Meanwhile, Alex and his safety instructor Jack were trailing Hugh and Phil so they didn't reach Atigun until dark. To make matters worse, Jack got frustrated with Alex's lack of "chaining up" experience and left him to finish the process himself and then cross Atigun alone. This was toward the end and by this time, my nerves were a bit frayed. I know he made it across safely, but the details are a bit sketchy. He said a prayer and then took it nice and slow until he reached safety at Coldfoot (the Dalton's midway point). And then there's George and Tim and their harrowing trek through the flats with snow drifts that resembled snow mounds. These "drifts" were all over the road as the wind from the storm whipped more and snow into their lane. You could hear and see the stuff hitting the side of Tim's truck! It was intense!
My girl Lisa tackled her third oversized load of the season, but she only made it to Coldfoot because the storm shut down Atigun Pass before she had a chance to go through it. She, like most of the trucking fleet, was grounded in Coldfoot until the storm passed. Before she got there, though, there were a few tense moments. As any driver knows, our worst enemy is the other drivers on the road. They're unpredictable, distracted, and no one (and I mean no one) drives as well as we do. The Dalton is no exception. Lisa feared that the southbound traffic would brake as they approached her, causing their trailer to jackknife and plow right into her. Then, she lost her brakes for "The Rollercoaster," which, thanks to some awesome camera angles, put me right into the driver's seat with her. It was scary, but she made it safely to the bottom (full speed ahead). It was just another day on the Dalton.
Ice Road Truckers airs Sunday nights on History Channel. To catch up on this season, click on over to HistoryChannel.com where you'll also get show info, driver bios, and an IRT app for your iPhone.