At China Lake, the main gate is easily accessible from State Highway 178, State Highway 14 and Highway 395. Like any other command in the Navy, you have the responsibility of letting your command and your sponsor know you have arrived. Military personnel should initially check in at the Quarterdeck, which is located in the Headquarters Building at the northeast corner of Knox Road and Blandy Avenue. The Quarterdeck staff gives further instructions to complete the check-in process. The Quarterdeck is staffed 24 hours a day. A Safety and Security Orientation Briefing is scheduled regularly for new personnel. New arriving personnel will also want to check in with Personnel Support Department for assistance with badges and processing transfer papers and the Fleet and Family Support Center for further information and referral information. Be sure to call your family members and let them know you arrived safely. Also give them a current number to contact you in case of emergencies.
Your spouse may want to attend three very informative classes after arrival. They are:
- Indoctrination (Your spouse is invited to attend with you)
- Compass/Links (A spouse mentoring spouses program)
- Fleet and Family Support Center's Spouse Orientation
All three classes are geared to inform you and your family about military life, the installation, and the local community. You can contact the Fleet and Family Support Center for further information, dates, times, etc.
China Lake Badge
After you have checked in, you will be issued a China Lake badge. This badge is very important to you and should be safeguarded with the same care as your driver's license or any other important document. It must not be left unattended where an unauthorized person could obtain it (in your vehicle, for instance). Your China Lake badge says, "I belong here," and identifies you as an official China Lake employee. The badge must be worn in full view while in any restricted area. You must show proof of the following to receive a permanent vehicle decal: vehicle registration, insurance, and a Department of Motor Vehicle driver's license.
Also, bring any family member over the age of 16 to get them a base dependant badge (not ID). Children who attend the schools on the installation will not be mandated to wear a badge. China Lake works a little different due to the large amount of civilian employees (3000+) and a regular military Active Duty ID/dependant will grant you access to the main side but will not grant you access to the installations airfield or ranges.What to do if you Get Married Enroute
If you get married before you PCS, you must inform you commander and follow the procedures exactly as you are given them. The Military will not pay for travel and housing of your spouse if you do not follow proper procedures.
A sponsor is someone from your new command who is assigned to assist you and your family with settling into your new location. A sponsor is assigned through your gaining unit.
A sponsor's duties include:
- Contacting you and your family by letter of introduction or e-mail upon learning of your assignment to the installation.
- Sending any information about the installation/area, which you may require, or putting you in touch with the proper authorities, which can supply the information.
- Answering any questions which you or your family may have, or, again, providing the proper resources to answer those questions.
- Being available when you arrive at your installation to meet you, show you around, and help you through inprocessing.
If you have been assigned a sponsor, or have not been contacted as of yet, you may request one by contacting the commander of your new unit.