"Can They Go Home Again?"

"The Marshall Fire destroyed the Colorado subdivision of Sagamore. Homeowners weigh how to build back -- and whether they will feel safe."

"SUPERIOR, Colo. — The land was partly barren back then, but Steven Sellars saw the potential of the 171 houses being built. They would be minutes from Boulder and a short drive to Denver, abutting protected fields and offering glorious views of the foothills. He popped into the developer’s trailer, looked at the floor plans on offer and put down a deposit for a four-bedroom on Mohawk Circle a few days later.

Sellars moved into his cookie-cutter home in the subdivision known as Sagamore in 1998, when the trees were still glorified twigs. Over the next 20 years, it became everything he and others hoped. The trees grew above rooflines. Tiny lots and two playgrounds helped neighbors forge deep bonds. A Costco and a Target went up on the east side, but the running trails and open space where elk bedded down remained pristine to the west. “People would drive to be right where we lived,” said Sellars, 61, who co-owns a land surveying firm.

Sagamore was compact and convenient to everything this booming region has to offer. It was not a place where wildfires loomed as a threat.

But last month, all of Sagamore burned to the ground in minutes. The open space its residents treasured had turned into a menace, as a fire whose origin is still being investigated was propelled across drought-parched grasses by 100 mph winds."

Karin Brulliard reports for the Washington Post with photos and videos by Chet Strange
January 25, 2022.

Source: Washington Post, 01/25/2022