Cause of Seven Falls fire announced

By Hugh Johnson Updated: August 8, 2017 at 11:11 am • Published: August 8, 2017 0
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An investigator has ruled that the Saturday fire that gutted the caretaker's home at The Broadmoor Seven Falls was accidental.

Equipment failure in the boiler room sparked the fire, said Jacqueline Kirby, spokeswoman for the El Paso County Sheriff's Office.

The blaze broke out about 6:45 a.m. in the building at 2850 S. Cheyenne Road. Seven Falls was closed for the rest of the day and reopened at 9 a.m. Sunday.

More than 50 firefighters responded to the fire after The Broadmoor Fire Department put out a call for assistance.

Several water tenders carrying thousands of gallons of water had to be brought in because no hydrants are nearby, said city Fire Department spokesman Capt. Steve Wilch.

The Broadmoor Seven Falls is a series of cascading waterfalls that reach a height of 181 feet, says the city's Visitor Information Center. The top of the falls is accessible via a 224-step staircase that begins at the base.

Seven Falls, now owned by The Broadmoor resort, has been a tourist attraction since the late 1800s, when James Hull bought the property for $1,300. Hull built a road through South Cheyenne Cañon to the falls and a staircase along its side.

He also built a toll gate - a trip to the falls by carriage or aboard a burro or horse cost 25 cents initially. Admission for adults now is $14.

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