Herb Lake 100


Home / Reference / Graveyard / Friends / Wekusko



Wekusko was the railway station on the Hudson Bay Route to Churchill at Mile 81. The railway tracks reached Wekusko approx 1924 (check date). Wekusko was the gateway to the gold mines at Herb Lake and later at Snow Lake.

Remembering Wekusko – Through the Eyes of Dave Roberts

by Cathy Stabback

The school was closing in Herb Lake, and I was at the age where I had to begin school when we moved to Wekusko in 1959.  I attended the one-room school house there from 1959 to 1967.  In 1967, after completing my Grade 8, I moved to Cranberry Portage to attend Frontier Collegiate, and my family stayed at Wekusko until 1972.

It’s hard to believe that Wekusko was once a happening place.  The train stopped at Wekusko (Mile 81) regularly.  There were always passengers getting on or off the train as it was the main link between Snow Lake and the outside world.  Not only did the train carry passengers, but it also carried such commodities as groceries, coal and motor and heating fuel.

CN offered employment to some people.  My father, Peter Roberts, was employed as a track laborer from 1959 to 1972.  There were also businesses within the community that employed others. Bud Botham started the thriving business of Transport Limited.  He transported groceries, mail, and other merchandise from the train to Snow Lake.  His business also offered a bus and taxi service to transport train passengers to their final destinations.  Rainville’s had a boarding house and restaurant for those who had to wait for the train or the bus, depending on which way they were traveling. Bridgeman’s had a general store for the shopping convenience of the locals.  Most families ordered their groceries from Western Grocers at The Pas and had them shipped by train.  My grandparents, Marie and Greg Ducharme, often kept case lots of goods on hand to sell to others. Grandma was the postmistress at Wekusko for 12 years. Grandpa was the mail carrier who picked up the mail at the train and delivered it to Grandma to sort and distribute.  Grandma and Grandpa had the only partyline phone that connected us to The Pas and Snow Lake.  I remember the familiar two long rings.  Mr. Roy Gray worked for Natural Resources and he climbed the lookout tower during fire season to check for forest fires.  Roy was a bachelor and owned one of the two cars in Wekusko. (Cote’s owned the other one.)  He often drove the ladies to Snow Lake to play Bingo.

We had to find our own entertainment. As kids we played road hockey in the winters and swam in the sand quarries during the summer.
During the years that I lived in Wekusko, I remember others besides those already mentioned: the Edwin Stoltz family, the Everson’s, the Tony Cote family, the Komars, Dorothy Spillet and her family, the Ladouceurs, the Mayhams, and of course King Calcutt. There may have been others that I have forgotten.
The train at Wekusko junction was the heartbeat of the community.  Our family quite often traveled to The Pas to visit relatives or to shop.  Because Dad worked for CN we had free train passes, and we didn’t have a car, so it made more sense to travel somewhere by train than to travel to Snow Lake.
Wekusko was a community with a simple way of life – no electricity, no running water, and outdoor toilets, but at its peak, it was home to approximately 100 people.

Custom Search

© 2013 Community of Herb Lake Landing
c/o Linda C Butler
PO Box 92, Chilliwack BC Canada V2P 6H7

All Rights Reserved Internationally