The trucking community has always had its own language, or lingo. Some phrases, such as the 10-codes, are more universally used, but many other phrases were born in the trucking community. Phrases like, “The coops are open,” or “There’s a full-grown (bear) sittin’ in the comedian, shootin’ ya in the back.” Most of us know and comprehend these phrases. Another phrase, which has all but gone the way of the buffalo, is when someone refers to the left lane as the “Monfort Lane”. This nickname came from a time when Monfort of Colorado was a fleet of recognizable orange, yellow and white rigs (A.K.A. Circus Wagons). Monfort had a reputation for having fast trucks, and drivers who weren’t afraid to mash on it. Making back-to-back trips from Colorado to New York couldn’t have been an easy Sunday drive, so these trucks were often seen in a blur of paint and chrome, making tracks in the left lane. There were other fleets that were known to run, too, but, somehow, Monfort has the honors of carrying that left lane nickname to their grave. I would make a politically-correct disclaimer about not condoning excess speed on the highways, but I think that should be obvious. Remember when trucks looked like trucks and driving them was a great, big, fun, pain-in-the-back? I guess time flies, faster than a circus wagon in the Monfort Lane! Thanks go out to Harry Patterson of New Jersey for allowing us to use his great photo of the old Monfort KW from way back in the day!
THE MONFORT LANE
By Trevor Hardwick
I can still remember in my younger days,
My daddy teaching me about the proper ways.
He taught me nearly everything I’d need to know,
Like rollin’ nice ‘n easy on the ice and snow.
If you’re the kind who’s terrified of driving rain,
Then what-n-the-heck ya’ doing in the Monfort Lane?
As I recall the fancy fleets of yesterday,
Pounding down the interstates, every night and day.
It seems there were a few, that were notorious,
For having trucks much faster a Greyhound bus.
If you ain’t any faster than an old freight train,
Then move that clunker over from the Monfort Lane.
Little Audrey’s Trucking, and DC Trans,
Even Tigator, out of Lou-z-anne.
National Carriers was an “Elite” fleet,
Pirkle Freightlines, and good ol’ Circle-C.
These are just a few of the familiar names,
That I recall rolling, in the Monfort Lane.
These days the big fleets play a different game,
Streamline and fleet-white, they all look the same.
I sure miss the days, when tractors were distinct,
Now I fear the glory days have all but gone extinct.
Back when rubbing alcohol made a sweet blue flame,
And granted you access, to the Monfort Lane.
Out in California or the “Buckeye” state,
You better be careful, if you’re runnin’ kinda late.
The hammer lane in Oregon’s gonna cost you money,
And Virginia state troopers, think it ain’t that funny.
So if you’re not a major fan of cost and pain,
Then you ain’t got no business, in the Monfort Lane!