View Full Version : Alone

16-06-2015, 01:04 PM
Starts Wednesday 24 June 10pm History Channel

Ten survival experts are dropped off in separate and extremely remote locations on Northern Vancouver Island. Equipped with only limited gear, their years of wilderness experience and supplied with cameras to self-document their journeys, the men are completely isolated from one another as they struggle to live in the wild for as long as they can.

16-06-2015, 07:50 PM

ian c
17-06-2015, 08:47 PM
I think I will have to put it onto record so I don't forget.

jacob karhu
18-06-2015, 11:36 AM
May you know Mitch from Native Survival ?
He's part from these episodes.

Here is his ad :


18-06-2015, 12:48 PM
I don't get the History channel on FreeSat (AFAIK). Boo! :(

20-06-2015, 08:03 PM
Thanks, I'll series record it,

28-06-2015, 08:17 PM
Mitch lost a lot of subscribers (including me) on youtube for doing this.
Whilst these outdoor survivalist shows may be entertaining to watch, they are only really for entertainment and do not reflect honest, down-to-Earth skills. I know this isn't as messed up as Discovery, but an actual documentary series on survival skills and outdoor knowledge is not something the show producer wants to film. If you are a participant in these sorts of shows, you have little say in the matter - the producer gets final say, and if that entails lots of drama and faked events/scenes, then that's what will happen...unless you walk away and cancel your contract. Knowing all this and what happened to Cody Lundin with Discovery, I would never be a participant in such nonsense, even if they offered $$$$$. It just isn't accurate and gives the wrong impression to viewers, most of whom are gullible.

I don't think Mitch is a bad person, I've never met the man so I cannot say, but his straying from a practical outdoor skills youtube channel to the world of TV has lost my interest.

28-06-2015, 08:50 PM
Aargh 21st century TV have no time at all for it! Even more annoying when it's supposed to be covering a subject close to your heart. Struggle to see where the entertainment comes in to be honest...

As a child of the 70s "Why don't you..." springs to mind - though that was pants too!

29-06-2015, 07:51 AM
Hi Guys

I haven't got the history channel so I`ve never seen this show,

However id do believe that having any Outdoors/Bushcraft type programs on TV is a bonus,

Its one of the easiest ways to inspire new people to try what we do and love,

I have an 11 year old daughter who comes on walks/camps etc with me and the reason she started coming is because
she loves watching Bear Grylls on the Tv (I`m assuming a similar type of show to this one),

I know there are much more factual shows about Bushcraft etc on Tv and Youtube but that doesn't seem to stimulate an 11 year olds
mind in the same way that a less factual but more exciting show does,

And I think that anything that gets kids/people more in touch with the outdoors is a wonderful thing!


29-06-2015, 05:10 PM
And I think that anything that gets kids/people more in touch with the outdoors is a wonderful thing!

Good point - I get grumpy about TV sorry :)

29-06-2015, 07:46 PM
Hi Guys

I haven't got the history channel so I`ve never seen this show,

However id do believe that having any Outdoors/Bushcraft type programs on TV is a bonus,

Its one of the easiest ways to inspire new people to try what we do and love,

I have an 11 year old daughter who comes on walks/camps etc with me and the reason she started coming is because
she loves watching Bear Grylls on the Tv (I`m assuming a similar type of show to this one),

I know there are much more factual shows about Bushcraft etc on Tv and Youtube but that doesn't seem to stimulate an 11 year olds
mind in the same way that a less factual but more exciting show does,

And I think that anything that gets kids/people more in touch with the outdoors is a wonderful thing!

Good points, and to be fair, when Bear Grylls and Cody Lundin hit the screen on Man vs. Wild and Dual Survival, I was all in and wanted to see every show...until I learned what was happening behind the scenes. It's just such a horrid place to be in the world of TV where honesty is skewed in favour of drama that may or may not put the participant (or "actor") at risk, and in this particular show, with the participants it seems to be all for fame and self promotion to be the "best" :rolleye: But that's just me.

