Abandoned Plane Wrecks of the North

I am taking a few liberties here, because this is not in the far up in the Arctic North, but rather in a remote part of British Columbia. Its remoteness is a key factor here but also a tribute to the the endeavour of a rather intrepid young man (and equally so can be said for his partner) to head out in the wilderness!.

Crash site of HU-16 7237; report by Kyle G. Cameron
This post, 'Operation Annette', was shared on Facebook in 08Aug2017, but I came across it in Jan.2019.

Crash site of HU-16 7237; report by Kyle G. Cameron

Kyle wrote: "Three day hike into Grumman HU-16 Albatross, 7237 near Sloko Lake, BC.
The aircraft crashed with the loss of three of the six onboard, June 15, 1967 while on a search for another aircraft.
Radio Operator, Robert W. Striff Jr 26, Pilot Lt Robert D. Brown 30 and Copilot Lt. David J. Bain lost their lives. Remarkably, Thomas Graham 27, an electronics tech, Gene P. Blay 37, an aircraft mechanic and Mike Korhonen 25, of the Alaska State Police survived the accident.
The aircraft they were searching for, an Aeronca Sedan on its way from the Lower '48 to Juneau, turned out to have suffered a relatively minor accident due to fuel starvation; (the Aeronca Sedan is rather notorious for fuel venting system failures causing the gas to siphon out in flight). In the resultant forced landing, the Aeronca overturned in a swamp and the father / daughter crew walked 15 miles over three days, out to the Atlin Road."

Crash site of HU-16E 7237; report by Kyle G. Cameron
Grumman HU-16E Albatross, 7237 (c/n G-324)

This is the report on Aviation Safety Network (ASN), as per 26Jan2019:
"Crashed into ridgeline of a mountain in Alaska while searching for a downed aircraft. The three flight crew members were killed. The three spotters in the cabin survived." ¬A little less detailed than above and not entirely correct: 'spotters' versus their jobs, although they may have acted as spotters from the cabin and their location was probably what caused them to survive.

Location: Atlin Provincial Park, BC (west of Haines,AK and Skagway,AK)
Departure airport: Annette Island Airport, AK (ANN/PANT)


Below item by Ken Ettie started this page and over the years I've added items at the bottom of the page, but from now on I wil add the on top.
Starting with this item shared by Christopher Lennie in Aug.2018

DC-3 crashsite 30 miles south of Stokes Point
DC-3 crashsite 30 miles south of Stokes Point
Chris wrote: "Looks like I came across a DC-3 crash". Story is it was on a resupply flight from arctic village
to DEW line site Bar-B (Stokes Point) with no fatalities. But I’m unable to confirm this story.... Can you?"

Story is it was on a resupply flight from arctic village to DEW line site Bar-B (stokes point) with no fatalities.
"I took these photos yesterday (12Aug2018); the info was word of mouth, local rumours."
Compared to a much smaller photo (below) it seems the fuselage was broken in two, the aft section has disappeared.

Story is it was on a resupply flight from arctic village to DEW line site Bar-B (stokes point) with no fatalities.

Iinitially I had trouble finding the location on Google Maps and Google Earth Pro of Stokes Point (Airport),
but Wikipedia provided the coördinates:
Stokes Point Airport
Chris: "This wreck is at 69.13N 139.20W, which is east of the firth river, not west of it and south of Herschel.

I (webmaster) spent some considerable time on this, and I did manage to find the story behind this wreckage (mainly thanks to the earlier work by one Doug Davidge).
First I came up nil:
www.baaa-acro.com/crash/crash-douglas-dc-3-yukon-8-killed RCAF, no tail - wrong date: 04Nov71 ! No other suitable Yukon crashes on this website, none; this is relevant as Chris has doubts about the identity of 'his' crashsite being N75391 - based on how the parts are distributed compared to the small photo of Interior Airways N75391 below.

Doug Davidge stated on lswilson.dewlineadventures.com/comments/ (20Jan2018):
"I was too young to experience life on the DEW-line but grew up hearing 'BAR-C'…a place where my Brother spoke of when he worked with Imperial Oil Ltd. out of Inuvik and Tuk.
Later, my work took me to Shingle Point and Stokes Point; once camping at Stokes in the mid 1980s for about 6 days. Of late I am trying to track down more information about an Interior Airways DC-3 that crashed in January, 1958 en route to or from one of the sites back to Fairbanks.
There appears to be all but one photo of this accident site from about 1962, taken by a helicopter pilot who was working with geologists at the time mapping the north Yukon.
There is a recent blog on the story (prepared by a good friend, Murray Lundberg - explorenorth.com/wordpress/another-dc-3-crash-site-yukon/) with the limited information we have so far.
It seems few people actually know about the wreck, so now we are trying to figure out exactly where it took place and if the wreckage could still be there or if it was salvaged/cleaned up.

The Wordpress article included several images to illustrate the research; I've compiled them in one image.
The article is from The Fairbanks Miner
Details on the crash of DC-3 Interior Airways during Dewline operations
That small photo of the crashsite is probably from a book by Kit Cain ('Flying the Yukon's Bush', 2006)
Further down are more exact map indications and the lat/long coördinates

Determined to be C-47D N75391 c/n 26366/14921 (ex/ USAF C-47B 43-49105)
Mostly reported as 'Destroyed at Aklavik, 16Jan58'

Article in the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner of 17Jan1958. "Interior DC-3 Crashes; Two Aboard Safe.
Two crew members aboard am Interior Airways DC-3 airplanes which crash landed late last night on the Canadian Arctic coast were alive and unhurt.
James Magoffin, president of Interior Enterprises, said here this morning. The plane made a forced landing about 10 p.m. some 15 miles south of Herschel island while on its wayto Alaska after flying freight to a Canadian DEW line site. Magoffin said he had no information on extent of damage to the aircraft.
Earl Casellius, pilot, and Roy Morgan, co-pilot, were spotted at 9:20 a.m. today by an Interior Airways search plane which left Fairbanks at 4 a.m. to hunt for them."

Doug Davidge found a basic record of the crash at the Aviation Safety Network: '..it records the registration as
N75391, a C-47D built in 1944 (construction number 26366; but other sites disagree with that construction number’s history)'.
Note from Webmaster: Air Britain's most authoritative book 'The Douglas DC-1/DC-2/DC-3 - The First Seventy Years' quote N75391 as c/n 26366 with Interior Enterprises Inc, crashed 16Jan1958 Aklavik, Yukon.

Dirk Septer wrote (20Jan2018) as a reaction on the Wordpress article: "One summer flying into the Firth River strip, the pilot pointed out this DC-3 to me and gave me a lat and long of it. I was hoping to get some pictures of it on the return flight, but unfortunately the wreckage was obscured by clouds."
I spent a long time looking at partially hi-res resolution (wego.here.com) but so many snow pockets remain in the imagery, it's a needle in a haystack. Apparently it is supposed to be on a "slope of the mountain about 50 feet below its summit". But that did not help me.

The book 'Triumph Over Turbulence' (written by the founder of Interior Airways, Jim Magoffin) has more details about the DC-3 N75391 wreck, but obviously not all information is correct.
Magoffin mentions the accident on page 124 and includes a copy of the newspaper story, reporting the accident at the time. He states "In a hair-raising brush with possible tragedy, the plane drifted a bit south of course and, in doing so, scraped the top of a snow-covered ridge. The plane came to a spectacular sliding stop that bent the props and put indentations on the skin of the plane’s belly."
Magoffin then goes on to say in the next paragraph on page 125, "We were able to subsequently repair the DC-3 with much difficulty and put it back on the job."
This is obviously not correct, although parts may have been salvaged.

On Facebook 'Dewline', Doug Davidge wrote (05Apr18)
"Trying to find out the fate of an Interior Airways DC-3 ( N75391) that crashed in 1958 during a re-supply flight from Barter Island to BAR-2 and BAR-1.
On the west bound leg between BAR-2 and BAR-1, it clipped a hill top South of Herschel Island and belly landed on the hillside.
Both crew survived but the plane was badly damaged.
Wreck was photographed in 1962 by Kit Cain (pilot, Klondike Helicopters), but no recent information can be found about the wreck i.e. is it still there or was it salvaged?"

aviation-safety.net/database/ details on the 1958 vent:
"The captain used the nondirectional radio homing beacon (DF) for navigation while flying over a remote area of Canada. He had not been advised that this facility is frequently unreliable at levels due to terrestrial conditions and normal atmospheric disturbances.
The aircraft deviated from the planned course and crashed in a ridge, some 50 feet from the top."
In the book 'Triumph over Turbulence' Jim Magoffin claimed the root cause was the novelty the CAA insisted on all take offs, landings, radio calls, to be logged by the crew - done in darkness this required putting the lights on in the cockpit, spoiling the crew's nightvision and this caused the aircraft to drift of course unnoticed and crash...

Interiot Airways DC-3 crashsite(s)
I think the initial coördinates of N75391's crashsite was poorly mapped; just like the documentation of 'near Aklavik'.
Personally I don't think there are two DC-3 crashsites we're speaking off here. But that's just my two cents...
Doug Davidge shares my theory: "My guess is very strong winds have caused the destruction and re-distribution
of the pieces." Mind, there's a gap of 1962-2018, that's 56 years last time I counted!
Wind & water move entire mountains, admittedly over longer period of time, but I think that is the case here too.

Sat imagery using ArcGIS, showing a wingsection on 69.13N 139.20W
On the small insert there seems to be a trail of a landslide or track of smeltwater, maybe a cause of parts moving.

X marks the spot, zooming out from the ArcGIS imagery above.

DC-3 crashsite, photos by Christopher Lennie

EMAIL me for any more information or photos you may be able to provide regarding this event; thank you.

Ken Ettie wrote me in Feb.2010:
"In my career, as a Canadian Flight Service Specialist, I have been involved in SAR operations many times. This involved co-ordinating with the canadian military Search and Rescue out of Trenton and Victoria.
While talking with one of the officers from the Victoria unit, he informed me that they have a data bank of most of the Canadian crash sites that have been reported and investigated over the years. Have you ever approached them to see if they would share this information?" (No, I have not - Webmaster)

"Additionally, having perused your website, I did not see mention of the DC-3 that is sitting in the Tundra off the end of the Sachs Harbour runway or of the Lancaster bomber Avro Lincoln (correction by Ken Ettie) that sits in the lake at Watson Lake, Yukon.
Apparently there is also a B-17 in a lake, north east of Whitehorse (was the subject of a hush-hush recovery attempt about 10 yeras ago, allegedly). It is supposedly quite intact.

There is also a Goose or Gosling at the bottom of a pot hole lake near Beaver Creek and was checked out by divers. It apparently still had all of its contents, including unopened bottles of wine. It is frequently reported during search and rescue ops, as are the two DC-3s that have been mentioned on your web site."
Ken (NAV CANADA retired)

Reactions welcome EMAIL (but sure to state the -url- (link) and subject!!!)

Beaver Creek location against Wellesley Lake

Ken Ettie also wrote me in june 2017, making me aware of this 2009 event:
RCMP seize salvaged bomber -by Tristin Hopper, 05Jun2009
Part of the text reproduced here (I have no photos to share):
"An Alberta couple’s attempt to salvage a piece of Second World War aviation history has been cut short by Yukon authorities.
Early this week, RCMP officials seized the nose of a B-26 Martin Marauder that the couple had salvaged from Watson Lake.
They did not have a permit or permission to salvage or remove wreckage from the area, the RCMP declared.
The RCMP and heritage officials agreed to seize the artifact before it could be moved out of the territory.

Several years ago, private salvagers pulled a P-39 Airacobra out of Carpenter Lake, NWT, but were stopped by government officials before they reached the US border.
Old airplanes are hot commodities these days.
After a year of legal wranglings, the Airacobra was successfully transferred to a US-based restoration facility.
More than 7.000 US-built planes were flown through the Yukon en route to the Soviet Union during the WW2.

The salvaged B-26 was part of a flight of six Siberia-bound aircraft that set out in January 1942.
The crew was quickly rescued, the wrecked plane was stripped for parts and, when the spring melt came, it broke through the ice and sank to the bottom.

Another B-26 crashed in Whitehorse, where it now lies buried under the runway.
Only one of the original six Marauders made it safely to Fairbanks.
Of the aircraft that came down on the BC-Yukon border, all 3 have found their way into the hands of collectors.
One has been restored to flight capability and is housed at the 'Fantasy of Flight museum' in Polk, Florida.
The 2 others are being restored at sites in Pima, Florida California, and Akron, Ohio.
Watson Lake’s B-26 belongs in a Yukon museum, rather than a museum down south.

Watson Lake is a key target for vintage-aircraft hunters, mainly because of the area’s sheer volume of air crashes."


While browsing my database (16Nov16) for random updates I came across, while googling, images that served as an update for a Douglas DC-3 (C-47D 43-49403, c/n 26664/15219) wreck near Gustavus, Glacier Bay in Alaska.
C-47 wreck at Gustavus, Glacier Bay, Alaska

The plane crash was on the 23Nov1957, four people died, seven survived.
The photos included following information:'Location: Gustavus,Glacier Bay,Alaska,USA' and 'Date taken: 9th July 2011'.
Link (for images for sale): www.alamy.com/stock-photo-1957-dc-3-plane-crash-gustavus-glacier-bay-alaska-usa-41261601.html

Crash report on Aviation Safety Network.

C-47 wreck at Gustavus, Glacier Bay, Alaska


B-17 crashsite at Coffee Creek - photo by Doug Davidge
Doug Davidge sent me this photo and email in June 2014:
"I came across the email from Mr. Ken Ettie in 2010. I don’t know Ken at all, but was intrigued by his comments about a B-17 in a lake NE of Whitehorse.  I am not sure where this could be? 
A B-17 crash landed SW of Whitehorse, on Bennett Lake near Carcross (1940s), but it was later retrieved from shallow waters. 
Attached is my most recent photo of a B-17 crash near Coffee Creek, Yukon (1952), at high elevation south of Dawson City. This photo was taken yesterday (28Jun14 - Webmaster), while working in the area.
This Boeing B-17 was taking part in a search for a RCAF Mitchell that had gone missing the summer of 1952.

And here is a 2017 response to the B-17 at Bennett (or Bennet) Lake, also by Ken Ettie, he emailed me this links:

B-17 salvaged at Bennet Lake
From: www.virtualmuseum.ca/sgc-cms/histoires_de_chez_nous-community_memories/.........
Yukon Transportation Museum, Whitehorse, Yukon Territory

Returning to Mr. Ettie’s earlier note: the only thing I can think of, that relates to his story, is about a B-24 (B-25? -
) in a lake NW of Whitehorse; several groups spent a great deal of time and money searching a lake in the late 1980s and 1990s with no reported results (not that I know of at least). 
The location was Wellesley Lake. 
Funny thing though: to date there is absolutely no evidence the USAAF ever lost a B-24 in the Yukon, missing, crashed or otherwise!?!
Maybe someone can correct me on this. 
I often wonder if the B-24 story was somehow mixed up with the C-54 at Snag story (about half way down this page): slightly different time frames, both large 4 engine aircraft and Wellesley Lake is very close to the expected flight path of the missing C-54; which was the perfect place to make an emergency landing, on solid lake ice in the middle of a Yukon winter."
Reactions welcomed (email -state url of this page for reference please-)

Robert Holden responded Jan.2015: "With reference to a downed B-25 Mitchell bomber near Whitehorse, YT in 1952. I was stationed there in 1952 with the RCMP.  We received an alert regarding this plane and I was a spotter, I believe on a Lancaster, for two days. Snow conditions made it impossible to see.
I had a particular interest in the search as the pilot was Robin Hooper, who was a school friend.  We both lived in Cowichan Bay, BC.
They were on excercises I believe, from CFB Cold Lake (Alberta) or possibly from CFB Moose Jaw (Saskatchewan).
I trust this will help in the confusion weather this was a US or Canadian plane."

In May 2014 I received following contribution to the website from Marguerite Randall:
"For your use: the year was 1938 and the pilot was Ted Stull, my father. A recap of the crash was in the May 4, 1988 Northern Miner (''Odds and Sods').
Crash at Favourable Lake, Canada
A profile of Wings is outlines on my page Photos by Friends & Guests (39). Ted Stull is mentioned too.
The crash site is mentioned as Favourable Lake, which I found in NW Ontario (Red Lake region). There was mining industry nearby.
Marguerite added: "We recently found another article, in the Red Lake District News, dated July 23, 1997, that states that the accident happened near the Dianna Gold Mine and that an old road led them 5 miles to a Long Lake General Store run by Leith Campbell. They all walked to the store and then sent a teamster with a team of horses and a sleigh to pick up the baggage and freight."

Crash at Favourable Lake, Canada
In this picture the man sitting on the wing is Roy Brown (CAHF) .

So what happened to Ted Stull? I found another mauled ocr-scanned text (of the Winnipeg Free Press, 1956) Prairie Flying Pioneer E. W. Stull Dies At 52 - VANCOUVER (CP).
E. W. (Ted) Stull, 52, a well-known figure in Canadian commercial aviation, died here Saturday after a brief illness. Mr. Stull, a veteran of more than 30 years in air transport, was "Western Region Operations Manager" for Trans-Canada Air Lines.

Marguerite added: It was a Bellanca Airbus, CF-BBJ.
The story in the Northern Miner refers to 'the eggs made it to the mine, the plane didn’t!'


Crash at Favourable Lake, Canada
The engine

Crash at Favourable Lake, Canada
No reason to presume any of the wreckage remains on site after all these years.

I found some OCR-scanned text, badly mauled, from the Amarillo Tribune (copy of 22Feb1938):
"Plying the mail and flying passengers in the bush country. No weather reports, no beam flying, no radio, no automatic pilots. "Well, we didn't even have maps."
Finally, his own company started, with a war buddy, Milt Ashton, as general manager and with a fellow pilot [Glenn Morris? some text unreadable], Ted Stull, as vice president in charge of maintenance.
They have ten planes now, carrying from four to 12 passengers on regular schedules, but most of their business is freight. They carry everything, from Bibles to tractors.
"We also," he says, "got a share In a gold mine.
A while ago, a sourdough got hold of Ted Stull and said he had a hunch about a place up along the Sachlgo River. Ted put up $250 and we put up the transportation. To file a claim you've got to make a shot of doing some work on it, so this fellow just goes through the motions because he's not ready to work it yet, runs a diamond drill down any old where and dulls out $900-a-ton ore.
Ted's got back about $150,000 of his $250 already, and the company's took in about $40,000.
"He stopped talking for a long minute. "You know," he said suddenly, "It makes me homesick to think of what's back there. The house and the car, the fellows all around, the bush country with its miners and trappers , Hunyaks, Canucks, breeds, the airplanes coming down on lakes lost from the world.'
At Red Lake, they damn near needed a traffic cop last summer. An average of one plane tying up at the dock every six minutes, 16 hours a day, all summer long. Busiest seaplane port in the world!
That sure is great country for a man to make a living." 

