Your Road Map to Reading Road Maps

Why We're Celebrating this Obscure National Day

We all love our GPS systems. But we can’t forget that road maps are still very important. GPS systems have changed the way truckers navigate the open roads. However, car-based satellite mapping systems don’t always work for truck drivers. They don’t take into account the important things truck drivers need to know, like restricted routes, low clearance, and weigh station locations.

On April 5th we’re celebrating “National ‘Read a Road Map’ Day!” because we know that map reading is becoming a lost art, that folding a road map should be considered a sport, and that you really can travel without satellites beaming directions to you from space (science!).


GPS and other tech systems will get you where you need to go, sure. But the experience of listening to a robotic voice does not compare with pulling out a paper map and marking your own route. Maps also make great keepsakes and serve as great reminders of past trips and the beautiful parts of America that you have visited. Driving over the road and long-haul as a CDL driver is a wonderful way to see a lot more of this magnificent country that we call home.


The United States is a vast land that was made to be driven, and our roadways through the heart of the country are second to none. Even though you can get the info that you need from your smartphone, or in-cab GPS system, it is always fun to pull out a road map and relive the navigation process of a bygone era.

On a more serious note, map reading is an essential skill to have if you are out of range of GPS service. Having updated road maps for your travel also provide a back-up. Luckily they require no connection or power source, other than your own brain. Of course, the most challenging part of using an old style road map is folding the darn thing back up when you are finished with it!

Looking for a truck driver specific maps with updated restricted routes, low clearance, and weigh station locations? Check out these Motor Carrier map books from Rand McNally!


Choosing a new career as a trucker can create a lot of opportunities in your life, and to reach your full potential, a strong training foundation is essential. Truckers have a large amount of independence, are paid well, and enjoy seeing the heartland of America. If you pursue a career as a local driver, you will learn a lot about your own area that you would never know about otherwise. Trucking is also a great way to meet a lot of different people and you will enjoy the camaraderie of your fellow drivers.

Contact Heavy Metal Truck Training to learn more about our Minneapolis training facility, and how we can teach you all of the important trip-planning skills necessary for a successful trucking career!