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Season One Talk: Wolves and Cougars and Bears, Oh My!

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A place to discuss particular episodes, arcs and moments from the show's first season. Please remember this isn't a complete catch-all topic -- check out the forum for character topics, other seasons, and other places for show-related talk.

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I am all in!

 

The minute I saw cop-guy, I somehow knew he'd tap out early.  I just didn't expect it to be within the first 12 hours.

 

The cocky kid who howled like a wolf also rubbed me the wrong way.

 

I can hardly wait for the realities of the rugged Pacific Northwest to kick some more ass.  I hope these guys watched a lot of Survivorman episodes.  :-)

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Ha. They showed this many times over the weekend and I got to see it again. I have to say that I am confused about the choice of some of the items that the guys bring. Mitch for the win! (fire / periwinkle guy, plus his daughter is cute). 

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I'm totally in. I grew up wanting to do exactly what they're doing -- and the north end of Vancouver Island is my favorite place in the world!

 

I don't have a favorite yet. I don't think we've really seen everyone. I'm thrilled to death the cop guy tapped out. He was an IDIOT.

 

Rule #1 of camping: If there is fresh bear sign in the vicinity of your camp, you MOVE. Period. No discussion. Finding the den and seeing mom and her two cubs was even extra incentive. Staying just that one night was utterly ridiculous.

 

I'm totally bummed that all the participants are male. I want to do this! I couldn't, though, because we need my salary to pay the mortgage. Plus, I couldn't leave my dogs that long.

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Loved the first episode. I still don't know their names but enjoyed the premise and most of their actions. I want to know what they could choose from because they have the same items.

I would totally tap out If a bear came sniffing by my tent. That is seriously scary.

Can't wait to see how this unfolds

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I thought this was going to be the typical hack reality show (it is, after all, on the History Channel) but I was surprised to find that I was drawn into it.  I think maybe the fact that there is no narrator really kept the fake hysterical drah-mah to a minimum.  If you read the bios on these guys, I think the title 'survival expert' may be setting the bar too high. Most of them are what I would describe as outdoor enthusiasts.

 

When I hear Vancouver Island, I think of Victoria, the parliament buildings, the Empress Hotel, and Butchart Gardens. I do not think of really wild wilderness, so I was really surprised how serious this was, especially with the cougars.

 

When the screencap said "Day 1 - 10 men remain" I thought, "Well of course 10 men remain, it's just started!" and then I started to wonder if someone would tap out the first day. Wow. Not sad it's Josh, although Sam and the howling really got on my nerves. And I don't know how far Josh could have moved once he saw the bear den, don't bears have a pretty large range?

 

I want to know what they could choose from because they have the same items.

ProfCrash, there's a thread to discuss that.

Edited by Quilt Fairy
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And I don't know how far Josh could have moved once he saw the bear den, don't bears have a pretty large range?

 

Yes, sometimes many square miles, but they don't cover all of it all the time. Camping where bear have been actively hunting, sleeping, and leaving signs on trees is a no-no.

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I spent some time around the popular Vancouver Island locales, but once you start driving north of Campbell River, it gets remote real fast.  I seem to remember a lot of trees, and lots of rain.  Beautiful!

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Does anyone know why they kept saying "10 men remain"? How many started the task? I have only seen snippets so I may have missed that important bit of information.

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Howler Boy has to know (well, maybe not) that by howling at the wolves, he's calling them in. To attack and eat him alive. I'm making popcorn on Thursday.

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Does anyone know why they kept saying "10 men remain"? How many started the task? I have only seen snippets so I may have missed that important bit of information.

cooksdelight, 10 men started. I think they're using that phrase because the point of the show is that the one guy who outlasts the others wins the prize, which IIRC is substantial. What hasn't been made clear is if they are made aware of how many contestants are left. It reminds me of that goofy game show where people were locked in windowless cubicles and if you were the first one to give up on a task you were eliminated but they didn't tell you that someone quit.

