In June of 2012 a large and violent wildfire devastated the western edge of Colorado Springs. I had moved to town just a few weeks prior and I had never seen a wildfire attack a town like that before. The flames lighting up the mountains and burning homes within view of my living room window had a profound impact on how I viewed the place I lived. When the one year anniversary came up I wanted to give everyone in the community a better sense of what actually happened those days other than the pervading sense of doom.
Working with the Gazette’s fire reporter, who had the benefit of seeing the fire firsthand and up close, and our lead investigative reporter, who has become pretty good at putting together Google Earth videos, I built a wrapper around a YouTube player which walks users through the fire day by day and explains the full scope of the event.
To help people understand the scale of the fire and the speed it spread I included both the Google Earth generated flyover video and a smaller map showing the day-by-day outline of the fire.
If I could do this all again I’d have liked to have been able to put more time into the production of the video portion of the project, but another fire on the north side of town — the Black Forest Fire — started up right in the middle of this project and so I am proud that this even got finished in the first place.The finished project