IDYLLWILD, Calif. (KGTV) -- Lori Brookes was walking in downtown Idyllwild with her cousin when the smell of smoke hit her. At that point, it was clear that something was going on in the area, and she soon found out that she would have to evacuate as the Cranston Fire approached.
"All you had to do was look down the street and you could see it, and it was coming from my neighborhood area," Brookes said.
The former San Diegan moved from Normal Heights to her new home in Idyllwild just 25 days ago. She told 10News the area was a special spot in her 2016-2017 hiking journey.
Brookes' cabin isn't far from the Idyllwild Arts Academy and Inspiration Point.
"It was really obvious it was coming from there as I drove (back) to my house to see what was going on," she said. "People were saying 'you gotta get out, you gotta get out.'"
Her cousin - visiting from Nashville - was able to get all of her things from the home, but Brookes said she wasn't able to grab much.
"Sadly, I grabbed my computer and some important papers," she said, shaking her head. "Just kind of a tail spin out of there."
Brookes is now back in San Diego, staying with her son until she learns more about the fate of her home and when she can go back up the mountain.
"The only (news) I've seen, which has been really hard to watch, are the houses burning," Brookes said. "I believe I read it was (burning homes) on a street called Deer Foot Lane, which is two streets over from mine."