Here´s another crashsite of which I presume the wreckage is now long gone, but the details are worthy of mentioning here. George Chomkovski sent this photo to me to help find the background of this situation and Gordon Olafson provided the details, almost a year later (Dec.2014).
CF-SON crashed in the woods of Manitoba
Found FBA-2C CF-SON crashed just north of the town of Riverton MB Canada. Must have been some time before 1967. George added: "the crash was about a half mile east of the Icelandic river, by the sea plane base."
Al Nelson wrote in Feb.2014:" I have some enquiries out to some of my buddies for info on
the Found, CF-SON, but I think it was probably owned by Pete Lazarenko's Northland Airlines."

Gordon Olafson wrote the definitive answer to this:

"The Found that crashed north of Riverton was trying to land in the Icelandic River (in Riverton) after dark. He had passed over town heading south, but turned back due to the darkness. The Icelandic River was a well know commercial floatplane base at the time. 
The assumption was that he hit the bank of the river, while trying to land, as he wasn’t familiar with the river.
He was landing toward the town (southerly direction) and on his go-around he turned right 180 degrees and was heading north when he crashed into some tall spruce trees.
My uncle was operating a dragline, a kind of digger, which had lights on the long boom so he could work in the dark. He was repairing a ditch and he said the aircraft came very close overhead and crashed into the trees on the other side of the road. 
He immediately went to help and amazingly there were no serious injuries! ;
He took the pilot and passengers (I think there were three in total) to the nearest hospital (Arborg, which is about 16 miles away) to get checked out. He left them at the hospital and came back to Riverton to see people still searching for the plane; many people had heard the aircraft go around with a high power setting, followed by the noise of the crash, followed by silence (only a mile north of town) and knew it was down...
Eventually the location of the aircraft, and the fact that the passengers were safely at the hospital, was communicated by word of mouth to the various searchers (no cell phones in those days).
Myself and a couple of friends were also driving around in my Volkswagen, looking in the fields for the airplane.
I went to see the aircraft in the morning: the wings were ripped off and the aircraft was lying on its right side, with the whole top of the cabin removed; it looked like it had been cut open as a display so you could see the inside of the airplane! ;
It had contacted tall spruce trees, which had resulted in a relatively slow deceleration, which was probably what saved them as this was just a small bluff of trees and the surrounding area was mostly farm and pasture land. If they had hit open ground they would have more likely suffered serious injuries or worse...
The aircraft was a total loss; if I remember well, it was nearly new then."


Felix Stadler wrote me in april 2014: "I have visited a few of those wrecks shown on your webpage 'Abandoned Wrecks' in the past, with the help of your page, and plan to visit more of them in the future.
There is a RCAF C-47A wreck near Port Hardy, Vancouver Island that I did not see mentioned anywhere on your page.
I visited it in March 2009 and took some pictures. The corresponding aviation-safety.net page complete with the exact location:
http://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=19440419-0 "

C-47 wreck near Port Hardy
In April 1944, the Dakota III FZ576 of 32 OTU crashed near Port Hardy, British Columbia.

C-47 wreck near Port Hardy

C-47 wreck near Port Hardy
Dakota 576 tribute, crashed 19Apr1944, while on training exercise. R.I.P.
For the crashdate, read on below!

C-47 wreck near Port Hardy

The actual crash date seems to be April 20th, though!
This was copied (26apr2014) from the RAFCommands forum
"I have the following details:
"On 19 April 1944 the Dakota III FZ576 of this unit took off from Patricia Bay airport in Sidney on a simple navigation exercise. A few hours later, in thick weather and low on fuel, it was destroyed when it flew into high ground 4 miles north of Port Hardy, British Columbia, as they were making a second final approach after overshooting at Port Hardy Airport. Both pilots, Plt Off James Merville Talbot and Plt Off Tom Story Wardlow, were killed while the wireless operator/air gunner, Sgt Thomas Robert Moss, survived. Despite being badly injured he was found the following day wandering through the forest. He died in 1997.

Sources used:

But my problem is that about half of these sources put the crash on the 19th and the other half on the 20th. The latter included the CWGC and the RCAF serial sites by Mr Walker, so I would rather believe them.
My guess is that the Dakota took off late in the 19th for a night navigation exercice and crashed in the early hours of the 20th, but I would like to have confirmation of this."

This received the following reply:
"I have the accident record cards for Dakota FZ576.
The crash happened at 00:57 hours on the 20th of April, 1944.
To make a long story short, the crew became lost and finally picked up the Port Hardy Beacon at around mid-night. They were instructed to land at Port Hardy and the rest is, as they say, 'history'. "

Felix Stadler has an inspiring website (landscape, transport, architecture, misc); click on the link www.555nm.de or:


The Arctic North (northern parts of Canada and Alaska) is a cruel environment for men and machine; for planes it is no different. The weather creates all sorts of hazards, the terrain offers its own variety of opportunities for disaster.
Men are prone to make mistakes and machines are bound to fail at some point. Here are some of the results. I hope we can establish the identities and the locations of these planes, help will be welcomed.


Wreck PBY Catalina near Tofino, BC
Jason Pineau published this beautiful photo on his Flickr account (link) and added following information:
"PBY Canso from World War II. Parked on the side of a hill near Tofino, BC."
David McIntosh made a video profile and can be seen on YouTube - his photos HERE..
Identity of this plane is: PBY-5A Canso (Catalina) RCAF 11007.
If you intend to hike up there, this may be helpful:
or thus YouTube video 'on the bomber trail' by Wayne Stadler https://youtu.be/qUz9WiWhQac (the Canso has a lot more grafitti on it, video published 27Sep2016).
Dirk Septer wrote an article about this Canso A RCAF 11007: Crash site of Royal Canadian Air Force Canso A 11007 revisited, by Dirk Septer 2009 (.pdf format)
Warning: it is only a 45 minute hike, but one could easily get lost and some people have...


Cessna T50 near Ft Yukon, wreckage

Dietmar wrote me in Sept.2012:
"One plane you might want to include is this unidentified Cessna T50 'Bamboo Bomber', near Fort Yukon (north of Fairbanks,AK).
The plane is too small for the ASN database, but what I learned from a pilot out of Fairbanks is this:
'The story I heard about the Bamboo Bomber was that there were two aboard and they made a forced landing when they ran out of gas in the 1960's. It was winter and they weren't injured, so they just walked to Ft. Yukon across the frozen river. I haven't found anyone who can confirm that, except one other pilot who just said there were
no injuries

I am working on photo-series called 'happy end' - abandoned airplanes where all survived the forced landings and were rescued from the remote location. The focus is how these beautiful airplanes (with amazing stories) now rest in vast and beautiful landscapes."
Dietmar Eckell

"A possible candidate for this airplane is c/n 3799/N58558 (ex UC-78, USAAF 42-58308). It was sold to Hawley Evans, dba Fairbanks Air Service, Fairbanks, AK, 31Mar54, and later modified with a right-side oversize cargo door and emergency window exit. Its last recorded annual inspection was 22-5-61.
It was reported 'burned completely and will not be rebuilt, 20May65'.
Its registration was cancelled 21May65.
The aircraft in the photo does not appear to have burned, but this is the only T-50 I have recorded whose history coincides with that of the mystery aircraft. "
Michael McMurtrey (oct.2012)


N91016 at Unmak Island

Andreas Morgner wrote me this in Feb.2008 :
"Saw a possible new addition to your Wrecks of the North -section...
Adjacent to the small Unagan village of Nikolski on the southwest end of Unmak Island (way out on the Aleutian chain) is a gravel airstrip once owned and run by the USAF. Off to one side is an old DC-3 that used to belong to Reeve Aleutian Airways (tail number N91016) that had a little mishap in 1965 and has been there ever since!
Accident report: http://aviation-safety.net
The above photo is from 2004 which I found here: http://kiska.giseis.alaska.edu/Input/celso/okmok/photos/2004Okmok62.html
Maybe someone else has a better photo of it?"

A few facts:
In February 1946, Bob Reeve received a call informing him that some ex USAAF C-47s and DC-3s were for sale. Reeve bought his first DC-3, N19906, for $20,000 with $3,000 down and the balance payable over 3 years. The cost of conversion to civilian standard was quoted at $50,000 but Reeve did the work himself at a cost of $5,000.
A strike by sailors on steamships operating between Seattle and Anchorage started on April 6 1946. Reeve, along with Merritt Boyle and Bill Borland began flying between Seattle and Anchorage, with stops at Juneau, Yakutat or Annette Island. Each trip carried a full load of 21 passengers and took and average of 9½ hours. In 53 days, 26 round trips were made.
In July 1946, DC-3 N91016 was purchased from the USAF. In the Winter of 1946/7, Reeve filed with the CAA for a licence to operate on the 1,783 miles (2,869 km) run between Anchorage and Attu, and in the summer of 1947 he was making weekly flights down the chain. Within a year, he was running a twice-weekly service, keeping all four DC-3s busy.
[Source Wikipedia ]

http://www.geocities.com/alaskanheritage/REEVEFLEET.html (dead link) - N91016 w/o Nikolski,AK 29May65

Wikipedia on Nikolski and Umnak Island

Michael Prophet made me aware of the fact the DC-3 actual featured on the photo shown on the Wikipedia page:

Michael Prophet also stumbled on this photo in an Airways magazine (March 2008), at the end of the runway.
photo by Penn Air's Burke Mees:


N91012 Reeve Aleutian
Alexandre Avrane of aerotransport.org pointed me to www.panoramio.com/photo/2598135 for a better picture of DC-3 N91016...
At above link there is also a much larger image to be seen.


DC-3 N91016 Reeve Aleutian at Nikolski Alaska
Michael Prophet spotted this August 2009 image of N91016 on a website dedicated to an adventurous and challenging boattrip, in the Arctic North, on www.sailaway.no (alas, the account is not in English).
Jan wrote: "Only two people on board: Katherine Maloney (American) and myself, Jan 
Fr. Mack (Norwegian). We came to the Aleuts from Japan, are presently still in Alaska and will start for Canada in a few weeks. And this is far from the only wrecked aircraft up here."
Photo © Jan Fr. Mack

And indeed another update from this remote location was sent to me by Knud Jorgensen in Feb.2014. He wrote: "Taken these pictures in august 2004, on a fish/hunt trip to Nikolski." Many thanks!

Reeve DC-3 at Nikolski

Note the wing is still in place here, compared to the image above
Reeve DC-3 at Nikolski




B-24 wreckage at Atka Island, Aleuts Jan Fr. Mack made me notice this WW2 B-24 bomber, the wreckage surviving at Atka Island (Aleuts), Alaska.

Jan wrote:
"The B24 is on Atka Island, one of the Aleuts, quite 
far to the west.
It is easily accessible if you come by boat. We know a crew that has been there, but unfortunately they have no blog."


Jason Streitmann wrote me in Nov.2011:
'The B-24's identity is: B-24D 40-2367, it force-landed at Bechevin Bay, Atka, Alaska on Dec 9, 1942. Assigned N58426 in 1984, with American Veterans Memorial Museum, CO, but not recovered.'
Source: http://www.joebaugher.com/usaf_serials/1940.html
Note: see Joe Baugher's note on a second set of reassigned numbers, from 24As to 24Ds.

Jason included these links, providing more details on the story of the crashlanding, its preservation and the background of use of this type of airplane:
www.adn.com/2008/12/28/636258/wwii-wreck-part-of-new-national.html (click on photo for more)
Also a video on YouTube of the crash site:


Mike Criss likes hiking. Hiking in remote areas. He lives in Wasilla,Alaska and on his hikes he comes across quite a few crashsites. Here is one he would like to know more about...
Crash site Merrill Pass

He wrote::
"I found some wreckage from a C-46 or C-47 in Merrill Pass, Alaska. Tail number is 348069, see the photo.
No info found on it. I even contacted Joseph Baugher.
I have several photos of the wreckage, radios, landing gear, engines and an entire wing.
Any information would be appreciated."

This website identifies it as a Douglas C-47, 43-48069. The crashdate was 21Apr52 but except'Alaska' that website offers no further details.

The website www.aerotransport.org has more details: 43-48069 is a C-47A-DK with msn/ manufacturer's serial number (aka construction number or c/n) 25330. It has a remark; 'ultimate fate obscured', well now we know..

The Air-Britain publication "DC-3, The First Seventy Years" has a detailed history-
C/n 25330 (reserialled from duplicated c/n 13885) was delivered with USAAF serial 43-48069 on 12Jul44. The book lists various units: 1 TC Baer 806 BU - Pope 349 TCG 30Jul44 - 812 BU 05Feb45 - CTC Pope 316 TCG 20Jun45 - ATS Davis Monthan 4105 BU 19Mar46 - AMC Van Nuys AMV CP 26Jan49 - NG Felts 116 FS 22Mar49 - Paine11O RCD 25May49 - Seattle-Paine 15Jul50 - ANG Seattle 110 RCD 21Sep50 - Portland 123 FS 07Nov50 - Seattle 110 RCD 25Dec50 - AMC Norton SBAMA 19May51 - AAC Elemendorf 110 RCD 06Nov51 - Accident 21Apr52 - Scrap 29May54"
No details about the crash itself or fatalities. The route via the Merrill Pass was well known even from the early days of the Alaska aviation pioneers. But this route has a reputation of the weather (visibilty & winds) turning on you, many time with a fatal outcome.
Russel 'Russ' Merrill was an early Alaskan aviation pioneer and he discovered this pass. Merrill disappeared in September 1929 on a flight to Bethel. The first aviation beacon in the Territory of Alaska was located at Merrill Field and was dedicated on September 25, 1932 to the honor of Russ Merrill. 

Scrap indeed...
Miek at the crashsite
Mike is a serious photographer, have a look at his website: www.akphotograph.com

DC-3 at Reindeer Lake, July 2006

DC-3 at Reindeer Lake In July 2006 a very unteresting thread was started by the King of Obsolete on www.avcanada.ca/forums. He published these 2 photos, with a link to the story on his website: http://kingofobsolete.ca/discovery_of_the_dc3_airplane_webpage.htm
The DC-3 crashed when take off failed; it flew for a lodge situated here. The King's website offers the link to the report on Aviation-Safety Network: it concerns here DC-3B-202A N139D (c/n 2027). Photos on the King's report shows Ozark- titles.
Found this website with a map of Reindeer Lake's location, assuming there is only one, in Saskatchewan.

Dirk Septer added to this (Oct.2006):
"The DC-3 at Reindeer Lake: damaged beyond repair July 10, 1969 at Malcolm Island, Saskatchewan.
This must be one of the hundreds of islands in this huge Reindeer Lake in northern Sask. I worked one winter north of there on Walleston Lake. We were flying out every morning on a Beaver on skis. In one of the doors was a metal tag from the Dutch firm of Aviolanda.
Most of the time we had a hard time finding a spot to land: thousands of migrating cariboo everywhere and where there weren't any of them the rough ice surface was often covered with windblown ice ridges, making landing very risky. A couple of mornings we went out on a Cessna 185 on skis: it's amazing how much abuse those landing gears can take!"

Read about how the King is planning to salvage this DC-3,
on www.douglasdc3.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=287

Joey "the King of Obsolete" has also found something written about this crash and the one mentioned further down, on Lynn Lake-

? No Photo, but in Propliner magazine no.111 -Summer 2007- I read about a Douglas EC-47 (42-24304) wreck surviving on Prince of Wales Island. The wreckage is located a little north of Klawock.
It had made a forced landing here on 25Oct68.
See also http://archive.ec47.com/oct2568.htm (www.ec47.com or www.ec47.com/ec-47-serial-numbers-and-data)-
'Crashed in Alaska en route to SEA, 25 Oct 1968. No casualties.'

Joe Baugher I found has on his website "24304 (msn 10166) delivered Sep 1943. No card. MAAAG Portugal 1956-1963. Converted to EC-47Q. Crash-landed in Alaska Oct 25, 1968. Crew uninjured. Crashed Jul 23, 1969 at Saint Grenier."
Since I could not find a 'Saint Grenier' in Alaska (one in France) I have to assume the forced landing resulted in repairs and a fly out of Prince of Wales Island!

But repairs at Prince of Wales Island is contradictory to the report on Aviation Safety Network (ASN)

Date: Friday 25 October 1968
Douglas EC-47Q
Operator: United States Air Force - USAF
Registration: 42-24304
C/n / msn: 10166
First flight: 1943
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney R-2000-4
Crew: Fatalities: / Occupants:
Passengers: Fatalities: / Occupants:
Total: Fatalities: / Occupants:
Airplane damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location: Big Salt Lake, Prince of Wales Island, AK (   United States of America)
Phase: Unknown (UNK)
Nature: Military
Departure airport: ?
Destination airport: ?
Crashed during ferry flight to Vietnam.


Also, when I went to another website / online database, B3A (BAAA ACRO), and searching on '1969 + France + DC-3/C-47' I found no results. Therefor I think the 2nd crash 23Jul1969 at Saint Grenier must be in error and 42-24304 found its demise at Prince of Wales in 1968. Fortunately without fatalities.

Photos of 42-24304 welcomed!

In Air-Britain's magnificent DC-3 publication there is no mention of that second crash and c/n 10166 has its ending at Prince of Wales Island in Alaska:
C/n 10166 42-24304

Here is proof by Google Earth it is still there...
C-47 location crash site Prince of Wales Island
The airport visible is Klawock Airport on Prince of Wales Island.
My theory, by location and position, is that C-47 42-24304 departed Klawock airport on that fateful day,
developed a problem and tried to turn around in an attempt to return to its point of departure but did not make it.
Note- I was told the GE image dated back to 2003, but if it survived 1968-2003, I am pretty sure it's still there!
Again, repeated request here: photos of 'recent' dates welcomed!!!


DC-3 crash This photo was published on that same forum and thread.
I have a feeling this concerns a DC-3/C-47 I paid a visit, see: C-47 in the Ruby Mountains.

Photo taken by 'Scudrunner'.

click here

Again on that same forum / thread, another contribution by the King of Obsolete:
"This Curtiss C-46 Commando in Churchill,Manitoba is set up with a picnic table and everything. Here is the picture thanks to "Google Earth. it is painted to look good and you walk inside on the plywood floor and sit in the seat for a picture; it is even on the Churchill tourist map."
Must admit I couldn't find it on Google Earth.
Aad van der Voet (Old Wings) identified it as Curtiss Commando C-46 C-GYHT c/n 22375.

