This Job Can Give You A Lifetime Of Stories To Tell

Topic 4285 | Page 1

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Old School's Comment
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You see so many things when living like a modern day gypsy constantly on the move from one state to the next, that you can easily build up a lifetime of tales to tell. I rolled out of Colorado City this morning carrying this load of "slinky coils" that I picked up late yesterday at the Rocky Mountain Steel Warehouse in Pueblo, Colorado.

flatbed trailer loaded with steel slinky coils in Colorado City

After weighing my loaded truck I found that my gross weight was 79,960 pounds. That is just 40 pounds under the maximum legal weight for an eighteen wheeler. My fuel tanks were full when I weighed, so I was good to go without having to calculate my fuel burn-off before getting to the first weigh station.

After winding my way up through the Raton Pass and crossing the line into New Mexico I was going to head west on US 87, so I took the exit for Raton New Mexico and stopped at the traffic light to wait for it to turn green. As I looked to the right to get a look at what might be coming from that direction a young Whitetail buck deer, with about six or eight inches of fresh new velvet covered antler growth protruding from his head, trotted up beside me on the shoulder and stopped abruptly. He then appeared to be looking at the traffic light as though he were waiting for it to turn green. The moment it changed he gently trotted out into the intersection while looking both ways and then promptly disappeared down into a small brush filled ravine on the other side of the road. I wish I could have photographed him, but it all happened so quickly that I didn't even have the presence of mind to grab my phone and snap the photo.

This is what I mean about seeing so many things out on the road. It seems that I see interesting things every day, and after a while you just get accustomed to experiencing so many varied things that it seems like normal to you. Having a deer cross an intersection with you is definitely not normal though, and it will go into my mental file of strange yet true stories of life on the road. Some day when I'm old and grey I'll hear someone say something about a whitetail deer and it will open up that mental file that I have stored away in my mind and I will tell them the story about the time I crossed an intersection in Raton, New Mexico with a Whitetail deer right along the side of my big rig.

I'm headed to San Antonio Texas with this load, and will have plenty of time to get in a 34 hour reset before I deliver it Monday morning.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

SOBER-J's Comment
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That's crazy isn't it but I believe every word of it. The biggest buck I ever saw was running across the road at a major intersection just in front of a Mcdonalds and hardees.

By the why did you get a message from me? I sent out a few of the private messages just to see if it works and I don't think there is a private message option on my profile. I'd just like to have all the perks from this site that are available.

thanks Sober-J over

Anchorman's Comment
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Some day when I'm old and grey...

Just wait till Daniel B. sees this one! rofl-3.gif

Brett Aquila's Comment
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I'd just like to have all the perks from this site that are available.

You do. Everyone has the same features.

I sent out a few of the private messages just to see if it works and I don't think there is a private message option on my profile.

It works. And you have that option. The reason you're not seeing the message on your profile is because you're the one looking at it. It won't give you the option of sending a private message to yourself. But everyone else that's logged in will see that message when they view your profile.

it will go into my mental file of strange yet true stories of life on the road

That was a great story! I love hearing about interesting stories from the road. Hey! We really should have a way for people to submit and publish interesting stories from the road all in one place. I'll have to ponder that....

But every driver that's been out there for even a year has a long, incredible list of memories. The variety of experiences you have on the road is mind boggling. You're doing so much travelling that it feels like you're living three lifetimes in one.

It's a very rich lifestyle if you're up for that kinda thing. That's why I feel that the travelling lifestyle is what makes trucking worth doing. I dare say if you're really well suited to that type of lifestyle the experience is just priceless, even if for only a few months. There's absolutely nothing like it. There's no routine. It's like every moment is completely unique, unpredictable, and almost random there are so many variables.

Even if you were deaf and isolated, the scenery alone would be worth dedicating 6 months of your life to trucking. You'll see wonders that will take your breath away.

How can you explain any of that to someone who hasn't lived it? You can't. You can tell the stories and if you're good they'll even be quite enjoyable. But looking out over a giant canyon or off the side of a mountain at a sunset in the desert has to be experienced first hand. And you get that kind of stuff all the time out there if you're covering a big region of the country.

