Canadian Warplanes 4: Noorduyn Norseman

Noorduyn Norseman

(RCAF Photo via Mike Kaehler)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI (Serial No. 2496), c/n 378, coded AP-Q, No. 413 Squadron, on a Canadian photo-mapping mission ca 1944-45.  It is docked on the water at Sawmill Bay, on the East side of Great Bear Lake, Northwest Territories.  Ex-USAAF UC-64 (Serial No. 43-5387), RAF (Serial No. FZ442), 2496 was in RCAF service from 1944 until 1952.  On 23 Jun 1952 it was reduced to spares and  scrapped.

The Noorduyn Norseman, also known as the C-64 Norseman, is a Canadian single-engine bush plane designed to operate from unimproved surfaces.  Distinctive stubby landing gear protrusions from the lower fuselage make it easily recognizable.  Introduced in 1935, the Norseman remained in production for almost 25 years with over 900 produced.  A number of examples remain in commercial and private use to this day.  Norseman aircraft are known to have been registered and/or operated in 68 countries throughout the world and also have been based and flown in the Arctic and Antarctic regions.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3642459)

Noorduyn Norseman, CF-AYO, Arcturus, Dominion Skyways, 10 Feb 1936.

14 Nov 1935.  The first Norseman, powered by a Wright R-975-E3 Whirlwind, was flight tested on floats.  The Noorduyn Norseman was the quintessential Canadian bush plane. The RCAF operated several of these on photographic mapping of northern Canada.   CF-AYO was sold and delivered to Dominion Skyways Ltd., on 18 Jan 1936, and named “Arcturus."  In the summer of 1941, Warner Brothers leased CF-AYO for the filming of "Captains of the Clouds" starring James Cagney, and with Air Marshall Billy Bishop.  Principal aerial photography took place near North Bay, Ontario with CF-AYO carrying temporary registration CF-HGO.  CF-AYO was lost in a crash in Algonquin Park in 1952.  Its wreckage currently is on display at the Canadian Bushplane Heritage Centre at Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3642459)

Noorduyn Norseman, CF-AYO, 28 Nov 1935.

Almost immediately, the Norseman proved itself to be a rugged, reliable workhorse with steady sales.  The first aircraft, CF-AYO, was designated the Norseman Mk. I.  The next aircraft, "CF-BAU," having some minor changes required after the certification tests, and a new Pratt & Whitney R-1340 Wasp SC-1 engine up-rated from 420 to 450 hp, was designated Norseman Mk. II, while the next three aircraft were Norseman Mk. IIIs: CF-AZA going to MacKenzie Air Service, Edmonton, Alberta, CF-AZE to Prospector Airways, Clarkson, Ontario and CF-AZS to Starrat Airways, Hudson, Ontario.  CF-BAU would be modified on 26 June 1937 to become the prototype Norseman Mk. IV, powered by a Pratt & Whitney Wasp S3H-1.  The Mk. IV became the "definitive" model.

Until 1940, the Noorduyn company had sold only 17 aircraft in total, primarily to commercial operators in Canada's north and to the RCMP.  With the outbreak of the Second World War in Europe, demand for a utility transport led to major military orders.  The RCAF and the USAAF became the two largest operators; the RCAF ordered 38 Norseman Mk. IVWs for radio and navigational training for the Commonwealth Air Training Plan.  The RCAF ordered an additional 34 aircraft designated as the Norseman Mk. VI.

In postwar production, the Canada Car and Foundry (CCF) in Fort William, (now Thunder Bay) Ontario, acquired rights to the Norseman design, producing a version known as the Norseman Mk. V, a civilian version of the wartime Mk IV.  In order to exploit the market further, the CCF factory designed and built the Norseman Mk. VII.  This version had a bigger engine, a new all-metal wing and greater cargo capacity but was fated never to go into production.  The last Noorduyn Norseman to be built was sold and delivered to a commercial customer on 19 Jan 1959.  A total of 903 Norseman aircraft (Mk. I - Mk. V) were produced and delivered to various commercial and military customers.

The Canadian Second World War "ace-of-aces" George Beurling died in a Norseman while landing at Urbe Airport in Rome, Italy, in May 1948.  Beurling had been ferrying the aircraft to the nascent Israeli Air Force.  (Wikipedia)

The operated 79 Norseman aircraft from 1940 to 1953, and the RCN operated 21 Norseman aircraft from 1943 to 1957.

