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- "What could be a more natural location for a retired billionaire ex-astronaut to build a paradise retreat?"
— Agent's Technical Manual
Tracy Island is situated somewhere in a remote sector of the central Pacific Ocean, midway between Australia and South America. Its precise location is a closely-held secret. Tracy Island appears, to the outside world, as an almost-barren rock.
Formed as a result of seismic shifts in the ocean bed during the late Triassic age, approximately 200 million years ago, the island and its near neighbor, Mateo, are peaks of a sub-aquatic ridge that stretches east across the Pacific tectonic plate to its convergence with the Nazca and Antarctic plates. Now completely dormant, both islands were once volcanically active and are internally honeycombed with vast lava-formed chambers linked by a network of extinct vent channels. On the southern side of the island at sea level these form a network of cavernous grottoes, which are reputed to be the home of an elusive species of water mamba. The geological composition of the island's rock strata is also rich in valuable minerals, including sought-after deposits of the ultra-rare Cahelium X.
Following Jeff Tracy's purchase of the two islands in the early 2060s, work quickly commenced to create an idyllic, self-contained luxury retreat - indicating to the casual visitor that Tracy Island was nothing more than a lavish millionaire's paradise, where the Tracy family could live a life of luxury oblivious to everyday reality. After construction of an airstrip leading from the northern edge of the island to the cliff-edge of a small plateau, well-placed to catch the dramatic Pacific sunsets, work started on a streamlined two-storey villa to Jeff's personal design. Built on an outcrop of rock overlooking a palm-fringed apron, which offered the perfect location for a kidney-shaped pool, the villa quickly took shape. Additional accommodation was also planned and constructed to provide guest-quarters and leisure facilities. This consists of the Round House, a cantilevered doughnut-shaped residence built above a sunken circular oriental garden and accessed by a path running to the east of the main house; and the Cliff House, a jutting two-storey construction built into a cleft of rock situated above the landward end of the island's runway and topped with a domed concrete canopy. Internal lift and moving-walkway systems link Cliff House and Tracy Villa, with a small hangar entrance built into the base of the cliff. A further internal travel-way connects to a converted ocean-side cave, which acts as a boathouse for the family's various seagoing craft.
Tracy Island MapEdit
- 1. Tracy Villa: Cloaked by the exterior of the Tracy Villa, Thunderbird 1 is stationed on a mobile cradle in its hangar. The Pilot's cabin can be accessed immediately by its pilot (usually Scott, sometimes Alan) via a moving platform concealed by a revolving panel in the lounge. Pilot and passenger transportation systems for Thunderbird 2 and Thunderbird 3 are also built into the surrounding structure, providing direct flight-deck access.
- 2. Swimming Pool: Built on an outcrop of rock overlooking a palm-fringed apron, which offered the perfect location for a kidney-shaped swimming pool.
- 3. Cliff House: A jutting two-storey construction built into a cleft of rock situated above the landward end of the island's runway. The Cliff House houses the emergency control room, used if the villa's control systems are compromised, or if there are problems with Thunderbird 2.
- 4. The Round House: Visitors to Tracy Island would never suspect that the area beneath the Round House conceals... a three-hundred-foot space rocket! The three-story Round House comprises two levels of bedrooms and living areas, plus one lower level for utilities, laundry rooms and storage areas.
- 5. Mateo Island: In the event of emergencies and to provide additional services facilities, nearby Mateo Island has also been converted for International Rescue's use by the Tracy family. A monorail link to the main island allows access and transportation of supplies without drawing attention to the organization's activities.
Behind Tracy Island's placid tropical façade, the extent of International Rescue's conversion of the remote rocky outcrop is truly astonishing. From the lounge, the three main hangars can be reached by dedicated crew-access systems or via interlinked tunnels and other subterranean sections of the island. An inspection monorail has also been installed which, by means of a recently-added spur, connects Tracy Island with neighboring Mateo Island. Further transportation of materials and supplies is provided by a fleet of service vehicles, powered by rechargeable atomic batteries.
The locations of the hangars are as follows:
- Thunderbird 1: Hidden below the swimming pool, beneath the main house.
- Thunderbird 2: Hidden behind a large door that is disguised as a cliff-face, topped by the Cliff House. Upon reaching the runway, the palm trees that line either side will fall away, to accommodate Thunderbird 2's wingspan, so it can reach its hydraulic launch platform.
- Thunderbird 3: Held in a silo under the Round House. (In the 2004 film, the Round House actually opens up, as opposed to the original Round House, which doesn't move at all.) There's also an emergency launching silo nearby, if the Round House silo should become compromised. (Never actually seen on screen at all, it might be usable by both Thunderbirds 1 and 3)
- In addition, Thunderbird 4 has an emergency launch tube if Thunderbird 2 is unavailable.
- Thunderbird 6 is kept inside the pods for Thunderbird 2 along with the Mole, the Firefly and quite a few other rescue vehicles.
In addition to the main hangars, other naturally-formed caverns beneath Tracy Island have been adapted to house a compact power plant and a complex of laboratories and construction bays, enabling Brains to carry out research and experimental development to create new rescue devices and vehicles.
Christmas on Tracy IslandEdit
The Tracys entertain some special holiday guests, for Christmas - and snow falls, too!
- Main article: Christmas on Tracy Island
- Main article: History of the Cutaway Drawings (Classic Thunderbirds)
At least three cross-sections of Tracy Island exist. Two were illustrated by Graham Bleathman.
The first was published by City magazines, and featured in Thunderbirds Annual 1967; the second, in The International Rescue Book of Thunderbirds: FAB Cross-sections; and the third appeared in World of Thunderbirds. A fourth appears in the Haynes Thunderbirds Technical Manual.
- In Thunderbirds Are Go (film) and Thunderbird 6 (and, briefly, in Lord Parker's 'Oliday), the contours of Tracy Island changed.
End Of The Road Edit
- Tracy Island seen from a different angle, as Eddie Houseman's jet swoops in for an unexpected visit.