BMI:

Body mass index (BMI)

BMI is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat. For most people, BMI provides a reasonable estimate of body fat. The BMI's biggest weakness is that it doesn't consider individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. BMI may:

  • Underestimate body fat for older adults or other people with low muscle mass
  • Overestimate body fat for people who are very muscular and physically fit

It's quite common, especially for men, to fall into the "overweight" category if you happen to be stronger than average. If you're pretty strong but in good shape then pay no attention.

Schism's Comment
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Old School ,

Those slinky's are such a bread and butter account for Western . I was at that very same location no less than 3 times in 5 weeks . Every time I was there there was another company driver or two !

i25 south through Raton is a great drive . I was shocked to see all the large mammals in NM the first time thru there .

My most shocking NM experience was driving for what seemed like 2 hours directly at the center of an enormous storm . Watching the temperature drop from 79 degrees all the way to 41 degrees , driving at the storms edge and then into the beast as the hail started to fall was a bit suspect ! The hail came down so fast it accumulated 1 1/2 to 2" over the course of 2 miles . Driving speed went from 64 mph to 38 mph and I was overwhelmed to get to the other side of the storm and see dry ground again !

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Old School's Comment
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Schism, you remind me of another time that I came through the Raton Pass. I was headed north from New Mexico into Colorado. I forget the time of year, but the weather seemed pretty mild. As I got near to the crest of the pass where you are about to cross the state line I could feel the air getting cooler rapidly, and as I began to descend the mountains on the Colorado side, all of a sudden I could barely even see because it was snowing like crazy on that side of the mountains. It was blizzard like conditions in a matter of a few moments. I could only drive about thirty miles an hour, and as I was leaning forward in my seat and straining my eyes to see, all of a sudden I see some motion on the shoulder of the road right next to the front of my truck. It was a bicyclist wearing regular street clothing, and pumping his pedals for all he was worth. He had snow piling up on his arms and shoulders several inches deep. I know that change in the weather took him by surprise also, but he was not nearly as well protected from it as I was. Things can really change in a hurry out on the road, especially in the mountains.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

mountain girl's Comment
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OS: love how you rigged those coils: tied to the flatbed and then to each other. Very cool. Re your deer crossing with you and the green light: If I were a deer, I'd cross when you cross, too. lol.

Ma-an, you guys are making me want to go OTR!

Re the crazy weather, here: As we say in Colorado: If you don't like the weather, wait 5 minutes.

Brett: maybe you could open a new category in this forum for "way-cool road stories." No career questions or anything, just way-cool stories.

-mountain girl

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Pat M.'s Comment
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Re the crazy weather, here: As we say in Colorado: If you don't like the weather, wait 5 minutes.

-mountain girl

You know everyone says that but the only place I have experienced weather changes that were drastic was in Alaska. Dutch Harbor to be exact. Yes the one on Deadliest Catch.

We worked 10 hour shifts 6 days a week up there and one time in my 6 years on the island we had a weird day of weather.

Went to work with clear skies and freezing temps. Then all heck broke loose...

Heavy fog rolled in. Then it rained. Then it hailed. Then it snowed. Then the sun came out and melted it all.

All of this occurred within the 10 hour work day.

Old School,

Reminds me of the drive from Anchorage to Houston. We saw everything from Rudolph to caribou and swamp donkeys to speed goats. My daughter thought it was really cool at the young age of 8 years old.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Brett Aquila's Comment
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Brett: maybe you could open a new category in this forum for "way-cool road stories." No career questions or anything, just way-cool stories.

Well we also have a category in our Truck Driving Blogs called Stories Of The Road we could put them in. Basically the difference is whether or not we just want an article or we want a discussion. I've disabled comments on the blog so it's only articles, no discussions. Here we can discuss them. So I'm not sure which would be best.

mountain girl's Comment
member avatar

Yeahyeahyeah! Discuss, discuss! Let's have a thread. You know! ... "drinkin' beer and tellin' lies" kind of a thing. Like, "Yeah, back when I was on the Mekong Delta and stuff was comin' in from all sides ..." Oh wait, that's "war stories." Well, you get it. "Way cool stories from the road," or something.

You guys made me so lonesome for travel, I just took an overnight road trip with one of my kids....

If you ever get the chance to drive over Kenosha and Hoosier Passes on I-285 and I-9 and then back down to Denver on I-70, I highly recommend the drive ...through Fairplay, South Park, and Almont the drive is so choice. We saw couple of King Soopers and CR England trucks come through there this morning at sunrise. It was so dang pretty.

-mountain girl

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

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