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Thread: Haul Road incident

  1. #1

    Default Haul Road incident

    I am writing this to clarify the broken glass incedent up north. Although the story is a bit disturbing, keep in mind that most of the Truckers up north have heard about this and do not approve of the Pilot Truck driver's actions.
    In addition, please remember to bring your saftey kits and any emergency type equipment.

    Last Thursday a friend and I headed up north to bow hunt the caribou. We saw nearly nothing (5 bou across the Sag) and drove all the way to Deadhorse that day.
    Friday we started out just before light from Deadhorse and immediately saw some animals off the right side of the road. My friend got out to try the low-crawl stalk, a pretty funny sight seeing how it was his first time hunting caribou with a bow. He would get within 90 yards and they would just get up and walk another 50 . After an hour of this fun I put an end to it, and we headed south again, spotting about 120 along a 10 mile stretch. We found some cover, but it was not in the books as the wind changed and they headed off.
    We headed south again and this time spotted at least 400 animals to our right. Droves of them where coming over the hills and we knew this was our chance. We saw two loners way ahead of the heard coming our way and parked the truck. Caribou don't always go where you think they will and we misjudged by 150 yards where they would cross. So back to the truck.
    I drove north to turn around and spot the herd. Again, we saw 2 decent bulls coming our way. This time, we have plenty of time to watch as they are about a mile off the road headed our way. My buddy hops out and guides my truck off into the snow. I pull off so that my truck was in as far as I could go without losing traction and my left tires still in the gravel on the road. In addition, I was parked uphill so anyone coming behind me would have a good view when they crested the hill behind me.
    We headed off to the left side of the road about 630 yards right in line with where the bou where walking and found a couple decent divets in the tundra for cover. Right as we sat down the pilot truck pulled up in front of my truck, retrieved a tool from the back of his truck and smashed my driver's side window. He then got up on my step side and smashed my windshield right in the driver's field of view. By the time he got back to his truck I had covered about 200 yards, and was having some bad thoughts, but didn't do anything because he may have been carrying a gun.
    That is the short/long of it. I will answer any questions for the next few days that you guys might have.

  2. #2
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    Default

    I hope you got a license number, description and turned the bas---- in. Even if you thought, despite your best attempts, that you may have parked wrong (and I am not saying you did) there was no reason for him to vandalize your truck and he needs to be turned it. Which company was he warking for? Aleyska? or a construction company

  3. #3
    Member EricL's Avatar
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    Angry Hard to believe

    I know this type of crap happens and it is always on my mind when up north. I just can't believe anyone (adult) would do this. I sit here and try to think about what I would do if that had been my truck. I get so worked up I can't sit still. I guarantee I would have caught up to the truck whether he was northbound or south. After that, I think my emotions would take over. I sincerely hope I am never in that type of situation!!

    Did you get any info from any of the rigs? Eric

  4. #4
    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Default Report it.

    Hopefully you reported the situation to the troopers. Stuff like this does not need to be tolerated anywhere in our society.
    "Never again shall one generation of Veterans abandon another".
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    Member EricL's Avatar
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    Default More thoughts

    After thinking about this a little more I have some ideas. Why not go after the company this idiot works for? It is bad enough if this happens at the local grocery store in town, but 200-400 miles from anything and in the winter! If you got any info from the rigs I'd take it straight to a lawyer then to his employer. After all, he (and his actions) is representing them. I am by no means a sue happy person, but I think something like this would get some guys attention especially those who have done this before. And I'd make sure the amount in punitive damages really got their attention!!!!! Eric

  6. #6

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    No, I did not get a plate number. I did call the state troopers and was directed to the Deadhorse Trooper. He has been very helpful and seems to have made a great deal of headway.
    I gave a description of the pilot truck, the driver, and the rig he was guiding. I won't name names here, because that is not the intent of the post. Suffice it to say that I intend to let the law do its job and press charges when they have a confirmed suspect.
    Again, the intent of the post, is that it is a very dangerous environment up there and to be prepared for anything.
    By the way, I was going to try to chase him down, but they have alot more experience than I do on that road and it was pretty bad that evening. In addition, my seats were full of glass and I spent 15 minutes getting it all cleaned out. Half of the glass was in the passenger seat, so that shows how much my truck was leaning to the right from pulling off the road.
    Something else I left out of the original post was that, about 15 minutes after I started home, I pulled off again to fuel up with the jerry cans and another trucker pulled off to let me know about the caribou he had seen. I told him my story and he gave me his roll of duct tape to cover up the window, and the idea to throw a blanket over the door. That helped alot. He was pretty furious himself over the whole issue, which soothed my nerves a bit more.
    Again, this was just one guy of many that drive that road to make a living. Most are good people and I want nothing to do with a trucker vs hunter type attitude. I made the post, because so many people had already heard about the incident and I wanted to clarify the facts.

    Good luck and good hunting guys!

