Valley Gets Some Flooding of its Own on September 18
By Thomas Wills
As locals watched news reports of the aftermath of the Front Range floods the Valley and particularly the Hotchkiss area, they received a minor taste of flooding of their own during the late afternoon of Wednesday, September 18. The intermittent rains of recent days became a sudden deluge with about two inches falling in less than an hour according to one Hotchkiss resident’s rain gauge.
Then came an alert from the Hotchkiss Fire Department that parts of 3400 Road and Scenic Mesa Road south of Hotchkiss had up to 18 inches of water flowing across them at certain points. A little later water came roaring out of a gulch in the dobes south of Hotchkiss High School and the Crossroads Complex inundating Bulldog Lane and continuing on overwhelming culverts along Highway 92 and finally flooding the yards of several properties between River Ridge Road and the river itself.
At 6:30 p.m. Bulldog Lane was closed with signs as well as several County and Town of Hotchkiss vehicles and the road in front the Montessori School was a small misshapen lake and a rush of muddy water, the remains of the flash flood, was still coming down the gully to the south of the swimming pool. In the light of the setting sun the scene of the flooding there was primal, beautiful and surreal.
On Thursday morning September 19, a front-end loader worked in the yards of the homes near the river, moving mud and debris. Water still stood in pools in part of the Fairgrounds parking lot, the results of a nearby pipe and culvert being overwhelmed.
On Facebook people shared photos and videos of water inundated driveways and yards.