|“||Mount Weather was a military base built within a mountain.||”|
|— Thelonious Jaha [src]|
Mount Weather is a United States military underground bunker and missile silo launch facility located in the Blue Ridge Mountains in the eastern United States of America on Earth. It was constructed to house senior US officials in the event of a nuclear war.
The Mountain Men are descendants of the original people who took shelter there during the Nuclear Apocalypse. During Season One, it was the intended dropping point for the 100, but they were unable to travel there as the territory belonged to the Woods Clan. Mount Weather is currently inactive due to a self-destruct sequence initiated by Carl Emerson and the Ice Nation. It was permanently destroyed.
History and Background
The Mount Weather Emergency Operations Center (a.k.a. the High Point Special Facility), is a U.S. Government Continuity of Operations facility located in the Blue Ridge Mountains– near Bluemont, Virginia, on the border between Loudoun and Clarke counties– about 40 miles from Washington, D.C.
The site was originally acquired by the National Weather Bureau in the late 1800s, which named it the Mt. Weather Observatory. After World War II, the Army Corps of Engineers began construction of the underground complex under the code name "Operation High Point". The underground bunker initially included a hospital, crematorium, dining and recreation areas, sleeping quarters, reservoirs of drinking and cooling water, an emergency power plant, and emergency broadcasting system.
After the first Nuclear Apocalypse, Mount Weather was able to sustain itself using hydroelectric power from Philpott Dam, fresh water from its own underground reservoir, and fresh food from its hydroponic farm. It also served as a preservation of civilization through the U.S. Federal Culture Preservation Initiative.
Mount Weather was believed to be the last surviving human stronghold until Outsiders appeared several decades later. Assuming it meant that the Earth was survivable again, Mount Weather opened its doors. Within a week, 54 people were dead from the exposure. Sometime later a missile silo was constructed as a defense system and the Harvest and Cerberus Projects were initiated. At some point before Lexa was born, Mount Weather fired a missile at the Grounders. According to legend, the missile left a hole in the woods so big that you couldn't see across it.
After the arrival of the Sky People from the Ark, conflict broke out when the Mountain Men kidnaped 48 of the Delinquents in the aftermath of a Grounder attack on the Camp. Intending to use the Delinquents for the Harvest Project to be able to survive on the ground, the Mountain Men faced trouble from without and within when residents of Mount Weather began aiding the Delinquents and the Sky People and Coalition formed an alliance to rescue their people and defeat the Mountain Men once and for all. The conflict ended with the rescue of the surviving Grounders and Sky People as well as the extinction of the Mountain Men aside from Carl Emerson after Level 5 was irradiated by Monty Green, Clarke Griffin and Bellamy Blake.
Three months later Mount Weather, now in the territory of the Ice Nation, was reoccupied by survivors of Farm Station seeking shelter. With the help of a vengeful Emerson, an Ice Nation assassin activated Mount Weather's self-destruct despite the best efforts of Raven Reyes, Jacapo Sinclair and Gina to stop him. Mount Weather was destroyed with the only survivors being Raven and Sinclair. Emerson was later killed by Clarke, bringing a permanent end to the Mountain Men of Mount Weather.
Throughout the Series
In Ye Who Enter Here, many survivors from the Farm Station have taken shelter at Mount Weather. However, an assassin from the Ice Nation sneaks in and activates the self-destruct sequence in the President's office. Having been warned by a mortally wounded Gina, Raven and Sinclair hunt down and kill the assassin and retrieve the codes from his arm in an attempt to help Gina disarm the self-destruct. However, Gina dies before they can give her the codes. Mount Weather self-destructs, killing 49 Sky People. It's revealed that Carl Emerson gave Queen Nia the self-destruct code to help instigate a war between the Grounders and the Sky People.
In Demons, Emerson tries for a final time to get revenge upon Clarke and her friends for the deaths of everyone in Mount Weather. However, Clarke kills Emerson by implanting the Flame into his head, liquifying Emerson's brain. With Emerson's death, the last survivor of Mount Weather is gone and the Mountain Men are left extinct.
In The Four Horsemen, after Thelonious Jaha states that he knows of a potential bunker that could hold thousands, Raven points out that all of the government bunkers considered for the Delinquents to survive in are listed as compromised or unviable and Mount Weather has been destroyed.
In Damocles (Part 1), while arguing with Echo about the blood on their hands, Clarke asks her if Echo thinks the people she blew up in Mount Weather don't matter because Echo was following orders. Echo doesn't respond to this accusation, instead stating that she should've killed Clarke when she had the chance. Shortly afterwards, while trying to convince Clarke to do the right thing, Madi reveals that Lexa has been showing her Lexa's memory of abandoning Clarke outside of Mount Weather. Madi explains that it was Lexa's biggest regret and she is trying to keep Clarke from making a similar mistake. This ultimately helps convince Clarke to save Echo and free her and Madi to save Wonkru.
