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Colorado Life

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The United States Air Force Academy is 7,258 feet above sea level. Newcomers from lower elevations may experience minor altitude sickness. Be sure to drink plenty of water and do not overexert yourself in the first two to three weeks after arrival.

Colorado enjoys more than 300 days of sunshine each year and the climate is very moderate, but can vary. April through September are normally pleasant. Average temperatures during the summer months are in the mid-80s and afternoon thunderstorms are common. During the winter months, average temperatures are in the mid-40s. Snowfall normally occurs October through late April.

The Academy Weather Flight provides specialized event-focused weather forecasts and observations, including weather warnings and advisories for Academy outdoor activities and the airfield’s flying training and airmanship programs.


If you are arriving during the winter, ask your sponsor to provide an Academy snow route map in your welcome package. Only priority roads remain open to drivers during extreme weather conditions. They are identified on the snow route map and on signs across the base.


  • Invest in all-season radial tires.
  • Frequently check your windshield wipers, fluid, battery and connections.
  • Build in extra travel time.
  • Check road conditions and have an alternate route in case conditions worsen.
  • Increase speed slowly to avoid losing traction on snowy or icy roads.
  • Know and use proper braking techniques — squeeze the brake pedal, never slam your brakes.
  • Keep plenty of distance between your vehicle and other vehicles.

Have an emergency kit in your vehicle that includes water, candles, matches, blankets, a flashlight, jumper cables, snow and ice scrapers, a towrope, and an orange or yellow streamer for the antenna.


The base is home to black bears, mountain lions, mule and whitetail deer, elk, coyotes, foxes, raccoons, snakes and turkeys, among other species. All wildlife can be potentially dangerous and some may carry diseases, so viewing wildlife from a safe distance is highly encouraged. It is illegal to feed wildlife (excluding bird feeders), and you should not attempt to capture, chase or pet any animal.

Report black bear and mountain lion sightings immediately to Security Forces by phone at 719-333-2000 or to Natural Resources at 719-333-3308.

For those driving on base, reduce collisions with wildlife by slowing down and scanning the roadside, especially at dawn and dusk when wildlife are most active. If you are involved in a wildlife-related accident, call the Security Forces Squadron at 719-333-2000 to file an insurance report and notify the authorities of a dead or injured animal.

For those living on base, minimize encounters and conflicts by appropriately securing or removing garbage, pet food, bird feeders, barbecue grills and other food sources. More information is available on the Colorado Parks and Wildlife website at


Discharging firearms of any sort, including air rifles, BB guns and similar devices, within the Academy’s boundaries is forbidden. The only exception is on guided hunts conducted by the Natural Resources section. For more information, contact 719-333-0442.

Residents in the dormitories, visitors’ quarters and the temporary lodging facility must register and store firearms at the Security Forces Armory, Building 8024. For more information, call 719-333-2000.

All personnel in Academy privatized housing must follow the Hunt Residential Management requirements for registering privately owned weapons. Registration can be completed at the Security Forces Pass and Registration Center in Building 8486. Registration must be coordinated through your first sergeant and an AF Form 1314, Firearms Registration, must be signed by the unit commander or designee. Personnel are also required to complete a DD Form 2760 that must be dropped off at the Pass and Registration Center to complete the registration process.


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