Wings Magazine

Rookie pilots, impossible jobs


Rookie pilots, impossible jobs
Real-life adventures of Buffalo Airways pilots unfold as Ice Pilots NWT takes off on History Television tomorrow at 10 p.m. EST/PST.

November 12, 2009  By Administrator

Nov. 12, 2009, Vancouver, B.C. – It’s the classic frontier story, young pilots with a taste of adventure come to Yellowknife-based Buffalo Airways to earn their wings and fly the same vintage aircraft their grandfathers flew in WWII. 

However it’s a different war now, a war against bitter cold and frequent breakdowns, a war to haul people and supplies in the toughest conditions on Earth.

Ice Pilots NWT behind the scenes footage.


Premiering Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2009 at 10 p.m. EST/PST on History Television, the gripping 13-episode, real-life documentary series Ice Pilots NWT features the maverick people and the extraordinary adventures of the most unorthodox airline in the Canadian North.





Filmed over nine months, the series follows several of the company’s free-spirited pilots, including legendary founder “Buffalo” Joe McBryan, who still flies a classic DC-3 every day with his beloved dog Sophie in the cockpit.  “It’s a chaotic high-wire act of cargo deadlines, sick crew members, late arrivals, breakdowns, of temperamental planes and stormy Arctic weather that’s hard on the pilots and even harder on the aircraft,” says series producer David Gullason.

Ice Pilots NWT’s accompanying website, funded by the Bell Fund, offers an inside look into the people of Buffalo Airways, the planes they fly and the harsh environment they live and work in.  A key feature of is an interactive story map of the Northwest Territories using Google Maps, in which viewers can share their personal stories about flying in the North by uploading text, photos and voice recordings.


Ice Pilots NWT is produced by Omni Film Productions Ltd., in association with CanWest and with participation of the Canadian Television Fund, the Rogers Cable Network Fund, the province of British Columbia Film Incentive, The Canadian Film and Video Production Tax Credit Program and British Columbia Film.  The series was created and produced by David Gullason, and executive produced by Gabriela Schonbach, David Gullason and Michael Chechik.

For more behind the scenes photos check out our Ice Pilots NWT photo gallery.


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