Wednesday, July 17, 2013

On The Road Again...

Well I'm back! Sort of... While I'm not driving a big rig back and forth across the country, I have been driving the past five months. I'm now a route delivery driver with a run between Orlando, FL and Clearwater, FL. On average, I drive only about 230 - 250 miles a day in either a Ford E350 cargo van or a Ford E350 box van. Some days are uneventful, but others can be interesting. I'll try to get in the habit again of posting a daily blog with some stories and photos of the day. So, stay tuned for more of A Truckers' Day...

Friday, August 6, 2010

Off The Road

My last day for driving was May 6th, 2010 due to traffic violation. Thanks all for riding along.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

SE Missouri to St Louis to Kansas City - 396 Miles

Kinda tired, so this will be short.

Unloaded this morning in Scott City, MO down in the southeast corner. I quickly received my next load. So I mapped it out and headed north on I-55 into St Louis, crossing the river over into Illinois. Just a few miles later I pulled into the Pilot at East St Louis, IL. There I was receiving my next load as a relay from another driver.

While I waited, I ate at the Taco Bell and fueled up the truck.

At 1:00 PM, the other driver showed up and we swapped trailers. Jumping on I-70, I rolled on westbound non-stop to Kansas City, MO and our drop yard.

My next load picks up at 3:00 tomorrow morning at the Con-Way Freight depot across the river in Kansas City, KS. So that's where I sit now. I got an early morning wake up call so goodnight everyone.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Atlanta, GA to Southeast Missouri - 495 Miles

Well last night I was supposed to drive down to Jacksonville, FL. But as I awoke from my nap around 7PM to get ready to drive, I received a message stating my load was canceled. Arrrggggg!! In a rare achievement of actually getting a good nap before an all night drive, now I have to try and sleep again tonight. Which I did finally just after midnight.

Anyway, so I wake up this morning about 6:30. Waited and waited, finally getting a load assignment about 9:30. I drove about 6 miles away over to the Forest Park area of southeast Atlanta to O'Reilly Auto Parts. They finished loading my trailer at 11:00 AM with a bunch of junk car batteries. 38,700 lbs worth.

Let there and headed around the I-285 loop, north to I-75 and stopped in Cartersville, GA for fuel and lunch. I also scaled the load which was a good thing because I was 3,000 lbs overweight on the trailer tandems. So I had to slide the axles back.

Now back on the way north on I-75 to I-24 west, through Tennessee and into Kentucky. At Paduca, KY I got off the interstate and onto US60 west down some 2 lane back roads into Missouri. By then it was dark and raining. And with the narrow roads and the narrow 2 lane bridges crossing both the Kentucky and Mississippi Rivers, it was just a little tense. I think I've been this route before, but it was during the day. At night and in the rain though...

But I made it to Scott City, MO to the battery recyclers where I will unload in the morning.

That's another day in the life of a trucker. See ya tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Playing Catch Up

OK, so I got lazy again about my daily updates. Time to catch up.

After Omaha, NE, I went back to the Tractor Supply DC in Waverly, NE and picked up another load going to a store in Independence, MO on Monday January 19th.

Tuesday morning at 0700 I unloaded and then waited most of the day for my next load assignment. It finally came around 3PM. I picked up in Kansas City, MO and had to haul it 428 miles all the way across Kansas to Hugoton, KS. What a drive! It was a heavy fog after sunset and going down through the back roads and small towns was difficult at times. But I did arrive there at 2 AM and was VERY tired to say the least. I unloaded that morning at 0700.

After unloading that morning, I reversed course and headed back across Kansas to the K-Mart DC in Lawrence. There I picked up a load which delivered to 2 K-Mart stores around Wichita on Thursday morning the 21st.

By noon the 21st I left the last K-Mart store and drove a few miles away to SFB Plastics there in Wichita, KS. I then picked up a load of empty plastic jugs and hauled them 743 miles down to El Paso, TX. They were going across the border to be filled with something and probably brought back over here. But that's for somebody else.

On the way down o El Paso on Friday morning of the 22nd, I encountered some snow along US 54 south of Santa Rosa, NM. Here's a few pics:

After dropping the trailer there in El Paso, I only had to wait a few hours before getting my next load. I left Friday night driving 1379 miles to LaGrange, GA hauling a load of vacuum cleaners to a WalMart DC.

I arrived in LaGrange on Sunday evening of the 24th and delivered at 6:30 AM on the 25th. Yesterday was Monday the 25th and I sat around all day in the truck waiting for my next load assignment. Which by the way never came.

