Veteran truckie Garth Roots had come out of retirement briefly to drive a Kenworth T909 Director for his son Dean Roots when Big Rigs saw him in North Queensland recently.
But the 72-year-old tells me he was about to “retire again” when we yarned at a pull off area beside the Gregory Development Road.
“I am just helping out my son and have brought up tractors from Wacol to Townsville. I actually retired when I was aged 67 and intend on retiring again after another trip,” he said.
Roots said the Kenworth was a good truck with plenty of grunt from a 600hp Cummins motor and with an 18-speed gearbox.
His hobbies include doing a task that most of us dislike – mowing the lawn. “I have acreage at Purga in the Ipswich area,” he said.
The quietly spoken Roots said it was a trip where he had seen very few trucks on the highways. “It is not very busy on the roads and I have never seen it so quiet,” he said.
Roots rates the Gregory Development Road as amongst the worst he has driven on.
This gentleman of the highway was looking forward to getting home after the trip and who could blame him. “My son is going to shout me a carton of beer so I’ll enjoy that,” he said.