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. III (2), (Serial Nos. 694, 697), Mk. IV (47), (Serial Nos. 491, 494, 496, 497, 498, 499, 678, 681, 691, 692, 693, 695, 696, 698, 2455, 2456, 2458, 2462, 2465, 2466, 2469, 2470, 2474, 2476, 2477, 2478, 2479, 2480, 2481, 2483, 2486, 2493, 2494, 3522, 3523, 3525, 3527, 3528, 3529, 3531, 3532, 3533, 3534, 3535, 3536, 3537, 3539), Mk. IVW (27), (Serial Nos. 492, 493, 495, 679, 680, 2457, 2459, 2461, 2463, 2464, 2467, 2468, 2471, 2472, 2473, 2475, 2482, 2484, 2485, 2487, 2489, 2490, 2491, 2492, 3526, 3533, 3538), Mk. IVWA (3), (Serial Nos. 2460, 2488, 3524), Mk. VI (21), (Serial Nos. 361, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 787, 788, 789, 790, 791, 792, 2495, 2496, A591), for a total of 100 aircraft.

(Author Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV (Serial No. 494), mounted on skis, CF-EIH.  Alberta Aviation Museum, Edmonton, Alberta.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3581435)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 678) and Northrop Delta, Cartwight-Hopedale, Labrador.  Both of these aircraft were flown as part of 'Operation Labrador'.  The flight commenced on 20 July 1939.  The objective was to fly secret photo-reconnaissance missions over the Labrador coast in efforts to locate potential airfield locations.  The RCAF detachment formed to conduct this reconnaissance was designated as the Labrador Flight.  The operation was authorized by Eastern Air Command and was flown in conjunction with an Royal Navy survey ship, HMS Franklin.  It was completed by 9 August 1939.  The aircraft involved were Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV (Serial No. 678) and Northrop Delta (Serial Nos. 676 and 677).  The two communities are 152.49 nautical miles apart.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3650956)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 681).

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3650955)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 681).

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3583646)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 692), 8 Dec 1948.

(DND Photo via Mike Kaehler)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 693).

(Comox Air Force Museum via Mike Kaehler)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 695), Comox Air Force Museum.

(RCAF Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 2456).

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 4448523)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IVM, RCAF (Serial No. 2476), 10 Aug 1952.

2476 was assigned to No. 12 (Communications) Squadron, RCAF Station Rockcliffe, Ontario.  On 16 May 1941 it was involved in a Category B accident at Rockcliffe, and on 22 May it was sent to Noorduyn Aviation for repairs.  Returned to No. 3 Training Command on 3 September 1941 and put in Reserve Storage.  25 October 1941 it was transferred to Eastern Air Command, No.4 Repair Depot, and used for 'drop testing parachutes'.  Category B accident at Hower Argyle, NB on 15 November 1941, while serving with No. 119 (Bomber Reconnaissance) Squadron.  On 18 November sent to No. 4 Repair Depot, Scoudouc, New Brunswick for repairs.  Returned to Eastern Air Command (EAC) on 15 July 1942.  It was involved in an accident that year (probably mid-November) with the aircraft record noting 'Crew Missing' and no other details.  Sent to No. 4 Repair Depot, Scoudouc for repairs.  It was returned to EAC on 4 February 1943 and sent to Goose Bay, Labrador for rescue work.  Sent to Noorduyn Aviation 23 October 1943 for repair and overhaul.  Returned to EAC on 4 March 1944 and put in Reserve Storage.  Re-activated 21 August 1944 and on 18 October 1945 assigned to search and rescue work.  Subsequently saw service at Mount Pleasant and on 31 August 1948 was transferred to North West Air Command, Nelson, British Columbia.  (R.W.R. Walker)

(RCAF Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 2477).

