My sister Ruth sent this shot to me the other day via text, asking me if I could identify what’s in the bed. Since she lives in Alaska, that should have made it easier. But my phone wouldn’t let me expand the image she sent, at least not for some 10-15 minutes (maybe the extra data for the full size view was held up). Although it was obviously something furry, I couldn’t quite make it out and was stumped. So then she sent me another image:
Even with this one, it wasn’t until the full-sized image was available to zoom in that I finally got it. Part of the problem is forgetting how large this object is, which is what was creating a problem for me. How about you? Seeing it? What’s the oddest thing you’ve seen getting hauled in a pickup?
It’s either Godzilla’s kid brother….Or a moose head. After a couple of more Yuenglings, I’ll be sure.
Dead moose, almost certainly.
Not the oddest maybe but to me the funniest: Bigass macho Toyota truck, giant sand-crawler wheels and tires, hi-rise suspension, burly dude at the wheel, headed north towards Ventura or beyond on 101. Strapped down in the bed? Two Vespa scooters, one pale green, one pink!
I’ve actually seen an entire stuffed moose in the back of a pickup headed south on I-5 between Seattle and Tacoma.
Just Golden Retrievers. That’s about it.
I kept a couple of bales of hay in my truck to blend in with my rural neighbors. The odd part was someone stole them while I was in Houston. Why would you steal wet moldy bales that cost $5 for clean dry hay is beyond me.
Just last weekend I looked ahead and saw a pickup leaving the city on a 4 lane road with a 50 mph speed limit. In the bed were two guys facing forward in lawn chairs. I think they were leaving some kind of 4×4 truck event at our local State Fairgrounds.
Somewhere, someone has a VHS Videotape of me and my best friend sitting on a Coleman cooler and drinking beer in the bed of my best friend’s brother in law’s Toyota pick up while stuck in traffic. It was back in 1993 and we went to a Hot Rod Magazine car show in DuQuoin, IL. We were stuck in traffic on the two lane roads around the fairgrounds. His brother in law had a 4X4 with a standard cab so we rode to and from the show in the bed. (He’d honk when he saw a police car so we could duck down into the bed.) It was late summer and hot, so we opened up the cooler, popped two cold ones, and closed it to use as a seat. I looked down and some woman was videotaping us from the car next to us. Of course we waved. ? And we passed a cold one to the driver and his wife through the sliding window on the back of the cab.
Back in the eighties, when I was in the National Guard, one of my fellow guardsmen rode home from Camp Shelby, Mississippi in the back of a Chevy S-10. He made himself a nest among some duffel bags and was up against the back of the cab so he was out of the wind. He said it was more comfortable than riding three abreast in the cab. Did I mention this was something like a 10-11 hour trip?
We used to ride in the backs of pickups on a regular basis when I was growing up; it was not illegal then and, as far as I know, it isn’t illegal now, although probably not the safest way to travel. Not a pickup but in the Air Force we used to group travel in the back of Steve’s Econoline van. The only real seats were the two up front for the driver and the co-pilot; for the rest we just used bean bags and folding lawn chairs. Again, not the safest way to travel, but, to quote Patterson Hood, “we lived to tell about it”.
As a kid in the 70’s and 80’s I recall rides in the backs of pickup trucks and also work vans, sitting on milk crates or boxes. I believe it was, and is, illegal, but the adults in charge at the time were more concerned with expeditious transport using the available vehicles than with the details of the law. We never had any injuries, fortunately, but the back of a fast-moving pickup truck is bouncy, windy, and uncomfortable.
Later in life I was on a landscaping crew, and one of us would sometimes ride in the back of the truck, cushioned by the mound of grass clippings. It was fairly comfortable, cooler than crowding in the cab with other sweaty guys on a hot day, but could result in a face full of grass when the wind kicked up.
I never had one, but I remember the advertisements for Subaru Brats with the seats in the back, thinking how cool it would be to ride back there.
The most interesting pickup loads I have witnessed have been scrappers with precariously loaded mounds of interesting metal objects held together with bits of rope and fully-stretched bungee cords. I saw one such vehicle, with a similarly loaded trailer, on the NJ Turnpike, and was amazed at the drivers temerity, ignorance or desperation, to risk what I imagine is an expensive ticket, for a few dollars worth of metal.
On a sad note, a friend of mine used to drive his dog around in the back of his pickup until the dog bounced out upon hitting a bump and was hit and killed by another driver. My friend lost his dog, and I can only imagine how the other driver felt.
