Hyslop Rural Transport are regulars at Ravensdown Dunedin and when Craig Andrews caught up with Doug Maskill at midday on a Friday recently he was in picking up his second load of super for the bulk store in Outram. Doug had already got a load of lime in for the morning from Milburn and dispatched it up to Clarkes Junction.
Doug pilots this 2002 Mercedes Benz 2643 on bulk work mostly, and covers the local area ranging from the Otago Peninsula, down to Taieri Mouth, over Taieri Plain and up to the Lee Stream and the Strath Taieri area. It’s a lot of ‘shortish’ but hard running, hence the truck only has around 458,000 kms on it. He adds it could do with a bit more horsepower but the Merc with its short wheelbase has a great turning circle for negotiating the places the work takes him. Doug’s job is made all the more enjoyable because he gets to go into areas the public won’t ever go, “Silverpeaks and Lake Waipori come to mind. Great views.”
Doug started out in the Mosgiel Woolscours with Alex Joyce but an opportunity arose to get into a truck picking up wool, so he jumped at it – some sort of single drive Ford he recalls. The Woolscours closed down and he ended up farming from 1980 through until 2001 when he took up a position with Hyslop’s. He’s recently clocked up 15 years with them.
He has met some great people along the way and is now seeing folk he went to school with running the family farms around the Taieri. Time constraints can put the pressure on. One small hold up (like a truck nut doing a JTA on him) can mess up your day and he feels you have to do 70 hours a week to get a good wage. More young people in the industry would be appreciated as well – the standard points with most of us in the game.
His vexing question… “Was the moon landing real?” He considers there was enough evidence to suggest it was fake. So no, not real.