MAPLE LEAF DC-8S: CONNECTING CANADA

The Douglas DC-8 introduced jet services to Trans-Canada Air Lines and opened up new routes across the country and the world. The rebranding of the airline as Air Canada refl ected this expansion, writes Barry Lloyd.

Main photo: Joining Air Canada in February 1970, CF-TIS only carried passengers for a small part of its long career. Converted to CFM56 power in 1982, the aircraft flew as a -73F freighter with various operators until 2012. AirTeamImages.com/Wolfgang Mendorf

Despite being one of the world’s largest countries by area, Canada is not densely populated. This meant that the demand for internal air services was not as pronounced as that of its southern neighbour, and domestic routes did not develop rapidly until jets were introduced in the early 1960s. The development of civil aviation in the country was also shaped by its rugged terrain, extreme variations in climate and the distances between the principal cities. Montreal and Vancouver are more than 3,000 miles (4,828km) apart and overland transport between them typically takes several days.

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