I would be surprised if anyone ever rode very far in back of a BRAT more than once. A former brother-in-law had one years ago and I remember that the seats were fairly high off the bed floor, high enough that most people would feel exposed. As I recall there were no belts or any other type of safety equipment back there; I suspect that most people did as the BIL did and quickly removed and discarded the seats.
I suspect that is true. I recall they had some handles that looked cool (kind of like the handles of ski poles) but likely did little for safety. I read somewhere, perhaps here, that the purpose of the seats was to get the Brats classified as cars rather than trucks for tax purposes-Subaru intended for them to be removed by the dealers. My younger self, seeing them in ads and also on vehicles that kept their seats, naively saw this as a positive vehicular innovation.
There were seat belts installed in them when they left the factory. They couldn’t count it as seating more than 3 without the seat belts, which at the time was what separated a Pickup from a MPV or a cargo van from a passenger van in the gov’t eyes. Never mind that those seats were not really useful it got them in the country chicken tax free.
Two mannequin torsos…
This is going to be a great thread .
A huge dead black bear thrown over a large pile of firewood in the back of a truck that was stopped by the RCMP on the TransCanada Highway near Victoria BC
Body. Human (I was a police officer, remember).
Turned out no foul play, it was from natural causes and the guy was weird, didn’t want to pay the cost of transport to the funeral home. It was called in by someone else on the highway.
He could at least have covered it up.
Haven’t even finished all the comments and I know you’ve won already.
Would the Alaskan Godfather’s goons be making a delivery of some sort in the featured pickup?
When I lived in L.A. I was in the middle lane in slow moving traffic in my black ’66 Imperial Crown. In the slow lane was a Chevy dually with a full cage in the bed and some type zoo markings, it was a perfect spring day, most everyone had windows down, including me. As I got alongside a very large tiger stood up. I like large cats, a relative had one before that became illegal. I told it, “you are one beautiful tiger.” It yawned and looked content. My lane moved forward, the old Ford pickup behind me, the guys in it were yelling at the tiger, I couldn’t tell what, but the tiger seemed to take exception to it, turned it’s rear to them and sprayed them and the cab of the Ford. Other than that, the shop next to mine had many tenants over the years, one fellow, G.P. had a very high I.Q. and was always inventing things. His shop door was usually closed. He talked for months about re-discovering Nicola Teslas anti-gravity ideas. When he moved out, he had a early 70’s Ford PU converted to a flat bed with shallow toolbox sides, he carefully loaded a UFO (circular, polished bare metal, looked large enough to hold one man, what would you call it?) He had to tilt it so it wasn’t too wide, partly standing. Last I saw of him was the saucer in the back of his truck, going down the driveway. Months later his ex-wife came looking for him. The new shop had his truck, all his papers, and a bunch of inventions, but no G.P. and no saucer. Police asked later, never saw him again.
About the dangers of transporting animals: my brother works for Fiat/Case IH and told me this story. The company sent him to their plant near São Paulo, Brazil. One day he’s driving to the plant and stuck in traffic next to a truck with a horse being transported in the bed. A car behind the truck starts honking its horn, the horse got angry or startled, and BOOM! the horse did its business all over the front end of the car. ? According to my brother, he laughed so hard he nearly wet his pants. ?
Obviously the car owners were none too happy and needed a car wash, STAT!
That is a Moosehead mount. The antlers are detached for moving. There is no way that a moose with a head that size would fit in a short box pickup with the tailgate closed. Around here most people use double snowmobile trailers to haul a fresh kill.
This is about the oldest thing that I could find in a pickup truck. As photographed he is standing outside the truck. Laughs!
1) A live horse. Standing in the bed of the truck. With wooden pallets tied together with rope to make a pen. On the Cherokee Turnpike, no less. To each his own, but I don’t let my horse ride in a slantload trailer without screens, much less subject his eyes – or my wallet – to the direct assault of 60+ mph road grime.
2) A load of discarded toilets, pile high; a real $h!tload of them (pun intended). My guess is that they were from a hotel or apartment complex that was upgrading.
Weirdest thing not in my truck? 1993-2003 2WD Chevrolet S-10 standard cab pulled over by the Lemont, IL police department on Lemont Rd. The reason? Rear bumper 6 inches from the ground, front bumper and headlights pointed to the sky, and in the (short) bed? Wood shipping/packaging pallets stacked from the base of the bed to ten or fifteen feet OVER the top of the cab roof and half-ass tied to the truck and shifting over to the passenger side. ? Classic definition of “an accident waiting to happen”
A wave runner. It was in the bed of a Ford Raner, not on a trailer, fell out, and slid into my lane. I instinctively honked at it like it was going to do something. Luckily I missed it.