  7. #7
    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Default Idea

    With all of the work that the state does in the summer grading and hauling fill to maintain the road, just how hard would it be to make a small pull-off about every mile just big enough for a pickup or even a semi to pull over. It would solve a lot of problems on both sides of the issue for truckers and hunters.

    The cost would be gradual, as maintence was being preformed along the road. It would allow everyone to be able to pull over if a vehicle was in need of repair or needed to pull over to hunt.

    It does not sound difficult and would help eliminate some of the problems.
    "Never again shall one generation of Veterans abandon another".
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    Dave, I have wondered the same thing. The Trans dept may not want to do it with their money but F&G could do it with theirs to provide hunting access.

  9. #9

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    That is a good idea, there are already "some" pulloffs; however, putting one every mile would mean roughly 250 between Atigun Pass and Deadhorse. I don't think that is reasonable.
    Widening the road by a few feet in some areas might be doable, but again if you think of the amount of rock to haul, it seems a bit much to ask.
    The solution has to be a mutual respect and understanding between the drivers and all others. This includes tourist, because they make the trip as much or more as the hunters do.

  10. #10
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    True,

    This is NOT the first time I've heard or seen this. Saw a pickup with a nice big hole in his windshield "from a rock" is what we were told. He was clearly off the driveable surfice of the road to the point we didn't think he'd be able to get out of the ditch due to water. Not sure where they were but I'm sure they had a ruff ride of it home (though this wasnt winter...yet).

    Heard you met Scotty (the duct tape man). He's a bowhunter himself, great guy!

    He also mentioned you might be able to figure out who it was just by the time they did it. They have to log into prudhoe when they arrive and can figure out times and rigs from there. Figuring there are fewer pilot cars coming in then rigs, you might be able to figure out who it was by that.

    I would have also made the trip to prudhoe hell bent for leather, just to find the SOB and turn him in for it on the spot. Sorry but I don't think the law would do enough to make me happy. I'm also not a sue happy person however in a situation like this I could definatly see me hiring a crooked lawyer if nothing else to teach the sob a lesson. That or start carrying rambo exploding heads for just such occasions .

  11. #11
    Member AKBighorn's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by TradBow View Post
    He also mentioned you might be able to figure out who it was just by the time they did it. They have to log into prudhoe when they arrive and can figure out times and rigs from there. Figuring there are fewer pilot cars coming in then rigs, you might be able to figure out who it was by that.
    Not only do they check in at Prudhoe but anyone working in the oilfield that travels the road must check in at every pumpstation along the way. You have a set time from station to station that you can't beat or you will be in trouble with security. I don't know if that pertains to shipping companies but I would assume it does as they make contractors do the same thing. It for sure would narrow it down to whoever it was that was totally out of line here. If he didn't like where you parked he could have left you a dirty little note or just kept driving but there was no call for this, period.

  12. #12

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    There are obvious disadvantages when hunting w/ a bow.

  13. #13
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    Its a lot harder to figure out who the pilot car driver was than you hink. Theres a lot of different companies using Pilots to haul loads from Carlisle to Alyeska to BP. What he did was B.S. but I have seen the pilots as well as the truckers do very similar things, the slightest intentinal swerve from an 18 wheeler or pick up truck haulin azz while passing a parked vehicle on that loose chip seal and rock will shower the side of your truck parked along the road. I have lost rear view mirrors,windshields, tailights, rear sliders and even a side window from rocks while just driving or parking along the road to chase bou. The sad reality is that road is not maintained for hunters or tourist for that matter, its for the hauling of goods and materials in and out of Deadhorse. The DOT does work dilligently on that highway year round and its never enough, and the last thing I want to see is F&G use its almost non-existent budget to develop rest stops. The issues being discussed have been going on forever, its a remote part of the state that is hopefully not going to become developed anytime soon. Personally I hink the road is too good now, too many people go up there now, when it was bad, and you couldn't even make it to Coldfoot without a couple flats you never saw the amount of hunters that you see up there now. But it is what it is guys. I'd enjoy whats left of that situation before its completely gone.

  14. #14

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    TradBow,
    Yes I met Scotty. Great Guy! He seemed more mad than I was. As far as the Pilot driver, he was headed south and I didn't see him in coldfoot when I got there 4 hours later.

    AlaskCub,
    I agree about the situation up north. I have heard the stories of truckers and hunters fighting it out. I did meet some great people up there in Deadhorse, and as mentioned before, Scotty was great.

