Best of the best
Top, Manitou’s 4x200 relay team has posted the best time — 1:30.58 — in the state among Class 3A competitors. Team members are, from left, Michael Delashmutt, Malachi Peterson, Morgan Burnell and Dustin Bohnert. Bottom, members of the girls track team that will compete at this weekend’s state track championship meet are, from left, Maddie Conarro, Angala Jensen, Hali Krause, Kristi Longfield, Taylor Finn, Caroline Ruyle and Brooke Garretson. Not pictured is Julia Lucero-Orebaugh.
Photos by Larry Ferguson
It was there one minute and then gone the next.
Manitou Springs resident Julia Wright thought something looked strange when she glanced toward her garden one day back in 1997. Something was strange alright; one-fifth of her garden had been washed away during the Ruxton Creek flood.
What had been considered a “minor” flood proved to be a wake up call to Wright. The current threat of floods in the aftermath of the Waldo Canyon Fire inspired Wright to publish a book about past floods sharing dramatic photos and tales from past floods and offering advice.
“The book began as a way to share those photos with people who had no concept of what the true power of water and the types of damages a flood could inflict upon property,” Wright said. “They become wide-eyed when they see these photos and a bit more respectful of the warnings we are hearing now.”
The book, “Lessons From Past Floods: Destruction, Restoration and Future Preparation,” is available on Amazon on paperback or can be downloaded on Kindle. The book’s already been downloaded 600 times, according to Wright.
A few of her reviews on Kindle were from people living in New York, who had dealt with Hurricane Sandy, Wright mentioned.
“They said, ‘This is really good information. A flood can happen anywhere,’” she added.
Wright published the book in March. She began the project back in November after hearing a number of people talk about the current flood threat.
“I listened to people that weren’t very convinced that it could actually happen or what it could mean,” she said.
Besides the Ruxton Creek flood, the book also offers accounts and photos from the 1999 Canon Avenue flood.
The book includes checklists for what to pack in disaster preparation. It also discusses flood insurance, where to find free flood plain map and ways to avoid mold and unpleasant odors that may occur after one’s house has been flooded. The book contains pointers on when it is safe to return to a home after an evacuation and precautions to take when returning to a home that was evacuated.
The 1997 flood ended up costing Wright $15,000 in property damage that included replacing a huge chunk of retaining wall that washed away.
“That happened within just a few hours,” she said.
Many people forget that it wasn’t even raining in Manitou Springs when the flood of 1999 hit, Wright said. Many aren’t aware how fast things can happen.
“All those photos were of floods caused by storms far away,” Wright said. “We were dry here. Whether it’s raining on you or not, it’s what's happening upstream. You don’t know when it’s going to happen and it’s a frightening thought that it can happen that quickly.”
To request a copy of the book, e-mail Wright at
, or call 685-0965.
Photos courtesy of Julia Wright.
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