A pile of brush in an old, old Chevy with a lot of “patina” and the sign, “Brush Pile for Sale, $200.00. I’ll deliver and you keep the truck.”
Weirdest thing that SHOULD have been in a pickup but wasn’t? The Mrs. and I were rolling along I-865 towards I-465 in Indianapolis a few weeks ago when in the middle of our conversation she shouts out “What the heck is THAT in the middle of the road?!?” I react and swerve around piles of shoes, purses, and plastic storage boxes in the middle of the highway. Then I see a late model Chevrolet crew cab pickup with a VERY ANGRY ? woman in the passenger’s seat and a very sheepish looking man in the driver’s seat going in reverse on the shoulder.
If they didn’t divorce or break up, that dude is about $2-4K in the hole for new shoes and purses.
Lesson learned: Lock that tailgate and TIE THAT LOAD DOWN! Especially with your lady’s shoes and clothes ?
I own a 1918 Lester upright piano that my grandmother bought during the depression, and which has been moved maybe 10-12 times since then, usually in the back of the old ’69 F-100. On more than one of those moves (would have been shorter local trips), I sat in the back and played ragtime as we traveled along.
When I was in Middle School, Dad bought a ’52 Ford 8N and brought it home in the bed of the F-100. He rebuilt the engine in the back yard, then drove the 8N to our farm property about 30 miles away.
I’ve carried a lot of stuff in the F-100 myself that would look odd to folks in the city, but which folks out here in farm country wouldn’t bat an eye at.
Probably the most unique vehicle/load pairing I’ve personally done was when I pulled a John Deere manure spreader home from a farm auction with my New Beetle decaled like ‘The Love Bug.’ “Herbie: Fully Loaded,” indeed!
Pic didn’t take, so here it is again.
Love that ragtime music ! .
Don’t miss getting manure on me when dragging the spreader with our 1937 John Deere ‘A’ model in the 1960’s .
It used a row of forks to fling the manure pretty much every where .
Been there, worn that!
Nice truck-I have two of those-they inspired my username. That’s a great way to carry the extra bed around while you wait for the primary one to reach a state of decomposition sufficient to warrant replacement.
A truck that can play its own silent-movie chase music? Cool.
Wait for it 😉 …..https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5JLr0XUrEF0
I live in dairy farm country and the number of cows exceed the number of people several times over. There is a guy that picks up dead cows from the farms to be cut up and sold to a commodities company. His old Ford is usually seen with a dead cow in it. One day at the local store, a girl, obviously not from around here, saw a dead cow in his truck and asked, “Uhmmm, did you know that there is a dead cow in the back of your truck?” “Yes, I was aware that she was in there,” he responded. She then asked, “Did you put her in there dead or did she climb in there and then die?”
Unfortunately the most common thing in the back of a pickup around here, including mine, is nothing. Which seems odd for a vehicle intended for hauling something. But as great as all the comments have been, I nominate Brendan’s mannequins for the win. After the moosehead, of course.
Spinet and upright pianos in pickups aren’t rare. I don’t think I’ve seen a grand hauled in a pickup; they usually get cushier treatment.
A friend has a harpsichord. He bought a pickup whose bed would fit his harpsichord, wrapped in its protective cover, when he had to move it to a performance site.
When we moved a pipe organ into our house, we didn’t use a pickup; we rented a truck with a lift. But I would not be surprised if pickups don’t get regular use hauling pipe organ parts around from workshops to installation sites.
We did tax a ’79 Toyota long-bed pickup severely with loads of concrete blocks for a building project. It was really sagging in the rear.
I had an old relative tell me how her neighbour’s piano was moved into her second floor apartment. The bonneted moving truck (Dodge or Inter) was reversed back to the balcony, then the moving crew lifted the piano onto the bonnet of the truck, then up onto the cab roof and onto the top of the box body. Then they rolled it back before lifting it over the balcony railing and in through the sliding door. Apparently there was quite a crowd watching, and I gather it got a tune after that!
I once had access to the Rainier Beers, had to transport in the back of my buddies pickup, we got a LOT of thumbs up
Very very cool. Better include this for those that don’t understand.
I don’t remember seeing anything strange, such as an unrecognizable object or animal, in the back of a pick up truck but I did have a strange and scary experience once. We were on I-10 on our way to NOLA from Houston, just as we passed the LA state line I notice a pick up in front of us carrying a refrigerator (upright), some other household items, and an untethered dog. A few minutes later there were some undulations on the road and the refrigerator and the dog were thrown off the back of the truck. The refrigerator landed on the right lane while the dog landed on all fours right in front and facing me. I don’t know how I managed to avoid hitting the poor frightened dog but I did.
