NORTH BEND, Wash. - In the Snoqualmie Pass, it was a mass truck gathering no one wanted to be in.
"The winds have been anywhere between 40 to 70 mph and that will blow me over," said a truck driver, Denis Lewellin.
Lewellin took refuge from the wind at a North Bend truck stop last Friday. He was worried about his truck, hauling appliances, tipping over from the wind. By the time he felt conditions were good enough to get back on the roads, WSDOT shut down Snoqualmie Pass Monday evening due to avalanche dangers. The stretch is between Ellensburg and North Bend on I-90.
"This is the worst I’ve ever been in like I said I’ve been here 5 days," Lewellin said.
Lewellin said he is carrying around 20 washers and dryers that he picked up from a store in Kent. Now the purchased items are late going to people in Idaho.
With I-90 shut down for nearly 24 hours, the truck stop at exit 34 in North Bent turned into a home away from home.
"Country boy from Louisiana so I am not used to the snow," Jackson said.
They are used to the solitary nature of their job, but days of being stranded together will make a neighbor out of most.
"It gets lonely watching traffic so if there is a truck driver next to you and rolls down the window well that is where it starts," said Kory, who is also a truck driver.
Kory befriending Josh Hamilton who has been stuck for five days too. Hamilton said he is hauling parts for Boeing.
Their patience is being tested by mother nature, but it’s not lost on them that things could be worse.
"You have 100 or so cars parking out there in the Interstate they don’t have the restaurant, the facility to shower up," Kory said.
The truck rest stop was packed on Tuesday leaving dozens and dozens of trucks to park either on I-90 or on the side of the highway.
As the wait stretched on, some like Terry Farnam changed their plans after a nearly 24-hour delay.
He said his company, Western Idaho Trucking, told him he doesn’t have to make his stop in Wenatchee to pick up more items.
"They are canceling, that they will have someone else get it," Farnam said.
Farnam said it’s the longest he’s waited to get through Snoqualmie Pass in the 7 years he’s been in the trucking industry.
Farnam worked for an IT company for 20 years before getting into transportation. The latest hurdle hasn’t affected his love for his job and the company he works for.
"They watch out for their drivers, they take care of their drivers," Farnam said.
But many truck drivers had no choice but to wait because they had products they had to off-load.
"If you’re using it, you bought it, we brought it to you," Kory said
On average about 30,000 vehicles cross Snoqualmie Pass every day and 8,000 are freight. As of Tuesday night, WSDOT said drivers will need chains on their tires unless it is 4 wheel drive or all-wheel drive.