Why’s that ice climber scaling a cow trailer? As any bull hauler will know, Matt Hopkins (the ice climber in question) included, it’s not exactly that out of the ordinary. “I climb up there all the time,” he says, for one reason or another. More often than not, it’s to nudge a recalcitrant bull to turn around and exit the trailer after he’s opened the rear door to unload.
This month’s cover story in Overdrive is about Hopkins’ Truckers Against Trafficking benefit climb of Mount Aconcagua in Argentina (read more about the journey here). We figured, hey, how better to combine the climbing and trucking parts of Hopkins’ life visually than to put him to work on the trailer with his ice-climbing gear. The photo shoot took place where Hopkins parks his truck, near a friend’s place in Dillon, Mont., with plenty of yard to work with — these outtakes show, if nothing else, the oddity of the images that resulted. Turns out that, sometimes, the more elaborate the shot, the less effective it is, ultimately.
Score one for originality in trucking photography, though — find a gallery of further images following, all shot by Belgrade, Mont.-based Brian Smith of High Mountain Photography.
Over the past four to five years, a lot has been written about the shift away from big-bore 15-liter engines to medium-bore (11-liter to 13-liter) engines. This was particularly true among truckers looking to minimize fuel costs.
New data shows that many of the industry's trend-setters have discovered the truth in the old saying, "there's no replacement for displacement." They've come to understand the benefits of new technology in the big-bore engines, and have been making the switch because it saves them money. The comeback has been dramatic.
Todd Dills is Senior Editor of Overdrive magazine and writes from Nashville, Tenn. He frequently covers business, regulatory and lifestyle topics for the magazine and at OverdriveOnline.com. His work on the “CSA’s Data Trail” series in Overdrive about the federal CSA program was awarded the highest honor in trade journalism – the “Grand Neal” – by American Business Media at the 2014 Jesse H. Neal Awards. Dills’ Channel 19 blog covers a grab bag of on-highway hearsay, owner-operator news and driver views from the roadways the nation over. His work in trucking journalism builds on a background of news feature, fiction and other creative writing and editing. Find him here at the Channel 19 blog and via his Twitter feed, or send tips to firstname.lastname@example.org or via phone at 205-907-2481.