Many years ago, my parents took the back seat out of their Ford Falcon and loaded a small donkey in. The drive home took a couple of hours. No “accidents” in the back seat, but it did cause consternation in a few passing cars.
My Father-in-law tells a similar story from when he was young. They put the donkey in the back of their 1950s Dodge, and as they were passing a bar in town, he said a guy came out, did a double take when he saw the donkey’s head hanging out the window, then turned around and went right back in the bar!
My wife and I took a road trip two years ago for Christmas at her parents in Arkansas. Somewhere in Kansas at approximately 9PM in the evening and right before we were going to stop for the evening, a Ford Super Duty truck had a beacon-like light in the back. It lit up a very bright white. For a split second, we never thought it was a vehicle, we just assumed we were near an airport. Then It was directly behind us. I was going to pull over even though the white strobe never resembled any lights on an emergency vehicle I’ve seen.
Just as I piloted the car onto the shoulder, the driver gunned its engine and roared past, as if he were irritated by our presence, almost clipping the back of my car. Might have been intoxicated too, who knows. A glance at the license plate, the obscene lift and the camo headache rack quickly confirmed that this was not an emergency or vehicle.
Because Kansas is pretty flat, the “beacon light” still showed in a considerable amount of distance, then suddenly disappeared. Maybe the highway patrol finally caught up with him and told him to knock it off with a whopper of a ticket to boot. It was a distraction nonetheless and made no sense. I don’t think tornado/storm chasers would do something like this.
That episode wasn’t the only crazy event on that trip. We take one or two road trips every year, although it’s usually in the summer or fall, and we never had crazy or dangerous experiences like we did in the dead of the winter. A guy literally stopped at the business end of the on-ramp in Colorado. He had the ability to merge effortlessly. The freeway and the merge lane was as empty as can be. He just stopped, and the three other cars behind him, including us, all avoided a chain reaction wreck that was about to unfold. Luckily there was ample shoulder to avoid that one. Also encountered a semi changing lanes without a blinker–twice–right before we crossed out of Utah, our home state, into Colorado.
Don’t know why winter driving can’t be drama-free, even the commute to work or a jaunt into town. There’s something about the cold, the snow and the ice that mess with people’s internal circuitry, I guess.
A levitating sofa, which then became fully airborne before flying toward the windshield of my ’66 Corvair Monza at closing speeds higher than either of us could have predictably survived. Deft evasive action saved us both from a violent de-upholstering that night in Southern Connecticut.
Does the sidecar of a bike count?
A few years ago my niece was getting big into the Goth scene. She bought a coffin online on the local equivalent of Ebay, and asked me if I could help her pick it up as I had a Falcon ute at the time. Had to be picked up in town and delivered out to a friends place, it was a big ornate thing, and the tailgate wouldnt go up with it in there. So I left the tailgate down, and tied it into place with the vinyl tray cover bungee corded down over it, it was secure but still fully visible from behind.
Somebody, I cant recall who, had provided an arm off an old mannequin, which I stuck in the lid, it bounced up and down waving at people as we went over any road irregularities. It was about a 20km trip out to where it needed to be delivered, mostly on the motorway, and yes…. we got some strange looks and double takes
It’s close to a pickup…but on a recent cross-country trip to pick up and drive back home a 41 year old (rust-free!) Volvo 245 (that’s a story in itself), we spotted a full-sized taxidermy giraffe being carried in a car trailer behind a van. On I-90 in NY. I guess they’d just been to the tag sale at the Natural History museum. Or maybe they were just driving it around so that people like me could take pictures of it.
A buddy of mine used to haul his Fairmont in the back of his ’74 C30… no, that that kind of Fairmont, this kind:
This isn’t a pic of his, his is the same model tho.
The oddest thing I have hauled is an airplane fuselage, tail up over the cab. It got a lot of looks on the 110 Harbor Freeway in LA.
A coworker had both a totem pole and missile nose cone in his truck.
Not technically in the bed of the truck, but I have both the VW and airframe boxes ticked!
The upper wings of my (still unfinished) Nieuport 11 replica rode up on the roof of my wife’s Caravan, eliciting many of the same types of looks.
Picture worth a thousand words
4 dead wolves. Don’t get all excited it was a Minnesota DNR wildlife vehicle and they had starved to death during a particularly long winter. All were collared. That’s a horrible way to go.
BMW Isetta. Spotted on I-83 north in PA 5 years or so ago.