Wet But Ok In Boulder

Amy and I took one of our Qx vacations last week – where we go off the grid entirely for the week (no phone, no email, no computer stuff). We were originally going on a walking trip to Prague with some friends, but decided we needed 12 hours of sleep a night for a week so we gave our trip to some other friends and headed to Vail to hide out for a week in a fancy hotel with room service and a spa.

All went according to plan until Thursday. I woke up at about 10:30 and wandered into the living room of our hotel with the goal of going downstairs and getting some coffee. The TV was on – which is weird since we don’t watch day time TV – and Amy seemed really agitated.

“Boulder is flooding,” she said.

“Huh? That’s weird,” I replied.

“They are having massive flash floods.”

Flood in Eldorado Springs and Boulder

Photo Credit: Jenna Rice

We spent the next hour glued to the TV, the web, and Twitter trying to figure out what was going on. It only took an hour – it was clear this was going to be awful given the weather system. Even though we were 120 miles away, we were incredibly anxious. And the constant stream of news – and water – didn’t help. As we started seeing areas we knew well, like the Boulder Creek, Canyon Road, 36 on the way to Lyons, and Lyons being flooded and destroyed, the severity of it all sank in.

I generally stayed offline until Sunday. We monitored everything through Saturday, checking in with our friends and offering help to a few folks we knew were stranded. We felt helpless to really do anything and it made no sense to go back early since many of the roads into Boulder were impassable so we just hung out, tried to keep relaxing, and sort of stayed in touch and offered help where we could.

I got back online yesterday. By that point things were settling down. I don’t necessarily mean getting better; rather the extent of the damage was becoming clear. And the rain was still coming down.

450 Driveway Destroyed


This is a photo of what used to be the driveway to our house in Eldorado Canyon. And the picture above it is the road to our house – or what used to be the road – through Eldorado Canyon state park. We have no idea what condition the house is in – we’ll find out more today when we try to get up there using our hovercraft.

Thanks to everyone for all their well wishes. We are fine – many are worse off – so we are going to turn our attention to them and see if we can be helpful now that we are back in town.

And yes – it’s still raining, although the weather people say it’s finally going to stop today.

  • Heard from my son in Fort Collins that Lyons was evacuated.

    Wacko weather.

    • Yup – Lyons was basically destroyed.

  • Jonny Schnittger

    wooooah… that is some serious damage. Glad to hear you’re both ok. Best wishes to you and everyone in Boulder

  • Amy Bevilacqua

    I read your blog every day and was concerned that you hadn’t posted in a while. Glad to hear you are both okay, and refreshing to read your focus on others who need a lot of help right now. Best wishes to everyone.

  • Looks appalling…but glad you are OK.

    Hope the house is untouched and fine.

    Best, Roger

  • Unreal… wish you and everyone in Colorado quick return to nice dry sunny weather!

  • Nature has this nastiness about it, especially when it makes you helpless.

    Sending you good wishes for managing it all.

  • So similar to what happened in Calgary & area this summer. The real test will be how the Boulder & other Co communities comes together in the aftermath.

    Stay safe.

    • Thx. We’ve got super strong communities out here so I expect everyone will rise to the challenge.

      • eabrandon

        There is already a lot of energy revolving around the cleanup. My guess is that Boulder will set the bar in post-disaster community involvement and teamwork.

  • I hope things are ok at your house and I hope all those that were more severely impacted are ok too. I live in the Stapleton area in Denver. We didn’t get anywhere near as much rain as Boulder. However, Westerley Creek which flows right in front of our house flash flooded for about 15 hours. If I had to make a guess it was probably 10-15 ft above its normal level during that time. Fortunately, our house is about 30-40 ft above the creek. There were some tense times last week for lots o folks. I haven’t seen rain like this since I lived in Houston…

  • That driveway photo is just unreal, like a mini class 5 or some such. Glad to hear you are OK and best wishes in the aftermath.

    • Thx. I can’t imagine what it looked like with water running down it!

  • Hi Brad – Glad you and Amy are Ok (and I trust fourlegged Felds or you would have said).

    It’s ironic that I saw this post from Amy http://anchorpoint.blogs.com/amythoughts/2013/08/leaving-the-canyon-house-for-sale.html . Leaving your home is an emotional upheaval, I hope its in order and you can get it back to looking its best.

    Re community, as my Gran used to say – “Count your blessings but meanwhile help others find theirs'” – Good advice and pleased to hear you are helping out where you can.

    Re community2 – (the global one) it seems weather is really taking its toll in the US and elsewhere. I think VC has a roll to play (but not just in terms of money – also thought leadership) because events like this lend weight to the argument that if we don’t disrupt ourselves – something else will do it for us.

    Tweeted earlier but it probably got washed down the road 🙂

    • Thx for the kind words. Brooks the wonder dog is doing ok. He doesn’t like storms so he’s kind of twitchy, but cute.

      Yeah – the emotional dynamics around this are a mess. If you’d seen the first 10 minutes of lunch with me and Amy today you would have had plenty for a chapter in a psych book.

      • Hey we already know that – We read your blog –
        Feld = utterly nuts on occasion + rather interesting 🙂

  • You were the first person I thought about when hearing about the floods. Glad you are OK and sorry to hear there is some damage to your area. Hope all affected can get back to normal again very soon and thanks for the update!

  • Thoughts and prayers with you and with the Boulder community.

  • Jo T.

    My gosh! Sending only good thoughts and energy to you and Amy….

  • Thoughts and prayers. Glad to read that you’re alright.

  • Ovidiu Schiopu

    Our thoughts and prayers go out to you. Glad that you, Amy and Brooks are ok. Nice to see how everyone in Boulder are pulling together – it’s a special place.