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Big Creek Stage has Wreck

Written by Dick Perue

Bad, wet snow storms during the spring of 1917 not only threatened livestock, blocked railroad tracks, caused severe hardship and closed roads in and out of the Saratoga and Encampment area, it also disrupted mail service, as reported in the May 5, 1917 issue of “The Saratoga Sun.”

The Encampment-Big Creek stage met with an accident last Saturday night at the crossing of Beaver Creek, which came near causing the loss of the team, owned by Contractor Frank Cront. The thaw of last week had caused some high water in the creek and softened the snow, as well, and when the stage attempted to cross, the horses sank down in the slush and a bad entanglement resulted.

After much strenuous work in the dark, the driver, Earl Christensen, managed to extricate one of the horses, which he rode to a nearby ranch, and when he returned to the scene of the accident later found that the other horse had managed to get out without assistance. The wagon with the mail and other cargo were recovered without loss or damage.

According to Contractor Crout, on account of the great amount of snow along this route, there will be a period of a few weeks later in the season when it will be impossible to travel this stage route with a team, and it is likely that the mail will have to be transported by men on snowshoes.