 

I'm totally bummed that all the participants are male. I want to do this!

rainsmom, they now have a casting page up: http://www.history.com/shows/alone/articles/want-to-be-on-alone

Edited by Quilt Fairy

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I can't wait until one of them gets the gumption to go look for someone else. Do they know others are out there? Somewhere?

 

This could wind up being a great Broadway musical when it's all said and done.

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I grew up in Northern Maine, have had deer, bear and moose walk through the yard, and camped outside at Sebago Lake and Mt. Katadin in a lean-to, but do not consider myself a camper or outdoors nature person of any kind. But, even I know that if there is some type of active animal activity, you MOVE your camp. You find a den and actual bears. You move your camp. You find dead fish and fresh poop, move your damn camp!  Geez.  If you watch this show again, Josh basically quits 30 seconds after being dropped off. He immediately becomes terrified and starts talking about how isolated it is. He JUST got dropped off and he is already crying like a 2 day old baby. Now, I am not saying that I would do better, but I don't pretend to be an outdoors "person" and I would never attempt a show like this because of that aspect. The alone stuff, no problem for me. I like being alone. I think that Josh (the cop) is very used to having a weapon, take away the weapon and all safety that he is used to having was gone. If it were me, the first order of busy is fire. I think that fire will keep away larger predators and then you can also have water, but from watching The Island, water can be strained through several layers of cloth and is drinkable. I would risk it. Hell, my grandmother's house had a little "babbling brook" in the back field. My brother and me would take straws and go drink straight from it. I have no idea where that water was even coming from. That one guy so lucked into his camp site with an actual waterfall right there. I think that Josh had one of the worst camp areas. I think that some of the areas are worse and more wet than others. Really looking forward to the next episode. 

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I think that Josh (the cop) is very used to having a weapon, take away the weapon and all safety that he is used to having was gone.

 

 

And there you have it. Without his gun, he's a wuss.

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riverheightsnancy, I *completely* agree with you about Josh. He was freaked out at minute 1. And he was an absolute idiot who is lucky he wasn't eaten by that bear.

 

One of the water things that surprised me was that no one created a catch system. Dude, it rains CONSTANTLY there. You can drink rain without boiling it. Create a system to catch rain or even just funnel it into your pot.

 

Also, you have waterproof tarps and the container you carried shit in. FInd the driest materials you can and protect them from rain. You may fail at fire the first night, but there's no excuse thereafter if you plan ahead. Hell, keep some tinder in a dry place all the time, so you can re-start your fire, if necessary.

Edited by rainsmom
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It's not lost on me that it's an all-men show. Such as The Island. Women would rock this thing and leave production with little "oh, no, poor widdle me" footage. :)

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They have a maximum of two tarps that they can use if they chose them off the list. Any extra tarps are there to protect cameras and equipment. The tarps they brought were used to make their initial shelters. I am sure they will be used for other things later once more permanent shelters are built.

We saw one day. Building rain catchment systems and a good shelter will take time. Building and protecting a fire will be the first priority.

I don't think they are allowed to go looking for each other. The voice over said that they seperated by a distance and with real barriers so that they would remain alone.

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I think it's *possible* women would rock it. Depends on how they chose to cast it. They aren't, after all, trying to populate this (or any) show with the best survivalists. They're casting characters who will make the best TV.

 

They would DEFINITELY want some whiny or highly emotional women because that would create drama.

 

Oh, and very true that setting up a catch system probably wasn't the right task for day 1. I really won't be sympathetic if some of them whine about being thirsty, though.

Edited by rainsmom
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All they need to do is catch the water in their pot and they should be fine for water. I understand not being able to start a fire easily, everything there is wet. I have a feeling most will have fire on day two. I figure we will see a fair number of early drops, once the novelty ends and the long haul begins, but that we will go a good amount of time before getting to the winner. It also depends on what time of year they filmed. Was this shot at the beginning of spring or fall? Fall would make the most sense because the cold weather and a decline in hunting ability would probably guarantee an end in a reasonable amount of time. If they started in the spring, they could be out there for a while.

