18 October 2013

The Big Thompson

This summer I was lucky enough to take a few drives up the Big Thompson Canyon on my way to Estes Park.  The road is filled with little quirky stops like The Dam Store at the dam, the Cherry Store, and the Cowboy Church.  It's a winding canyon drive beside Big Thompson River.  The road hugs the canyon walls as the river sweeps by with little whitewater ripples in the wake.

Now it's all gone.  The road and the river have traded places at times and many of the homes and businesses are completely swept away.  The recent CO Flood has rinsed the canyon clean again.  Perhaps we were foolish, as humans to rebuild after the 1976 flood that took so many lives.  The 2013 flood didn't take many lives but it took the homes and roads away.  It left people stranded without access in and out of Estes Park.  

As someone that spoke to many of the flood evacuees while working at the Disaster Assistance Center, I believe most of them are just happy they survived. 

My sincerest wishes to the people that were affected by the floods and the communities that are still trying to hold it together.  Perhaps a trip to Estes Park is in order, I hear that these communities are depending on people for tourism to see them through the winter.  The Stanley Hotel and the photos of the canyon were taken by my Mom this August on a trip to Grand Lake.  At the time, I kinda laughed inside about the touristy part of taking photos from the car window but I'm glad I have a little memory of the canyon to keep.

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