The OOIDA tour trailer pulls into Ganado, Texas

January 31, 2022

Chuck Robinson


The next stop for the OOIDA tour trailer, in Ganado, Texas, is halfway between Corpus Christie, Texas, and Houston.

Marty Ellis and the Spirit of the American Trucker are scheduled to be at the Ganado TA Travel Center on Feb. 1-2. It is at Exit 522E from Highway 59.

There is parking for 104 tractor-trailers at the Ganado TA. It looks like it is fast food or grab-and-go from the convenience store for food options. If a driver is up for a walk, though, about a mile away on York Street to Taqueria Lele’s. Just a few steps farther is Estella’s Mexican Restaurant.

Ellis says he is up for a walk of a mile for a good meal, depending on the location and other factors, such as weather, if the truck can be left safely, and if there is a shoulder or sidewalk to do it safely.

It was raining pretty hard from Edinburg, Texas, to Ganado, causing some one driver with a gooseneck trailer to hydroplane on the wet, new asphalt. He jackknifed and landed in the median. No walking for Ellis if the rain keeps up.

A railroad official picked the name for the town of Ganado in the late 1800s, according the municipal website. It means “herd” or “livestock” in Spanish.

Discussion of getting paid for miles driven

Drivers at the previous stop for The Spirit in Edinburg, Texas, provided some rousing conversation on drivers actually getting paid for the miles they drive. An OOIDA member asked what could be done about companies paying short miles. Ellis said he was familiar with the problem too.

“I really thought most of the companies had been changing to at least ‘practical miles,’” Ellis said while relating the conversation on Friday’s Land Line Now. “But even when I drove with practical miles, there were times that you knew that the route that they were still paying you was not a truck route. And you, of course, when you questioned it, it’s like, ‘Well, I don’t know the route they’re paying, but that’s what it is, and so tough luck to you.’”

Historically, Ellis recalled how companies have calculated mileage by estimating miles ZIP code to ZIP code, post office to post office, city line to city line, or hub to hub. Today, though, is it difficult to understand why companies persist in those practices, he said.

“Now, we can actually look it up right there on your phone, you know, look how far it is from this address to the next address, and here’s the number of miles, and most of that is pretty accurate,” Ellis said.

In fact, there are apps that track mileage pretty precisely for International Fuel Tax Agreement and International Registration Plan reporting.

“There’s absolutely no reason at all we can’t pay at least pretty darn close to real miles.”

Listen to the Land Line Now conversation here


Stop by when you see The Spirit

If you see OOIDA’s tour trailer, stop by and say hello. Ellis looks forward to visiting about the Association’s activities and current issues. There are copies of Land Line Magazine to pick up there. You can join or renew your membership for $10 off the regular price at The Spirit. Face masks are available at The Spirit for anyone with a commercial driver’s license.

After Ganado, Ellis is scheduled to stop in Beaumont, Texas, before leaving the state for Lafayette, La.

Here is the schedule for The Spirit. LL