 

The other part that fascinates me is that the men are not going to know how many folks are out there. If the no contact rule is real, they are not going to be getting updates on other contestants dropping. So some folks might end up deciding to call it at week three, thinking that they are the last dude when they are not.

 

Someone asked about the prize, it is $500,000. A very nice chunk of change.

 

I would love to hear Les Stroud's take on this. "10 items? They have what? Dude, I could live for a few years with that type of gear!"

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The no outside contact idea could be fun.  I'm imagining some crazy old Wildman found living in the bush some 20 years later like a soldier who doesn't know WWII is over, asking if the half mil is his!   :-)

Edited by walnutqueen
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I just watched & I'm in. The first guy to tap seemed to be crying about his family within the first couple of hours. I think if it hadn't been the bears it would've been something else. I agree with y'all that the young, howling dude needs to shut up.

I'm the opposite of out-doorsey so I'd probably tap out on the boat on the way, but for that reason these shows fascinate me. I watched online so maybe it was mentioned somewhere else but is the time frame just however long it takes until there's only one left? One guy mentioned 90 days as his goal but wondered out loud about 180. While I have questions if anyone will go close to that long I suppose in theory if two are left & doing well it could go on a long time.

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I don't see any of these guys lasting more than a couple of months. They don't seem to have the know-how to survive with their wits and a few tools.

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I would love to get a producer to answer questions for us. My guess is that someone picks up tape/memory cards and leaves fresh batteries once a week. I would expect there has to be a check-in of some sort at least that often to ensure the participants are still alive.

 

I hope they started filming in the spring. That would give them time to get ready for winter. They don't have a wicked winter there, but they still need a chance to prep for it.

 

Ed. to add:  ramble, the application for season two (on History.com) says you should be prepared to stay as long as a year. I have no clue what they told these guys, though.

Edited by rainsmom
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Ed. to add: ramble, the application for season two (on History.com) says you should be prepared to stay as long as a year. I have no clue what they told these guys, though.

Thanks rainsmom! So, theoretically, they're prepared for participants to go the long haul. It'll be interesting to see if anyone makes it past a month or two, heck even a week or two. What do I know, I have a gas fireplace I flip a switch to light. If someone gets a decent shelter built & a groove going I suppose they could make it awhile & that's when I think the isolation becomes a stronger factor. I agree that it would be interesting to get some insider info from a producer or such.
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I think that Josh (the cop) is very used to having a weapon, take away the weapon and all safety that he is used to having was gone.

 

 

I agree with this.  I am no way an outdoors person and I'd never do a show like this but even I wondered why Josh didn't move his camp.  

 

Yes on the questions about the show:   I know they said they're separated either by mountains or rivers and can't get to each other, but do they know how many people are in the challenge?  Do they find out when someone's tapped out?  I wonder how long they stay since I think they said there was only one winner.  

 

What I like about this show is how quiet it is; there's no narrator and no annoying music (at least not yet).

Edited by Neurochick
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I haven't run across the answers to your questions yet, Neurochick. If I have time today, I'm going to hop over to History.com and see if there's a way to contact the show. I want to ask questions! I also want to see if I can entice a produce to visit these boards to share some insights.

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Ed. to add:  ramble, the application for season two (on History.com) says you should be prepared to stay as long as a year. I have no clue what they told these guys, though.

 

I'm pretty sure I heard someone say that his daughter could be a year older the next time he sees her. I was like, whaaaat? 

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I haven't run across the answers to your questions yet, Neurochick. If I have time today, I'm going to hop over to History.com and see if there's a way to contact the show. I want to ask questions! I also want to see if I can entice a produce to visit these boards to share some insights.

 

Great typo!  I have visions of a talking tomato dancing in my head.  :-)

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I'm trying not to hold it against these guys that they couldn't get a fire started. IIRC the Pacific Northwest was one of the places where Cody Lundin (aka The God of Fire) from Dual Survival had difficulties as well. 