No. 2477 went to No. 12 (Communications) Squadron, RCAF Station Rocklciffe, Ontario by 1 November 1941.  Category C damage at Rockcliffe on 1 January 1942, in a wind storm.  Loaned to RAF Ferry Command at Dorval, 6 February to 4 April 1942, for re-supply flights to USAAF weather stations in Labrador.  Category C accident at RCAF Station Rocklciffe, Ontario on 21 August 1943.  To No. 1 Training Command on 28 October 1943, and then on 9 November 1943 to No. 2 Training Command, No. 3 Wireless School. On 1 December 1944 it was transferred to No. 2 Air Command and on 12 April 1945 to Reserve Storage.  Sent to No. 10 Repair Depot, Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan for overhaul 15 May 1946.  Sold on July 18, 1946.  Registration CF-PAB was allotted to Alberta Department Of Public Works 23 July 1946 but they did not complete the purchase.  Overhauled by Western Airmotive, Edmonton, Alberta.  Test flown at Edmonton 26 January 1947.  Sold to Noel. D. Lambert, operating as Northern Mannix Companies, Vancouver, BC. and registered 1 February 1947.  On 25 March 1949 registered to Northwest Territories Power Commission, Ottawa, Ontario.  Registered to Yellowknife Airways Ltd., Yellowknife, NWT. 23 April 1951.  As of May 11, 1954 total time was 4,350 hours.  On 2 August 1951 it was registered to Associated Airways Ltd., Edmonton, Alberta.  Reported damaged beyond repair 11 August 1954 when floats dug in during a glassy water landing.  Location unknown.  (R.W.R. Walker)

(RCAF Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 2486).

No. 2486 was assigned to No. 1 Training Command, Trenton, Ontario.  Transferred 28 January 1942 to No. 3 Training Command, Rockcliffe, Ontario.  Category C accident at Windsor Mills, PQ 11 March 1942.  To Noorduyn Aviation for repairs 17 June 1942, returned to No. 3 Training Command 20 July 1942.  On 3 February 1943 transferred on loan to RAF Ferry Command, Dorval, Quebec, to be used for rescue work in Newfoundland.  Returned to No. 3 Training Command 16 March 1944 and put in Reserve Storage.  Re-activated 26 July 1944.  On 15 January 1945 transferred to No. 1 Air Command.  On 20 August 1946, sent to No. 6 Repair Depot for repairs, returning 26 May 1947.  On 30 October 1948 it was sent for repairs and fabric re-covering.  Returned to Trenton 27 October 1953 where it served until 4 December 1952.  To Royal Norwegian AF at Horten.  May have been stationed at Voernes, in storage there around February 8, 1955.  On 17 January 1959, given civil registration LN-BIU, C of A No. 506, Reg. No. 477 and placed on loan to Wideroes Flyveselskap.  Withdrawn from Air Force service 29 April 1959, and offered for sale with 1051 hours total time.  Sold to Wideroes on wheels with engine No.327535 on 9 December 1959.  Bought by Varanffly, Kirkens, 20 June 1967.  Written off in a crash at Grottoy 20 November 1971.  (R.W.R Walker)

(RCAF Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 2486).

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3583157)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 3523), 24 Feb 1944.  In 1953, 3523 was transferred to Royal Norwegian Air Force, their serial R-AO.  Later to Norwegian civil register, as LN-BFP.

(RCAF Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 3528).

3528 was with No. 6 (Communications) Squadron.  It crashed on 10 July 1945.  The crew of two were transporting freight.  The aircraft stalled in a turn shortly after take-off at a height of about 200 feet-300 feet then proceeded to strike the water in the mouth of the Liard River at Fort Simpson, NWT.  The aircraft immediately sank.  The pilot Flying Officer C. T. Wheeler was listed as missing.  His remains were never recovered.  LAC S. B. Ladell the crewman, was seriously injured.  (Chris Charland)

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3545910)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IVW, RCAF (Serial No. 679), 1938.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3545916)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IVW, RCAF (Serial No. 679).

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3581155)

Noorduyn Norseman, Mk. IVW, RCAF (Serial No. 680).

(RCAF Photo via Shaun Mullins)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IVW, RCAF (Serial No. 2487), c/n 60, coded CJ-H.  Taken on strength 7 May 1941.  Assigned to No. 3 Training Command, Montreal, Quebec.  Put in Reserve Storage until being transferred to No. 12 (Comm) Squadron 1 November 1941.  On 16 February 1942 transferred to Eastern Air Command, No. 4 Repair Depot, for use in rescue work and then on 12 March 1942 to RCAF Station Sydney, Nova Scotia.  To Noorduyn Aviation for repair 28 July 1942, following a Category B accident.  To No. 12 (Comm) Squadron 27 January 1943.  Transferred to No. 1 Training Command, No. 4 Wireless School, 22 June 1943 and then to No. 1 Air Command 15 January 1945.  To Noorduyn Aviation for overhaul 19 February 1945. Returned 4 January 1946 and assigned to No. 4 REMU.  Transferred to Central Air Command 28 April 1947 and then to North West Air Command, Edmonton, Alberta, 17 September 1948.  Struck off 23 april 1953.  Following three subsequent moves, it was transferred via Mutual Aid to the Royal Norwegian Air Force on 23 April 1953 and coded R-AU.  (rwrwalker.ca)

