LOVELAND — Seventy-two-year-old David Jessup looked out across still-rushing Big Thompson waters at the partially splintered home he and his sister grew up in.
Nearby, his Australian shepherd, Promise, padded over silt and chunks of insulation littering a newly carved riverbank that sloped into a gaping chasm and collapsed bridge that now separates Loveland’s historic Sylvan Dale Guest Ranch from the road into town.
As a young man, Jessup flew in from back East as the river’s waters ravaged his family’s home and livelihood during the 1976 Big Thompson flood. It took roughly nine months to rebuild that time. This flood was far worse, he conceded, a cowboy hat shading his eyes from Tuesday’s sun.