This website www.churchillmb.net/~cccomm/pintrest.htm (dead link) provided the following:
"Miss Piggy - this is a crashed C46 aircraft that was operated by Lamb Air. She is found on the scenic route road along Hudson Bay shortly before it ends, close to the Institute of Arctic Ecophysiology. She is called Miss Piggy because she was able to hold so much freight and once did have pigs on board. On Nov 13 (19), 1979 she was flying a cargo of 1 skidoo and many cases of pop for the Arctic Co-op from Churchill to Chesterfield inlet. She lost oil pressure in her left engine shortly after departing Churchill. The crew of 3 tried to return the aircraft to the Churchill airport. They clipped hydro poles with one wing just before the IAEP lab and crash landed on the rocks there. 2 of the 3 crew were seriously injured. Investigation of the failed engine only revealed small metal chips through out. Her oringal paint of white and red with the Lamb Air markings has been painted over with gray for a movie."
Try this link: www.weirdgoogleearth.com/curtiss-c-46-commando/

Aviation-safety Network report on this C-46 crash.

The King sent me this picture, which 'kinda' makes me want to put on my boots, grab the camera and go there...
Lambair C-46 at Churchill

Here is Jack Lamb's book, the story of flying in the great white north:
www.artbookbindery.com/TheBookshelfComplete.htm (dead link by dec.2011)

My Life In The North is a story of Jack Lamb, his father Tom, and his five brothers. They owned and operated Lambair Limited from bases at The Pas, Thompson, and Churchill, Manitoba during the 1950’s, 60’s, and 70’s. They lived all their lives flying as bush pilots in Northern Manitoba and the Canadian Arctic. This book highlights some of their adventures while operating scheduled and charter flights. The company motto was "Do Not Ask Us Where We Fly - Tell Us Where You Want To Go". Recommended reading.

The famous Miss Piggy C46 plane crash site:
www.tc.gc.ca/PrairieAndNorthern/churchillairport/menu.htm (dead link)

See also my Page 7 of Photos by Friends and Guests, for 2 more photos of C-GYHT.

Jackie Robinson sent me a photo taken on 16Nov07:


Kelly Walker was at the scene, shortly after the Curtiss C-46 Commando crashed...
C-46 wreck at Churchill

Kelly wrote:
"I came across your page of abandoned plane wrecks of the north. I was there, the day it happened...
This photo was taken shortly after the crash.
The wreckage is still there (Feb.2010), most of the paint has eroded away. I've never seen any other pictures taken at the time of the crash.
The people you see walking around the wreckage in the picture, are Ministry of Transport personnel; they wouldn't let us go any closer than where we parked."

Here's as 2018 update, taken from a tv (SBS6) show where a Dutch tv celebrity, Humberto Tan, is treated
on a bucket list trip in exchange for his live story. Tan is an avid photographer and he voted for a trip to
the polar bears of Churchill. They also visited the wrecked C-46, these days decorated with some fine graffiti.
Curtiss C-46 Commando at Churchill, Manitoba

Curtiss C-46 Commando at Churchill, Manitoba
It seems Pat Perry is responsible for these fine murals. Compiled last year, I think, during the 'Murals for Oceans Street Art Festival' in Churchill. I gathered this was an initiative of the PangeaSeed Foundation, which is "..an international non-profit organization acting at the intersection of culture and environmentalism to further the conservation of our oceans." www.pangeaseed.foundation

Curtiss C-46 Commando at Churchill, Manitoba
Curtiss C-46 Commando at Churchill, Manitoba
Several muralists from around the world joined forces in Churchill and created 18 large-scale murals that promote
ocean conservation not only in Churchill, but worldwide. The paintings were completed in June 2017, leaving behind stunning murals on old buildings and giving us another reason beyond belugas, polar bears, and northern lights,
to explore Churchill. ¬https:www.bemytravelmuse.com/seawalls-murals-churchill-manitoba/

Mural by Pat Perry at Churchill,MBChurchill, Manitoba - June 26th, 2017.
"It is with my utmost humility that I ask for understanding and grace from the people of Churchill as to why I
couldn’t make something more cheery on the beloved Miss Piggy plane wreck, and it is my greatest wish that
you find a sincere expression of solidarity in the artwork I’ve made." ¬Pat Perry

Ray Stickel sent me this image in July 2007: C-46 crashsite in Manitoba

He wrote me:
"I snapped a picture of this Curtiss C-46 Commando in 1993.
It lies between Thompson and Pikwitonei in Manitoba Province."


Brian Maddison followed this up with the following:
"The wreck is C-FCZH, which ran out of fuel and landed in trees as per the description:
aviation-safety.net, which includes the following information:
'Curtiss C-46C CF-CZH (c/n 22515) of North Coast Air Services was written off 24km [15mls] SE of Thompson,MAN on 29Sep77 when it lost height due to engine problems and was force-landed in trees, while trying to return to the airport.' "



In Sep.2007 I received following email:
Allen Barrett sent me this in March 2009; he explains:
"With regards to your picture of C-46 'CZH in the bush by Bryce Bay near Thompson. I remember this well as I was airborne doing circuits at Thompson with a Len’s flying school C-150 as the events unfolded as detailed in other comments."
Just to confirm Brian's story: that is indeed the C-46 out of Thompson, Sep 29, 1977...
I was the Area Manager for Northern Manitoba for Transport Canada Flight Service Stations, based out of Thompson.
I remember that one accident well, as they had just left Thompson (YTH) on a fuel flight (they had bladders of fuel on board), when they declared problems because of an engine failure and were returning to YTH.
We had them on the VHF DF so as to keep a bearing on the flight (no radar them days) and when we could no longer communicate with them, a Transport Inspector (the name I cannot remember now), who was doing some inspecting in YTH, commandeered a chopper which was about to depart and flew the heading of our last bearing on CF-CZH and found the wreck within minutes! They landed and picked up the two pilots and flew them directly to the Thompson hospital. The injuries were fortunately minor.
I believe the time from impact to hospital was within 30 to 45 minutes!! Probably a record for search and rescue!
That afternoon we were treated to beers in the "Trappers" by the crew.
Tom Gibson (ret.).
("Oh, there is a C-46 on Southampton Island, three miles off the end of the runway, I walked out to it in 1964 when I was a Radio Operator in Coral Harbour,NWT)."


In Sep.2009 I received an email from the family of the captain flying CF-CZH during that incident:
Martin Bluethner had written the following and Elsa Bluethner forwarded this to me...
"This is what I remember Dad telling me about the crash....
They were doing a fuel run out of Thompson Manitoba when a short time after take off the starboard engine caught fire. They shut the engine off, feathered the prop and turned around. They were still loosing altitude, so the co-pilot went back to dump some fuel out the back door...
Just as Dad was thinking that it was time to switch fuel tanks on the port engine (the fuel gauge was not working) the co-pilot came running back into the cockpit screaming that there was a fire in the belly of the plane. The co-pilot went down into the belly with a fire extinguisher and flashlight looking for a fire. But there was none: it was the smoke from the starboard engine that was snaking its way under the belly of the plane that he saw when he opened the back door.
Shortly after all of that excitement, the port engine died of fuel starvation...
Dad tried to switch tanks and restart it but to no avail. They feathered the props on that engine and prepared themselves for impact. The co-pilot strapped himself in again and covered his face with pillows.
Dad said that it all went in slow motion from there. He said that the tops of the trees were very soft. He passed out on impact. When he came to, he was dangling from his seatbelt, a dozen feet above the ground, where the co-pilot was yelling at him, urging them to get away before the whole thing exploded!
He undid his belt and tumbled to the ground. They hobbled off through swamp, stopping once for Dad to wipe the jet fuel out of his backside, where a chopper came to meet them. The chopper did not actually land, it just hovered a foot above the swampy ground while they got on (Dad was impressed by this).
The co-pilot came out without a scratch. Dad walked away with a few less teeth and a gash on his lower leg. They were very lucky. Pictures of the crash show a large tree between the pilot and co-pilot's seats. The jet fuel must have all gone straight out the front, avoiding the hot engines...
I do remember a reading a write up about it in some aviation journal, but I don't think I ever got a copy of it. I did do a quick search and these web sites seem to correspond to the crash:
aviation-safety.net/database "



C-46 crash site

Paul Chapman, when revisiting the area on 27Apr09, he took the opportunity of taking a few photos of CF-CZH...
The photo on the left (below) makes it clear that the cockpit has been salvaged.
The photo on the right illustrates how the wreckage is easily overlooked these days, trees encroaching the wreck site.
C-46 crash site
C-46 crash site

Alexandre Avrane (of AeroTransport Data Bank) suggested another crash of a C-46:
"Super C-46C C-GIXZ msn 22453 was lost on 31oct82 near Shamattawa, Manitoba and operated by Ilford Riverton.
Photo of the nose at the bottom of http://members.shaw.ca/navion/cgixz.htm (dead link)

Not to be confused with another (later) C-GIXZ msn 22495, which was destroyed in Kenya!"
See also Aircraft Crashes Record Office.
See Brian Maddison's photo of this C-GIXZ at Vancouver in 1978.

Joe Baugher describes an interesting history:
44-78630 (c/n 22453) to XT-526 Central Air Transport Corp., to N8311C.
To Flying Tiger Line Jan 1953 as N4879V.
To Cubana March 1954 as CU-T558, and to Ultramar April 1955 as N94593.
To Canadian Pacific May 1955 as CF-CZM. To Fairbanks Air Service in May 1974 as N802FA. [Correction see below]
And subsequently back to Canadian ownership as C-GIXZ.

C-46 C-GIXZ Allen Barrett wrote: "I took this photo of the original C-GIXZ, shortly after the 1982 Shamattawa incident referred to by Alexandre Avrane... The starboard maingear ran into the ditch and culvert that ran parallel to the runway, seen under the starboard wingtip and tore the main gear attachments off the spar! 'IXZ came to rest on the taxiway to the Shamattawa apron area. This C-GIXZ was scavenged and scrapped in Shamattawa. The second 'IXZ was wrecked in Kenya, at Lokichoggio."

Allen added: "When CZH crashed by Thompson I was an apprentice AME working for Lambair and taking my private pilot license training.  Lambair acquired YHT (Miss Piggy in Churchill), just before I left Lambair to work for Avalon aviation on PBY,s used for aerial fire suppression.   
I worked on the Ilford Riverton Airways / Air Manitoba fleet from ’79 to ’92 along with Bill Fraser.
Bill was with the C-46s in Kenya and has a better memory than I do, regarding the Air Manitoba C-46 fleet. 
I was in Shamattawa for a couple of weeks shortly after the incident to remove engines, propellers, flight controls and equipment from IXZ. Every couple of days one of our DC-3’s would drop in, whilst returning to Winnipeg empty, and we’d load up all the parts we had removed.  After a few months with several different recovery crews sent in, the aircraft was dragged off the airport back into the bush where the hulk is still today. This would be what one of your contributors saw in the bush close to Shamattawa: "Just to confuse the issue….there was a wrecked C-46 fuselage near the north end of the Shamattawa airport, which is probably GIXZ”.  The aircraft would probably have been repaired, if it was a little more accessible, but economics dictated that the best plan at that time was to scrap it. Once we de-registered the aircraft we thought it would be fun to apply the same registration to a C-46 acquired from the States.   That aircraft was the one that ended up in Loki..   I think secretly somebody wanted to confuse those British aviation buffs who used to visit our facility and keep them on their toes. These guys, I think they called themselves "Friends of the DC-3", used to visit about once a year and if they promised to help unload, at the other end they got free rides on C-46s and DC-3s! They thought they had died and gone to heaven! Seemed a little odd to us as we worked around these aircraft daily. Whatever feathers your prop, I guess" wink

Seems like a veritable Curtiss Commando scrapyard up there in Manitoba..!
Updates and other wreck sightings (not restricted to C-46s, but rather all vintage propellor transports.

"I am writing to you with some information on the following C46: 'Super C-46C C-GIXZ msn 22453 was lost on 31oct82 near Shamattawa, Manitoba and operated by Ilford Riverton'. -LINK-
Brian Tittley on CF-CZM / Dew Line In your historical description of this aircraft the following is mentioned:
To Canadian Pacific May 1955 as CF-CZM and to Fairbanks Air Service in May 1974 as N802FA.
This is slightly incorrect. CF-CZM was operated by Nordair from 1967-1974. I know this because I flew on this aircraft many times between 1969-71 while working for Nordair on the DEW-line.

I have attached some scanned photos taken during 1971, one photo clearly has the call letters while in flight with a DEW-line station in the background. The 2 other photos are of CF-CZM on the ramp at Fox Main, and in much better condition than the accident photo. I was saddened to learn of its demise."

From the 'Piston Engined Airliner Production List (TAHS, 2007) I quote part of c/n 22453's history (which evidently was not represented in full in the above writing):
Canadian Pacific Airlines bought CF-CZM 04Apr55, it was subsequently converted to Super C-46C in 1957, Pacific Western Airlines bt 7.59, Nordair bought it 31May67 and when Fairbanks Air Service bought it 28May74 it was reregistered N94593, - Webmaster.



This image was displayed at the AvCanada forum (topic), by 'N181CS'; he added: "this is a DC-3, about 16 miles west of Shamattawa, about 3 miles south of the Winter Road. I was told it was hauling lumber at night and lost an engine. As you can tell its been there for sometime due to the growth around it..."

GPS Co-ordinates for the DC3 near Shamattawa ( also written as Shamathawa) are: N55 58.18 W92 31.65

By consulting the database of Aviation Safety Network I have come to the conclusion that this is C-FBKX, which has C-47B c/n 32813 destroyed at Gillam-Shamattawa on 15Feb1983. At the time it was operated by Ontario Central Airlines. The no. 1 engine backfired and failed while at 700 feet. The crew feathered the propeller but the (overloaded) aircraft descended into trees and came to a halt in deep snow.



'ETTW' posted on the AvCanada forum 2 images of wrecks, suitable of unclusion on this page, I think...

When I asked who made these photos, and when, I was replied: "Cannot remember which copilot took them, but I believe they were both taken in the summer of 2006."
Above is CF-IHQ, a Curtiss C-46A Commando, which while operating for Wheeler Airlines on the DEW Line project, was written off on 25Mar60.
The report on Aviation Safety Network states- "Location: DEW Site 28, NU (Canada), Curtiss CF-IHQ took off from a dewline airstrip at 00:27 for a flight to another airstrip. The aircraft was on the downwind leg when it struck the ground at 780 feet asl."
Also on www.baaa-acro.com

Jeremy Hamburg sent me this shot of a partly obscured plane wreck, photo dated 13Jan13:
"Near Hall Beach" is all he wrote (no reply to my request for more information: EMAIL).
Planewreck 2013 near Hall Beach

Peter C. Hill responded to this (may 2017): "On careful review, I'm pretty sure it is a photo of snow covered C-46 CF-IHQ; the tail markings appear the same and the angle of the propeller on the LH engine.
All the windows obviously line up for a similar aircraft type. No guarantees, but something to think about."
-Peter Hill former (First Air/Bradley Air Services DHC-6 captain)

Another sad C-46 Commando: CF-HEI.

C/n 22419 was written off 09Aug61 at Scapa Sarcpa Lake,NU.
On ABPic is an image of when it was in use by Dorval Air Transport.
Here is a link to Google Maps to see how remote Hall Beach (bySarcpa Lake), Nunavut really is...
'ETTW' added to these images: CF-IHQ is still there, it is on the opposite side of the lake from the site, while CF-HEI is now in a hole in the ground covered by gravel during the cleanup of the site..."

Peter C. Hill wrote me (may 2017): "I had the opportunity to visit CF-HEI when I was the base manager
in nearby Hall Beach, in 1978. I will also take the opportunity to correct the name of the lake: it is
Sarcpa Lake. You have two spellings 'Scapa' and 'Scarpa', but it is in fact 'Sarcpa'.

Peter Hill sent me another batch of fine photos dating back to that visit of 05Sep1978:
C-46 CF-HEI by Peter C. Hill
Bradley Air Service pilot Doug Mcleod walking to C-46 CF-HEI wreck at the old DEW site at Sarcpa Lake.
Notice the relative flatness of the Arctic in this area, formerly called Keewatin region.

C-46 CF-HEI by Peter C. Hill
ASN's database has it as 'The C-46 struck the ground short of the runway with its main wheels. The airplane landed but the starboard landing gear collapsed and the C-46 went off the runway. The airplane was arriving at
Intermediate DEW line Site 29, CAM-F, Sarcpa Lake. Two crew, 7 passengers: non fatal.'
More on the event see the contribution by Paul Kelley further down!

C-46 CF-HEI by Peter C. Hill
Curtiss C-46C Commando CF-HEI (c/n 22419) crashed on approach to Sarcpa Lake, NWT on 09Aug1961.
I read somewhere that the remains of the C-46 were dumped in a hole and covered with rubble.

Sarcpa Lake airstrip by Peter C. Hill
Peter wrote (May 2017): "Our BAS Twin Otter C-GNDO on the airstrip at Sarcpa Lake."

Peter added: " I was a base manager for First Air in Hall Beach for a 6 week tour in 1978.This was a charter
trip I hopped on that particular day (05Sep1978). I don't recall the exact circumstances of the charter and am
a little uncertain about the exact period I worked at Hall Beach. My job as base manager was co-ordinating First
Air's scheduled flights to nearby Igloolik several times a week, as well as coördinating freight that was taken off
the Nordair and Transair flights. We also supported lateral flights to several DEW stations, where we swapped
crews and brought in freight and mail."

Abandoned DEW site at Sarcpa Lake, by Peter C. Hill
Picture of the abandoned DEW site at Sarcpa Lake, taken from the airstrip.

The 'Distant Early Warning Line', also known as the 'DEW Line' or 'Early Warning Line', was a system of radar stations in the far northern Arctic region of Canada, with additional stations along the North Coast and Aleutian Islands of Alaska, in addition to the Faroe Islands, Greenland, and Iceland. It was set up to detect incoming
Soviet bombers during the Cold War, and provide early warning of any sea-and-land invasion. -Wikipedia

Paul Kelley wrote me in Dec.2018, also in reference to Curtiss C-46 Commando CF-HEI...
Paul wrote: "During the last week of July 1961 (I don’t recall the exact date) I had occasion to fly in HEI
W from FOX Main (Hall Beach) to CAM5 (Mackar Inlet) and CAM4 (Pelly Bay).
On that occasion I took the following photos (Paul also provided the captions).
C-46 CF-HEI at Hall Beach, prior departure
"Nordair's C-46 CF-HEI (c/n 22419) on the apron at FOX Main, prior to departure".

