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"Ice Pilots": New Show Premiers This Week

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Brady Lane
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#1 Posted: 11/16/2009 09:32:36

 A new show called "Ice Pilots" premiers this week on History Television (Wed. 7p.m./10 p.m. ET/PT).  Looks interesting.



Here's an excerpt from their site http://www.icepilots.com/show.php :
 
"Ice Pilots NWT is a 13-episode real-life docu-series about an unorthodox airline in the Canadian North. Yellowknife-based Buffalo Airways flies WWII-era propeller planes – big old aircraft built by "Rosie the Riveter" that have remained virtually unchanged over the years. Rookie pilots defy bone-chilling temperatures to fly cargo and passengers through blizzards, breakdowns and transatlantic journeys. It's an impossible job in a merciless place.
 
New recruits come to slog it out on the ramp in -30°C weather to earn a chance to fly planes that most airlines scrapped long ago. Classics like the Douglas DC-3 and DC-4 and the Curtiss C-46 Commando – the very planes that once ferried troops and supplies in WWII."

 



EAA 808095 Multimedia Journalist
Kevin Brown
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#2 Posted: 11/16/2009 10:49:36

Sweeet!  Buffalo Airways is legendary.  Can't wait for this!



"Aviation is proof that given the will, we have the capacity to achieve the impossible." Eddie Rickenbacker
Jessica Jones
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#3 Posted: 11/16/2009 16:54:30

Aw, too bad I don't have this channel.



"For once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been and there you long to return."
Adam Smith
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#4 Posted: 11/16/2009 18:57:01

I think I read it was going to be streamed on their website.

EAA purchased a giant stash of B-17 parts from Buffalo Airways a few years back.  The team who went up to Yellowknife to load the semi's returned full of stories about a very unique operation.    I believe Joe McBryan has over 10,000 hours logged in a single DC-3 in their fleet.



Heather Gollnow
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#5 Posted: 11/17/2009 16:44:08

I just went to DVR this... didn't realize History Channel and History Television were different!  Oh well, I guess I'll just have to wait til they post the episodes online. 
goggles



The engine is the heart of an airplane, but the pilot is its soul. ~Walter Raleigh
Chuck Drake
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#6 Posted: 11/18/2009 10:45:32

Boy doesn't  that clip doesn't want to make you drop everything and grab your tool box and run up north !  I sure miss being a freight dog and working on the ugly side of the field! .  Yahoo!



Brady Lane
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#7 Posted: 11/18/2009 11:41:51

Chuck, you are so right.  The trailer does make me want to head up north and see this kind of extreme flying first hand. 

Adam, did these guys also used to have some B-17's in their fleet?   And where did you see that the video was going to be streamed?  I checked on both their site  and history television 's site, but couldn't find it.  It's probably right under my nose though.  I don't get the channel and would love to watch the whole episode online if possible.

 



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Adam Smith
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#8 Posted: 11/18/2009 13:40:48

From Avweb:

Talks are under way to distribute the show in the U.S. and in the meantime the show will be streamed on the Ice Pilots Web site

I don't think Buffalo Airways ever operated B-17s.  My recollection is that Buffalo purchased a giant warehouse full of parts from Aero Union, which included the B-17 stuff we eventually acquired for EAA.  BTW this is one of the best purchases we ever made, invaluable in getting Aluminum Overcast back in the air after her undercarriage collapse in 2004, and will help keep her flying hopefully for decades to come.



Janet Davidson
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#9 Posted: 11/18/2009 15:19:11

 

"The team who went up to Yellowknife to load the semi's returned full of stories about a very unique operation."

 

Actually, it was Red Deer, Alberta, halfway between Calgary and Edmonton.  Joe told us he had always wanted to fly/own a B17 and it was the only heavy taildragger still flying that he'd never flown, so when the parts came up for sale, he bought them incase he ever actually got a B17. 

 

There were 5 PBY Catalinas on his ramp, assorted C46s and about 12 A26s left over from firefighting duties.  I don''t think he owned the A26s, but he owned all the other stuff, and kept trying to persuade us we needed to buy something - PBY or C46 off him.  I think we would have done so happily if we'd had the money!  The hangars were lined from floor to roof, wall to wall with shelving full of aeroplane parts.  The guys were sent into one of the old mess buildings (its an ex-military base) with directions to help themselves to any tools they thought might be useful.  They came back laden, like kids coming out of a candy store.  They said it was the same in the mess building - floor to ceiling, wall to wall shelving filled with old instruments & tools. 

