A mother of two returned for a first look at what was left of her home in Jamul after the Valley Fire.
Kimberlee Leslie could smell it. She walked outside, looked east, and saw a wall of smoke bearing down on her home in what seemed like the pace of a sprint.
She grabbed her kids and dog, then drove west, with no choice but to leave behind her 11 horses in a round pen.
"It's hardly recognizable, you're just picking through things. Trying to figure out where you are in the house really. It's like ash," Leslie said as she looked at what was left of her house.
Struggling to hold back the tears, Leslie is getting her first look at the aftermath of the Valley Fire.
Her home was destroyed. It was burned to the foundation and the heat was so intense it even cracked it.
On Sunday, a week after the Valley Fire started, Cal Fire announced containment was now at 87%. The fire destroyed 30 residences and 31 outbuildings, damaged 11 other structures, and injured three firefighters.
"I got my kids out of it, that's what's important," Leslie said.
Leslie's two children, 5-year-old Collin and 3-year-old Elizabeth, saw the smoke and heard the sirens as they fled the fire.
"She's pretty um, she doesn't understand. She stopped asking to go home. I think they're happy as long as they have their mom," Leslie said of her children.
Leslie says the fire burned like it had a life of his own.
"The fire it was like walking, like jumping from the one bush to the next," she said.
Still, somehow, after the fire turned the home to ash, the raging inferno was stopped at the edge of the corral. Those 11 horses inside it were not harmed.
"They should be dead, they should have all been dead. There are burn marks in the arena and its incredible," she said.
Leslie makes unique rosaries and sells them online. She is close to her faith and when counting her blessings, her family comes to mind first.
"What's really important is your family. The people that you cherish, that you can hold on to," she said.
Leslie says she wants to rebuild. Most importantly she wants a home where her kids can be safe. And even though they loved living in Jamul, that means moving out of the mountains.
Leslie credits the community for coming to her rescue.
A popular restaurant, Brody's Burgers, found a place for her and her family to stay the first night, they even boarded her dog. A complete stranger filled her gas tank and gave her cash. And the 11 horses are being boarded and cared for free of charge.
The family has set up a GoFundMe page to help out with expenses.