The aircraft is painted aluminium with a matt black anti-glare panel and search red applied to the outer wings (top and bottom) as well as the horizontal stabilizer.  All the control surfaces were painted aluminium.  (Chris Charland)

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3582334)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IVWA, RCAF (Serial No. 2488) crash, 14 Jan 1943.

2488 was assigned to No. 3 Training Command, Montreal, Quebec and put in Reserve Storage until transferred to No. 3 Training Command Communications Squadron 26 June 1941.  Category B accident at St. Hubert, Quebec 30 October 1941, turned over on landing, the pilot and crew suffered minor injuries.  Repaired by Noorduyn Aviation, to No. 3 Training Command, Rockcliffe, Ontario 5 May 1942.  On 9 June 1942 loaned to Dominion Skyways Ltd., Montreal, Quebec and returned 10 October 1942.  While on loan registered as CF-BXB, not clear if this was actually marked.  On 13 January 1943 Category B accident at Rockcliffe, Ontario, landing with a hanging port ski. The crew was slightly injured and the aircraft sent to Noorduyn Aviation for repairs on 27 January.  Rebuilt using a Mark VI fuselage and rdesignated Mk. IV-WA.   To Western Air Command 27 December 1943.  Operated by No. 166 (T) Squadron, RCAF Station Sea Island, 1943/1945.  Sold at Vancouver, BC. 15 January 1948.  Registered as CF- GHH to Queen Charlotte Airlines Ltd., Vancouver, BC. 22 May 1948.  Registered to Pacific Western Airlines, Vancouver, BC. in 1956 when they bought out Queen Charlotte Airlines.  Registered to R.H. Laidman, Vancouver, BC. 6 June 1958 and then on 10 April 1959 to Celgar Ltd., Vancouver, BC.  In June 1959 a fire control water drop system was installed, did not perform well and was removed. As of March 25, 1964 total time was 5,920 hours.  Destroyed at Nakusp, BC. 4 June 1964.  Hit floating debris on take off and overturned.  Pilot and five passengers escaped injury.  (R.W.R. Walker)

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 4449258)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF (Serial No. 364), 16 Sep 1948.

(DND Photo via Chris Charland)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF (Serial No. 365), coded GA-A with RCAF Station Goose Bay's Station Flight.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3584792)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF (Serial No. 368), coded AK-O, 26 May 1953.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3584790)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF (Serial No. 368), coded AK-O, top view, 26 May 1953.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3586697)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF (Serial No. 368), coded AK-O, being towed by a tractor.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3228255)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF (Serial No. 368), coded AK-O, on skis, 408 (P) Sqn, 12 Mar 1951.

(RCAF Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF (Serial No. 371), AP-N.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3203759)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF (Serial No. 371), refueling from a Penguin snowtrack during Operation Musk Ox, 17 March 1946.

Operation Musk Ox was an 81-day military exercise organized by the Canadian Army between Feb and May 1946.  It involved the 48 members of the Army driving 11 4½-ton Canadian-designed snowmobiles ("Penguins").  They were joined by three American observers in a smaller American-made snowmobile called a "Weasel" as well as an observer from the Royal Canadian Navy and a number of scientists.  The RCAF provided airdrops of supplies, the largest aerial resupply effort ever attempted in Canada up to that point.

The main expedition, led by Patrick Douglas Baird, travelled 3,100 miles (5,000 km), starting from Churchill, Manitoba, first to Baker Lake, Northwest Territories where the number of vehicles was reduced to ten.  From there, the group travelled to Denmark Bay on Victoria Island, then south to to Grande Prairie and then by rail to Edmonton.  The mission demonstrated that it was highly unlikely that Soviet forces would attempt an overland invasion of North America through the Arctic.

Snowmobile #8, was commanded by Captain Bob Inglis, who is standing on the right, wearing his Eskimo made fur clothing. Bob ran out of fuel and flagged down the aircraft.  Bob was an instructor in Arctic warfare base in Churchill, Manitoba.  

