Working in America info please

Good evening fellow truckers , I was having a scan through here the other day and noticed some of you had been out to the states with some of the harvesting crews , so I thought about it and let it settle . A couple of weeks later I had a particularly awful day at work so I thought ■■■■ it I’ll call the guy what’s the worst that can happen ■■
So I got chatting and he suggested sending my details in to see if I was acceptable . The following Thursday I got a call asking me to come in for an interview .
I know this is only an interview and it could all go belly up but I wondering what I’m letting myself in for ■■

I’m 36 , no kids/house/wife and or girlfriend , I see it as an oppertunity to see the states ( country side we will be working in not Disneyland !! ) for 7 months , I don’t expect a vast amount of money as long as there’s enough to cover some bills back here that’s enough , and I expect exceptionally long hours

Just wondering if anyone can tell me your stories

Thanks in advance James

give sats72 a shout hes been there and done it and tell you the word straight tae the point…im sure he wont bite. :smiley:

I was watching Wanted down under the other day and the truck driver there was told his licence was transferable,not to sure about that but he was told he’d be on $70k aus he works for Ceva on car transporters

Google “Custom Cutters” and you should find plenty of harvest crews with websites looking overseas drivers on H2A temp harvest visas.
I went with Altendorf Harvesting back in 2002 and “Sats72” went with them more recently.
Hear a rumour on USA combine forum they are bust!!!
Holland Harvesting
Frederick Harvesting
Demaray Harvesting
Bergman Harvesting
Danelski Harvesting
are all Cutters that use H2A drivers.

I did it through the OSU (Ohio State University) Intern Program. Which is basically a cover to get you a visa a bit easier as a ‘student’. This option won’t work for you as you are too old already. That said, it means your pay will be better! The experience itself is still the same though.
I worked for Dolechek Harvesting who are related through marriage to Frederick Harvesting, one of the biggest and best publicised cutters. At the time the Dolechek ran three Gleaner R62’s, they now run two Case combines.
The first month, April, saw us doing maintenance, tyres, practicing and sitting our CDL test (commercial drivers licence), air brake test and hazardous test ( the service vehicle had a large fuel tank fitted, so that we could drive all the vehicles in the fleet.
We ran 80’s and 90’s Petes and a late 90’s Freightliner. One semi Pete and the rest were tandems, or rigids to us.
From May, we moved from our home in Kansas, to Texas and harvested from there up to North Dakota, then back to Kansas for soya beans and milo, we didn’t do corn sadly.
I spent the first half of the time on the Freightshaker hauling grain into the grain elevators and moving one of the combines when we travelled. The 30ft header slid in the body, the combine went on a tandem axle drawbar trailer. Later in the year, I drove one if the combines most if the time except when we travelled and I was back in the Frieghtshaker. My last day cutting was in a heavy frost on November the 4th.

The experience was out of this world. I have friends now who I first met there in 2003 and have since, travelled go work on their farm in Denmark. We saw the real America, salt of the earth folk. We counted the wagons on huge grain and oil trains, we watched wolves playing in crops we were harvesting, we watched tornados and we bloody felt them! We got lost in dust storms, saw torrential rain wash fields away and cleaned the inside of combines in the 42 degree Texan sun!
We earned enough to buy a 5L V8 Ford Crown Victoria and travel for six weeks at the end, coverin 6500 miles. The Hoover Dam, ■■■■■■■■■■■■, Las Vegas, St Louis, Niagra Falls, The Appaletian Mountains, The Rockies, The Sturgess Bike Show, all the sights inbetween and the highways that stretch to the horizon in a dead straight line…

Just do it.

Thanks niceroadtrucker exactly what I needed to hear

No problem at all. I recommend it to anyone that asks. The experience is a future story to tell. You’ll have bad days, of course you will but when you look back, you seldom look back at them for all the good days you’ll remember :slight_smile: :slight_smile:

Go for it, you only wish you had done a long time I go!

Interview was today , it’s with custom harvesting , and they recruit for three crews , the main one being Haynes custom harvesting , I’m probably too old for that one as they usually recruit under 30’s but I stand a chance with the other ones ,
At least I can say I tried , and now I know about it I can try again next year if I’m not successful ,

Thanks for the info chaps

Check out this combine forum for harvest vacancies:

Nice road trucker, what a coincidence, I also went to America with Ohio state Uni in Columbus, I had a student visa backed up by Antony Gibson from the National Farmers Union, with the Young Farmers Club exchange visa programme.
I had the choice to cover most of the States on the combine teams, I was told it was long hours, low wage, food and bed provided, but a great experince.
I got sent to dairy farm in Michigan, milking three times a day with no days off, the farm was bankrupt,and was paid in full when I left, I lived on candy bars and macaroni cheese.
I then travelled all over the States on an Amtrak train city hopping for three weeks.
I was then sent to Florida to work on a tree plantation,sharing the company bungalow with two English lads.
I then got a job with no green card,as the student visa had expired, I worked as a steel fixer on sky scrapers in Miami and Fort Lauderdale,amazing people and experinces.
Weekend cruises for $ 99 to the Bahamas, I bought a Yamaha RZ 350 Ypvs and crossed Alligator Alley to Tampa and St Petersburg.
I got an old Jeep, that was a piece of junk, then an old fashioned car, that I shared with the two Limey lads.

Small world, then! Sounds like your experiences varied a lot from agricultural to industrial. Plenty of photos to boot, no doubt? I’ve got stacks, bought my first digital camera out there, could couldn’t do it without one really. It was John Beardmore who was my rep, an English chap working on behalf of OSU having done the harvest run himself. I did it after meeting him for the second time, on his stand at Smithfield. The first time was when he visited us at Lackham College.
I did that Alligator Alley too, with a friend the year before I went on the harvest run. Only, in a Nissan hire car, not the same buzz at all. It did rain in a torrential fashion though and the traffic drove with hazard lights on through the rain, they don’t have fog lamps. We did actually stop at one point as visibility was worse than any kind of fog I have seen here!