Letter calls for support for improvements on highway joining Baggs and Craig
Craig — Midge Mixon is on a mission.
As a Baggs, Wyo., resident who frequently visits Craig, she has started a drive to make improvements to Colorado Highway 13 connecting the two towns.
The road has no shoulders and is becoming less safe with increased energy trucks and wide loads, Mixon said.
An appeal letter created by Mixon can be found at locations around Craig, requesting signatures expressing concern about Highway 13. Mixon will forward the signatures to Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter, along with letters of personal concerns about the highway.
“There’s no shoulder at all right now, and they haven’t even cleaned off the road with a brush-hog,” Mixon said. “Deer come right out of the tall clover and you can’t see them.”
Citing safety concerns on the highway that contains a number of steep drop-offs and crumbling pavement, Mixon said she has noted a lot of accidents this year.
She said almost all Baggs residents use Craig for medical, dental and shopping needs.
“Everybody up here shops in Craig,” she said. “We’re busy people, and we don’t have time to drive to Grand Junction. We shop in Craig for groceries, haying equipment and cars and trucks.”
Mixon makes the drive weekly with her “list of chores” to accomplish while in Craig.
Baggs Mayor Linda Corners agreed the road could be improved.
“I’m sure people in the (Little Snake River) Valley would like to see shoulders,” she said. “There are quite a few wide loads and no shoulders the last 15 miles into Baggs.”
Corners is not in favor of taxing truckers more for using the roads, saying they already pay highway taxes, but she sees the need for Colorado or perhaps the federal government to step up and make improvements.
“It is a state highway,” she said. “It’s also a link between interstate highways 70 and 80.”
For Mixon, the Colorado-Wyoming state line is large on the maps, but in reality the towns are very close.
“It’s just like Craig and Baggs are one town,” she said. “They may be 42 miles apart, but since the early days people on the (Little Snake) River have shopped in Craig, and a lot of Craig people come up here, too.”
Mixon plans a visit to Craig soon to check on the signature letters scattered about the town’s businesses. She said people are signing copies located in Baggs, and a few Craig businesses have gone into second and third pages to record names of people interested in Highway 13 improvements.
A bond between the two towns has existed for generations, Mixon said, and highway improvements could go a long way in making the trip safer.
“Our sports teams all take buses to Hayden and Soroco and Craig,” she said. “Our families live down there. That’s a long, narrow road with no place to pull over.”
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