This particular snowmobile is believed to have survived, was rescued by a collector and ended up at the Bombardier Museum.  A large “8” was found painted inside the roof hatch.  The museum told me however that it was later scrapped. This was presumably because it was not made by their company. (Colin MacGregor Stevens)


(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3203761)

Operation Musk-Ox, Noordyn Norseman, a Penguin snowtrack, and a WACO glider coming in for landing, 29 April 1946.


(RCAF Photo)

Douglas Dakota and Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF Serial No. 371), Op Musk Ox, 1946.

(RCAF Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI RCAF (Serial No. 372) in flight.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo,MIKAN No. 3390844)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF (Serial No. 787), June 1943, Upper Green Lake, Ontario.


(Author Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF (Serial No. 787), c/n 136, coded QT.  Built in 1943, this Norseman VI was flown by No. 3 Wireless School in Montreal during the Second World War, and was used to train wireless operators.  Between 1945 and 1950, it served as a communications, search-and-rescue, and transportation aircraft across Canada.  In 1950, it served with No. 121 Communications and Rescue Flight, still bearing the RCAF markings from its last year of active service.  This aircraft was transferred to the Museum in February 1964.  (CA&SM)

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 4448522)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF (Serial No. 790), 17 Mar 1954. medevac.

(RCAF Photo via Larry Milberry)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 792), c/n 14, Reg. No. CF-IGX.  Built as USAAF (Serial No. 43-5150), but transferred via Lend-Lease to the RCAF.  Delivered 10 June 1943 as aircraft No. 792 and assigned to No. 12 Squadron, Rockcliffe, Ontario.

(RCAF Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI RCAF (Serial No. 791).

791 was an ex-US UC-64 (Serial No. 43-5149).  Converted to Mk. VI on 7 July 1943.  It flew with No. 13 (Photographic) Squadron at RCAF Station Rockcliffe, Ontario.  It was on operations around Ungava Bay in July 1944.  It went on to the US civil register as N55444, registered to Fleetway Inc. of Burbank, California.  To Lineas Aeras de Transporte Nacional of Paraguay in 1954, registered as ZP-CAZ.  (R.W.R. Walker)

(RCAF Photo via Shaun Mullins)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 792)

(Bill McRae Collection Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI RCAF (Serial No. 2496) c/n 378, docked at a lake while on a Canadian photo-mapping mission, ca 1944-45, ex USAAF UC-64 (Serial No. 43-5387), RAF (Serial No. FZ442)

(Bill McRae Collection Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI RCAF (Serial No. 2496) c/n 378, docked at a lake while on a Canadian photo-mapping mission, ca 1944-45, ex USAAF UC-64 (Serial No. 43-5387), RAF (Serial No. FZ442)

(RCAF Photo via Mike Kaehler)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI (Serial No. 2496), c/n 378, coded AP-Q, No. 413 Squadron, on a Canadian photo-mapping mission ca 1944-45.  It is docked on the water at Sawmill Bay, on the East side of Great Bear Lake, Northwest Territories.  Ex-USAAF UC-64 (Serial No. 43-5387), RAF (Serial No. FZ442), 2496 was in RCAF service from 1944 until 1952.  On 23 Jun 1952 it was reduced to spares and  scrapped.

Taken on strength 24 Mar 1944.  Assigned to No. 1 Training Command, Ontario 24 Mar 1944 and placed in Reserve Storage.  Activated 5 May 1944 and transferred to No. 1 Air Command 15 Jan 1945.  To No. 9T Group, No. 13 (later No. 413) (P) Squadron, RCAF Station Rockcliffe, Ontario 4 May 1946.  Coded AP-Q.  Transferred to Air Transport Command 1 Apr 1948.  On 14 Oct 1948 sent to No. 6 Repair Depot for reconditioning.  Returned to ATC, No. 413 (P) Squadron, 5 Mar 1949.  On 31 Jan 1950 to No. 6 Repair Depot for refinishing and returned 17 Feb 1950.  Sent to N0. 11 TSU (Canadian Car And Foundry) 24 Apr 1950 for door installation, returning 27 Apr and going to No. 6 Repair Depot "pending allotment to contractor".  On 27 Jul 1951 to No. 11 TSU (Canadian Car) for reconditioning.  Returned to No. 6 Repair Depot, reduced to spares and produce.  Struck off and scrapped 23 June 1952.  (rwrwalker.ca)

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3584156)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF (Serial No. 2496), coded AP-Q, during Geodetic Survey support duties at Flin Flon, Manitoba in 1948.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3584160)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI (Serial No. 2496), c/n 378, coded AP-Q, No. 413 Squadron, 18 Aug 1948.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3584161)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI (Serial No. 2496), c/n 378, coded AP-Q, No. 413 Squadron, 18 Aug 1948.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 358790)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF, 25 Jul 1945, Maple Leaf.