In Memento Mori, "Clarke and Mount Weather" is one of the things that John Murphy tells Josephine Lightbourne about to help convince Abby to make Nightblood for the Primes. As Murphy suggested, Josephine later brings it up while convincing Abby to make Nightblood for the Primes in exchange for using it to save Marcus Kane.
In What You Take With You, while commenting on the complexities of Clarke and Bellamy's relationship, Josephine mentions them bonding over "the actual genocide at Mount Weather" after Bellamy's selfish actions nearly caused a genocide on the Ark.
In Ashes to Ashes, as Clarke works with Gabriel Santiago to build a Red Sun toxin bomb to attack Sanctum, she realizes that Josephine was right about Clarke killing a lot of people to save hers again and comments on how "this is Mount Weather all over again". Clarke is inspired to find a less violent way than causing a massacre to save her friends.
The Mount Weather facility is functionally intact with 21st century technology, such as electrical power, gas-grenades, gas-masks, laser-sighted assault rifles, and a hospital large enough to have a dedicated Quarantine Ward. It provides its own agricultural products and has its own underground water reservoir.
The power for Mount Weather is provided by the adjacent Philpott Dam. Through five turbines, it is able to generate enough electricity for the entire mountain. There is also a backup generator within Mount Weather itself, but it can only run the most basic areas of the mountain.
The mine tunnels also connect to the dam and were used by Clarke Griffin and Anya to escape Mount Weather. Later, Raven Reyes and Kyle Wick blew up four of the five turbines, causing a catastrophic failure and power loss across all of Mount Weather, forcing the Mountain Men to evacuate everyone to Level 5.
Mount Weather Mines
- Main article: Cerberus Project
The Mount Weather Mines are a series of tunnels built underneath Mount Weather and the surrounding areas. They are connected to the outside through a series of entrances. It is unknown what their original purpose was, however, they were used by the Reapers to transport captured Grounders to and from Mount Weather.
- Main article: Mountain Men
The Quarantine Ward was used to house the 48 Delinquents after they were brought to Mount Weather in the first season finale. It was later used to imprison the overthrown president of Mount Weather, Dante Wallace by the current president, Cage Wallace.
- Main article: Harvest Project
Since Mountain Men were not able to adapt to the outside as they had remained in Mount Weather the entire time, they eventually realized they could use Outsiders to filter their blood of the radiation that was poisoning the Mountain Men. Through the Harvest Project, Mount Weather detained hundreds of Grounder prisoners at a time over a 56-year period. They built a Harvest Chamber filled with cages to hold the Grounders pending Harvest. Each Grounder was used multiple times before the Mountain Men disposed of them, sometimes still barely alive, by leaving them in the mines for the Reapers to feast on.
- Main article: Mount Weather War
When the Mountain Men began harvesting the Delinquents of their bone marrow, an additional room was set up with 47 cages specifically to house the Delinquents. Only two Delinquents, Monty Green and Harper McIntyre, were ever imprisoned there before their release by President Dante Wallace. After Cage Wallace took over the presidency, the Delinquents resisted arrest and imprisonment. After power was lost to most of Mount Weather, the Delinquents' dormitory on Level 5 was turned into a makeshift prison and the Delinquents and other captured Sky People were chained to the walls to await bone marrow harvesting.
Below is the facility map given to the 48 delinquents during their orientation tour upon being released from quarantine. Clarke Griffin added to this map from her own knowledge after she tried to escape with a pencil she was given by Dante Wallace.
- 101 - Horticulture
- 103 - Warehouse
- 201 - Science labs
- 202 - Science labs
- 203 - Warehouse
- 204 - Warehouse
- 301 - Quarantine (the 48 were brought here after being taken)
- 303 - Medical labs
- 304 - Medical labs
- 402 - Life support
- 502 - Mess Hall
- 503 - Kitchens
- 504 - Library
- 505 - Residences (the 48 resided here)
- Unknown - School
- 601 - Commons
- 602 - Commons
- 604 - Gyms
- 605 - Residences
- 606 - Residences (residents of Mount Weather presumably resided here)
Main access tunnel to Mount Weather complex is protected by a blast-proof steel door.
According to the elevators and Clarke's map, there is a level above level 1.
- Main article: Mountain Men
Mount Weather was inhabited by descendants of the US government and military officials that survived the nuclear apocalypse in the underground bunker.
When the Delinquents first arrived in "We Are Grounders (Part 2)," there were 384 residents in Mount Weather 184 men, 174 women, and 26 children.