Can't argue with getting more folks outdoors. I was fortunate to be introduced to the outdoors in elementary school as part of a 3 day course, 'Nature's Classroom'. I think there needs to be more classes like that available to the younger generation. Heck, incorporate it into the curriculum :).

30-06-2015, 06:44 AM
I just read as a story or TV show ,is it true? If it is true ,that is an amazing experience .

30-06-2015, 08:27 AM
Looked like some of them had never used a ferro rod before.

28-10-2015, 11:28 AM
Best exposť on that show that I have seen:

As I said from the first episode, bunch of whiners on an all expense paid camping, hiking, hunting and fishing trip yet all they could do was lay around camp and whine.

How much of that is editing? Maybe a lot of it. For all we know they could have been putting in sixteen hours a day of hard work, yet all they showed us was the half hour of whining. However what they showed makes that difficult to believe. Watching their camps each episode showed little to no improvement. Winter was coming on fast, firewood and insulation should have been showing improvement with every episode. The trapping and fishing attempts were anemic. Both are numbers games and none of the contestants showed serious numbers in either. Everyone complained about being cold all of the time yet no one was improving their shelters, storing up firewood nor making winter clothes. And on and on...

For those of us coming from homesteading and backpacking backgrounds who have learned outdoors skills along the way, it was a really weak showing. For us outdoors skills are part of a robust and comprehensive set of knowledge and skills that we use to safely enjoy extensive amounts of time in the outdoors no matter the obstacles. Unfortunately, especially in America, bushcrafting has become a hobby mostly about gear with a few isolated skills rarely (and usually poorly) practiced in backyards or while car camping with very little time spent in actual wilderness. The contestants were American bushcrafters... and it showed.

28-10-2015, 12:20 PM
The absurd fear of critters was hilarious. Obviously very little time spent in the woods. Humanity's biggest fear is the unknown, and it showed. Again, we only know what we were shown yet those of use who have lived among bears, cougars and wolves saw zero to be concerned about. The bears were fat and happy and only mildly curious. That was my first clue that the contestants were not deep in unspoiled wilderness. The bears acted habituated to humans. Besides, they were heading into hibernation. Come Spring, well then they might have been an issue. Wolves? Come late Winter and they might become an issue. Cougars? Very rare for them to attack humans and even rarer for it to be a serious attack.

The fire issues they had were hilarious. Josh had fatwood and can't get flame?? With fatwood scrapings and a ferro, flame is guaranteed if you do your part. Often in a single scrape, pretty much always within ten. They had at least five weeks to prepare and were supposedly "expert" survivalists. As rik_uk3 pointed out, obviously little to no experience with a ferro. Joe stated that Friction Fire couldn't be done in that environment. Hmmm, funny how the aboriginal peoples did so for centuries. People on forums told me flint (the rock) and steel, aka F&S, could not be done there. Good thing they weren't there to convince the native people who used flint and pyrite and F&S for centuries. True "flint" to a geologist or rockhound is only cryptocrystalline quartz found in chalk or marl. There may not be any "true" flint on that island. Flint, for the purpose of making fire, is any of hundreds of types of rocks found all over the world. I highly doubt that there is no quartz, granite, agate, jasper or other suitable rock on Vancouver Island. Joe ostensibly bailed because he lost his ferro. In reality he bailed because he was in over his head and when the going got tough, he caved. People throughout most of time made the majority of their flame from coals from an existing fire - which he had. Indeed, it is a modern affectation to start fires so often, rather than continue them. Coals as your only source of fire adds to your stress because you must always be aware of the state of your fire. But it can and has been done. Joe Robinet didn't even try.

Alan complained in one of the episodes that when he came back from checking his fish trap that his fire was out. That should have merely been another step in establishing a baseline on how much wood of what type arranged how gives me usable coals for how long. A useful experiment, not an item of complaint. Mitch did well to conserve his ferro by using char. Many of us have made char from a multitude of materials by charring or snuffing - with and without tins. Some charred materials will catch a spark from F&S. Every plant or fungi material when properly charred will catch a spark from a ferro. Between char, fatwood, Old Man's beard, aka OMB, cedar bark, etc I cannot see making fire is any issue at all in that environment. Remember, the natives did it for centuries with less options than we have. Therefore the issues with fire in that area lie solely with the practitioner's lack of knowledge and skill.