CF-HEI on the apron at CAM5 (Captain John Smith with hands in pockets)
"C-46 CF-HEI on the apron at CAM5 (Mackar Inlet). Captain John Smith seen walking with hands in pockets".

"Curtiss C-46 Commando CF-HEI taxiing to the apron at CAM4 having just returned from
CAM Main (Cambridge Bay) to pick me up for the return flight to FOX Main (Hall Beach)."

Saturday, 05th of August – "I was wandering about the apron at FOX Main taking photos and, quite by chance, the following may well be the last one of CF-HEI while still operational!"
Hall Beach, 1960s
"Photo of the apron and hangar at FOX Main (Hall Beach) with C-46 CF-HEI parked to the right of shot with
the terminal building further to the right off shot – more or less in the same place it was on the day I flew West."
"CF-HEI was the only C-46 I ever had occasion to fly in and it was the only aircraft that I did fly in that
met its untimely fate while I was on the Line..!"

CF-HEI wrecked
Photo of CF-HEI at rest taken by Brian Jeffrey, (FOX Sector Radician).
"I have dated it as on the day of the incident although Brian may have taken the photo a day or so later. He is no
longer sure how much time elapsed before he could get over from the site with his camera. Note the Doppler
tower in the background – the only such shot of CAM-F’s tower."

"09Aug1961 - "This day Lyall LaLonde (FOX Sector Mechanic) was working at DEWLine Site 29, CAM-F
(Sarcpa Lake), District of Franklin, NWT (ca.50mls WSW of FOX Main-Hall Beach)."

Comments by Lyall LaLonde forwarded to me by Paul Kelley about events on that fateful day:
"Captain John Smith was flying her that day and just prior to touchdown a heavy gust of wind tipped her and the starboard undercarriage hit the end of the runway and buckled it.  She landed but when the starboard side
went down she ran off the runway.

Among the passengers that day was André LaBelle, the Sector Electrician.  As the aircraft came to a stop they already had the passenger door open.  As the starboard wing was on the ground and the passenger door was on the port side it was a fair drop to the ground.  LaBelle got out of his seat and went running for the door and keep [sic] on running in mid air till he hit the ground and got clear of everything.

Two months later, when patching up CF-CZL (C-46) at CAM4 (Pelly Bay) there was a discussion about possibly using the starboard wing of HEI as a replacement on CZL but, in the event, they managed the job without it."

Paul's final word on CF-HEI: "My understanding is that, after the Site Remediation work done during 2005-2007,
the remains of CF-HEI now lies buried in a hole where she last came to rest."


Another C-46 wreck is N9995F (C-46F c/n22409), at Kugaaruk, Nunavut;
photo taken by Jason Pineau in Sep.2011.

C-46F N9995F at Kugaaruk, Nunavut
The Curtiss freighter was on a night-time VFR approach to Pelly Bay when the left wing struck rising terrain at 1000 feet msl. Date: 18MAR1956 [Source: Aviation Safety Network]

Larger image at Jason's Flickr.com account

Peter C. Hill elaborated on N9995F's position, with help from Google Earth (may 2017) :
C-46 N9995F Flying Tigers crashsite
Flying Tigers' Curtiss C-46 Commando N9995F near Kugaaruk.


Patrick Nagle made me aware of the wreck of C-FOOY (CF-OOY) near Iqaluit. This is Douglas C-47A c/n 12411 CF-OOY. Information from the website polarpilots.ca:
On November 3, 1975, C-FOOY, a 1944 Douglas C47A 10DK Dakota 3 (DC-3) belonging to Kenting Atlas Aviation was carrying a group of Inuit on a charter from a meeting in Pond Inlet back to Iqaluit (or Frobisher Bay as it was then known).
Bad weather forced it to miss refuelling in Pangnirtung or Broughton Island (now Qikiqtarjuaq).
It ran out of fuel and landed on the tundra about 45 nm north east of Iqaluit.
The passengers included many of the original Inuit group that worked to develop the idea of Nunavut, which became a territory on April 1, 1999.
Note- Kenting lost 2 C-47s near Frobisher Bay( Iqaluit) - see the item on CF-OOV further down!
Abandoned wreck DC-3 CF-OOY

Search and Rescue in Nunavut volunteers use the wreck as a target for spotter training. The winter photo (upper left) was taken by Kenn Borek pilot Marcel Siegenthaler during a training run in January 2012.
The engines have been removed and much of the useful material stripped.
And it now serves as a shelter for hunters, as you can see in this summer photo (below) taken by Patrick Nagle.

Abandoned wreck DC-3 CF-OOY

2014 UPDATE !!!
Nigel Hitchman wrote in dec.2014: "A friend of a friend, Eddie McCallum, flew his CTSW from Northumberland to Oshkosh and back this summer and came across this DC-3 on the way! It is close to CYFB on Baffin Island."
CF-OOY abandoned, on Baffin Island. Photo by Eddie McCallum

CF-OOY abandoned, on Baffin Island. Photo by Eddie McCallum
Seems nicely preserved!

This was shared on Facebook as CG-OOY, the Kenting titles are obvious but the registration incorrect.
Kenting DC-3 / C-47 wreck
The damage is much different from C-FOOY above and I think C-47A CF-OOV (c/n 13300) might be a
candidate: (ATDB.aero) 'Destroyed (nr Frobisher Bay,NWT) 12 February 1973'.
Aviation Safety Network (ASN) has 'Engine power was lost after takeoff. The pilot tried to return, but
crash-landed short of the airport. The DC-3 was returning from major overhaul in Toronto.'


F.27 wreck at Resolute Bay I came across this photo by Erik Charlton on Flickr.com

So which aircraft is this? It looks like a Fokker F.27 Friendship, but of which airline and which tailnumber?

Jan F.Homma wrote: "This is Fairchild F-27 (c/n 114) of Great Northern Airways (CF-GNG), which crashed on 20 Dec.1969.

Then Aad van der Voet (www.oldwings.nl) responded: "Most sources claim that CF-GNG ran off an icy runway at Inuvik, NT on 20Dec69. But this photo was not taken at Inuvik. The caption mentions "Arctic tundra", and the tags say Resolute Bay on Cornwallis Island, which is 1500 km from Inuvik...
Some sources also mention a different accident date for CF-GNG: 14Feb70.
Was CF-GNG perhaps repaired after its mishap at Inuvik, only to crash again almost 2 months later? Or was there only one accident, which then obviously did not occur at Inuvik at all?
Or does this photo perhaps show a different aircraft?"

Dave Brosha seems to have photos of this aircraft too in his Arctic folder www.flickr.com/photos/brosha

Frans van Zelm responded to above email exchange: "This is Fairchild F-27J CF-GND (c/n 113) which crashlanded at Resolute Bay 12Jun68 (afaik; conflicting data is reported: also 15Jun68 is mentioned...).
F-27J CF-GNG (114) crashed at Inuvik 20Dec69. Registration was cancelled 14Feb70."

Also visible in Google Earth/Maps at 74.67265N  94.5879W

Kalman Feher wrote (in Nov.2010):
"It had Lorne Christiansen as one of the pilots, I believe they'd run out of fuel. He told me
the story himself but I forgot the details..."

Bob Cameron wrote me in Feb.2011:
"To clarify a little bit the confusion about the F-27 wreck at Resolute Bay: Great Northern Airways did have
TWO F-27 accidents!
I do not know the details of the Resolute Bay one, but Danny Bereza in his book 'the Big Dipper Route' describes the Inuvik accident in minute detail, as he was the co-pilot on it..." 

Tom Frook wrote in March 2011 (back on GNG, though that's not the one we are discussing here):
"CF-GNG was operating a crewchange charter on behalf of PanArctic Oils Ltd. The aircraft had departed Edmonton, then to Yellowknife for refuel then on to Rea Point on Melville Island.
After departure from Yellowknife, the weather at Rea Point went to minimums, the aircraft continued as planned and attempted a landing at Rea Point. Weather was severe enough that a decision was made to divert to the alternate airport, namely Resolute Bay.
The Resolute Bay weather was just at minimums, and after missing the first approach, the crew were attempting a second try and exhausted their fuel on the downwind leg...
The aircraft impacted just to the East of runway 35, where it sits today.
The Captain was Ernest George Adolphe, don't know the First Officer. Ernie was a wonderful man, a terrific friend and a great pilot. "

Peter C. Hill sent me this in May 2017 on the location of the F.27 CF-GNG of Great Northern, near Resolute Bay:
F-27 CF-GNG near Resolute, crashsite (GE)

Daniel Bourque wrote me in Feb.2018 on Fairchild F-27J CF-GND and he included this picture:
Crashsite of CF-GND, by Daniel Bourque
Daniel wrote: 'Here a bad quality picture (sorry) of the crashed plane CF-GND. I took it in august 1975 while on training in the Artic with the Canadian army. Years later, I talked to a friend (a plane mechanic) of one of my sisters who was teaching in Nunavik in the 70s. He knew the story of the plane landing, but I can’t remember details. At that time I visited the site, people were removing wiring and stuff inside the airplane, but it was in one piece.
As far as I remember, the were no crash markings on the ground so they probably landed on the snow.'

'The flight originated in Calgary (YYZ) to Yellowknife (YZF) and continued to Sherrard Bay but diverted to Resolute Airport (YRB) due to headwinds being much stronger than forecast. A forced landing was carried out near Resolute Airport.'
Aviation Safety Network (ASN) database



Lodestar CF-CPA
This photo was grabbed from the AvCanada forum (topic), posted by 'HotShots21' (alias for Alex St-Gelais) with comments "CF-CPA a Lockheed Lodestar forced landed in the 60's."
[Date of photo: August 2007]

CF-CPA is Lodestar c/n 18-2177 and the subject of serious intentions to recover it. Its location is near Weeks Lake or Schefferville,QUE and it found this resting spot when it was forced down by fuel starvation.

"This Lockheed 18 Lodestar was one of those slated to join the Dutch East Indies Air Force in Java in 1940 where it was to have been given the serial number LT-926. However, when the Japanese overran Java, the Lodestar was diverted (seized, might be a better term) by the U.S. Government to the Army Air Corps as a C-60-LO and given the serial number 42-108787. The Army Air Corps never used the plane and released it to Canadian Pacific Air Lines in the early 1940s...." MORE: www.cf-cpa.ca/en/history.shtml


Beaver Creek This wreckage lies at Beaver Creek, though I have no specifics of where this is nor the date of the photo. Google Maps link.
In correspondence over the disappearance of Douglas C-54D 42-72469 (c/n 10574) in the area, it was first thought that this wreckage was that DC-4/C-54, but subsequent information and photos have revealed it to be a DC-3/C-47.

The photo was taken by 'scudrunner' who tells his tales on the AvCanada forum.
He wrote me (July 2008): "I am the photographer of the pictures from the Beaver Creek and the Ruby Range DC-3's. All of those pics where taken in 2005/2006. As for the Snag airport, last I saw the strip it was in beautiful condition. Check it out: 62°20'36.09"N 140°24'35.80"W
I am not quite certain but that aircraft lies some distance north of the snag airport."

Location of Snag, according to Google Maps I used Google Maps to search for 'Snag' (right) and 'Beaver Creek' (below).

Beaver Creek, Google Maps
Richard Mosse went wreck-hunting in recent years, to enlarge his remarkable photography portfolio, and included the wreck at Beaver Creek / Snag (you'll also see images of Churchill's C-46 'Miss Piggy' which is illustrated elswhere on this page and one I hadn't included, remains of a C-47 wreck at Crow's Nest Pass....).
C-47 wreck at Beavers Creek, Yukon
C-47 wreck at Beaver Creek,YT June 2009
DC-3 wreck at Snag, Yukon
DC-3/C-47 wreck at Snag

Richard Mosse was interviewed by ´Leviathan´ on BLDGBLOG, follow this link or read it in the Acrobat Reader .pdf document I saved.

DC-3 wreck at Snag, Yukon

Bruce McAllister's book (DC-3, a 75th Anniversary Photographic Tribute) finally brought a photo showing the full aircraft remains! The photo is by Doug Cote.
The caption reads (slightly abbreviated):
'In WW 2 this USAAF C-47 ditched in a lake near the Snag airstrip, in the Yukon Territory.
By 2005, when this photo was taken, the aircraft was exposed as water levels dropped.
It is rumored that the nose of this aircraft was destroyed so that the Russian lend-lease personnel based in nearby Fairbanks (Alaska) could not examine its radio and navigation equipment.'

Bob Cameron wrote me in Feb.2011:
"The C-47 near Snag, Yukon crashed on Feb. 16, 1950 during 'Operation Sweetbriar'. The aircraft had dropped off some "troops" (practice exercise) on a frozen slough, and during take-off, with a total of six on board, the aircraft assumed a nose-high attitude right after lift-off, and stalled... As it dropped back onto the frozen surface, the landing gear was driven up into the wings, and the fuselage buckled.
When I photographed it in 1975, it was lying sunk in a considerable sized slough, which seems to have dried up, according to Bruce McCallister's photo.
A key factor in the crash of the C-47 near Snag is that it was on skis.
The investigation revealed that pilot Durnin had had minimal training on the Dakota on skis, on a hard-packed snow surface north of Edmonton. At the accident site, the surface was 14 inches of snow on top of slush, and Durnin found that the skis seemed to dig when he lifted the tail during take-off. He therefore ended up taking off in the three-point attitude, inadvertently allowing the nose to pitch up excessively after lift-off, resulting in a stall and subsequent crash. 
This is all written up in RCAF Investigation No.2618."

Sheldon Rose wrote me in June 2007:
"The DC-4 near Beaver Creek, referred to in top of above search for the wreck at Snag, was actually destined for the airport (military) at Snag, in the 1950s I believe.
Snag no longer exists as a town; but it is still famous for the lowest recorded temperature in North America, -83.5F or something like that!
You can still see the outline of old airstrip in Snag in Google Earth. Beaver Creek is to the west of it.
I flew over the wreck a couple of years ago, but cannot recall exactly where it was."

Sheldon found more details on www.planecrashinfo.com/1950/1950-6.htm, which offers the following information:
January 26, 1950 (Time: ?), near Snag, Yukon Territory
Operator: Military - U.S. Air Force, flight: ?. Route: Elmendorf - Great Falls, MT
AC Type: Douglas C-54D-DC (DC-4), registration: 42-72469 (c/n 10574)
Aboard: 44 (passengers:36 crew:8). Fatalities: 44 (passengers: 36 & crew: 8)
Summary: Disappeared while en route.
This wreckage seem to be related to the DC-3 accident described on Mystery DC-3 in the Yukon, which was described to me as crashed during a search for DC-4, which to this day was never found. Both crashed in the same area on 26Jan50 and 07Feb50...
This wreckage, of the C-54D, has yet to be located...
Craig Fuller (AAIR Aviation Archaeological Investigation & Research --www.AviationArchaeology.com ) wrote me in July 2007, and sent me several pages of the accident report.
Dirk Septer wrote a report on AF42-72469 on my website

Perhaps the real answer lies in the archives of the US Air Force Historical Research Agency at Maxwell AFB,Alabama

Craig Fuller, of AAIR Aviation Archaeological Investigation & Research, emailed me in May 2012:
"On 26 Jan 50, USAF C-54D 42-72469 failed to arrive at Great Falls MT on a flight from Anchorage AK.
The last known position was over Snag, Yukon Territory, Canada.
A massive joint US-Canadian search was conducted, but the aircraft and its victims were never found.
With 44 people on board this is probably the largest unresolved missing aircraft case in North America.
Family members and interested researchers are spearheading an effort to renew the search for this aircraft. If you have not done so already, please consider joining his facebook page, Operation Mike, at www.facebook.com/operationmike.
This page serves as a place for people interested in this accident to connect, and as new (or forgotten) information is discovered, it is being posted here for all to see and discuss."

I recently (6-2013) found there was a Wikipedia page on this:

Christened 'Operation Mike' there is also a Facebook page on the search for this Douglas C-54. Dean Russell, a supporter to the cause of finding this lost C-54, took out his helicopter on 20Sep2014 and searched & photographed various locations. Alas, the C-54 remained invisible. The search is described on the Facebook page. Below is a photo taken by Dean Russell of Snag Airport.
Snag airport
Dean wrote: "On September 20, 2014, my wife and I left camp and headed directly for Snag. We expected to see an old airport with a couple of rundown buildings in a reasonably usable runway. This of the way the Snag airport is now. That is a pick up truck with a cattle trailer, you can see in the picture."


Matt Miller wrote Feb.2008:
"After research into the RCAF Dakota history I came across some details which may be of interest.
In early February 1950, Canadian and US forces were conducting 'Exercise Sweetbriar' in the Yukon. On 16Feb1950, a RCAF Dakota force-landed on a small frozen lake about 8 miles from Snag,YT, about 8 Miles east of the Alaska highway and about 20 miles from the border with Alaska; no fatalities.
Your picture (the item discussd above -Webmaster) certainly shows a small lake and it is in the correct vicinity..?
The crash was survivable, which is consistent with the data you have.
I have still to uncover the identity of the Dakota concerned, possibly 664 or KJ936."

RCAF Dakota KJ936 crashed

Andy Beebe sent me this photo in May 2012, he wrote: "This is a picture of the RCAF Dakota KJ-936 taken from an after action report of 'Exercise Sweetbriar'. I discovered it while researching the loss of C-54 42-72469 in the Yukon." [No source/photographer for the image provided]

Bob Cameron wrote me in April 2017:
"I recognize this one as the one that crashed off the south end of the Whitehorse runway in February of 1950.
If I remember rightly, hearing the grown-ups talking about it at the time, it was the regular (weekly?) Air Force scheduled flight up from Edmonton, and it experienced an engine failure either upon its arrival, or after take-off - I don't recall which.
In any case, the story was that the pilot turned in on the dead engine, causing a loss of control at inadequate airspeed, and it dropped down into the trees off the end of the runway.
There were no fatalities.
After the Air Force had completed their investigation, a bull dozer was sent in to destroy it and make it unrecognizeable, but it was not buried for many years.
Back in the 1950's some of us kids rode our bicycles out to the site, and I took that picture that appears as 002. Sometime in the 1960's it did get buried, and only the odd piece could be seen sticking out of the ground..."
Some photos were included with this email:
DC-3 KJ936 crash site; provided by Bob Cameron

DC-3 KJ936 crash site; provided by Bob Cameron
Bob: "That is my mother standing on the wing, with an unidentified guy".

