : CFS Armstrong

Main gate
Dec. 1965
Courtesy Ren L'Ecuyer

Armstrong fire hall
Jjune 1972
Courtesy George Clarke

Operations site
May 72
Courtesy Frank LaFrance

HQ building
Sept. 1956
Courtest Wayne Mathern.

HBC 1958 Wayne Mathern.

Thank you to Michael Brown for the July 2004 color photographs