Edited by Quilt Fairy
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I'm trying not to hold it against these guys that they couldn't get a fire started. IIRC the Pacific Northwest was one of the places where Cody Lundin (aka The God of Fire) from Dual Survival had difficulties as well. 

 

it is extremely difficult to start a fire, or keep it going, when all the flammable material is wet, wet, wet.

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I don't hold it against them either. I look at it from the stance of, these guys know how to do it and even they couldn't get fire on day 1. Mitch got it on day 2. It was interesting to see all the different techniques used, that probably would work 99% of the time in most other circumstances. I thought that Mitch's approach of curling down the wood was interesting. I have never seen that before, as a regular, non-camping person. 

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The minute I saw cop-guy, I somehow knew he'd tap out early.  I just didn't expect it to be within the first 12 hours.

 

I would hate to be this guy's partner in any type of a firefight.

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Oh, he probably won't be a cop for much longer.  After six months of hearing "Hey bear" snickers following him around the squad room, he'll be tapping out of there, too.

 

I'm thinking the guy who doesn't take a step outside his front door without choosing the appropriate gun will cave to his vulnerability pretty soon as well.

 

I appreciate the amateur casting, but I would have enjoyed watching a bona fide survival expert plunked down out there we could watch as a compare & contrast "control"--maybe as a non-competitor participant.  Would he have a container of fresh rainwater and a hearty meal of fat roasty grubs spitted over his fire on the first night or be just as damp and deflated as the rest of them?

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I don't know. *thinking* The point of this show isn't to show that these guys suck. They want to show what happens to people who have survival experience and *believe* they can survive alone, get the chance to try it. They want us to see their struggles, want us to see what makes their journey easier and harder. A pro survivalist wouldn't be much fun. Yes, we'd learn about survival, but it would change how we look at these guys.

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I think the point of the show is that these guys AREN'T survival experts; that they're regular people.  To me that's what makes the show more interesting.

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Okay.  I thought they all presented themselves as outdoorsy survivalist types.  I just don't have enough expertise to be able to tell who's making good moves. . . and it's not as much fun if I can't sit on my couch and be all judgey.

  : )

 

Re predators, I've heard that hikers wear "bear bells" because a black bear will scamper away to avoid humans (but if you meet a grizzly, you're screwed.)  The show bears seemed pretty happy to leave when they heard a shaky "hey bear," in spite of the repeat footage making it seem they kept coming back.  I think wolves beat a wide path around humans unless they're starving and Anthony Hopkins is served up with a broken leg, but I don't know what the hell you do about the cougars.

 

Personally, I would have peed a few drops in a 20-yard circumference around my sleep spot.

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The idea is that if you make enough noise the bears will steer clear of you. When I go hiking in bear territory, I carry bear spray with me because bells are not really going to do anything to deter a bear. I did see some guys with what appeared to be bear spray on their belts.

 

If the Cop had food in his tent he would have been dead. Yosemite has an impressive collection of pictures that show what a bear can do to a car when it sents and sees food. If you leave a coke in the car you will be ticketed. Bears will break into the car to get the coke. I saw this happen. All food goes into your trunk where the bears might smell it but cannot see it. They will move off to easier pastures then they and break into your trunk. The bears in Yosemite are smart enough that they can get into the bear boxes that are commonly used in National Parks so Yosemite had to come up with new boxes.

 

Yeah, don't get in between a bear and food. Never mind a Mama bear with a cub and her food.

 

The bears were checking out the newcomer to their territory. The cub was probably more curious then the Mom but he was in a bad situation there. He never should have built his camp there, even for the night. He was an idiot.

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There haven't been many bear attacks on Vancouver Island - just 2 by black bears in the past decade, I think.  There isn't too much danger of running into a grizzly - there have only been a handful of grizzly sightings on the Island in recent years.  No documented wolf attacks, either.  Cougars, on the other hand, are a real threat, even if they haven't killed anyone there lately, most of the Canadian attacks have happened on Vancouver Island.