    True

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    True, I know several truckers that run that road and have been for 30 years ( most of them are really great guys) and I can tell you that no matter how much I talk to them the bottom line is they would much rather us not be there. Some deal with it okay and some really get peeved about the hunters. The best description I can give you from their perspective be it right or wrong is this. They simply have a job to do, they have time schedules that they try to keep whether its the break between runs to fix things around the house that arent right or just seeing their wives and grandchildren for a day before the next run, or a doctors appointment or whatever. Everytime they get a good pace going they have to stop, slow down, or **** near run over road hunters that are day dreaming off in the Tundra (been there done this too) and not realizing that 80,000 lbs is coming up on them from behind at 70mph (on a flat stretch) and that everytime they lose momentum prior to an uphill grade it screws their whole pattern for running that road all up. They claim that we pass them half out of control , then we get a mile up the road and hit the brakes cuz we see something( I know I have done this) and as anyone knows that road can be just plain nasty all year round if it isn't hard pack Ice in the winter, then its souped up between gradings in the summer and fall, either way they are just trying to make a living and we ( yeah me too) just get in the way and create problems for lack of better words. I argue back and forth with them about these issues but ultimately they are correct for the most part, all the things they say I have seen or done myself. And who am I , I visit the are maybe once or twice a year and I am gonna argue with a trucker that **** near lives on that road and feeds his kids and even for some their grandkids with the money they earn doing this grueling job, not me I am not going there. Instead I take their words and keep them in mind when I am up there and do my part to stay in line. As to the Jackazz that did what he did to your window, I am not sure he wouldn't have been digging a 125 grain 2-blade stinger out of one of his tires giving me a little time to catch up with him, if you know what I mean. I have had a few narly incidents with Pilot drivers myself. Not to mention interactions with some really friendly guys from Wiseman too.Take it in stride, thats what I do.

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    Member Dirtofak's Avatar
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    If this story is true - IMO - The company that employs this @sshat needs to fix the truck, reimburse all hunting fees/costs lost by the hunter and fire the offender. The State Troopers need to arrest this person for distruction of property and anything else that they can find. The AK DOT needs to remove and commercial drivers license that this person has (road rage is not acceptable anywhere). The judge needs to impose a healthy fine, many hours of community service, suspend his drivers license for 90 days, require counciling and lock him up for a week. Then the fine people of Alaska need to publicaly humiliate him and escort him to the airplane/border. As long as this behavior is tolerated, we will keep having to deal with it. How can a person this immature be responsible enough to function as a pilot car driver anyway? There is NO EXCUSE.

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    Sorry I have to disagree with you AlaskaCub. That road is open to the public like it or not. The truckers have a job to do, that is to haul goods or materials period. Not worry about the other dip**** on the road or bash their windows in. The truckers in the states have to deal with the public on the roads and its now no different here. As for 70mph on the haul road I would say that is against any safety rules your company or theirs have. 70 mph is against the law anywhere in Alaska and according to the safety classes I attended before going to the slope the speed limit is 50mph.

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    dirtofak, you gotta have a way to catch him first. My stinger in the tire would be a good way to anchor him! Since he couldn't get a license plate # as you usually cant see them because of the mud. In this case theres nothing to tolerate and I dont know anyone who would have tolerated anything like what happened, it happened and the hunter didn't act fast enough to catch him. A phone call from Coldfoot to the troopers with a description of the truck, and he would have been nabbed for sure as theres only one road south and it doesnt end for 250 miles, but True didn't act fast enough. ilike your thinking though, I would have much rather and most likely handled the situation right there in the middle of nowhere guaranteed.

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    Guys, for starters I am not a trucker and dont work for a company that runs that road, I am Joe Blow hunter just like everyone else and I didn't state that what happened to True was okay.I dont think you read my post thoroughly. I just stated that I know some truckers and although I dont neccessarily agree with them, they too have some valid points. A trucker did not get out of his rig and do the damage to Trues truck , it was a Pilot Driver and like I mentioned also in my thread, I have had my fair share of run ins with them(Pilot Drivers) also, **** near come to blows a couple times. And AKBighorn you know as well as I do that no one drives the speed limit 100% of the time anywhere in this nation nonetheless the Haul Road, so please dont preach to me the speed limit, thats just plain silly. I dont think you guys understood what I said about the Pilot Driver, I agree with you that what he did was wrong and I am trying as hard as I can to explain to you that his truck would not have left the scene if I were in Trues situation. The troopers might have been called from Coldfoot but it wouldn't have been for them to be looking for a southbound pickup if you catch my drift. Takee a deep breath guys and read my post clearly, your as pissed as I would have been, never implied that what happened was okay.

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    I know you didn't state that what was done was ok, yes I got worked up just reading this ****. I thought I read you were one of them trying to tell them they were wrong, my apologies for the error. Trucker, Pilot car driver makes no difference they are an employee not the law and that was all I was saying. I am sure I would be in deep **** if I acted this way while representing my employer. Didn't mean to preach the speed limit but on the Slope they preach so much safety its not funny and yes its done for a reason. Like I said before, I don't know for sure about the truckers/pilot cars, but Slope hands and contractors are required to check in at each pump station and you have a set time which basically doesn't allow for speeding. I'd have to agree with ya as far as the truck/car whatever not getting far fast. Hate to think I'd do something to stupid and 2 wrongs don't make a right but I have as bad of an attitude as anyone when it comes to BS like this.

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