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Beulah Hill Fire: one year later - KOAA.com | Continuous News | Colorado Springs and Pueblo

Beulah Hill Fire: one year later

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BEULAH -

A year after the Beulah Hill fire broke out outside of town, community members still remember every detail of it.

"We left about 11 o'clock at night.  Driving out was horrendous," recalled longtime Beulah resident Judi Taylor.  

"It was seeing fire on every side of us and it was so scary.  It was shocking to me," she added.

Taylor was one of about 2,000 people forced to evacuate, after the fire sparked on October 3rd, 2016.

Eight homes were destroyed by the 5,500 acre fire.

Kyle and Muire Jones say they're lucky their home wasn't one of them.

"It was at our door step.  It was maybe 100 feet from our house," said Kyle.

Their much more pressing fear, though, was how the fire would affect Muire, who was newly pregnant at the time.

"It was so hard to see even 10 feet in front of you.  I didn't know what to do--I was breathing horrible smoke.  I didn't know, with the stress, if we were going to be able to still have him or not.  It was terrifying," she explained.

Now a year later, she has 5-month-old Abel is a happy, healthy baby.

And while things are growing back, there are new concerns. 

Both the burn scars from the Beulah Hill and Junkins Fire have already caused flooding this year.

Pueblo County has been awarded a $200,000 dollar grant to put in six emergency sirens on North Creek Road, as well as gates at North Creek and North Creek cutoff--which are the areas that saw some major flooding this past spring.

And even though crews have been busy re-seeding them, Beulah is preparing for the next inevitable flood.

"Neither of those areas did we see a lot of trees that have started to fall," said Beulah Fire Chief Bryan Ware.

"That will be your 2 and 3 [years] post fire.  So these next couple summers and rain seasons will definitely be our higher threat levels."

The Beulah community appears to be making a much quicker recovery.

"This is just a good little town.  Everybody came together.  It seems like in tragedy everybody comes together and wonderful stories come out of it," said Taylor.

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