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Weather Dictates Tie Drives

The Pass Creek Drive

Consisting of about 100,000 ties, nearly to the river. No trouble about dams or headgates.

J.H. Mullison came in Monday from Pass Creek where he has been superintending the Teller tie drive of about 100,000 ties. The ties are nearly to the river, and the drive will be finished so far as the creek is concerned in a few days.

Mr. Mullison was asked about the dams and headgates in the creek and said, “There isn’t a dam in Pass Creek which can be called a dam and never was. We were careful about the headgates to the ditches and sent men along ahead to place ties across them in such a manner that they were not harmed in the slightest.

“The bridges across Pass Creek were very low, and it was necessary to prop them up to let the ties under, which interrupted the crossing as long as the ties were passing, which was about a day in most cases. The bridges were then let down and everything was fixed securely.

“The ranchmen on the creek are perfectly satisfied, and they will tell you that if they had not seen the drive pass they would not have known, so far as the ties damaged their ditches and headgates, that there had been a drive.” 

This article from “The Saratoga Sun” on June 7, 1900 can be contrasted to a May 1917 issue of the hometown weekly newspaper, which reads:

Tie Drive Will Be Late

Andrew Olson of Elk Mountain, manager of the Carbon Timber Company, spent a few days in Saratoga the first of the week, going on to Encampment Tuesday afternoon to look after the company’s property in that section and to make arrangements for the tie drive this spring.

According to Mr. Olson, there is still too much snow in the timber for his men to be able to start the drive for some time, there being as much as 10 feet in many places, and as a consequence, the drive this year will be much later than usual. There are only about 100,000 ties and timbers to be brought out this year by this company.

Records show that 1917 recorded the highest amount of snowfall in both the Sierra Madre and Medicine Bow Mountains, which resulted in the worst floods ever of the Encampment and Upper North Platte Rivers.