Military History Books
by Harold A. Skaarup   
Canadian Warplanes 5: de Havilland CC-108 Caribou

de Havilland CC-108 Caribou

Data current to 4 Feb 2021.

 (de Havilland Photo)

de Havilland CC-108 Caribou.

The de Havilland Canada DHC-4 Caribou (designated by the United States military as the CV-2 and later C-7 Caribou) is a Canadian-designed and produced specialized cargo aircraft with short takeoff and landing (STOL) capability.  The Caribou was first flown in 1958 and although mainly retired from military operations, is still in use in small numbers as a rugged bush aircraft.  The Caribou was flown by No. 424 Squadron Transport and Rescue Squadron, until it was retired from the Canadian Forces in 1971.

The de Havilland Canada company's third STOL design was the first DHC design powered by two engines.  The Caribou was primarily flown as a military tactical transport. The United States Army ordered 173 in 1959 and took delivery in 1961 under the designation AC-1, which was changed to CV-2 Caribou in 1962.

The majority of Caribou production was destined for military operators, but the type's ruggedness and excellent STOL capabilities requiring runway lengths of only 1200 feet (365 metres) also appealed to some commercial users. 

de Havilland CC-108 Caribou Mk. I (1), (Serial No. 5303), Mk. 1A (4), (Serial Nos. 5320-5323), Mk. 1B (4), (Serial Nos. 5324-5327), for a total of 9 aircraft.

 (DND Photo via Jim Dunn)

de Havilland CC-108 Caribou Mk. IB, (Serial No. 5327).

Jim Dunn had this story about the Caribou: At Trenton circa 1969 I had a Caribou request landing clearance.  I told the pilot that I had a wolf on the centreline about 6,000 feet from touchdown.  He accepted the clearance & landed with room galore to spare.  He then asked for permission to taxi down the runway toward the wolf since he had a Malaysian student onboard who had never seen a live wolf.  I approved this and he taxied up behind the wolf, a couple of hundred feet or so distance.  The wolf just glanced over its shoulder and continued to trot along until it exited the runway in the approach lights.  The pilot said, "I bet you have never seen that before, a Caribou chasing a wolf".

 (DND Photo via James Craik)

de Havilland CC-108 Caribou Mk. 1A (Serial No. 5322).

 (RCAF Photo)

de Havilland CC-108 Caribou Mk. 1A, UN and RCAF colours.

 (DND Photo via James Craik)

de Havilland CC-108 Caribou Mk. 1A (Serial No. 5323).