It’s said that politics makes strange bedfellows.
But, politics — even in this weird presidential year — ain’t got nothin’ on the truckers of the Canadian ice roads as drivers of the rival companies joined forces in a late-season convoy over thawing lakes and disintegrating roads on Thursday night’s episode of “Ice Road Truckers.” Yep, Darrell Ward and Lisa Kelly threw in with Polar’s Todd Dewey and Steph Custance for a mad dash to North Caribou, Ontario. Even Polar’s Biggest Dog, owner Mark Kohaykewych, went along for the ride.
What ride it was.
Convoy: Lisa & Darrell meet Todd & Steph … and Mark too
A lot of cargo had to go a long way over an ice road that had already been closed for a week. Needless to say, Kohaykewych needed all the help he could get. He asked former employees turned business partners and rivals Kelly and Ward to pitch in on this wild ride.
“Let’s see if we can bury the hatchet, and get this done,” said Kohaykewych.
So, for the good of the nice people of North Caribou, they said yes and the four-truck convoy hit the road.
Then the road hit back.
Ward led the pack with Kohaykewych riding shotgun and offering plenty of unwanted driving advice. On their flatbed was a front loader just in case someone needed a shove.
At one point, Ward tired of his new sidekick’s commentary so stopped the truck and made Kohaykewych drive. The Montana Legend gave as good as he got and finally the two switched places.
Meanwhile, at the back of the convoy, Polar’s newbie Custance, was so busy checking her mirrors and begin cautious, she drove off the road and into the snow. Luckily, Dewey was behind her; he hooked on a chain and pulled her to safety.
But, as the hour drew to a close, smoke started filling the cab of Ward’s truck. Alarms sounded, and Kohaykewych bailed from the cab.
That was how the second to the last episode of Season 10 ended. The series finale airs next week.
Alex Debogorski: Takes the long, hard road to Sachigo
The veteran ice road driver had one of two loads to the Ontario First Nation village of Sachigo Lake, and he decided on the longer route, but one with a far shorter — safer? — lake crossing.
But, it meant 450 miles over mostly rutted and muddied muskeg, and that had Debogorski poking along.
“Sasquatch could walk beside the truck and we could have a conversation,” deadpanned Debogorski, adding the season started too warm and was ending too warm.
And, while the road made his back, neck and shoulders sore, the prospect of a mile-long lake crossing made his stomach unsettled.
“I’m a lot nervous about this ice crossing,” said Debogorski.
But, he stood on the step outside his cab, prayed The Lord’s Prayer, said a few Hail Mary’s and invoked God’s name and edged over the lake to safety. But, he still had 150 miles to go.
Art Burke: Shortcut to Sachigo almost his undoing
Like Debogorski, Art Burke was headed to Sachigo Lake. But, unlike his colleague, Burke took the shorter route that included a four-mile lake crossing … the same lake he broke through a year ago and faced down earlier this season.
This crossing was only slightly better than last year’s as Burke’s truck started to billow what appeared to be smoke, forcing him to stop halfway across.
“I’m not sure what’s going on,” said Burke. “But, I think we’re afire.”
Instead, it was just steam; his fan was destroyed, his radiator was leaking and Burke cussed his bad luck and the prospect of being stranded on the ice.
He got his truck started and struggled across the ice and into his final destination
“I just limped her across the line, boy,” said Burke.
But, across the line or not, there was no mechanic available to fix Burke’s busted truck, which was now 350 miles from home.
The Season 10 finale of “Ice Road Truckers” airs Thursday, Oct. 6 at 10 p.m. Eastern and 9 p.m. Central on the History Channel.