Monday, August 5, 2019

Celebrating a Survivor

Jan here, with the post I promised last week.

In the third week of our hiatus between houses, we're house sitting for a young family who is on vacation. Isn't it a lovely little house?

And it's almost a log cabin!

Yes, it looks like logs, but it's really log siding - a popular style around here.

The most interesting thing about this house and neighborhood is that it's a survivor. Built in 1947, this house was already an older home during the flood of 1972.

On June 9, 1972, Rapid City was hit with a devastating flood that has been classified as one of the deadliest floods in US history. More than 1330 homes were destroyed and 238 people lost their lives. The floodwater at its highest level reached 15' 9". As you can imagine, the memories of that flood live on today.

Here's a link to the Wikipedia article. And here's another link - South Dakota Public Broadcasting.

If you go to the SDPB link and scroll through the pictures, the 7th and 8th pictures are aerial shots showing Canyon Lake. This little cabin we're staying in is located just past the top of the picture and to the left of the road. When the dam at Canyon Lake broke on June 9, 1972, this house and neighborhood were mere yards from the wall of rushing water.

While we're enjoying our stay in this house, I can't help think about the flood that happened not all that long ago. The city determined that such devastation would never happen again, and turned the ruined neighborhoods into green spaces. There are flood control areas where the banks on both side of the creek below the dam have been widened to handle extra water in case of another flood and other steps have been made to prevent the kind of damage and loss of life the city experienced in 1972.

Of course, there isn't a lot of cooking going on while we're in our little cabin. I brought my Instant Pot, and have used it a few times. We had Chili Verde for a couple meals (recipe here), and I use it to make oats for our breakfasts a couple times a week.

I've also been making my breakfast smoothies (sometimes for breakfast, sometimes for lunch) from last week's post (recipe here).

And of course, since it's summer, sometimes a peanut butter and jelly sandwich is just enough for a quick meal.

But even though we're thankful for our various temporary houses, we're counting down the days until we get to move into our new home...

Eleven days!


  1. I love your log cabin, Jan, but I really can't wait for you to be in your new home. I'm so excited for you.

    That's so interesting in a responsible way, that they took action in such an environmentally conscious manner. Thanks for sharing. I love green spaces.

    1. As sad as the loss of lives and homes was, the area along the creek is a real gem. Bike trails, parks, golf courses, etc. line the creek, and just downstream from Canyon Lake in a more industrial area, there are acres of flood plains.

      This year we've had a LOT of rain, and the creek has been running so high all year that they've had to close some of the bike paths. But there is no fear of flooding!

  2. That is one sweet little house! I wouldn't mind one just like it!

    Like Cate said -- incredible that the city took such responsible action after that flood. We've been wrestling with floods here the last few years. In some areas, people had just got their houses rebuilt after wrangling with insurance money and lack of construction workers because of the demand only to lose it all again this year. So heartbreaking.

    1. It is a lovely house! Our friends have made it into a cozy home for their family.

      One of the steps the city took early on was to prohibit the building of any houses in the flood plain. So the civic center is there, and a few other public buildings, but no houses. They don't want a repeat of 1972!

  3. A cute little home with the log siding.
    As other commenters mentioned it's wonderful how the city took action that made it more environmentally secure.

    You'll appreciate your new home even more after this hiatus of living different places.

    1. Yes! As much as we're enjoying our various spots this summer and are thankful for our friends who have opened their homes to us, we are anxious to get into our new place!