- Main article: Delinquents
48 Delinquents were brought to Mount Weather in the first season finale. This includes:
- Main article: Sky People
Several Sky People were captured during Mount Weather War, but after Clarke and Bellamy irradiated the Mountain, everyone was rescued. Later the Sky People scavenged some materials from the Mountain, before a truce with the Coalition was formed, restricting access. Chancellor Griffin broke the truce when she moved in a group of 36 Farm Station survivors and 13 other Sky People and searching for medical equipment. An assassin from Azgeda, along with Carl Emerson, set off Mount Weather's self-destruct sequence, resulting in the deaths of everyone inside and leaving Mount Weather uninhabitable. Known Sky People, who stepped inside:
- Main article: Grounders
Through the Harvest Project, Mount Weather detained hundreds of Grounder prisoners at a time over a 56-year period. They built a Harvest Chamber filled with cages to hold the Grounders pending Harvest. Each Grounder was used multiple times before the Mountain Men disposed of them, sometimes still barely alive, by leaving them in the mines for the Reapers to feast on. The only known grounder, who was inside the Mountain is Echo.
|Twilight's Last Gleaming||Absent|
|His Sister's Keeper||Absent|
|Contents Under Pressure||Absent|
|I Am Become Death||Mentioned|
|We Are Grounders (Part 1)||Absent|
|We Are Grounders (Part 2)||Appears|
|Many Happy Returns||Mentioned|
|Fog of War||Appears|
|Long Into an Abyss||Appears|
|Survival of the Fittest||Appears|
|Coup de Grâce||Appears|
|Bodyguard of Lies||Appears|
|Blood Must Have Blood (Part 1)||Appears|
|Blood Must Have Blood (Part 2)||Appears|
|Wanheda (Part 1)||Mentioned|
|Wanheda (Part 2)||Appears|
|Ye Who Enter Here||Appears|
|Watch the Thrones||Mentioned|
|Terms and Conditions||Mentioned|
|Join or Die||Absent|
|Red Sky at Morning||Absent|
|Perverse Instantiation (Part 1)||Mentioned|
|Perverse Instantiation (Part 2)||Mentioned|
|Heavy Lies the Crown||Mentioned|
|The Four Horsemen||Absent|
|A Lie Guarded||Absent|
|The Tinder Box||Absent|
|We Will Rise||Absent|
|Die All, Die Merrily||Mentioned|
|The Other Side||Mentioned|
|How We Get to Peace||Absent|
|Sic Semper Tyrannis||Absent|
|The Warriors Will||Absent|
|The Dark Year||Mentioned|
|Damocles (Part 1)||Mentioned|
|Damocles (Part 2)||Absent|
|Red Sun Rising||Absent|
|The Children of Gabriel||Mentioned|
|The Face Behind the Glass||Absent|
|The Gospel of Josephine||Absent|
|The Old Man and the Anomaly||Mentioned|
|What You Take With You||Absent|
|Ashes to Ashes||Mentioned|
|The Blood of Sanctum||Absent|
Notes and Trivia
- Mount Weather is based on a real facility. The real Mount Weather is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains– near Bluemont, Virginia, 40 miles from Washington, D.C.
- The Philpott Dam is also a real place in Bassett, Virginia, though it is located approximately 196 miles southwest from the real Mount Weather.
- Aerial views of the facility were shot in Vancouver. The dam and the communications tower are VFX. The inside does not resemble the inside in the real world; most of the interior of the real Mount Weather is unknown to the general public.
- Art in Mount Weather arrived through the "U.S. Federal Culture Preservation Initiative".
- Numerous flags hang inside the mess hall, including:
- An early Confederate flag, the "Stars and Bars" (seven star version)
- United States Marine Corps flag
- Washington, D.C. flag
- There are similarities between the Mountain Men and "The Enclave" faction from the Fallout series. It is also set generations after a nuclear holocaust devastated most of the Earth's surface.
- They are descended from politicians, elite military units, and other powerful people (the "military-industrial complex") who survived the nuclear holocaust by hiding in the nation's most advanced bunker complexes.
- They still have access to the pre-apocalyptic technology, making them one of the most dangerous factions in the post-nuclear world.
- As of "Blood Must Have Blood (Part 2)," all the residents are dead, apart from Carl Emerson who was given the bone marrow treatment about ten days earlier.
- Emerson died in "Demons," making the Mountain Men the second extinct race of people on the show, the first being the Reapers.
- During Season Two, an in-world Tumblr account was created for Mount Weather.
- Philpott Dam, which provides the Mountain with power, shares it’s name with production designer James Philpott.
- Aaron Ginsburg tumblr "Dante Wallace’s father installed a missile silo into Mount Weather as a defense system — to be used only in the most extreme cases."
- Finale Secrets And What’s Coming In Season 2, Interview with Jason Rothenberg, 06/11/2014