Hey, everybody, my name is Brian and I am a 15 year-old who lives in Maryland. I have had an interest in roads since I could communicate, especially interstates. I've never really had the opportunity to go on anything out of the ordinary, but I'd really like to. The areas that interest me the most are I80 in Wyoming, Utah, Nevada, and into the Sierras, as well most roads in the west. As soon as I'm old enough, I'd like to embark on a road trip throughout our fabulous country and its great interstate highways. I'm also thinking that a long-distance truck driver might be a good job for me.
Thanks for your time
Welcome to the RTA Forum!
There is something special about your first time out on the open road.
The editor recently wrote a very good article I think would be right up your alley. Its called The Teenage Roadtrip, and I think it will give you some excellent insight both into how to convince your parents to go along with your plans as well as help you prepare for the many responsiblities that come with a major roadtrip!
Welcome to the RoadTrip America Forum!
Perhaps some of your desire comes from living near the National Road (US-40 / I-70)? It may have gotten in the water :)
I remember that feeling of finally reaching a destination that I had wanted to see since before I could drive - a subtle euphoria. Since that time, I haven't been able to quench the desire. Back then, I had an affinity for I-90 (because it's all I really knew), and there were no Interstates I didn't like.
I have known some long-haul truck drivers, and like any job, they said it has its good and bad moments. Personally, I like travelling too much to become a trucker. Keeping work and play separate are very important, in my opinion.
Living near I-70 had probably had a lot to do with this even though the last time I was on it was when I was a baby. There are no Interstates that I don't like.
Originally Posted by Mass Tim
I can understand your opinion. I see it a bit differently, but I understand that a lot of people could feel that way, in part because you have to go a certain way to a certain place, etc. I personally like that kind of authority, but that's just me.
BTW, thanks to Midwest Michael for his link to "The teenage Roadtrip". The Editor is awesome. He writes guides for just about anything he can think of! They're really cool!
It can be a tough, tough life
Brian, one of the RTA correspondents, Mike Booth, has been a long-haul professional trucker for a decade or two and one of the current Moderators, Gen, is seriously considering that lifestyle. Our friend Mike's favorite description of his job is "One, very long roadtrip". The biggest problem for nearly all truckers is getting enough excercise and eating well. You do see fit truckers out there, but they are a rarity. The work can be long and grueling -- here is an article I wrote about another key challenge faced by truckers.
Originally Posted by Interstate_80_Rules
Gen... a trucker? If she gets in to trucking, then might too! I too have been considering it, not quite as seriously though. I'm probably not yet old enough to be hired on by most long-haul companies, and my Dad who holds almost every CDL endorsement you can get in Washington State has advised against it. His reason is not the long drive times or the dangers, but more because the pay isn't that good and you have to be away from your family for long periods of time, something he's not willing to do.
Originally Posted by Editor
As far as embarking on a single road trip to discover the interstates, you could also drive one or two interstates end to end per trip. This might be a good way to get your fill of interstates without breaking the bank the first run.
And once you finish with the interstates, you can move on to the old two lane US Route highways if you wanted to.
18's old enough
You actually should be fine if Trucking is what you would want to do Brad. My brother did the long haul trucking thing for about a year and he was only 21 or 22 at the time, and since you can get a CDL at 18, most compaines will take anyone who can drive.
The idea has certainly crossed into my head as well, but I don't think I would ever actually do it at this point of my life. Your dad is very much correct in that the pay isn't that great, and you basically have no life outside of your truck. The rare times you do get a weekend off, many times your weekend is half done by the time you can actually get to your home.
Not to mention, if Roadtrips became work, it would be a lot more difficult to use them as a way to get away from work.
That's one thing that has come across my mind. I'm cool with the "long hauls" but being unhealthy doesn't appeal to me. I'm not healthy or unhealthy, but I'm wondering about what would be my reular meal. Fast Food is what I'd imagine. Correct me if I'm wrong...
Originally Posted by Editor
BTW, thanks for the article!