25th Anniversary of the South Canyon Fire

This past Saturday marked the 25th anniversary of the South Canyon Fire near Glenwood Springs, which claimed the lives of fourteen firefighters battling the blaze on Storm King Mountain. Caused by a lightning strike on July 2, the wildfire seemed manageable until July 6, when a shift in the wind caused the fire to suddenly […]

Time Machine Tuesday: 1984 Floods and Landslides

In May and June of 1984, unseasonably warm temperatures caused that winter’s heavy snowfalls to melt at a rapid pace. As a result, fifteen counties on the Western Slope experienced significant flooding and landslides. Two people died. The damage was so extensive that Governor Lamm renewed his initial disaster declaration over and over again well […]

Colorado Hazard Mapping Tools

Flood season has arrived, and the State of Colorado has a number of online tools useful for mapping areas at risk of floods and landslides. Colorado Water Conservation Board The Colorado Hazard Mapping and Risk MAP Portal from the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB) provides a variety of tools for assessing hazard risk. In addition […]

Is Your House on Shaky Ground?

Ground subsidence problems are very real in Colorado. Whether from naturally occurring elements in the soil or from the effects of Colorado’s mining history, the ground in certain parts of Colorado is susceptible to settling, collapsing, expanding, heaving, or swelling, all of which can have potentially hazardous effects on structures. So how do you know […]

September is National Preparedness Month

The recent hurricane events have demonstrated the importance of being prepared for disaster.  Even though we don’t get hurricanes in our state, there are a number of other disasters to prepare for — including both natural disasters (floods, fires, tornadoes, storms, avalanches, rockslides) and manmade disasters (terrorism, active shooters, power outages).  There are many personal […]

Rockfall Mitigation Video

How does the state transportation department (CDOT) clean up the roadways after a major rockfall?  CDOT has created a video to show you.  Just shy of a year ago, on January 12, 2014, a major rockfall on Red Mountain Pass in southwestern Colorado kept the Million Dollar Highway closed for a month; the governor declared it a “disaster emergency.”  […]

Cleaning Up and Returning Home After Floods and Mudslides

Last September’s floods left many with difficult clean-up before being able to return home.  With the significant amount of burn areas in Colorado, floods remain a threat for this year, and Mesa County has already seen mudslides this spring.  If your home is affected, it can be overwhelming to think about all you need to […]

"Force of Nature"

What’s the connection between rockfall mitigation and historic preservation?  The Colorado Dept. of Transportation explains in a fascinating 10-minute video, Force of Nature:  Passage and Preservation from Georgetown to Silver Plume.  Most of us have driven I-70 near Georgetown and seen the signs warning of falling rock.  The video explains how CDOT engineers are developing systems to protect […]

I-70 closed for Rockfall Mitigation

Today I-70 will be closed between Empire and Silverthorne for rockfall mitigation in the Georgetown area. There is a large, unstable cluster of boulders above the highway that will be removed. More information about the closure is available on the Colorado Department of Transportation website. If you are curious about rockfall and why it happens, […]