DC-3 KJ936 crash site; provided by Bob Cameron
Crash site of RCAF Dakota KJ936


The photos by Richard Mosse, in his 'THE FALL' portfolio, also revealed a C-47 wreck at Crows Nest Pass, Yukon...
Photos I found in a thread on the AvCanada Forum, with photos from 'Bear319':

C-47 wreck at Crowsnest Pass

No mention of identity (serial number) of the aircraft.
Location by Google Maps

The sign reads: DAKOTA PLANE CRASH - 1946
On January 19, 1946 a Royal Canadian Air Force DC-3 (Dakota) with seven crew men on board was reported missing on its flight from Comox, B.C. to Greenwood, Nova Scotia. Search efforts for the twin engine transport plane, last seen near Cranbrook, B.C. were hampered by bad weather. Five days after the flight's disappearance, Crowsnest Pass Forest Rangers made their way on snowshoes to the crash site near North York Creek, guided by smoke from the still smoldering wreckage. The plane had collided with Mount Ptolemy and then plummeted into the valley below.
There were no survivors.
A twelve men rescue team brought the bodies out by toboggan. The remains of the Dakota aircraft are still scattered around the area.
Help protect the memory of the men who lost their lives in this tragic accident. Please leave these pieces of the past for others to discover.

http://www.planecrashinfo.com/1946/1946-5.htm  No aircraft identity

Jeff Rankin-Lowe wrote;
"A quick look through my database:
These are the RCAF's Dakota crashes in 1946...
-- 962   Dakota Mk IIIN   124 (Ferry) Sqdn.   crashed 15.9.46
-- 967   Dakota Mk III   426 (T) Sqdn.   crashed 27.9.46
-- 986   Dakota Mk IV   168 (HT) Sqdn.   crashed 29.3.46
I checked one other reference I've got and the following may help with photo interpretation...
-- 962 crashed near Estevan, Saskatchewan, so no mountains or passes were anywhere near that and it can be ruled out.
-- 168 (Heavy Transport) Sqdn. used QZ codes from 1943 to 1946.
-- 426 (Transport) Sqdn. used BC codes from 1947 to 1951. Previously, it used OLP, OLW, OW, and OWP, but the dates are vague."


Images at (dead links) http://rjcharity.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!45A38976DB774CBC!2361.entry and http://rjcharity.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!45A38976DB774CBC!2469.entry showed another surviving wreck: CF-ILQ of Austin Airways.

CF-ILQ crashed 09Jan64, flying cargo, near Rupert River,QUE.
A forced landing was made into trees about 1.000 ft from the river with the undercarriage down. Both pilots were severely injured. Examination of the wreckage showed that the front fuel tanks were empty and no fuel had apparently been used from either of the rear tanks. (Aviation Safety Network)

Jeff Rankin-Lowe provided the following history:
- c/n: 12377
- delivered to USAAF as C-47A-10-DK, s/n 42-92563: 22.1.44
- t/o/s by RAF as Dakota Mk III, s/n KG368: 30.1.44
- delivered to U.K.: ?.2.44
- assigned to 512 Sqdn.: 14.2.44
- assigned to 437 (T) Sqdn. (RCAF*): 12.5.46
- transferred to RCAF as Dakota III, s/n KG368: 16.6.46
- t/o/s: 9.9.46
- s/o/s: 22.9.47
- sold to Canadair as ?: 27.10.47
- sold to ? as NC1388N: (date unknown)
- sold to Eldorado Mining and Refining as CF-GEI: 5.12.47
- crashed (?, Saskatchewan): 12.9.52
- sold to and rebuilt by Austin Airways: (date unknown)
- registered as CF-ILQ: 12.1.56
- crashed (near Rupert River, Québec): 9.1.64
- registration cancelled: (date unknown)
- wreckage still at crash site

* The RAF assigned some of its own aircraft to RCAF squadrons. The
personnel were (mostly) RCAF personnel. Some of the aircraft that were
returned to the RAF were later acquired by the RCAF. Others were simply

Ron sent me an update on 17June09, writing:
Austin Airways CF-ILQ "I received several pictures of the crash site from Rangers who were there at the CF-ILQ wreck last week."

Pascal wrote me about an overland trip he did in 2012 and where he came upon C-46 CF-ILQ:
Pascal wrote:
Two years ago I found the details of C-46 CF-ILQ crash in the north of Quebec on your website.
Last summer I travelled to this place!
Here's the story (sorry, it is in French but you can look at the pics)
And... I found another one, a Liberator B-24: maps.google.ca
See for the photos here: http://s584.photobucket.com/albums/ss288/ve2whz/liberator/

That same thread provided also these 2 photos of a Bristol Freighter... A sad sight!
Klimman123 provided these photos and also this clarification:
The Bristol Freighter is laying on the shore of Beaver Lodge Lake in NWT; about 150nm northwest of Yellowknife.
From what I could find out, it seems it went through the ice one year while servicing a uranium mine in the 1960s. It was hauled on shore and salvaged.

Heard it belonged to Max Ward back in the ol'days. I didn't get a chance to poke around her or find out it's registration. Found it just 3 weeks (July 2006) ago."

I would welcome the name of the photographer for a proper credit.

Aad van de Voet provided the following details: "This is Bristol 170 Freighter Mk.31 CF-TFZ, c/n 13139, which was flying for Pacific Western Airlines at the time. It crashed there on 30 May 1956, only two months after PWA had acquired it..."
Thanks Aad!

Dirk Septer added the following:
"It was one of the three originally purchased by Trans Canada Airlines (later Air Canada). These aircraft were totally unsuited for this airline's requirements and were soon sold off to smaller Canadian operators.
CF-TFZ crashed on May 30, 1956 after only flying with Pacific Western Airlines for 2 months. It was damaged beyond repair after the undercarriage sank through the ice. Upon landing the port landing gear broke through the ice and the aircraft fell on its wing, bending the spars and crushing the sides of the fuselage....
The remains were later hauled onto the shore and stripped for parts. It was then left there on the shore.
Many off these Bristols had short careers with Canadian operators, mostly lost during landing accidents. For example Lambair, quoting Jack Lamb in his book 'My life in the North' (p. 151 ): "We operated four Bristol Freighters, and crashed four!" It seems one was in service with them for only two months, while the second was lost after flying only 35 hours for them!"
Dirk Septer

Sean Barry zoomed past and sent me these photos, which I believe were taken in Feb.2007

CF-TFZ taking a gulp
CF-TFZ holding out

In July 2007 Dean Steer sent me photos of the 1956 accident, taken by his father Keith Steer at the time!
And Jason Pineau has photos taken on 12OCT2010: www.flickr.com/photos/jspitfire/

Ken Lubinski sent me these photos in Sep.2007; he recalled those days as follows:
The Biffo, as found by Ken Lubinski "The Bristol was probably photographed late 1970's. The one pic shows the old mine cabin. Fellow on the left was the cook (Henry) and on the right my helper (Rick). I cannot recall their last names.
We spent the month of Feb at that camp. It was very cold... At night water would freeze in the cabin. All the packing between the logs had fallen out, so the wind would blow right between the logs. Every morning we would have little snow drifts on our sleeping bags!
The crewI was doing exploration drilling at the old uranium mine for a company out of BC. I believe the company name was Noranda. Could be wrong on that one.
Of all the years of working the Arctic, Baffin Island included, I have never witnessed Northern Lights as intense as they were there! For two nights the sky was literally alive from one horizon to the other. The colors were so vibrant, and the movement of the lights was scarry! They seemed like they were just above the tree tops."
Copyright Ken Lubinski
Pedal of the Biffo
Andreas sent me this link www.flickr.com/photos/yellowknifesilke

In Dec.2007 I received following email:
"The salvage rights for the Beaverlodge Bristol 170 have been secured from Air Canada (AC is the successor firm to Pacific Western Airlines). I am trying to find a museum or preservation group who would be willing to recover and restore the plane.
Unfortunately, several Canadian museums have begged off due to the anticipated high costs.
I also reached out to the people at the Bristol Aero Collection but that may not fly as they were already finalizing arrangements for a Bristol fuselage in Australia.
If you know any museum people..???

Anyone with any sightings (or fate) after Dec.1970 of Lambair's Bristol Freighter CF-WAC:
Bill of sale recorded 20Nov70 from Wardair to Lambair Ltd, The Pas,MB, and registered to them that date. Lasted only 37 flying hours with them before being lost in a non-fatal landing accident when it crashed 19Dec70 at Trout Lake, Manitoba, (95.50 N 94.00 W) on landing in muddy conditions.
Swung off runway and substantially damaged fuselage and wings. WFU with TT 11,707 hrs. Canx 7 Apr 71.

Jerry Vernon added to this: 90° West is not in Manitoba,, it runs up through Northwestern Ontario... Big Trout Lake, Ontario is bisected by the 90° West meridian, at just below 54° North;  Big Trout Lake is the village of the Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug First Nation!! They were formerly known simply as the Big Trout Lake First Nation.
But..... there is also a Trout Lake and a Little Trout Lake adjacent to it elsewhere in Northwestern Ontario, near the famous mining town of Red Lake, at about 93° West/51° North;  Lambair could have been flying in there too!!

Note that Lambair operated four Bristol Freighters in all, as follows, but the Lambair website gives no further details:
  • CF-YDP (freighter, short nosed)
  • CF-YDO (short nosed)
  • CF-WAC (short nosed)
  • CF-QWJ

Dirk Septer added the following:
"Lambair’s 3rd Bristol crash took place on the dirt strip at Trout Lake,Ont.
It was a carbon copy of the landing accident (of Bristol ‘YDO) at Repulse Bay. Bob Shinnie, the Captain, wandered off the centerline during the landing rollout, hit a pile of frozen mud, and collapsed the gear of the Bristol.
His load of 25 drums of diesel fuel went scooting out the nose doors of the aircraft! We had just bought this particular Bristol from Max Ward. It was only in our service for 35 hours... ouch!"

Dirk added the following information he found on the 'long-nosed' CF-QWJ:
"By acquiring long-nosed CF-QWJ, Lambair became the only non-European operator of this Superfreighter. On May 31, 1974, QWJ crashed while en route from Churchill to Rankin Inlet with a load of insulated sewer pipe and empty fuel tanks. Turning final to land at Rankin, the Bristol kept on rolling, striking the sea ice inverted. The crew of two were killed but the actual cause of accident was never determined.
Bristol CF-QWJ would also become the last flying long nosed Freighter in commercial service, and possibly the last one flying in any configuration... The other two remaining Superfreighters had not flown since the demise of Midland Air Cargo and were derelict by then. G-APAU was at Lasham and ‘AV was withdrawn at Coventry. When no buyers were found, after some considerable time, G-APAV made one last flight.... to Lasham for scrapping."


Unidentified Canso, with sketchy data:
Unidentified Canso
Erik Thingbo wrote in March 2011 on Yahoo's CV-Canso forum

"I have the following from a friend in Canada, Dan Gudmundsson.

That Canso with the broken wingtip, I think it was from Flying Firemen of Edmonton AB, they were on a pickup and lost control of the aircraft and managed to beach it. I heard they made a temporary fix by inserting some 2x4 lumber in the wing and ferrying it to Edmonton. I was on the same fire, but didn’t see the accident happen, they did their pickup with the floats down and that may have contributed to the accident...

I am pretty sure this happened in fall of 1969 or maybe possibly in early summer of 1970.

I flew at the time in CF- IZO from NORCANAIR." 

Have any heard about this accident, and which plane it was ?

Erik followed this up by a theory:
"A friend and I have studied the picture and we are pretty sure that the plane is from Kenting Aviation, Toronto, Ontario.
And that it is Canso CF-NJF, now G-PBYA with The Catalina Society, England.
On that time Kenting flew with CF-NJF, CF-NJB and CF-UAW in a blue colour. We studied the window configuration there are different.
CF-NJF has a round window in the starboard cargo hatch, but covered.
CF-NJB has a round window or observer bobble in stb. Cargo hatch.
CF-UAW has a square window in the stb. Cargo hatch
And on Dan's photo there seems to be no window in the stb. Hatch, so therefor it most is likely CF-NJF there on the water.
David Legg will next time he came to Duxford study the Logbook for G-PBYA and see if he can find something."
To be continued!



Beech 18 at Sawmill Bay,NWT by Jason Pineau
Jason Pineau got a glimpse from this Beech 18, off the end of the runway at Sawmill Bay, NWT.
Jason Pineau wrote me on 23Jul11:
"With regards to the Beech 18 crash in Sawmill Bay, NWT, I have some more detailed photos. I had a chance to walk right up to the wreck, but could not find any registration or serial number info.
It does have titles on the side for "Great Bear Lodge," which is a fishing lodge that operated at that location until 1987. On the one photo you can see a steel cable wraped around the wing spar just inboard of the engine nacelle, which suggests it was dragged or slung to it's present location. Maybe with the extra info and photos someone can figure out what happened to it."


A response on the AvCanada forum solved this mystery:
"I believe I can solve the mystery of the Sawmill Bay wreck!
I flew Great Bear Lodge's Beech 18 CF-GXI during the summer of 1972. The aircraft was at Bristol in Winnipeg being converted from wheeled format to a float plane. New Pontoons and mounts were installed, an escape hatch built in the cockpit roof, new radios seats, etc. The outside still looked standard RCAF but she was a sweet flying bird with very low time.
I ferried the plane along with members of the lodges staff from the river just noth of Winnipeg to Great Bear Lake on July 4th 1972 with fuel stops in Flin Flon, Uranium City, and Yellowknife. 11.9 hrs of flight not counting the time for fuel stops.
Spent until September taking guests to Minto Inlet for char, Coppermine for char, Holman Isand for fuel and Blackwater lake for grayling.
Returned south to Winnipeg on September 3rd with stops in Yellowknife, Uranium City and Lynn
Lake for fuel Stuck there by weather for 2 days and finally arrived at the base on the Winnipeg River where the aircraft was stored for the winter.
In the spring of 1973 Great bear Lodge offered me the position again wanting me to be chief pilot of Minto Airways, (their company based in Canada) but I decided to not go back.
They had painted the aircraft and refurbished everything over the winter and it was with regret that I opted no to go north for the summer.
They hired another pilot (and I use the term pilot in jest!) who got lost on the way north and finally figured out where he was when he landed in Hay River. Got his bearings straight and headed for Sawmill Bay on Great Bear Lake. On his first landing there he had glassy water and decided to land heading into the bay towards shore. He was still on the step when he hit the shallows and shoreline and flipped CF-GXI over, basically destroying it...
The company hired some mechanics to come in and salvage what was left and later that season barged the engines, wings, pontoons etc. out of there. I imagine the hull of the aircraft was pulled up deeper into the trees so later guests would not want to get scared of flying...

Great Bear Lodge was owned by a group of doctors in Sioux Falls S.D. where they also had their corporate offices. Jack Bauer was their manager in Sioux Falls and arranged all bookings of trips etc. Guests were picked up once a week in a DC-4 in Minneapolis and flown north with a stop in Winnipeg for customs. They landed on the 7.000 ft sand strip at Sawmill Bay, and picked up the departing guests for their flight back to Minneapolis.
We used the Beechcraft, CF-GXI and another one that was leased, to move the guests, their luggage and all fresh supplies that came in on the DC-4 to either of the lodges to camps, Bear Island or Nealand Bay. Bob Ostrom, Corpus Christi, TX"



The above discussion on the identity of the Beech 18 remains, seen from the air & photographed by Jason Pineau, initially also led to other candidates.
Mick Butt offered the following candidates as a start to find the identity of this mystery wreck-
"Aviation Databases gives a couple of possible candidates for the Beech 18. They are both recorded as W/O... no details known, and were both based in the Northern Territories.
C-FMBO of Air Sahtu Ltd, c/n 7751 type Beech C18S
C-FYQB of Arctic Wings & Rotors Ltd, c/n A-0753/CA-153 type Beech Expeditor 3N
The latter aircraft was with Arctic Wings & Rotors Ltd from 27 November 1991, until it was deleted from the register on 19 July 1994, according to the Canadian Military Aircraft Serial Numbers website.
Of course, if the crashed example wasn’t based in the Northern Territories then it could be one of many other examples!"
[Update: C-FYQB A-753/CA-153 (Beech 3NM). Manufactured Apr52 - was reported in Air-Britain News (Oct94) as registration cancelled Jul94, as destroyed by fire. -Robert Parmerter]

Sep.2016 I received an email plus photo from Brian Lowe:
"I was browsing your website and came across the article on the possible identity of the wreck off near Sawmill Bay, possibly being a Beech 18 of Air Sahtu. 
I can verify for you that is not that wreck..! 
I lived up there in Ft Franklin in 1987;  the pilot of C-FMBO was close family friend and my father worked with Air Sahtu.  I remember the story,  it all came back to me when I read the article documenting loss of right engine oil pressure, 9 aboard and so on..
I was just a child when that happened. I know a bit about the story as we were living up there, the pilot was a dear friend of my father's. I remember they all headed out on snowmobiles to get everyone off the plane! I beliove there was one broken arm or a simular minor injury. I grew up in those planes doing deliveries all over the North with them. Ed was well known for loading these birds right to their max.
Here is a pic of C-FMBO sitting on the ice in 1987."

Beech18 C-FMBO at Ft Franklin 1987 by Brian Lowe
Beech 18 C-FMBO at Fort Franklin, 1987 - photo provided by Brian Lowe

History of CF-MBO, as compiled by Bob Parmerter.
C/n 7751 Beech C-45F
44-47361 USAAF deliv 21st FG Palm Springs, CA 29Sep44.
Accid 25Nov44 Palm Springs, CA grnd collision (assg to 560 Base Unit). 501 Base Unit Langley Fld, DC.
Accid 12Jun46 Langley Fld, DC while landing (assg 501 BU). Maxwell Flt Svc, MATS Maxwell AFB.
Accid 18May53 Corinth Munic, MS while landing (assg Maxwell Flt Svc).
Reclam compl Hill AFB 6Oct54. Delogra Avn Corp, Ft Lauderdale, FL (CAR Nov61) as C18S N6799C.
Joe G. Marrs, Avon Park, FL (CAR Jun63) modif for floats.
William H. Magie (Wilderness Wings Airways), Ely, MN (CAR Jul64, Jan71).
Export certif 27May71 (Wilderness Wings) to Taber Lake Airways, Prince George, BC  as CF-MBO.
Lsd to Columbia Airlines Ltd, Prince George, BC 4Jun71.
Wolverine Airlines, BC reg’d 7Jul75.
Parsons Airways Northern, Man reg’d 8Aug75.
Wildwood Airlines Inc, St James, BC (CCAR Sep76)
Photog May79 orange overall with white fuselage stripe & trim with Wildwood titles and large Playboy Bunny on tail.
Sale reported (CCAR Sep81).
Lsd by Turn Air Ltd, Yellowknife, NWT 17May82.
Spur Avn, Yellowknife, NWT (CCAR Jun84).
Air Sahtu, Ft Franklin, NWT.
Accid 7May87 Ft Franklin, NWT (17 mi ENE) when rt engine lost oil pressure & severely vibrating-shut it down & emergency landing on ice of Great Bear Lake. 9 aboard (1 seriously inj) rescued 3 hrs later by snowmobiles. It was over gross wt & reg’d as C-FMBO.
Regis canx Aug93.



