Tom Engle and his brother Terry had never had problems with their 1975 motor home before. But just after noon Saturday, the engine on the 24-foot GMC motor home burst into flames that eventually consumed the vehicle.
The brothers quickly searched for water or fire extinguishers. Rita Ryan, a visitor from Lake George, had two extinguishers in her motor home and one in her boat. She gave the extinguishers and a bucket of water to the men, but they could not get the fire extinguished.
The Oak Creek Fire Protection District received the call at 12:29 p.m., said Chief Chuck Wisecup, who sent three fire trucks with eight firefighters, one ambulance and two EMTs to the scene.
Tom Engle, 56, drove to Stagecoach State Park for a weekend of fishing with his brother. The two are from Westminster, and this was the fifth time they had been to Stagecoach in the past month. They said the fishing in the area has been great.
"I guess we won't be catching any fish now," Tom Engle said with a grim look on his face. His fishing poles were inside the recreational vehicle and were lost in the fire.
Clothing, several CDs and a huge collection of Denver Broncos memorabilia that Terry Engle said was priceless also were lost in the fire.
The brothers called the motor home their "Broncos museum." Tom Engle had decorated it with Broncos posters, figurines, footballs, trinkets and wallpaper. Even the wheels were painted Broncos orange.
Fortunately, Tom was insured.
Wisecup said firefighters put more than 3,000 gallons of water on the blaze. It was mainly a precautionary measure because of a full gas tank and a 15-gallon propane tank on board.
Wisecup said the propane tank exploded, sending debris more than 20 feet from the vehicle.
The Engle brothers had started the motor home to move closer to the dam when the fire began.