 

ProfCrash is right - you have to be very careful with any food, and you should make a lot of noise when blindly stumbling about in the bush so bears can hear you.  Always carry bear spray, and a weapon of some sorts if possible.  But if a hungry young cougar is stalking you, it might be too late for any of that.  I remember a lady and her kids stopped at my cousin's place in the Interior of B.C. back in the 1990s.  She went horseback riding with the kids the next day and a cougar jumped her little boy while he was on the horse.  The little boy survived his injuries, but the lady died after fighting that cougar - long enough for the little girl to ride off and bring back help.  Horrible.

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I thought they all presented themselves as outdoorsy survivalist types

They are, at least if you go by the bios. So, not quite regular Joes.

 

I've seen all of the professional survivalist shows I can take at the moment, so this one is a bit refreshing.  Every other show was about getting out alive, and you knew that they would be out of wherever they were in 3 days, or a week or 2. (I can't remember how long Naked and Afraid lasts, but it's less than a month.) Going by the casting call for the second season, these guys have committed to staying out there as long as a year.  And it's not just to show us how to survive, there is a prize at the end of the tunnel.

 

I wonder how they can show this as a series when they don't know how long it will last? They're casting for the second season. Are there a couple of guys from S1 still out there? Or is one poor dude still out there, not knowing he's won? No wait, they wouldn't do that, right?

 

Describing this has reminded me of a Twilight Zone episode called "The Silence". It's sort of "If Rod Serling wrote 'The Gift of the Magi'". There's a man named Jamie at a poker table in a private men's club who talks all the time. One of the other men, Archie, can't stand the talking and offers Jamie a huge amount of money if he can stay silent for a year.  Jamie needs the money and he agrees. Within a few days, they've set up a room in the basement of the club with glass walls, cameras and microphones. When all is ready, Jamie comes down to the basement, shakes Archie's hand and enters the room without saying a word. The countdown begins. As month passes month and Jamie remains silent, Archie starts to panic, because he doesn't have the money. When the year is up, Jamie comes out of the box, triumphant that he has won and Archie is humiliated and forced to tell him he can't honor his wager. Then a very upset Jamie writes a note that says he knew he couldn't win the bet on his own, so he had his vocal cords severed. And..... fade to Rod Serling.

 

OT, the first episode was about them settling in, we'll see what happens in tonight's episode. (And damn, I haven't looked forward this much to a TV show in months.)

Edited by Quilt Fairy
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It is fun guessing who will tap out next.

Josh positively called to get him out of there THAT night but the producers made him wait until daylight.

 

The guy in the boat who picked up Josh was probably thinking....what a wuss....

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A couple of things I noticed upon rewatching the first episode.  The guys were told what type of terrain and the general area they were going to, just not specifics on exact locations.  They also know the contest started with 10 men.  Oh, and Vancouver Island has the most number of cougar attacks in North America.  Yikes!

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I'm sorry, but if a housecat can scare a bear off the porch, these guys are wimps.

I've had a bear come up on my deck before, sniffing around for food. My dog barked (from inside) and it ran off, scared to death. Same thing with coyotes and mountain lions, they are more scared of us than we are of them. We once had a snake get in the house. It was a black snake, couldn't do any harm, but I was clinging to the ceiling. LOL

My satellite blanked out just as the big guy with the beard called the boat to come and get him. Who else left? Or was he it this episode so far?

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That is it so far. But I am worried for my fav Mitch. They are focusing a lot on him tonight, which based on the way they have edited up to this point, is the editing kiss of tap-out. Mitch is freaking out about water, so I hope he finds some. 

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Here's travel writer Bill Bryson's advice for when you meet a grizzly:

You might as well run.  It will give you something to do with the last 70 seconds of your life.

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I bet!! We only have black bears here in WNC.

I want to know why these guys don't take all their stuff with them when looking for water, and set up camp there. Is Mitch really going to keep going back and forth across the waterway?

OK, Joe just said he's moving. But is there fresh water?

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