(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3586673)

Noorduyn Norseman, RCAF, coded AP-P, No. 413 Squadron, Clearwater Lake, 28 Aug 1950.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3586650)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. IV, RCAF (Serial No. 7--), coded AP-F, June 1950, No. 10 Det, Sault St Marie, Ontario.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3584523)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, coded AK-T, No. 408 Squadron, Rockcliffe, Ontario, 9 Jun 1951.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 4449260)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, RCAF, AK-F, Golden Lake, Ontario.


(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 4276736)

Noorduyn Norseman, CF-MPL, RCMP Air Service.  

Registered to the RCMP on 19 Feb 1949 as CF-MPL.  Traded in to DeHavilland Canada on a new Otter.  Registered to Bradley Air Service, Carp, Ontario on 20 May 1959 then to Arnold E. Bradley, Chicoutimi, Quebec on 26 Sep 1960.  Registered to Mattagami Skyways Ltd., Moonbeam, Ontario on 20 Nov 1964.  Damaged beyond repair when landing in a rain storm at Cooper Lake, Ontario, on 27 May 1965.  Three fatalities and two survivors.  DOT accident report # 2569.  Total time 5789 hours.  (Noorduyn Aviation)

(Author Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. V, floatplane, CF-HPY, mounted on a pylon. Alberta Aviation Museum, Edmonton, Alberta.

C/n N29-52, registered to Northern Wings Ltd., Sillery, Quebec on 24 April 1955 as CF-HPY.  Registered to Gordon Norell, Sioux Lookout, Ontario on 8 Feb 1963.  Substantially damaged landing at Big Trout Lake, Ontario on 26 Feb 1965.  This aircraft landed with one ski upturned.  There were no injuries to the pilot and four passengers.  Sale reported in 1975 but no details given.  Airframe may have gone to Joe McBryan in 1992.  (Noorduyn Aviation)

(Alain Rioux Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman Mk. VI, floatplane (Serial No. 831), CF-DRD, yellow with red stripes, silver pontoons, mounted on a pylon.  Red Lake, Ontario.

C/n 831, delivered to the USAAF as(Serial No. 45-41747) on 8 May 1945 and flown to Newark, New Jersey, arriving 11 May 1941.  The aircraft was scheduled to be shipped to Karachi, India but was diverted to Baer Field, Fort Wayne, Indiana and flown there on 12 June.  It was assigned to the Reconstruction Finance Corporation, Kansas on 8 Aug 1946 for disposal as surplus.  Sold to Dayton Aero, Dayton, Ohio and registered as NC75938.  Registered to Ontario Central Airlines, Kenora, Ontario as CF-DRD on 15 Apr 1953.  Next registered to Teal air Ltd., Winnipeg, Manitoba on 13 Nov 1958 and then back to Ontario Central on 13 Sep 1968.  Registered to Swanair Ltd., Dryden, Ontario on 27 Aug 1973 and then to Wings Aviation Ltd., Red Lake, Ontario on 7 Feb 1974.  Reported as last flown in 1981.  A sale was reported in 1983 but no buyer named.  Registered to Kuby’s Aircraft Ltd., Kenora, Ontario on 26 Mar 1990.  Bought by the Town Of Red Lake, restored to display condition, and mounted on a pedestal on the waterfront in Red Lake, Ontario in 1992.  Total time 7,109 hours.  (Noorduyn Aviation)

(CambridgeBayWeather Photo)

Noorduyn Norseman, CF-SAN, Buffalo Airways.