Sean Barry sent me these photos, of York CF-HMX at Hall Lake,Nunavut; taken on 23may09:
Aviation Safety Network has the following:
Avro 685 York C1 CF-HMX (c/n ?) of Arctic Wings struck a snow bank at Hall Lake,NU on 12APR1955.
(Arctic Wings apparently was a sub-company of Spartan Airways, details welcomed).

Avro York CF-HMX of Arctic Wings
The Avro York had a somewhat unlucky career in Canada's Arctic North; 3 Yorks crashed in 6 weeks in the spring of '55, 7 in 18 months, 2 on the same day 13 Sept 56...

The Avro York was a British transport aircraft that was derived from the WW2 Lancaster heavy bomber, and used in both military and airliner roles between 1943 and 1964.
Production orders included 50 civilian Yorks and 208 military versions to the RAF – many of which subsequently passed into civilian hands. During the Berlin Airlift, Yorks flew over 58,000 sorties – close to half of the British contribution, alongside the Douglas Dakota and Handley Page Hastings. During wartime years they also served as VIP transport aircraft.
In the postwar years, BOAC used Yorks on their Cairo to Durban service, which had previously been worked by Shorts flying-boats. They were also used by British South American Airways and by many independent airlines on both passenger and freight flights.
When the Distant Early Warning Line (Dew Line) was being constructed in Canada in the late 1950s, the Avro York was introduced as a freighter by Associated Airways. At least one of the Yorks, CF-HAS, was retained, and was in service with Transair as late as 1961. [Wikipedia]

Lee Cormie sent me these images of CF-HMX at Hall Lake, and sent me his shots, which he took in 1972 when it was in slightly better shape...

Avro York CF-HMX at Hall Lake

CF-HMX in 1972, at Hall Beach

Peter C. Hill flew over the crashsite on 05Sep1978 and sent me this image of the Avro York at Hall Lake.
Peter C. Hill recorded York CF-HMX in 1978

Peter had been visiting Sarcpa Lake (C-46 CF-HEI, pics further down) and flying back to Hall Beach airport:
Nunavut: Sarcpa Lake and Hall Beach

Here's some more by Google Earth, in part sent by Peter C. Hill, to indicate the current location of CF-HMX
Avro York CF-HMX, location at Hall Lake
So CF-HMX is rather on the shores of Hall Lake than nearby Hall Beach, as some sources have it.


Jay Ladell wrote me in April 2010:
"My grandfather, Captain Josef Cermak (RAF), died in a York (CF-HMV) during the same time running the DEW Line flights as CF-HMX.
He crashed at Thoa River on 29Sep1955. The plane CF-HMV sank, but the co-pilot survived on the aircraft wing, which broke-off and remained at the surface.
I imagine the plane is still there in shallow waters?
We would love to find-out the actual location of the crash, but the Thoa River seems fairly long.
Here are two links about the crash:
If you happen to come across anything, please let me know..?"

Jay himself came up with this:
"I just found this account and sketch (www.bombercommandmuseum.ca/s,fm159york.html) of the crash from one of the people involved in the rescue effort.
While his account is missing specifics, the date, location and details of the crash definitely line-up with those of my grandfather's crash!"

See below newspaper clippings, sent by Robin Weber!


UPDATE Dec.2018, newspaper clippings from 1955 kindly sent to me by Robin Weber:
York CF-MHV 1955 crash

York CF-MHV 1955 crash

'Search for York and crew continues', newspaper clipping from News of the North, 07Oct1955.
Note the name of the co-pilot is misspelled: Lossie instead of Lozie (see article below)

York CF-MHV 1955 crash
'Co-pilot Gerhardt Lozie of crashed York CF-HMV survives on the wing of the aircraft'

York CF-MHV 1955 crash
'Associated Airways gives up its DEW Line contract'


Sean Keating made me aware of the images of a Pacific Western Airlines Avro York C.1 on Henry Tenby's 'Photo & Video Mega Port' www.AirlineFan.com:

Avro York CF-HFP "CF-HFP. Syd Burrows was an F/L with the RCAF at Cape Perry (PIN Main) overseeing the contruction of the DEW Line in 1956/1957.
During his time in the North he took a number of slides. Syd was fortunate enough to be on hand when PWA York CF-HFP overshot the runway while landing at Cape Perry, NWT on April 13, 1956. The colour slide was one of several he took within a few hours of the incident."

Prints of these images can be obtained through the link above.


Dr. Stéphane Guevremont, Aviation Historian of Mount Royal University / University of Calgary, Vice-President, CAHS YYC sent me the following update on 06Jul11:

"These photos were taken last week by a pilot from Abitibi Helicopters based in Springbank, Calgary.
You are welcomed to add them to your website. "

York CF-HMX wreck on Hall Beach
Photos by Jack Crawshaw

Two images sent by Pat Donaghy in Jan.2014 (below), he wrote "..a couple pictures of CF-HAS that were taken by Hugh F. Bunn, one in 1968 and another some years later. 
HAS was used by TransAir of Winnipeg in the 50s and 60s on DEW Line resupply operations and was abandoned by them at The Pas airport in Manitoba. 
Later it was towed down the road and parked at the intersection of Highway #10 where it was eventually destroyed by vandalism and fire."

York CF-HAS wrecked


C-GFFJ at Sioux Lookout This is a Canso, about 25 mile NE of Sioux Lookout.
Mark Stachowiak had seen and photographed it while flying by, he returned for a closer look and better pictures...
Mark wrote: "the lake is called Jackson Lake, it's about 6 miles S of Adamhay Lake (Top NE corner of the Large Lac Seul); I took these pictures in Oct.2006."
About the location, Rich Hulina wrote: "Jackson Lake is the one north of it which is connected." A 2014 image see Photos by Friends & Guests (40).

C-GFFJ is a Canso PBY-6A, it has c/n 2066.

Its aviation history is like this:
Operated by Sonora Flying Service, Columbia,CA 1962-1966 with tailnumber N6456C, airtanker no.38.
Jack R. Ulrich of Chiloquin,OR bought it in 1969.
With Hemet Valley Flying Service (Hemet,CA) during 1972-1978.
It flew as tanker E84 (later simply 84).
It was damaged by fire while on the ground at Stockton,CA in 1977.

C-GFFJ N6456C was obtained by Flying Fireman Ltd of Sidney,BC in June 1980; registered as C-GFFJ and flown as tanker 9.

It crashed and was destroyed during water pick-up at Sioux Lookout, Ontario on 12Jul81.
Source: www.warbirdregistry.org

C-FNJE Tanker 702Came across this photo of Buffalo's C-FNJE Tanker 702 (PBY-5A c/n CV-437) at the AvCanada website.

It flipped over while scooping water Sitidgi Lake, NWT 24Jul2001. It was recovered from the seabed and brought ashore for repairs.

Curtis voluteered the following on the CV-Canso Yahoo forum:
"The Alberta Aviation Museum in Edmonton is trying to recover it as Buffalo Airways donated 'NJE to the museum about one year ago.
But the local native people in the area of Inuvik have been giving Buffalo (and now the museum) a hard time about the aircraft being on their land and about crossing their land to bring CF-NJE to Inuvik for further transportation south...
There are no heavy lift helecopters in the NWT, so the only way to get NJE to Inuvik is to tow her in the winter on ski's across the native land."

In March 2008 I was informed 'NJE had been sold by Buffalo A/W to a private party: Don Wieben of Alberta.
During April he and his son Greg went over to have a look; this resulted in a move (after almost 7 years of desolate storage) on 20Apr08, when transport reached Dempster Highway and headed for Inuvik that day. On 10Oct08 C-FNJE was loaded on a barge and headed for Hay River., a 7-10 day trip; At Hay River Don and his crew removed the wings and on 04Nov08 moved it from Hay River to Fairview Alberta;
the wing was put on a Redstar Farms 48 foot long high boy trailor, mounted high with lots of overhang.
The airframe we was put on a Capstan Hauling out of Grand Prairie long double drop trailor.
The roads were terrible much of the way with freezing rain and snow much of the way, but the crew got things done.
The ultimate goal is to restore 'NJE to flying condition, tour the western Canada air shows and do one epic journey with it... Go for it!

See the website www.savethecanso.com

Here is a 2012 photo by Nigel Hitchman who visited the farm at Fairview in 2012:
C-FNJE in restoration at Fairview (20212, by N.Hitchman)Canso PBY-5A C-FNJE (CV-437) under restoration of the Fairview Aircraft Restoration Society (FARS). This Canso was flown as RCAF 11094 on anti-submarine missions during WW2 and remained in military service until 1961. The aircraft was then, reg'd as CF-NJE, converted by Field Aviation into a pestcontrol sprayer.
After the bugs had gone, several companies used the amphibian (now reg'd C-FNJE) as a waterbomber, fighting forest fires. While in use with Buffalo Airways, as Tanker 702, it was damaged and went down in the waters of Sitidgi Lake near Inuvik (NWT) on 24Jul2001. (Source- Scramble magazine, #454, march 2017 issue).

I understand that the correct designation of C-FNJE is Consolidated 28-5AMC Canso, as it is an ex/ RCAF aircraft and not a former US Navy aircraft.


UPDATE Feb.2017 'First flight after restoration fast approaching!'
On the WIX (Warbirds) forum I read an update on the process of restoration of C-FNJE.
"One of Buffalo's former Waterbombers that crashed in 2001 is set to fly once again after a 9 year restoration: www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/canso-airplane-fairview-1.3976241
Someone replied: 'According to the Canadian Military Aircraft Serial Numbers website, it was RCAF 11094.'
"It's a Canso A as opposed to a Canso. It was built by Canadian Vickers but not all built there were Canso As. They built a large number of OA-10A Catalinas for the USAAF too."

I learned that on 18Jun2017 C-FNJE made '1st post-restoration flight'. Congratulations!


N103 at Venetie,AK Sean Keating made me aware of this wreck, he wrote:
"I found this on Google Images…. by typing in 'dc-4' it was on the first page… (property of www.warbelows.com, image direct link found dead in june2015: www.warbelows.com/images/Village Pictures/Venetie/VEE DC4 Wreck.jpg)
This may be good to display on your "abandoned plane wrecks of the north".
I have no idea if the Carvair picture is recent or not, maybe they can tell you."

The story of the crash of N103 (ATL-98 conversion no.7, ex DC-4 cn10273) can be found on Aviation-Safety Network :
(28Jun97) The Carvair took off from Venetie for a VFR positioning flight to Fairbanks. The aircraft was climbing when the number two engine on the left wing began to run rough. Soon thereafter, a fire warning light for the same engine illuminated in the cockpit. Fire was visually confirmed, the engine was shut down, and both banks of fire bottles were discharged. The fire continued to burn, and the number two engine fell off the wing. The captain was forced to carry out an emergency landing on a sand and gravel bar in the Chandalar River.

Andreas forwarded me this link: www.dced.state.ak.us/dca/commdb/images/Venetie_planecrash.jpg (also found 'dead' in june 2015) which shows the following image:
N103 Carvair

If the photographer makes himself known I would be happy to include proper credit to the photographer here.

Rob Tracz sent me photos of N103 in better days, click here


Andreas Morgner sent me the link to Google Maps, to further facilitate travellers...
Here are the coördinates: 67°1'16"N 146°31'55"W


Andreas sent me this image in june 2015; he wrote:
"I found this pic of the old Carvair wreck by Venetie, AK. Looks like it was taken circa 2003.
Source: http://www.angelfire.com/de/kanualaska/markusheiko.html

Carvair wreck at Venetie,AK

Thomas Bouwens from Alaska sent me this image and the question:
"I wonder if anyone has information on these wrecks I found on Google Earth at a mining strip, 4 miles east of Chandalar Lake, Alaska."
Two plane wrecks near Chandalar Lake

Marc Hookerman came up with the identities: "They are C-46 N92853 and (top) C-119 N15509.  That is the Tobin Creek Mine Airstrip (closed)."

C-119G N15509 (c/n 10775) crashed on 21Apr84, while on take off from Venetie Airport with destination Fairbanks. See Aviation Safety Network.
C-46 crashdetails 1983 on

NOTE: James Lumley disagreed (dec.2013) with the identity of this wreck, he wrote in dec.2013: "The C-119 identified as the wreck at the Tobin Creek airstrip is NOT N15509, as that aircraft now sits in a museum.
The statement says the aircraft crashed on take-off at the Venetie airport; but that is quite a ways away from Tobin Creek!"
Remark from Webmaster: The museum referred to is Hill Aerospace Museum, but that's a fake tailnumber. I have seen a photo from c/n 10775's dataplate taken by someone who has been inside the wreck. The only doubt I could share is whether this is a likely location for a plane that got into trouble at take off from Venetie! The runway at Venetie is on a 90 degrees angle to Tobin Creek as the crow flies..

The mystery untangled by contributions sent Dec.2013:
Aad van der Voet: "The aircraft at Tobin Creek is most definitely N15509.
The aircraft at the Hill museum is and always has been N966S, ex RCAF 22107, now falsely painted as USAF '52-2107'.
It is true though that N15509 did not take off from Venetie! It was taking off from the airstrip next to where it is lying now, but it never got off the ground. Here is what my database says about this mishap:
The aircraft attempted a downwind take-off from the snow-covered Tobin Creek Mine airstrip. Nosewheel steering was ineffective due to the snow and the rudder was not responsive due to the tailwind. This caused the pilot to lose directional control, and the aircraft ran off the runway, collided with a snowbank and nosed-over into a gully. It was severely damaged and the wreck was abandoned.
The aircraft's Westinghouse J34 jet pod, still carrying the Tanker number 36, was donated to the Pioneer Air Museum in Fairbanks, AK. A text on the engine said: "Recovered from a crashsite at Tobin Creek. Donated to the Pioneer Air Museum by Brooks Air."
- Note: the NTSB report incorrectly quotes the location as Venetie, AK." If an accident happens at a small/remote airstrip, the location as mentioned by the NTSB is often totally unreliable. They usually refer to a "nearby" airport instead. This has caused numerous incorrect accident locations to be reported on websites, and also in some books, particularly if it happened in remote locations such as Alaska. Tobin Creek is an example of that problem.

And Marc Hookerman wrote:
"The C119 at TCK is N15509. The C46 is N92853.
Downwind takeoffs or landings at Tobin Creek were often SOP as the airstrip is uni-directional - one way in, opposite way out.
You had to carry a lot of power coming in there to deal with the wind-shear and subsequent grade of the airstrip. Located in a tight, ascending valley within the Chandalar region of the Brooks Range, Tobin Creek was - without a doubt - one of the nastiest places the fuel haulers flew to. Altitude, short, steep grade, dog legged, and the surface was a tire shredder. With peaks on three sides of the airstrip, the wind-shear was awful. CAVU, calm days were favored, but in the Brooks Range of Alaska, that is about as rare as an Iguana...
During the few years leading up the closure of the mine, the only operators that would go in there were Brooks Fuel and occasionally Everts. The mine has been closed since 1996 or so - the runway is now completely washed out.
NTSB dockets no longer allow 'nearby' facility selection during data entry when dealing with an airstrip without a location identifier - unless it happens off airport. That was only a problem prior to the 1990s."

Following photographs (prints) of N15509 were given by Brooks Fuel to Michael Prophet (website), who scanned the images and passed them on to me for use on my website; unfortunately no date nor name of the photographer.
N15509 wreck at Tobin Creek
A photo taken later, again at some unknown date but without snow, showed the wreck without the top-mounted jet engine. I choose not to publish that image as it includes a person and could not credit the photographer.
That jet engine was donated by Brooks Fuel to the Pioneer Air Museum in Fairbanks: see my visit in 2003.


B-36Dirk Septer provided the text and photo:
In 1953 two Convair B-36 Peacemakers went down on Canadian soil. On February 12, 1953, B-36H Serial 51-5729 from the 7th Bomb Wing crashed on a hill near Goose Bay, Labrador. The bomber ran out of fuel while holding for traffic at the SAC base in Goose Bay. Two crewmembers in the rear compartment were killed in the mishap.
Blair Rendall visited the wreck in 1978. "It is in two pieces but you could spend a week there going through the wreckage. At that time there was 5,000 rounds of ammo still on it! I crawled in the tail and there were two boxes there on the fuselage, either side, with printing: 600 rounds 20-mm each. The ammo was still neatly stacked in the boxes as it was 20 years before."
A month later on March 18, RB-36H-25, Serial 51-13721 got off course in bad weather and crashed on Random Island, Newfoundland. This was the B-36 in which Brig. Gen. Richard Ellsworth and a number of others were killed. The aircraft had very nearly cleared the top of the 600-foot hill overlooking Smith Sound. In honour of Gen. Weaver Ellsworth AFB near Rapid City was later renamed Ellsworth AFB.
Today, a surprising amount of wreckage is still visible. The crash site remained virtually undisturbed since the U.S. Air Force salvaged it in 1953. A well-groomed trail, about one kilometre from the road, leads to the wreck.
Sean O’Brien, who visited the site in 2000, gives the following description. "It isn’t quite as remote as it may have been in the '50s. The tail section is intact and perfectly upright. I counted seven engines in the area. There are large sections of wing scattered everywhere. Oddly, there was remarkably little fuselage evident. But maybe local people salvaged some of that. Certainly, most of the armament was. I saw an electrically operated cannon mounted on a workshop wall of a local youth, who had only dragged the gun from the scene years ago. And locals tell me that there are truckloads of bits and pieces sitting in cellars in all nearby towns. "

A few years earlier, on February 13, 1950, U.S. Air Force B-36B strategic bomber 44-92075 ('075) the crashed in northwestern British Columbia. The giant aircraft belonging to 436 Squadron, 8th Air Force, 7th Bomb Wing, 7th Bomb Group (H) of the Strategic Air Command (SAC) was en route from Eielson Air Force Base (AFB) near Fairbanks, Alaska to its home base at Carswell AFB at Forth Worth, Tex.
Besides carrying 252 pounds of 20-mm aircraft cannon ammunition, the aircraft had an 11,000-pound Mk. IV atomic fission bomb on board, similar to the one dropped on Nagasaki, Japan in August 1945. "Lost Nuke", a Discovery Channel production, follows three Canadians, Dirk Septer, Jim Laird and John Clearwater to the crashsite in their attempt to unravel this mystery of the U.S. military’s very first "Broken Arrow" or loss of a nuclear bomb.

