Trapper Mine’s first dragline bucket finds new home in Loudy-Simpson Park near Craig | CraigDailyPress.com

Trapper Mine’s first dragline bucket finds new home in Loudy-Simpson Park near Craig

From left, Moffat County Commissioners Don Cook, Ray Beck, Trapper Mine general manager Michael Morriss, Commissioner Frank Moe, Trapper Mine maintenance manager Brian Smith and Trapper Mine engineering manager Steve Hinkemeyer pose in front of Trapper's first dragline bucket, which uncovered coal seams in the mine from 1977 to 2011.

CRAIG — In 1977, Trapper Mine's first dragline bucket scooped the soil and rock above the mine's first pit. Last week, the Moffat County Board of County Commissioners and Trapper Mining Inc. representatives dedicated that bucket at its new home in Loudy-Simpson Park just south of Craig.

"Trapper Mining contributes significantly to Moffat County and the Craig Community," Commissioner Ray Beck said at the ceremony.

The bucket was used on draglines from 1977 to 2011. It's been rebuilt numerous times and has hauled more than 33 million cubic yards of overburden, the soil and rock above a coal seam. In October 2017, it was moved to Loudy-Simpson Park with the help of Acord Crane and Peroulis Brothers Trucking.

"Normally, I wouldn't be excited that we kept a bucket for 40 years, but in this case, I'm tickled, because we actually kept the very first bucket that we purchased back in 1977," said Michael Morriss, president and general manager of Trapper. The bucket was headed for a scrap pile, he said.

"The fact that we can donate it to the community is even more special, because Trapper employees had a hand in this soccer field," he added, as the group looked over the field at Loudy-Simpson. "The partnerships that this community has had with Trapper is very special. That's one thing that I'm very proud of."

Contact Eleanor Hasenbeck at 970-875-1795. Follow her on Twitter, @elHasenbeck.