So there I was unloaded in Trenton, Ontario, and there is almost nothing coming out of Trenton that hauls on a step-deck, but the office only said they would keep looking. I told them I would see what I could find, and they said, "Great, find a load that will take you somewhere that we can get you a load out of."
Trenton has an Airbase, and I am ex-RCAF, so I did have a couple of people there that I knew, so I dug out my little black book and started checking. Sgt White and I had served together, so I gave him a call. Whitey was in charge of the engine bay there, and after getting caught up on things, I asked him if he knew of anything being shipped by freight. He thought there might be some engines and gave me the numbers to call. I found out six engines were sitting there that were supposed to go to Yellowknife to a Company called Buffalo Airways.
After several calls, I managed to get hold of the right man at Buffalo, and we made a deal. I quoted a reasonable price, and since it was much less than it would cost them to ship by air, I got the contract and headed down to the base. The engines were all at the Engine bay, so Whitey and I had a good chat, and he arranged a lift truck to lift the "canned" engines on my deck. There were 2 –R985s which I figured going up north were for Beaver aircraft, and 4 – R1830s which are DC3 engines.
Loading and tying down was easy, and I was soon off and rolling. It was the end of May, so the roads were great, the weather was perfect, and I had a light load. My old Bulldog was doing her thing until I lost an alternator just out of Edmonton. That was an easy roadside fix, and we pulled into Yellowknife about a day ahead of schedule and parked beside Buffalo's hanger for the night.
You must realize this was years before the show Ice Pilots, and I had never heard of Buffalo Joe, but the next morning he was banging on my door and getting me to move to where they wanted to unload. He sent several guys over to unload me but stayed to supervise and help. After unloading, I was invited for coffee and quizzed on my engine knowledge. When I told him I had served under the man that had signed out the engines as an Engine Mechanic and answered all his questions, he told me that if I got tired of trucking, he was always looking for a good mechanic.
It took me a couple of days, but I found a load out of there going to Vancouver and was away and running again. Looking back, I am almost sorry I hadn't taken Joe up on his job. After all, I could have been the poor hapless mechanic that Joe rags on every other show, but then again, I did get to truck.