August 09, 2007 06:35 PM by Joe Blackmon
The highest rated non-scripted cable series this summer among adults
25-54, ICE ROAD TRUCKERS, is kicking into overdrive with three
additional episodes. The History Channel will premiere THE ICE ROAD:
THEN AND NOW, a one-hour historical retrospective on the ice roads of
Northern Canada on Sunday, August 26th at 9pm ET/PT. A two-part reunion
special, ICE ROAD TRUCKERS: OFF THE ICE, which will bring together the
truckers for the first time since the season ended last winter, will
air on consecutive Sundays, September 2nd and 9th at 9pm ET/PT.
Prior to the bonus episodes, on Sunday, August 19th at 10pm ET/PT, the 2007 ice road champion will be revealed as the grizzled veterans Hugh “Polar Bear” Rowland and Alex Debogorski go head-to-head for a year’s worth of bragging rights.
An average of about three million viewers have tuned in every Sunday night since June 17 to follow the high octane exploits of Hugh, Alex, T.J., Rick, Jay and Drew as they attempted to conquer the terrifying ice roads that serve as the route to the diamond mines of Canada’s Northwest Territory. Hauling a year’s worth of supplies over frozen lakes that double as roads for only two months out of the year, has not proven to be easy, as each driver has contended with broken down trucks, intense whiteouts and the specter of going down with the constant sound of ice cracking beneath their trucks. Most of these truckers have taken nothing for granted and if they did, they weren’t long for the ice road.
THE ICE ROAD: THEN AND NOW on Sunday, August 26 at 9pm ET/PT: This one-hour special will explain how trucks were specifically fitted for sub zero temperatures in the 1930′s, and how the gold mines operated in the 1940′s in contrast to how the diamond mines operate there now. THE ICE ROAD: THEN AND NOW will also provide and in depth examination of the changes that have taken place in Yellowknife and the ice roads of the region over the past 75 years, from its geological history to the origins of the indigenous Eskimos that have inhabited the land for hundreds of years.
ICE ROAD TRUCKERS: OFF THE ICE on Sunday, September 2 and 9 at 9pm ET/PT: This two-part reunion special will reunite the six truckers, bringing them together for the first time since the ice road season ended last winter. Tensions are sure to be high as both Rick and Drew have not spoken to Hugh since leaving the ice roads prematurely. T.J., the rookie, has had time to reflect on his time up north and will discuss whether or not he’ll be back up on the ice roads next year. Alex and Jay, full-time residents of Yellowknife, are sure to have some thoughts on how the locals feel about the spotlight that has been shined on their small town.
And Friday, August 17 at 3pm ET History.com will host LIVE chat with Hugh Rowland. History.com has been taking ICE ROAD TRUCKERS into the digital realm with a multi-faceted minisite that features interviews and maps; short-form pieces on topics such as female ice road truckers and what daily life in Yellowknife is like; “Pimp Your Rig” allows users to create their own virtual ice road truck; and a driving game where users can test their skills driving loads over virtual ice.