The fire that destroyed the Minnesota Horse and Hunt Club's clubhouse on New Year's Eve had been burning too long and was too damaging for officials to determine a cause.
That's according to a new report released Thursday by the State Fire Marshal Division (you can read the full .pdf report here).
"This fire had progressed too far prior to discovery, which allowed a large amount of structural collapse," writes lead investigator Ronald Rahman. "The cause of this fire is undeterminable as an area of origin could not be determined."
The blaze began around 6 a.m. on Dec. 31, 2013 – by early afternoon, all that was left of the 10,000-square-foot, two-story building in Prior Lake were a pair of stone chimneys and part of a wall. No one was hurt and no animals were injured, and the club’s kennels and stables are located far enough away from the clubhouse that there was no damage to those structures.
According to the State Fire Marshal report, the sprinkler system did not function properly during the blaze. The water in the system was apparently frozen, and no water movement alarm was triggered.
The fire caused an estimated $2 million in damage to the building, which housed the clubhouse and Trigger's bar and restaurant.
But they'll be back – and maybe soon.
The fire may have destroyed the building, but if all goes as planned, the Horse and Hunt Club could have the clubhouse and restaurant back open and operating in a brand new structure in August, the club's website says – less than eight months after the incident.
The club has been posting photos of the rebuild on its Facebook page as work continues.
The building will once again serve as a clubhouse and house a new Trigger's bar and restaurant. The site has a photo gallery of the wreckage, plus designs of the new structure.