Fire & Environment | News | Colorado Springs Gazette

Danger at our Doorstep


Disasters are a very real part of life in Colorado. Things here burn. And flood. And they slide down mountainsides. And once in a while, things shake. We even get the occasional twister. This special section shows how locals can prepare for disasters that can strike in the Pikes Peak region.

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Waldo Canyon burn scar poses flooding threat along U.S. 24

Life along Ute Pass has settled into a new normal nearly three years after the Waldo Canyon fire, but part of that normal is a waiting game. Since the Colorado Department of...

Disaster Frequently Asked Questions

Get your answers to frequently asked questions in the wake of the floods and wildfires in the region

Flying W chuck-wagon dinners to return to Colorado Springs

The Flying W Ranch plans to rebuild on its old ranch site that was ravaged by the Waldo Canyon fire and once again serve its chuck-wagon dinners, Executive Director Aaron...

Cascade residents live in fear of being washed away below Waldo Canyon burn scar

Tom Harris never sleeps when it rains in Cascade. He listens to the rain and knows that if he can hear the water coming down the mountain, it's too late. "Two weeks ago,...

Royal Gorge continues comeback from wildfire with opening of tramway, theater

The Royal Gorge Bridge & Park's effort to rebound from a devastating 2013 fire will take a major leap Saturday as it opens a new $4 million tramway and reopens its Plaza Theater.

Volunteer organizations prep for disasters, address strengths and weaknesses

Volunteers are the driving force behind disaster relief and recovery operations across the state, making recruitment, training and preparation an ongoing effort.

Danger Doorstep Feature Video

Fire News view all

  • Colorado to spend $1.2 million for wildfire prediction system

    DENVER - Colorado will spend $1.2 million over the next two years on a "revolutionary" fire prediction system that uses atmospheric weather data to predict the behavior of wildfires up to 18 hours in advance. Gov. John Hickenlooper signed House Bill 1129 on Wednesday afternoon at a fire station in Arvada, implementing one of several bills...

  • Bledsoe: Worry more about floods than fires

    Southern Colorado rarely receives what is deemed "normal" or "average" weather and rarely plays by the rules when it comes to the season. This is especially true when it comes to precipitation, as it is usually feast or famine. It looks like we had a great winter in terms of snowfall. Colorado Springs picked up 46.5 inches for the season....

  • Colorado fire managers to release outlook for wildfire season

    ENGLEWOOD — State and federal fire managers are preparing to release their forecast for the 2015 wildfire season in Colorado. A briefing is scheduled Friday morning. It comes after days of rain in parts of the state that could help reduce or delay wildfires. A preliminary outlook released by the National Interagency Coordination Center says...

  • Red flag warning called for Tuesday in El Paso County, but relief could soon be here

    A red flag warning has been called for most of El Paso County after noon Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service in Pueblo. The warning, which is issued when relatively low humidity, dry conditions and gusting winds can increase fire danger, is from 1 and 8 p.m. and covers all but a small portion of the western part of the county....

  • Wildfires burn in Pike National Forest and near Durango

    JEFFERSON — Firefighters are working to contain two wildfires burning in Colorado. Fire managers expect to have a 250-acre wildfire burning near Kenosha Pass fully contained by Monday evening. The U.S. Forest Service says 40 firefighters are working to build hotspots and build containment lines on the Snyder Creek 2 Fire, which is burning in...

Flood News view all

  • Eastbound Manitou Avenue reopened to traffic in Manitou Springs

    The eastbound lanes of Manitou Avenue in Manitou Springs, from U.S. 24 to Serpentine Drive, were reopened to traffic Thursday afternoon after the Colorado Department of Transportation removed rocks that fell onto the road on Memorial Day, according to CDOT. However, a half-mile segment of westbound Manitou Avenue - also known as Business 24 -...

  • Williams Canyon mitigation helps Manitou Springs resident rest easy

    In 2013, flooding trapped Laurie Danin in her Manitou Springs home. She watched as black, thick water, soot from the burn scar mixed into mud, rushed through Williams Canyon and surrounded her house. Now she worries less when it rains because of mitigation projects that have been done, including the Williams Canyon Flood Control Channel....

  • Cascade homeowners in Ute Pass flood plain will soon receive buyouts from El Paso County

    Tom Harris has something on his property that many Colorado residents might envy - a swiftly running stream, swollen this time of year with spring runoff. But what Harris jokingly calls his water feature is something much more ominous - nothing like the kind of babbling brook that could lure him to sleep while camping. In fact, the stream...

  • Side Streets: Colorado Springs homeowners blame city inaction on erosion as yards, fences, decks fall in creek

    During three days of torrential rain, hail and snow last week, next-door neighbors Monika Buckley and Doris Munson stood at their windows and watched in fear as North Rockrimmon Creek, which runs behind their homes, swelled dramatically and their backyards shrank. Finally, late Saturday, a large chunk of Munson's backyard slid into the creek,...

  • Hickenlooper discusses southern Colorado flooding, bills awaiting signature

    PUEBLO - Gov. John Hickenlooper pledged to help southern Colorado rebuild flood-damaged roads Friday as he spoke to the powerful Action 22 lobby in Pueblo for a legislative session review. "We're going to help you in any way we can to get the roads rebuilt, but the water is to be blessed," said Hickenlooper, a former geologist who noted that...

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