More than just prairie dogs underground

You could probably say that North Dakotans are good at keeping secrets.  The state has often been called a "best kept secret" in reference to beautiful scenery, fun attractions, awesome fishing, hunting and more.  Some of the most impressive secrets in North Dakota are the ones found underground.

It's in the news today that oil production is expanding in ND.  Currently there are 102 active rigs and 4,500 producing wells in North Dakota.  The state currently ranks 4th in the nation in crude oil production - at 250,000 barrels a day.  Interested in oil facts and figures?  The North Dakota Heritage Center in Bismarck has a cool model depicting the drilling process and depths of the wells and the type of oil that's found in the Bakken Formation.

While North Dakota's #4 ranking in oil production may surprise you - the next underground secret might even unnerve you.

During the Cold War, it was no secret that Minuteman Missiles were positioned throughout the northern U.S.  Decades later, the types of missile may have changed - but they're still here.  North Dakota has two of the four air force bases with control over 530 Minuteman III Missiles.  It's unknown the exact location or number of the missiles in North Dakota but a guess would put about 265 here.  This modern military history can be explored at the new Ronald Reagan Minuteman Missile State Historic Site near Cooperstown.  Oscar Zero was the code-name for this specific mission control.  Travelers can visit the facility and even go underground to see where those infamous keys could have synchronized to launch a nuclear warhead.

Don't let North Dakota be a "best kept secret" any longer.  You are invited to be legendary!