June 13, 2012
The Colorado High
Park Fire and Us
June 29, 2012
High Park Fire
Pics & Update
July 1, 2012
Our First Trip
Back to "Paradise"
July 12, 2012
Ash Day
Reality Check
August 6, 2012
Progress Report &
Pics on the Fire
August 16, 2012
Before & After
Fire Pics
September 12, 2012
After Fire
Progress Update
September 27, 2012
Work Parties and
Donkey Story
November 29, 2012
OK - The Black
Truth Blog
January 2, 2013
Looking Forward,
Looking Back
June 18, 2013
One Year Later -
The High Park Fire
September 20, 2013
We Weathered
the Storm


The following letter was sent on June 13, 2012:


The Colorado High Park Fire and Us


Dear Friends, Family, Fans, and all of you who reached out to us,

As many of you know by now, the High Park Fire in Colorado has burned more than 43,000 acres since it started on Saturday. It is truly a "wild" fire, with strong winds and drought conditions making it uncontrollable. Today for the first time, our brave firefighters, together with an incredible teamwork of support from across the country and beyond, were able to make a start at containment, achieving 10%. Vast evacuations continue, over 100 structures have been lost or damaged, and one person has perished. Please pray for rain, no winds, safety of all involved, especially our exhausted hero firefighters, and success over this catastrophe.

The fire was caused by a lighting strike from an intense storm last Thursday night. After smoldering unknown, early Saturday morning a smoke plume was reported within a mile west of our house, which is located in a beautiful area known as Paradise Park, next to national forest land. By 10:00 AM, we received a call from a concerned neighbor who had heard of the report, and shortly thereafter we could indeed see a small smoke cloud too close for comfort. I began to pack, hoping it would only be a drill, as firefighter planes and helicopters quickly arrived and began the assault. The wind was already of concern. Mike kept watch as the smoke intensified and at times filled our valley.

Not much more than an hour later, we received an urgent automated reverse 911 call to evacuate immediately. We scrambled to grab the cat and select those items from house and studio which we deemed most valuable and/or which could not be replaced, and which we would most need to continue to carry on our lives and business should we never return.  I threw an armload of clothes into a small suitcase, and we pealed out of there in our car and van with a towering black and orange smoke cloud over our shoulders.

Through the graciousness of our friends, Mary, Lonna and Rex, Susan and David, and Cyndee and Robert, we boarded our cat, stashed our stuff, and are sheltered comfortably. We are safe, and we were able to take the most important things with us.

Today, we received official good news, and bad news, and good news, through the eyewitness account of our neighbor who is one of the hundreds of volunteer firefighters on the front lines, and verified even further by aerial photographs from a local news channel.

It has been confirmed our house and outbuildings have been lost, despite the personal and valiant efforts of our neighbor Jim Terrell, his fellow firefighters, and a firefighting team from Idaho. The Good News - our studio, a separate building where Mike and I lived comfortably the first year we were married, and where all of our production takes place, and containing many valuable research books and materials, our sewing machines and heavy equipment, and all of Mike's beautiful artwork, is untouched as of this time, along with our garage and some large farm equipment. Praise God! More good news - all 15 horses which had to be abandoned when we and our neighbors had to evacuate so rapidly, including six which were on our own property, were today evacuated by the Humane Society, and are safely reunited with their owners.

While we will mourn the loss of our home and its contents, we are blessed to still have a place to which to return. Other neighbors have lost everything. Please pray the fire does not return to our valley (there were still HotShot teams in there fighting fires today), for continued protection of all of the firefighters, and for favorable weather conditions.

When this is all over, and if the property status remains the same, we and our neighbors plan to return to Paradise Park, clean up, adapt, rebuild, add on, and carry on. As Mike says, we are mountain people, and we are grateful everyone got out alive. Houses are just houses, after all, and can be rebuilt, and the memories will still be cherished. God is good, and miracles have happened.

Mike and I wish to thank every one of you who have called, texted, emailed, and prayed for us during this stressful time. You have offered love, help, pillows, food, shelter, trailors, makeup, soap, offers to help clean up if needed, offers to help design and rebuild, hugs, comfort, your phones, your internet, and more than I can say. We have been touched by the outpouring of support from literally across the world.

We do not expect to be allowed to return home for some time yet, as this is still an active and dangerous fire. Once it is controlled, we have been told it may be 6-8 weeks, or more, before power can be restored to the area. We are in good hands, and so many of you have offered us lodging, we know we will be well cared for. And yes, we have insurance!  : )  And most importantly, we have each other, and all of you.

We appreciate the love and support more than you know. Thank you for your continued prayers. Mike knew the one person who perished, and we have too many friends and neighbors who are still awaiting news on if their homes remain.

We apologize for not being able to personally return every call and email, but we have been running constantly since evacuating. Be assured we have listened to, read, and appreciate every one of your messages, and will keep in touch.

Thank you, friends. So much love from you all. God bless every one of you.

Most sincerely,
Sharon & Mike Guli
Guli Productions/Michael J. Guli Designs/River Crossing Inc. 

PS: If you wish to view footage of the fire, we suggest you visit