Rock Creek flood roars down streets of Red Lodge

BRETT FRENCH

RED LODGE – Runoff from rain falling atop five feet of snow in the Beartooth Mountains over the weekend turned Rock Creek into a torrent early Monday morning, forcing dozens of residents from their homes and closing secondary highways.

On the other side of the mountains, Yellowstone National Park closed all five of its entrances to deal with the unprecedented high water threatening bridges and roads.

Kristan Apodaca stood across the street from the washed out 19th Street bridge in downtown Red Lodge wiping away tears as she talked on her cellphone.

The Rocky Fork Inn, located on Broadway Avenue in Red Lodge, is severely damaged as Rock Creek jumped its banks.

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“That bridge I literally drove yesterday,” she said. “My mom drove it at 3 (a.m.) before it was washed out.”

The tears fell for her grandmother’s house, now flooded.  Grandma Anne Woodruff died in March and the house was just listed for sale. 

“It was their last dream home because my grandfather found out he had pancreatic cancer,” Apodaca said.

People

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