Finally at 10 AM this morning I received my next load. I left LaGrange and drove north on I-85 into Atlanta where I pick up my load this evening headed to Jacksonville, FL.

That's what I've been up to. Sorry for the long gap. I'll try not to let that happen too often.

See ya tomorrow.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Bored in Omaha, NE, So Let's Go Play In The Snow!

Well I got tired of sitting here inside the truck for the 2nd day in a row in Omaha, NE. It's 34 degrees outside, foggy, and snow on the ground. There's not much wind so it doesn't feel very cold. I decide to go walking. There's a lake down the hill about a 1/2 mile behind the truck stop with some Geocaches around it. Program the GPSr, bundle up, and off I go. I get to the lake and it's frozen over with about a half dozen groups of ice fishers out there. I decide to wait until after I circle the lake, then walk out to take a closer look and some pictures. I've never been on a frozen lake before and thought it would be cool.

So, I start down the paved bike path around the lake. Only there isn't a paved path anymore. It's covered in snow. Anywhere from an ankle deep to knee deep! And the problem is that you can't really tell where the knee deep snow is until you're into it! But hey, I'm an adventurous guy and I press on. I got my hiking boots (waterproof), gloves, sweater, and jacket. I didn't feel cold at all.

The first Geocache was 1/4 mile away so I started tromping through the snow. Being from Florida, I don't experience this kinda thing too often. But I manage to get to the first cache, a micro in the woods disguised as a pine cone. Took about 15 minutes for me to find it. Then back to the "paved sidewalk", HA!

The next cache was another half mile away, so I continue on after it. I'm staying on the so called path, following all the deer and bunny tracks. I'm the only fool out here creating human foot steps. For the most part it's an easy walk, but every 50 yards or so the path tends to dip although the snow is still level. And when the snow gets deeper it wants to push my jeans up and get into the tops of my boots! But everything so far is still warm and comfortable.

I get about 250 ft from the 2nd cache and have to leave path, not that it matters with the snow. And in some cases, it's actually better! When you walk between a group of the trees, the snow is only a few inches. I walk down through some trees following my GPSr towards ground zero. I get to 40 ft away and here's this open path. Looks like it could have been a shallow creek. Of course now frozen over and covered with snow. The wind has actually formed what looks like dunes on a beach so I can't really tell how deep it is.

I see what looks to be a fallen tree on the other side. Of course most of it is buried in snow as well. Well I can't get this close and turn back, so I start forward. YEP, it's just above the kneecaps deep! I get across and can feel my ankles getting cold with the snow that has gotten in around the boot tops. I get to the tree and that seems to be where the cache is hidden.

This Geocache is a large sized ammo box, slightly larger than a shoe box. But it's also under a bunch of snow. I start at one end of the fallen tree and begin digging out the snow along one side. As it turns out, I started at the wrong end! After digging 6-7 feet down the side of this fallen tree trunk, I find the hollowed out end with the large ammo box inside. Success!

After covering the one end back up with snow, I make my way back to the main path. By then, quite a bit of snow has gotten into my boots and my feet are getting pretty cold. And I've only gotten less than a 1/4 of the way around the lake. There's no way I'm going to make it completely around. I gotta head back. Trying to follow into my same footsteps, I trudge on back through the snow. All the while trying to wiggle my toes within the boots to make sure they're still moving. With the exception of my feet and toes, the rest of me feels pretty good. I actually though about taking off my jacket because I was getting too warm.

Anyway, I make it back to my truck and quickly remove my soaked boots and socks, dry my feet and put on clean socks and sneakers to warm my feet. Then I grabbed my bath kit and some clean clothes and headed inside for a shower. The hot water felt good to my toes!

BUT THE WORST PART OF ALL, I STILL NEVER MADE IT OUT ONTO THE FROZEN LAKE! That will just have to wait for another time.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

A Long Drive From Oklahoma to Illinois - 710 Miles

This will be short because I'm fairly tired. Started out this morning at 6:30 AM in Calumet, OK, just west of Oklahoma City. I drove for 1 1/2 hours and stopped in Stroud, OK for breakfast at McDonald's.

After eating, I continued east on I-44 into Missouri and stopped again at 2 PM for fuel and a Subway sub. I relaxed for about an hour, taking my time eating.

Then back on the road, merging onto I-70 in St Louis, then north on I-57. I arrived in Pesotum, IL at a rest area around 7:45 Central Time. I'm about 19 miles from my final destination where I deliver tomorrow morning at 7 AM.

That's about it for me today. Not much excitement today. Just a long drive.

Good night for now and see ya back again tomorrow.