powered by AFI
Texas Rangers Steve Bowie and Lucky Laidlaw decide to resign their posts and enlist in the U.S. Air Force to better serve their country during the war. On the morning they plan to notify their commander, Capt. Hill, of their decision, the captain is visited by a government agent named Strong. Recalling the fine work being done by the Rangers in Trinidad and other outposts, Strong explains that the government fears enemy action in Alaska and asks for a Ranger to be assigned to replace Kendall, a friendly rancher who had been relaying reports to the government before being murdered. After Hill convinces Steve to pose as Kendall's nephew, Steve, Lucky and Ranger Harmony Bumpus head north for the Kendall ranch, an expanse of cattle country on the Alaska coast. Just before the Rangers arrive, Buddy Taylor, a boy who lives on the neighboring ranch, sails his toy plane onto the Kendall property. Noticing several strangers there, the youth tells his father about the intruders. When Matt Taylor and his daughter Sheila investigate, the strangers ride off, shooting. Taylor follows them and comes upon the Rangers, whom he believes to be his assailants until Steve convinces the rancher that he is Kendall's nephew. The men who were on the Kendall ranch, foreign agent Chris Larsen and his henchmen, killed Kendall and now, under orders from a U-Boat captain anchored just offshore, are building a runway for enemy planes. To destroy any incriminating evidence, Larsen sets fire to the Kendall property that night. Steve and Lucky arrive just in time to save the ranch house, and although the arsonists escape, Steve finds some rolled cigarettes that point to Larsen's involvement. The next morning, under the pretext of a neighborly visit, Steve rides to the Larsen ranch. There, he has a fight with a guard and is saved from being shot in the back by Lucky's timely arrival. Later in the day, Buddy sails his toy plane over Larsen's fence. Climbing inside, he sees a large group of men pouring cement. In his hurry to get away, Buddy falls to his death over a rocky ledge. Larsen puts the boy's body on Steve's side of the fence, and when it is discovered there, Taylor accuses Steve of his son's murder. The next day, Lucky decoys Larsen's men while Steve searches the Larsen ranch. When Lucky is apprehended and cruelly tortured by Larsen, Steve learns what is transpiring from short-wave radio conversations between Larsen and the U- boat captain. After convincing Taylor that he was not responsible for Buddy's death, Steve stampedes the rancher's herd through the Larsen property. Riding behind these "shock troops," Steve and his friends rescue Lucky and capture the enemy agents.