C/n N29-29 was delivered to Saskatchewan Government Department of Natural Resources, Regina, Saskatchewan and registered on 5 Oct 1946 as CF-SAN.  Registered to Saskatchewan Government Airways, Prince Albert, Saskatchewan in 1947.  Damaged at Ile-A-La Crosse, Saskatchewan on 16 June 1960.  The aircraft was taxied downwind for takeoff.  Turning back into wind the right wing dipped into the water and the aircraft tipped forward and capsized causing considerable damage.  Pilot George Greening and passenger both escaped injury.  Re-registered to Saskair, Prince Albert, Saskatchewan in 1964.  (Company name change).  Registered to Dolphin Airways, Lynn Lake, Manitoba in 1966 and then in 1968 to Ontario Central Airlines, Kenora, Ontario.  Registered to Ilford-Riverton Airways, Winnipeg, Manitoba, on 28 May 1971.  (Leased from Samuel Breen)  Registered to Northland Fisheries, Winnipeg, Manitoba on May 12, 1972.  Again registered to Ilford-Riverton Airways on 7 June 1973.  (Leased from Northland Fisheries).  Re-registered to Northland Fisheries in early 1974 and then on 4 June 1974 to Ignace Airways, Ignace, Ontario.   It was registered to Simpson Air Ltd, Fort Simpson, NWT on 10 Aug 1978.  Registered to R. and M. Smith (Sportsman’s Outfly Air Charter Service), Armstrong, Ontario on 11 July 1979.  Again registered to Simpson Air Ltd. in 1980.  Suffered substantial damage when it crashed at the Fort Simpson, NWT. airport on 15 Dec 1981.  Take off was attempted with frost on wings and the aircraft overturned.  C of A expired on 12 Aug 1982.  Shipped to Calgary, Alberta for rebuild but found to be beyond economical repair and donated to the Calgary Aerospace Museum in 1993.  Sold to Joe McBryan (Buffalo Airways) later the same year.  The aircraft has since been rebuilt and was registered to Buffalo Airways, Hay River, NWT, in April 2004.  (Noorduyn Aviation)

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 2218801)

Noorduyn Norseman 60-cent stamp, 1982.

C/n N29-27 was registered to the Saskatchewan Government Air Ambulance Service, Regina, Saskatchewan on 19 Sep 1946 as CF-SAM.  It was re-registered to Saskatchewan Government Airways, Prince Albert, Sask. on 14 June 1950.  It was one of three aircraft modified with a belly exit to allow the dropping of the Saskatchewan Smoke Jumpers when on floats.  The other two being CF-SAH (c/n 21) and CF-ECF (c/n N29-37).  In 1962 the aircraft was swept over a set of rapids above Nistowiak Falls, Saskatchewan.  The wings were removed and a road cut through bush in order to move the aircraft back to safe water.  Here it was reassembled, the floats repaired and flown out.  Later the same year, departing Pinehouse, Saskatchewan with a load of fish on board, the engine failed and the aircraft crashed in the bush.  It suffered substantial damage and  pilot Wally Homersham received minor injuries.  It was salvaged the following winter, was transported to Prince Albert Saskatchewan for rebuild and returned to service.  It was re-registered to Saskair, Prince Albert, Saskatchewan (Company name change) in 1964.  Registered  to Norcanair, Prince Albert, Sask. on 3 Sep 1965 when they bought out Saskatchewan Government Airways.  Registered to Dolphin Airways, Lynn Lake, Manitoba on 17 Dec 1965.  Re-registered to La Ronge Aviation, La Ronge, Sask on 4 Jan 1967 when they bought out Dolphin Airways.  Registered to Nipawin Air Service, Nipawin, Saskatchewan on 20 Dec 1967.  Its registration was cancelled on 15 July 1976.  Bought by Ag Air Company, Latah, Washington and was destined to be stripped for parts.  The Saskatchewan Tourist Association and the Western Development Museum stepped in and purchased it.  It has since been restored, painted in the original Air Ambulance gold and green colors and is displayed at the Western Development Museum, Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan.  In 1982 the aircraft, in Air Ambulance colours, was featured on a Canadian 60-cent postage stamp.   As of 29 April 1974 total time was 12,908 hours.  (Noorduyn Aviation)

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 4948504)

Smoke jumpers with a Noorduyn Norseman, 1952.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3584411)

...well, that didn't go quite as planned.  Tractor sinking after freeing Noorduyn Norseman CF-BSB from a beach, 14 Aug 1950.

(Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3586429)

Noorduyn Norseman, RCAF (Serial No. 338), coded 1A, with Inuit woman, 7 Dec 1949.