Neville Webb has something to say about the crashsite too, he lives in the area, CLICK HERE... Neville revisited the site with a group of hikers, updated his account with photos and two links for videos by a drone!

Doug Davidge wrote me in May 2012: "Living in the north has made me appreciate the importance of some of the older wrecked aircraft. I noted you mention the B-36 44-92075 crash site in the Nass River Valley of Northern B.C. but no photos were posted...
B-36 bomber 44-92075
B-36 2075 near Goose Bay

I had the opportunity to visit the site in 1997 and was able to gather a number of photos (above). If you wish to use them on your web page please do.
Unfortunately there was not much of it left due to the USAF demolition in the 1950s, but we did document some interesting items.
Since my visit, I understand much of the movable pieces have since been taken away by various interested groups or people with the money and means to access the site. It is possible the site could be snow covered all year so maybe the opportunity to see what we encountered will only be on a periodic basis."

Tina Chadwell Weiss wrote me in feb.2007-
"My father, Col. George T. Chadwell, was one of the survivors of the B-36 crash in 1953 near Goose Bay, Labrador, to which you refer to as occurring on Feb 12 of that year. My father had assumed command of the 7th Bomb Wing just weeks before on 3 Jan. 1953 and was the Wing Commander until June 4 1954.
I was only 5 1/2 yrs. old at the time (I actually do remember the days surrounding the crash) and my Dad died on active duty when I was in my teens, so I never discussed the crash with him more than briefly.
The 7th Bomb Wing website confirms my father's information I mentioned above. Photos which I found clearly show, as you mention, that the plane was in 2 pieces. After viewing all the close up photos, it is hard to imagine how anyone survived the impact.
I hope this email reaches someone who can explain further how people get to these crash sites. It had never occurred to me that these planes still were at their crash scenes."

Mike Charters wrote me in Dec.2007 and sent me the following photo:

Mike added: "Thought I’d send a photo of the B-36 Peacemaker near Goose Bay, taken from a Euorocopter EC-155B Helicopter in the Fall of 2005 or 2004 I believe.
Lee Cormie (who is also on your website, looking for info on the Ft. Ross DC-3) was the pilot of the helicopter, of which I had just assisted on an engine change and we flew out there on a test flight..."

Lew Noble remembered how a rumor told a different version of the cause of the crash:
"I was there at time of the crash as a member of the US Air Force. 'Ran out of gas' might be the official explanation but the rumor factory on base was quite different...
I know almost nothing about flying or GCA landings but here is what was said:
The planes were in line making their approach. Somehow the #2 plane had gotten into the lead or #1 position. The #1 plane was following GCA instructions which were based on the position of the lead plane #2. Oops. CRASH.
Is this true or even possible? I don't know, but this is the explanation that went around the base."

Roger Soupart shared this photo (no source or name of photographer) on his Facebook wall in May 2017:
B-36 wreck @Labrador, Canada

Michael Prophet (propliner enthusiast) noted this wreckage on
the website www.walter-steinberg.de/Koyukuk/Koyukuk.htm
C-119 on Koyukuk River Click the above link or the thumbnail to the webpage, for a larger image.
Michael suggested: "...it is the Fairchild C-119 Flying Boxcar, survivor N8682 of Hawkins & Powers (Tanker 138)

Location would be some 30 miles south of Bettles Field and near the Koyukuk River, close to the village of Allakaket; about 200 miles northwest of Fairbanks.
Accident details on Aviation-Safety.Net
This would be the C-119 Flying Boxcar, described in the Legend of Dead Dugan.

Phil Schaefer sent me this photo in June 2007, he wrote:
I've got a couple of aerial photos of the B-24 wreck near Wood River Butts, about 30 miles south of Fairbanks if you're interested. According to the great guys at the Pioneer Park museum it crashed shortly after WWII while trying to recreate a 4 engine failure that caused another plane to crash (I believe that is the wreck near the Charlie River). Unfortunately, they succeeded...
Not much left of the wreckage now, a wildfire a couple years ago did a lot of damage.

Tim Berg replied with the following information:
"That picture is of the first B-24 that went in with engine- and prop problems. No one was killed in it. There were some broken bones... B-24 wreckage
The second one, that went out to duplicate the first one, is about 4 miles south of the one you have pictures of and it had no survivors. It is much harder to see.
I do have some pictures of it. Fire never got to either one of them. I have an article from the Air Force Flying Safety Magazine Published June 1990 about the incidents, crashed in 1943."
Craig Bass wrote me in June 2009:
" Just finished reading a story by 'Lieutenant Leon Crane A.C. as told to Gerold Frank and James D. Horan' titled 'Eighty-Four Days in the Arctic' in an old book my father-in-law gave me entitled 'The 100 Best True Stories of World War II' (Wm. H. Wise & Co., Inc., 1945).
Lt. Leon Crane was the co-pilot of the B-24 that crashed near Charlie River while doing prop tests.
The story is about his experience as a survivor of the flight. Pretty interesting read, so I decided to see if I could find where Charlie River is, and while I didn’t find a map, I did find your website...
What spurred me to write to you was that Tim Berg quoted on your website from an article from the Air Force Flying Safety Magazine (publ. June 1990) saying that quote/ Fire never got to either one of them /unquote (referring to the two B-24 crashes near Charlie Lake).
Perhaps the article was referring to natural fires over the years; however, Lt. Crane says:
"I had landed on a snow-covered slope. Far above me, I made out the flaming wreck of the plane. It was at least five miles away, a distant, black-red glow with black smoke spreading and twisting above it. I looked into the valley below. There was a small stream threading its way down there, with spruce trees growing on both sides. I had landed in a rather barren area. The only vegetation about me was a few scrub brush pushing through the snow. I was well above time line."
"It was very quiet. Not a sound of anything. I shouted, 'Ho!' at the top of my voice. I yelled again and again. No answer, not so much as an echo in that rarified atmosphere. I must be up pretty high. Now I began to realize that my hands were almost blue with cold: I had left my mittens in the plane. I picked up my chute and wrapped it into a small bundle and set out to climb toward the wreck. We had always been told that if we crashed, the plane was far easier to pick up from the air than a man walking on foot. But I’d no sooner taken half a dozen steps before I was stumbling and floundering. Under the snow the mountainside was a mass of glacial boulders, rounded like cobblestones, ranging in size from pebbles to boulders too heavy to lift. It was next to impossible to walk. I tried struggling on, but after about half an hour I had made less than a few hundred yards, and I was exhausted. I cleared away the snow from a large boulder, sat down on it and as calmly and methodically as I could, took stock of the situation."
"I was in a hell of a fix. On the minus side, (1), I didn’t know where I was, save that I was about an hour’s flight east of Big Delta. That might mean as much as 200 miles from Big Delta. (2) The men at Ladd Field didn’t know where I was. The last time we’d reported was at 11 o’clock. We were then immediately over Big Delta. They had no way of knowing that we had gone far out of our way to find that gap in the overcast. Things had happened so swiftly in the plane that we’d had no chance to radio anyone. (3) Our B-24 carried a heavy load of gasoline. I’d seen such B-24’s, heavy with gas, go up in flame. I knew the chance of any emergency equipment, such as food, guns, sleeping bags, being left in the plane was pretty slight." (p. 857)
He chose to make his way downhill where he encountered a stream he later learned was the Charlie River. Later that night, he says: "I could still make out a distant red glow far above me. The B-24 still burned." (p858)
As the title indicates, it took him 84 days to find civilization and be flown back to Ladd Field, Alaska, where the flight had originated. He makes no mention of any of the other crewmembers ever making it home.
Anyway, as I said, it was a good read, and I found the pictures of the crash site on your website to be interesting, and thought you might find Lt. Crane’s account from immediately following the crash to be interesting. If you can find the book, he details the entire flight through his return to civilization. "
Craig Bass

Following I received from Mac McCrimmon, at this time without photos, but interesting all the same:
"I was working in the area when the Malcolm Island DC 3 crashed...
I was working for Calm Air in Lynn Lake, flying a Norseman and Beech 18 on floats and used to come to Arctic Lodge a lot. This DC-3 was one of many airplanes that brought guests to what was then called Arctic Lodge, although it is a long way from the real Arctic. I forget the name of the person who owned the lodge but it was a well run organization that catered to groups of sportsmen, as opposed to many fly in fishing camps that catered to individuals and their friends. These airplanes came up from Minnesota with groups and returned with another on a weekly basis. Since they were able to traverse from Winnipeg to Malcolm Island and return without fuel or stopped for fuel in either Flin Flon or The Pas, we, the floatplane operators, saw very little of them.
If you go to Google Earth and key in Malcolm Island, you will see the airport. Now, if you go west and north from the island about 7 or 8 miles in a small bay between two islands, you will see a settlement. That is Arctic Lodge. It is inhabited only in the summer.
Where I got involved in the incident, other than hearing about it, was when one of our company pilots (Calm Air Ltd., Lynn Lake, Manitoba) dumped a Beech 18 (on wheels) over on its back at the airstrip. We just left the airplane there for the winter.
In early spring, a gentleman by the name of Porky Weiben, owner of Superior Airways (of Thunder Bay Ontario), arrived in Lynn Lake with a DC-3 and he said he was going to Malcolm Island to salvage what was salvagable from the wreck. Later on that spring, we flew in to Malcolm Island with a Twin Otter to salvage our Beech 18, only to find that Porky had beat us to it and took all the radios and instruments out of the airplane!
We then simply haywired the tail section up, chopped the roof off the cockpit and taxied the airplane across the ice to Kinasao or Coop Point. We had a problem getting the airplane off the ice so we taxied around to a bay near the airstrip where there was ice right of shore, but about 100 yards (or meters) from shore, the airplane broke through the ice damaging the propellers... so we just chopped the engines off and let the airplane sink!
I have some pictures of the wrecked Beech 18, but they are on slides and I am attempting to put them on something digital but with poor luck...
When I was on the Island, I never got to the wreckage because it was on the south end and we always worked off the north end of the airstrip."

Arctic Lodge is of course a different location than Arctic Bay, which features in the book "My Life in the North" by Jack Lamb and which has an interesting chapter on a mishap with a Beech 18 at Arctic Bay and the plane's recovery.

Joey 'the King of Obsolete' has also found something written about the crashes mentioned by Marc McCrimmon (and the 'Ozark DC-3' earlier up this page)-
Joey would like to recover the Beech 18 but has no experience in salvaging a plane wreck from the water, advise welcomed !!!

Joey wrote: "I used my magic marker on the computer and showed you where the Beech 18 should be. I have some pilots tell me, on a clear calm day you can see the Beech 18 in the water... The water up here is clear to over 100 feet!
Here is a link to a map that will show you where the malcolm island runway is to Kinoosao:
He added: "Your website is answering a lot of questions over in the Great White North... I know a fellow that was in Lynn Lake when they were stripping the DC-3 at Malcolm Island. He remembers it well because the crew flew back to Lynn Lake every night and had the parts they took off the plane that day..."

Gord wrote me in May 2008: "Any idea what this crash is?
This is alongside the abandoned rail line between Sioux Lookout, Ontario and Upsala...
Looks like it may have been pulled out of the lake?"
"We came across it on a backroad motorcycle tour last weekend. We all took some pics and your welcome to use them. I also have the gps coordinates on my gps, here they are:
N 49 18.135'
W 90 44.196'.
We were guessing it's a Beech 18... "
Mystery wreck
Someone suggested: "It looks like a Beech 18 for sure. Note the battery box hole, the big gap behind it where the fuel tank goes (that has been obviously removed) and the tubular truss structure spar. "
Mystery wreck
"I remember this wreck from flying over it several times in 1968 and 1969. It was in the trees close to the rail line and at that time was much more intact than shown in the recent photos. It was a Beech 18 that had had engine problems and was put into the trees sometime earlier. I flew for Superior Airways and we made a lot of flights over this area when going between our base in Fort William, (now Thunder Bay) and our Sioux Lookout base. I suspect that at some point someone has done salvage work to retrieve engines etc. from the wreck leaving it in its present condition."
Bob Ostrom
Corpus Christi,TX
The coordinates N 49 18.135' W 90 44.196' would indicate this location
Lorne Brett sent me these images in Sep.2009; they were taken in 1997.
Beech 18 wreck near Upsala

Lorne wrote: "I live in Thunder Bay Ontario and have seen this Beech 18, between Sioux Lookout and Upsala, several times over the years while fishing in the area.
Beech wreck near Upsala When I last visited the sight the plane was in much better condition. I suspect that this airplane has sadly been the victim of high scrap prices for aluminum a couple of years ago, but I may be wrong.
Although somewhat remote, the sight is accessible by vehicle.
I have a short history of the plane, although I can in no way guarantee its accuracy since the information was given to me by a friend, who had talked to somebody, who had lived in the area for many years.
USAF C-45 wreck near Upsala The plane was used by the United States Air Force ( the markings are still on the plane ). It crashed into a small lake, beside the railway tracks, in the 1950's. I was told there were no fatalities. The plane was pulled up on shore, where the engines and other parts were salvaged.
I think that the fact that the railway was used up until about 15 years ago kept the plane in a fairly unvandalised state. Unfortunately this is no longer the case".

Robert K. Parmerter, authority on the Beech 18 subject and author of the 'bible' on this subject "Beech 18: A Civil and Military History" (Twin Beech 18 Society, Tullahoma,TN /2004) offered the following reaction to the above-
"Is it possible that someone (USAF?) used the orange paint after the crash to improve visibility or mark it as found? The reason I ask is that the orange paint seems to be in more places than I've seen it on other C-45s for high-viz.
I believe that the aircraft is a C-45G/H built 1951-55. The clues are the increased area leading edge inboard of the engine eliminating the WWII production C-45Fs. There are too many C-45G/Hs for which I don't have a fate, to make any guesses. Just to confuse matters, is it possible that it was a surplus USAF C-45G/H that crashed in the 1960's and the elements wore off the orange civil paint to expose the USAF markings which were painted over instead of removed?
Hopefully some more information will come to light."

A post on the AvCanada forum provided the following response from 'imarai':
"I can't yield any history on the C-45 in question, although I have heard from a retired RCAF Searchmaster that in the past, many known wrecks were painted with a large orange X to reduce re-reporting of a known downed aircraft. Best of luck on your findings."

Another Beech C-45 wreck, also in Ontario, as yet uncertain about the identity and crash background-
Vince Yonemitsu wrote me on Oct.2012: " A guy I know saw this wreck while hunting in Ontario; do you know what kind of plane it is? Its location is north of Thunder Bay, crashed sometime before 1988 as there is a date someone scratched into it. Near a lake, maybe a forced landing on the ice…?"
Twin Beech wreck near Thunder Bay
Beech C-45 wreck north of Thunder Bay
More details were provided:
"The location is acually east of Armstrong Station, in wash lake which is part of the Pikitigushy river.
It is not acessible by vehicle or boat due to rapids. It is about 1km off Mckinley road.
As far as I can tell it has been there since before 1988; it is a Beechcraft model 18 or C 45.
It is in the middle of the wilderness on the bank of a lake with the wheels still on it (not crashed).
Wings and motors have been removed and many souvenirs have been stripped off it.
There is part of a number still on one of the tail fins CF-Z....
the coordinates are:
N 50 28.428'
W 088 40.425' "


Scudrunner wrote me in July 2008: "I am the photographer of the pictures from the Beaver Creek and the Ruby Range DC-3's.
Here is a wreck of a BN2 you can add to the collection 63°33'1.49"N 139°54'21.36"W
Crashed while landing at a mining strip called 'Lammers'.


Karl Hayes wrote me in January 2009 with a nice challenge...:
"On your website (the bookspage) you mention the book 'Triumph over Turbulence' by Jim Magoffin, which is about Interior Airways of Alaska, which was founded by Mr Magoffin. I read this book over the Christmas and it was a great read. He mentions two crashes which may be of interest for your 'Abandoned Aircraft of the North' department. I carried out some more research, and they are as follows."
(The above mentioned research culminated in an excellent article about Interior Airways in Air Britain's quarterly magazine 'Aviation World', issue June 2009).

Curtiss C-46 N67982 - see seperate item further down

Fairchild C-82 N208M.
"Mr Magoffin mentions that as he was looking for more aircraft to fly cargo in Alaska, he became aware that an oil company in Guatemala had two C-82s for sale and he bought these, and they became N208M and N209M. In his book he mentions that N208M was on a flight from Northern Alaska back to base at Fairbanks when it had engine failure. It force landed at Yukon Flats about 100 miles north of Fairbanks and was just left there. It landed in the bush and none of the crew were injured. It was just too remote a crash site to retrieve the aircraft. He does not give a date but the crash is on the NTSB site and the date was 16th January 1965. Presumably the C-82 is still lying there out in the bush?" SEE BELOW!!!
(A photo of sistership N209M was sent to me by John Stewart, see Photos by Friends & Guests - page 20)

Chaz Harris wrote me in June 2009: "Just wanted to know I decided to look for the legendary N208M C-82A of Interior Airways today, AND FOUND IT IN 5 MINUTES!
I have a cropped Google Earth picture that I would like you to put up to confirm it's existance:"

C-82A N208M Interior Airways
-->See Samuel Boga's photos below

See also Art Goddard's photo of N208M taken at Fairbanks airport (FAI) by Art in July 1964, a few months before it crashed, 'found' on

This is what I found on www.c82packet.com
Date: 16 January, 1965
Operator: Interior Airways Inc. / N208M
s/n / msn: 45-57793 / 10163
Location: near Beaver, Yukon Flats, Alaska
For some reason this crash seems to have slipped past wreck-hunters for many years as it has only just recently come to light. An Interior Airways C-82, N208M was returning to Fairbanks from Northern Alaska when engine trouble forced it down in remote regions about 100 miles north of Fairbanks in the vicinity of a small outpost called Beaver. The crew walked away but the wreck has since been forgotten about.
Google Earth searches have turned up nothing as yet but if anyone out there has any further information please drop me a line via the home-page.
Beaver airstrip: N66 21.44 / W147 24.02 / elev. 106m. (Dave Robertson provided a Google Earth attachment with which one can zoom in on N208M, but I don't expect everybody uses GE, so I made a Google Maps link too.

Report on Aviation Safety Network

Dietmar Eckell has brilliant photos of N208M, amongst many other wrecks.