 

Joe ate with us one night, and was fascinating to listen to.  I wish he would come to AV, and do a "Freight-bird in review" version of the "Warbird in review".  His stories just for that evening were amazing.  He certainly has lived a very full life.  The rest of the time we worked with his brother, another older gentleman, and a cat that was about the size of a large wolf.  He was very protective of the morning donuts....and quite partial to them....woe betide anyone who got between him & his donut...  loopy

 

I'm really looking forward to seeing this program - I hope the makers of it do Joe, Buffalo Airways and all the team justice.



Brady Lane
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#10 Posted: 11/18/2009 15:52:28

Janet,

I love your idea — "Freight-bird in Review."  Joe seems like the kind of guy I could listen to for hours.  We should invite him down this summer. 

And I'm not typically a cat person, but a cat the size of a large wolf would be impressive!

 

 




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Tom Robertson
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#11 Posted: 11/18/2009 16:38:52

I was hoping to see the Ice Pilots tonight but I can't find the listing in the Direct TV schedule. Is this exclusive to Canada? HMMMMM



John Mahoney
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#12 Posted: 11/18/2009 18:24:18

I too was hoping to see it. I searched all over my listings (DISH) and found the same problem. There really is a difference between "History Channel" and "History Television". Let's hope it gets picked up by someone else.



Tracy Buttles
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#13 Posted: 11/19/2009 05:54:28

I tried to watch that first episode this mornigng but the  history teelvision web site said that it wasnt available in this county!!!!

maybe one of are freinds up nort  can put it on youtube or something so us down here can see it .

im sure the airplane will be good to see but im sure they will overhype trouble or have some arguing too make it like americam chopper or somthing !!!!

Tracy



Christopher Moon
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#14 Posted: 11/19/2009 21:04:47

ICE PILOTS episode # 1 is online at http://ow.ly/DQip. And it is worth watching.

How about a one engine approach in IMC and snow to minimums in a C-46. This show has it.




Chris Moon - Cardinal Flyer
Janet Davidson
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#15 Posted: 11/20/2009 08:21:13

Thanks for that  

 

Really looking forward to watching it.



Marl Halbrook
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#16 Posted: 11/20/2009 12:06:57

Page says it is not available in the US----maybe another site??



Marl Halbrook, EAA TC/FA Albany GA Starduster Too BK-1 Beta
Paul Dowgewicz
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#17 Posted: 11/20/2009 12:10:19

 I believe the way to do this is to set your internet connection to go through a proxy server in Canada.

Unfortunately, it needs to be a socks5 proxy because of the flash content. Because of the high bandwidth, I haven't been able to find a free one yet.



Adam Smith
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#18 Posted: 11/20/2009 19:53:11

I have got it working from the USA by using the Foxy Proxy add-on in the Firefox browser.

use proxy 132.213.9.222

Port 80

Looks good so far  biggrin



Adam Smith
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#19 Posted: 11/26/2009 07:16:55

Seems to have been well-received up north...From the "Edmonton Journal"- 25 November:

Pilots kept Leno under the radar

Some takeoff, eh? Ice Pilots NWT, History Television's bracing docu-reality series about a renegade airline that links remote communities across Canada's north using vintage Second World War-era transport planes, roared to a ratings record last week, with 459,000 viewers.

That was the most viewers to watch a homegrown-series debut in History's history. To put that number in perspective, last week's audience for Ice Pilots NWT topped that of time-slot rival The Jay Leno Show( 306,000), even though Ice Pilots aired on a specialty channel and Leno aired on a conventional broadcast network.

In other words, "Buffalo Joe" McBryan, son Mikey McBryan and the hard-working guys and gals who manhandle DC-3s and DC-4s through some of the world's most frightful flying conditions drew a bigger crowd than Leno's celebrity gossip and chit-chat.

And small wonder. Ice Pilots NWT is a lot of fun to watch, fascinating and entertaining by turns, and a lot easier to watch from the comfort of home than to suffer through in person. As tonight's followup episode shows-- Ice Pilots is scheduled to fly another 12 weeks, right up to the time the Winter Olympics will distract viewers' minds from the weather outside-- the opener was no fluke.

Tonight's episode, Pre-Christmas Rush, finds the mercury dipping below-40, as remote communities in the Mackenzie Valley are running desperately low on supplies. Just as important, families are waiting for their Christmas presents, even as a gruff mechanic and a Curtiss-Wright C-46 flight crew are stranded in a motel room in Norman Wells, with a busted engine outside and a serious case of cabin fever brewing inside.

Ice Pilots NWT is white-knuckle viewing at its best, exciting without being voyeuristic or manipulative. Based on its early ratings, it might also be the biggest homegrown TV success story since Project Runway Canada.

And why not? These runways are real. (History Television--8 &11 p.m.)



Drew Fultz
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#20 Posted: 12/9/2009 03:07:17

I also got FoxyProxy and it worked fine once I figured out how to change the IP and port number.

P.S. I really like this show!!



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