A New Look
August 21st, 2015 in High Camp Happenings
Well, I did not want to put this out there until everything was back in order. On the morning of Friday, July 31st we had a fire in the propane shower area of the sauna building at High Camp. We believe the propane was left on and the water was turned off, so the unit smoldered all night. It exploded about 5 am in the morning. Zeke saw the reflection of the 15 foot high flames in a picture on the lodge wall. Ron, a guest, had been watching the sunrise from the Lupine deck. The whining of his dog alerted him and he ran out again to see the flames shooting high above the building. Both Zeke and Ron ran to the fire alerting Gus and other guests of the emergency.
Buckets of water were used along with fire extinguishers. Zeke straddled the rooftop and Gus ran to provide buckets, extinguishers and phone me to call for help. It was an intense effort that paid off. Water was poured down from above between the walls. Gus got the propane shut off. Ron and Miles worked side by side with our staff and they got control and finally extinguished the fire. By the time I arrived with the fire department the fire was out. It was heroic and lucky. If there had been any breeze at all the trees around the sauna building would have ignited and a fire beyond our control would have ensued.
Both the outside propane shower area and the inside winter shower were destroyed. The wall of the sauna building facing the hot tub was obliterated. We lost part of the roof and damaged one of the main roof beams. Things looked pretty bad, although the sauna end of the building was not damaged at all!
Ron is a construction foreman and he really came to the rescue! We drove him down and he came back up in his construction truck with tools and spent half the day beginning to demolish the damaged area of the sauna building. He also put together a list of reconstruction supplies we would need to rebuild and recover. We appreciate the time he took and his expertise in helping us begin the rebuild.
All the guests at High Camp that weekend helped filling buckets, making coffee and keeping the situation calm and orderly. When I arrived with the fire department, the situation was definitely under control. Many thanks for the kindness and goodwill of all who were visiting High Camp.
One of our winter staff persons, Kelly, accepted the challenge of rebuilding after the fire. We had a wedding August 15th and wanted the area to be ready by then. Kelly and his helper Flynn spent 4 hard working, long days completing the repair. We also received volunteer help from Paul and Duncan, close friends of Kelly. Gus, Elly and Zeke from our staff contributed to the effort also.
We have decided to just use shower bags and forgo the propane fired hot water showers that we have provided during the fall season in the past. Those units are not made for public use and I believe it was just a matter of time before we had a problem We just did not realize it. The new shower area has a large stall and pully system. We still have a little finishing to do, but all is functional. Once again the High Camp Community unites and miracles occur.