Report from Thomas Hird, pilot flying in this crash...
"...With no notice the left engine barked once or twice and quit! Remember - no electrical power equals no feathering pump to action. The resultant aerodynamic behavior was something akin to a falling brick The C-82 needed all the power two functioning engine can produce to climb. Now I am flying a C-82 with the gear down and one wind milling propeller. While plummeting towards the earth...." MORE...  

David Tuttle wrote me in Nov.2010:
"I flew over this wreck of N208M (the C-82A of Interior Airways) many times when I worked for Warbelows Air Ventures. It lies on a straight line from Beaver to the old village strip at Venetie. Thought I'd send you a couple of pictures I snapped one day as I overflew it."
Route Venetie - Beaver
"I noticed on your page Photos by Friends and Guests you have some very nice pictures of my current airplane, tanker 45, a P2V Neptune tanker; I am the co-pilot on T-45 right now, with captain Bob West."


Karl Hayes wrote me in January 2009 with a nice challenge...:
"On your website (the bookspage) you mention the book 'Triumph over Turbulence' by Jim Magoffin, which is about Interior Airways of Alaska, which was founded by Mr Magoffin. I read this book over the Christmas and it was a great read. He mentions two crashes which may be of interest for your 'Abandoned Aircraft of the North' department...

While N208M has been adressed in the item above, this next one is about C-46 N67982.

"Karl wrote: "He also mentions an incident involving a C-46 in the spring of 1968.
The C-46 was landing on 'No Luck Lake' in the very remote western arctic region of Alaska. The lake was frozen at the time and the C-46 went through the ice!
There is a photograph of it in the book, sitting in the middle of the water after the ice had melted. He doesn't give a registration, but a bit of research shows this to be N67982, a C-46 of Interior. Again, the aircraft was just left there, so may well still be there..?"

Fortunately Francis Blake came to the rescue in may 2017! He contacted me with a splendid story and this unique photo of the unfortunate Curtiss C-46 N67982!

C-46 N67982 ran out of luck at No Luck Lake! Copyright Francis Blake
Curtiss C-46F N67982 (c/n 22584; ex/ USAF 44-78761) lost in 'No Luck Lake', Alaska.
Before it went to Interior Airways it was acquired by Flying Tigers (and reg'd N67982) from the military.

I have not been able to find an occurrence report, perhaps this 1968 incident is buried in some paper files somewhere.

Francis wrote me: "Saw the blurb on the C-46 N67982 in No Luck Lake (way down in the website, with a request for photos).
I have this close aerial photo of it sitting in the water, as described!
I took it in July 1972 while I was part of a geological field crew. We were tent camped at nearby Driftwood; our field transportation was a Bell Jet Ranger. Our cargo carriers were ex-C-46's and ex-C-47's."
Francis continued: "This particular C-46 (an F model, #22584, 44-78761) stayed in the lake for decades. It landed on ice in June 1968 and broke through.
Interior Airways intended to rescue it, but never did.
1990's satellite photos showed it broken into two major sections and had moved to a different part of the lake from where I saw it. Winter storms?
But current sat pics do not show it so guess it has been removed and scrapped.
BTW: The original Indian name for the lake was 'Nullaq Lake', but you can easily see how it was corrupted to No Luck! I don't know if it became No Luck before or after the plane incident..?
Summer 1972 was my only time on the Slope. First at Sagwon, then Umiat, finally Driftwood."

I think the nickname found use after the incident as Google maps still goes by the native name 'Nullack Lake'.Nullaq Lake, Alaska
While Google Earth found the name Nullaq Lake it failed to zoom in on the spot, I marked it and named it again.
Zooming in with data from Google Maps I found GE did have it named acordingly. The images do not show a plane.

In the book 'Triumph over Turbulence' (see my books page) I came across this photo:
Interior Airways C-46 drowning in No Luck Lake
So this states it hasn't been salvaged...



On the AvCanada another interesting item appeared: about a B-29 surviving in Northern Greenland. Those with aircraft preservation at heart will understand the drama when an attempt to recover B-29 "Kee Bird" went awfully wrong in the summer of 1995...

B-29 Kee Bird 1988

The above shot was taken during Operation "Boxtop" in 1988 and below was taken during "Boxtop" in 1990

B-29 Kee Bird 1990

"Finally after two years of work they are ready for the flight back to Thule. The plane has frozen into the mud and snow, and it takes maximum power to break the wheels free. The nose wheel can't be controlled, and at slow speeds, Darryl has to adjust the engine power to steer the plane. Finally, it is moving in a wide circle, out onto the lake, on its way toward the end of the runway. The plane is bounced and shaken by the frozen snowdrifts. Suddenly, smoke can be seen pouring from the windows in the cockpit. The auxiliary power unit, a stand-by generator, was thrown from its mounting in the rear fuselage, and caught fire."

See HERE how it sits now (2008).
The failed 'Kee Bird' recovery was discussed on
AvCanada forum. More details here on www.dhc4and5.org


"I have searched your site mostly off airport and friends & guests photos and found many photos and much great detail on arctic wrecks but have not found any on the various Avro York hulks dotted about the Canadian landscape... Have I missed them ?
These are the ones I have traced so far. More digging to be done !
Odd that two show the same date 'HFP and 'HFQ 13th September 1956.

CF-HFP Cape Perry, Northwest Territories .........................13/9/56
CF-HFQ Fox, Northwest Territories .....................................13/9/56
CF-HIQ 33Kms South of Rankin Inlet, Hudson Bay ...........8/1/57
CF-HMU Fort Chimo, Quebec .................................................24/1/56
CF-HMV Thoa River S.E. of YellowKnife .............................29/9/55
CF-HMW 44kms N. of Chimo Quebec ...................................26/9/56
CF-HMX Hall Lake, Northwest Territories ........................12/4/55
CF-HMY Edmonton ....................................................................26/5/55
CF-HMZ YellowKnife ................................................................11/4/55

David S. Truman


Jérôme Gagnon sent me this in Dec.2011:
"Here is a link on an article about a KC-97 wreckage in northern Quebec, near Mistassinni Lake and in the Otish mountains area.
It is written in French but I figured there might be some good info for you.
There's also a picture of the tail ":
Photo: Journal de Montréal/Dany Doucet
In April 2019 I received an email: "My father Paulo Trottier is the one who took that picture of the tail
of the B-29. He is a bush pilot and he discovered that plane back in early-90s." ¬Mary Trottier.

Alas, my understanding of French is poor and thus the text of no help.
Joe Bauger's info confirms KC-97 52-2685 'seen lying near Mistassini Lake in Quebec, Canada'
Here is an image of a similar KC-97 (52-2686) on Planepictures.net
I would welcome details as to how KC-97 52-2685 ended up here: a crash or an emergency landing? (See also below deatils provided by Bill Farrell)
EMAIL - pls include the url / link of the webpage you refer to.

Darcy Lafontaine sent me this image in Jan.2012 while he wrote:
"I came across that KC-97 wreckage when I was working for a company exploring the area in 2008. I thought I'd pass you some pictures I took of the wreckage."

KC-97 wreck in Otish Mountains

Bill Farrell wrote me this in Feb.2012, and while it is by no means certain (not impossible either) that the story is about the KC-97 in this crash, it does provide interesting reading!

"Just by chance the other day, I found three (Syracuse, New York) Post Standard Daily News Papers. They were dated Dec. 11th, 12th and 13th, 1962.
The front page news of those three days was about a U.S. Air Force KC-97 that was abandoned on Monday night, December 11th, 1962 while in flight near Watkins Glen, New York. There was in-flight fire that the crew couldn't extinguish, so the auto-pilot was set and they all bailed out just southeast of Watkins Glen.
The plane was left flying a northerly course. It was last sighted near RCAF Bagotville, still flying north. They lost radar contact with it about 100 miles north of Bagotville.
If this is the same plane, it flew more than 700 statute miles with no one in it.
The articles in the Post Standard are quite extensive. However. no serial number or tail number were given in the news paper article. The plane was based at the former Plattsburg (New York) Air Force Base."


Crash C-54 42-72616

Charles P. O'Dale shared these images on Facebook (published with permission), of the remains of the crashed Douglas C-54D (military DC-4 variant) 272616 (USAAF 42-72616); googling I found a crash date: 500410, which I would presume to be 10Apr1950. See www.accident-report.com/Serials/1942z.htm
This website www.aviationarchaeology.com/src/1950s/1950Apr.htm confirms the date, states it belonged to 1227ABG based at Goose Bay, Labrador. This website mentions the crash site at Prince Patrick Island, of which Wikipedia has this to say: "Prince Patrick Island is uninhabited. A High Arctic Weather Station ("HAWS") and associated airstrip called Mould Bay were opened in 1948 as part of a joint Canada-US military effort to support a weather station network."
Alan Sim pointed out to me (oct.2015) that the 2nd website has two different C-54s (2nd: 43-17245) listed as having crashed there on that very same date, which looks a bit odd...
But www.accident-report.com/world/namerica/canada/canada.html confirms this. What tragedy happened there that date?

But Craig Fuller, webmaster of www.AviationArchaeology.com, wrote me that C-54D 42-72616 was actually involved in 3 crashes! And it was 10Oct1952, where it was finally destroyed.
Charles confirms year 1952 for the cras=h date, if you read on.

This is what Craig Fuller contributed (2013):
"... if you search the master database by serial number at www.aviationarchaeology.com/src/dbaf.htm
you get both accidents, plus a third this plane was in:
Crash data C-54 42-72616
Looks like the 10 OCT 1952 accident is the one where it was actually written off and the accident you have photos of.
A damage of 4 in the D column means write-off damage for this time period. LACGL in Action is Landing Accident Ground Loop (GC is Ground Collision)."
Craig Fuller
AAIR Aviation Archaeological Investigation & Research

Charles P O'Dale wrote:
ALERT, Nunavut Canada - "A good landing is one in which everyone can walk away from the aircraft; this was a GOOD landing. Unfortunately, it was not an excellent landing as the aircraft was not re-usable...
Date: October 1952 - DC4 - USAF"
(Note the date is incorrect as compared to both websites above -Webmaster)

I (webmaster) also found this on C-54 272616:
Msn (c/n) 10721:
194? The aircraft was ordered for the United States Army Air Force (USAAF) as 42-72616.
194? The aircraft was allocated to Task Force 1.5.4 to Support the Crossroads Atomic Bomb Tests.
On: www.cnapg.net/dc4.htm

He also wrote: "On 31st July 1950 a RCAF Lancaster crashed here, due to a parachute entanglement during a supply drop. All nine crew perished and are buried at the northern approach of the Alert airport.
Rest in peace, gentlemen."
Lancaster wreck at Alert,Nunavut





Denny McCartney is not a writer, but that doesn't show! An immensely nice read.
He wrote a book about the period after his career as Chief Engineer for Northland Airlines, turning to an independent adjuster / repair mecanic / salvage teamleader.
The book describes how he single-handedly or with assistance picked broken planes from glaciers, repaired crashed bushplanes from the trees to fly out again and brought floatplanes facing doom in water or ice safely home.

Picking Up The Pieces
Published 2002, Trafford ISBN 1-55369-602-6

Denny McCartney worked on contracts for insurance companies to estimate the costs for salvage and repairs of broken aeroplanes. The types varied from Cessna single engine planes to a giant four-engined Lockheed Hercules... He got them home for final repairs.
The period of time this mostly took place was late-1950s to mid-1960s.
Denny succeeded in "first-aid" repairs to fly most of these crashed planes out under own power, some of them were towed or floated by barge.
It is interesting to read what was acceptable as working circumstances, being mostly out in the Arctic North, 19-hour working days, freezing cold, sleeping in tents...
Thoroughly enjoyed reading this book!
Pity the insurance companies ceased this patching-up-getting-them-home business, Denny could have written more books!
Most chapters describe one event, I've tried to list the type of aircraft, tailnumber and/or operator/owner:
DHC-3 CF-GBY Wardair (History on 'Otterflogger' by Karl Hayes)
DHC-3 CF-LAP Gateway Aviation
DHC-2 CF-GYK* Connelly Dawson Air Service
Cessna 180 CF-LCA* Peterson Air Service
Aero Commander N  
Cessna 180 CF-UQL  
Cessna 182 CF-IAG  
DHC-3 CF-ITS Gateway Aviation ?
DHC-3 CF-ROW Transprovincial Air Carriers
DHC-2 CF-FHZ Terr-Air? See www.DHC-2.com
Grumman Widgeon   Ben Ginter
Helio Courier   Lamb Air?
Avro Anson Mk.5 CF-PAC Pacific Western Airlines
Cessna 180   Branson's Lodge
Cessna 185 CF-GPL Canyon Airways
DHC-2 CF-HGY B.C. Yukon Air Services see DHC-2.com
Helio Courier CF-R.. Perry Linton
Grumman Goose CF-HUY Plummer's Great Bear Lake Lodge
Cessna 310 C-FPPF Whitehorse Flying School
HS.748 C-FMAK Calm Air
DHC-3 C-FSUB Air North
C-130 Hercules CF-PWN Pacific Western Airlines
Curtiss C-46 CF-PWD Pacific Western Airlines REPORT
Cessna 180 CF-VGM? Triway Air
Piper PA.18 CF-JGI  

*=information provided by Bob Cameron (Feb.2011):
"In the list of accidents covered in Denny McCartney's book 'Picking up the Pieces', the Connelly-Dawson Beaver was CF-GYK and the Peterson Air Service Cessna 180 was CF-LCA. My Dad was on both those jobs with Denny, and Dad flew both those aircraft out after bush repairs were completed.
I later flew both those aircraft on commercial operations. I also owned the Beaver CF-FHZ (in that list) in later years."

In Feb.2017 Bob wrote me: "About those two you previously showed 'sans' registration (Cessna 180 - Peterson's Air Service CF-LCA) and the Beaver (Connelly-Dawson Airways CF-GYK).
My Dad, Gordon Cameron, was on both those jobs with Denny (as well as the Aero Commander), and I remember those occasions well.
Dad had the same AME ratings as Denny (including 'B' Category), but he was also a pilot, which Denny was not. So in the case of the 180 (LCA) and the Beaver (GYK), Dad flew both of them out to civilization.
I was a kid at the time (with those guys and their colleagues being my heroes!), and many years later, as Flight Operations Manager for Trans North, I had both those aircraft in my 'stable'.
And many years even later yet, I ended up owning the Beaver CF-FHZ, which Denny rescued more than once!"


Crash site of Royal Canadian Air Force Canso A 11007 revisited by © Dirk Septer 2009 in .PDF format


In aug.2015 I received following request (on which I had no information to offer:
"This is a shot in the dark, but I am wondering if the flight my Dad was on has ever been found..?
Here is the info that Wikipedia has:

If you have any thoughts on this I sure would appreciate hearing from you. I am in Destin Florida and I am trying to make a memorial timeline of my Dad”s life.
Thanks so much,
Christina Clauson (Destin,FL)

This is some of the Wikipedia info:
"The 1951 Canadian Pacific Douglas DC-4 disappearance occurred on the 21 July 1951, when a Douglas DC-4 four-engined piston airliner registered CF-CPC of Canadian Pacific Air Lines disappeared on a scheduled flight for the United Nations from Vancouver, Canada, to Tokyo, Japan.
Neither the aircraft nor the 31 passengers and six crew have been found.
The aircraft, a Douglas DC-4 four-engined piston airliner, had been built in 1944 for the United States Army Air Forces as a Douglas C-54A Skymaster; but on delivery in June 1944, it was diverted to the United States Navy with the designation R5D-1.
In 1946 it was converted to a civil Douglas DC-4 standard for Pan American Airlines as Clipper Winged Racer.
It was sold to Canadian Pacific Airlines in 1950."

Aviation Safety Network (ASN) on CF-CPC' disappearance

If you have any info to offer, please email the webmaster (pls state the url/link you are referring to)


An item on Facebook (Feb.2016) quoted a link to the Urban Ghosts website, showing a stranded C-47 at Isachsen. The website quoted the photographer as Derrick Midwinter who displayed the images on Flickr.com.
C-47 at Isachsen
The above image clearly shows the identity: 316062 (which translates to 43-16062, c/n 20528).
I found a thorough description of this abandoned plane wreck on Aad van der Voet's website: LINK It includes the coördinates of the location, should one be interested in a visit!
Amazing to note that this Douglas C-47 at Isachsen featured in an episode op BBC's Top Gear!

Derrick replied me: "Happy to provide these images for your website!"
"The shots was from our helicopter, just got lucky on the angle and time of day for it to turn out nice."


Don Todd shared these memories with me in June 2016:
"I am a Canadian Metis pilot from Western/Northern Canada.
Started flying in the 1970's and am still holding a CDN ATPL. I was an accident investigator in CASB in 80's and overseas in the CAA of PNG, Namibia and Botswana.
I have investigated over 35 aircraft & rotary types in many remote locations.
I was interested in your site because I started flying as crew in NWT based out of Ft Smith in 1973 on a single otter on floats belonging to Buffalo Airways.
It was with a pilot named Walter Harms who I lost track of as years passed. He was from B.C. and taught school in the off season.

That summer we took accident investigators to a tragic accident when 2 Canso water bombers collided not that far from Fort Smith near a lake; possibly it was near Pilot Lake, just north along a river and another lake...
Have you ever heard of that accident or have any photos sent to you referring to it?
This was mid-summer 1973.
I have photos of other crashed types, but not of those that crashed in NWT; it still interests me to view the north and the aircraft that did not make it!
I flew once for Reindeer Airways from Inuvik on a DC-3 with an Inuit pilot named Tommy Gordon.
Also few for Northward, on Twin Otter, from Inuvik and later on the Do.228 out of same location with a good man named Bob Heath; he sadly crashed in Antarctica few years ago.

Around 1974, when I was in Red Deer, a man named Gordon Magnuson, whom I worked for (as a load master on a
DC-3), was killed in a crash of his spray plane in the summer season; somewhere in in central Alberta.
Magnuson owned a company called Candel Aviation and they owned Lockheed 18 and DC-3's, flying oil field supplies to Inuvik and Norman Wells.
Also, when we flew with Northward, we often passed an aircraft that crashed into the rocky out crops cliffs within 20 miles north of Norman Wells.

I share these points and persons named above in case you have come across any of them over the years and can share any news that would mean a lot to me.

I am now 64 and only a few more years to work in Aviation except to instruct PPL's because I hold a instructors rating still. I often work in Africa now in humanitarian programs; we see so many crash sites of Russian planes, they are scattered all over the region of Kenya, Sudan, DRC and Uganda. That's another story!

Kind regards
Aviaton Safety & Quality Mgr.





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