Dragon Land – Ultimate Gun, Military Collection
Dragon Land is what Mel Bernstein calls his collection of guns and military memorabilia on a 260 acre facility in El Paso County, Colorado. He’s got bullets, bombs, machine guns, landmines, military uniforms, rifles, handguns, military vehicles…even a tank. He may well be the “most armed man in America.”
Mel Bernstein served two years in the US Army during the Vietnam Era. He calls his collection “Dragon Land” because of a Harley Davidson motorcycle that he fitted with a firebreathing dragon and two 9 mm submachine guns. He excitedly calls himself, “The Most Armed Man in America.”
Bernstein, who holds a Class III FFL, began the collection in 1982 with his wife Terry Flanell when they started a Gun Store. Terry was killed in 2012 during a filming for the Discovery Channel, when she was hit by two smoke bombs at their gun range.
Shades of Burt Gummer from “Tremors”
Bernstein has 3,000 guns, (200 of which are machine guns)which he claims are worth about $8Million. The collection of tanks, military vehicles (80), uniforms, and other memorabilia ranging from WWI to Vietnam is reportedly worth around $10Million. Bullets, bombs, landmines–many of them are in their original boxes.
His facility not only contains a gun range, but incredible amounts of military items, all of which he claims are able to function. People come from all over the country every weekend, not just for the gun store, but to play war games, use the paintball field, shoot guns, and in general make controlled chaos. He even has the Dragon Precision Machining motorcycle repair shop.
With all that firepower, you might worry about security. Not this guy- he has cameras, motion detectors, German Shepherds, and assorted, well…just don’t disturb him when he’s sleeping.
“In my bedroom, I have an M-16 I sleep with, two Glocks and an M-60 machine gun under the bed with 25,000 rounds. You know I’ve got to protect it. What am I going to do if 30 gang-bangers show up at one in the morning? I can hold them off for a half hour until the helicopter gets here.”
And that’s not counting the 12 gauge shotgun under his mattress.
In 2005, the ATF stated that Bernstein was one of the “good guys.” He has notified the ATF when gang-bangers come to his shop and try to pull off a “straw-man purchase.”
Bernstein is originally from New York. He has re-adjusted his firing range when neighbors move in so that there is no chance of accidents. He plays by the book, but his place is always hopping on Saturday and Sunday.
Here’s a 20 minute tour of just part of his collection. He says it takes 2-3 hours to walk through it all.