Jul 2, 2012 8:46 PM by Matt Stafford
Thousands of people have been affected by the Waldo Canyon Fire burning near Colorado Springs. The hardest hit area seems to be the Mountain Shadows neighborhood with dozens of homes that have burned to the ground; many residents still can't return and remain under evacuation orders.
Monday fire crews took News 5 behind the evacuation lines for a closer look of the destruction. The damage was as random as the direction fire chooses burns; some homes looked untouched by the fire, others just around the corner or even right next door were leveled.
One home, left standing in between two that were completely destroyed, thanked firefighters with a large banner hung on their garage door.
For many of the destroyed homes it may be tough to find any belongings left behind when they're able to return and look. Many items were vaguely recognizable; everything from cars in the drive way that were completely destroyed to items like lunch boxes burnt to a crisp, basketball goals with melted backboards, and trampolines with nothing left but the springs hanging. For the destroyed homes it was mostly ash remaining.
It was just a quick trip in and out of the Mountain Shadows neighborhood for News 5. Many families are still evacuated and waiting to get back in. For many there are two questions; for the ones with homes still standing they want to know when they'll get to return, and if that's not soon they want to know when they'll be able to make another quick trip in to visit their property. News 5 asked city officials who say the executive team was discussing that Monday afternoon and working on plans; we're waiting to hear more, when we do we'll post it on KOAA.com.