By the way, OMB was seen in several episodes and takes a spark from a ferro very readily. Indeed, it is among the better tinders for use with a ferro such as fatwood scrapings, birch bark, dry grass, cattail fluff, etc. Especially when you have some conifer sap/pitch. Then you have an improvised candle where the OMB acts like a wick while the pitch acts as the wax.

28-10-2015, 04:20 PM
Dux, you hit the nail square on the head...
DISCLAIMER: Since I have cut the cord on cable TV, I have not watched any bit of "Alone" aside from the trailer.
In my own view, it's nothing more than a faked contest that did not actually take place in a remote location (see Ross' thoughts - http://woodtrekker.blogspot.com/2015/08/alone-most-realistic-survival-show-or.html). The drama and fear of wildlife was really stupid...like wolves are really out there in the brush just waiting for darkness so that they can intimidate you around camp, and then leap out and eat you alive :blabla:, etc. And what's wrong with mountain lions??? Like wolves, they also do not seek out humans unless they are starving in an environment lacking game.

But, what really made me shake my head in despair was that multiple people on a different forum (B&B) seemed to think very little (if anything) on the show was scripted...and these people are (apparently) outdoorsmen. These same individuals say that 1000 lb black bears roam the woods, wolves are ferocious creatures to be shot on sight because of how "threatening" they are, and that mountain lions are just as dangerous. Is it just me, or is this a bit out of touch with reality? And that's the problem with TV...everything seems real, and then you start thinking that everything on TV is real.

To top it off, before "Alone" ever aired, we may have heard of certain youtubers who were "going away for awhile" and wouldn't be back in 5-6 months. I remember Mitch on NativeSurvival and Joe from JoeRobinetBushcraft making these sorts of statements. I was subscribed to both channels because at the time, I thought the content was practical and honest. But I remember Joe saying in a video from the very start of this year that he, and I quote; "wanted to be the best and most popular bushcraft channel on youtube". So apparently becoming a TV personality does that for you, at least in his mind. Add on top of that the winner's prize of $500,000 for the show, and what we have now is pissing contest. The show was a complete waste.... :zombie-fighting:

29-10-2015, 03:23 PM
Ah, you are a breath of fresh air my friend! Got flamed on several forums for positing this view of that show. Very few people have done enough in the outdoors to get it. Indeed, the location was suspect from the get go as Google Earth showed. None of them were ever more than 3 miles from a road or home. At least one was in an established and popular camping site.

Don't be so quick to count out the wolves, lol!! This one happened not far enough from areas I backpack, camp and hunt in. The packs in that area have been troublesome for years. Killing many livestock and dogs each year as well as running down paved streets in towns in broad daylight aggressively approaching people. http://www.americanhunter.org/articles/2015/9/30/worldwide-exclusive-wisconsin-deer-hunter-fends-off-wolves-with-walther-pk-380/

This is a wolf attack on a dog that was moose hunting in Sweden. The second half is particularly gut wrenching for us dog owners who hunt in wolf territory. http://www.outdoorhub.com/news/2015/10/22/wolf-attack-swedish-hunting-dog-caught-gopro/

Most cougar attacks are on joggers or mountain bikers. Chase instinct, not to kill. Fight back and they quickly run away. As far as I know, 538lbs is the largest black bear ever recorded in my State. Anything 350lbs and up is considered a trophy around here.

That being said, I have hiked, hunted, backpacked, camped, etc in areas with black bears, wolves and cougars for decades. Rarely sighted them yet frequently found fresh tracks (on top of mine!), scat (still steaming on frosty morn's!!) and other sign. Never been attacked. Only time I came close to being attacked was cleaning fish alongside a river and a bear started crowding me. I left the fish! It should be noted that the bear gave me plenty of time to notice him and leave. I worry more about my dog than myself with coyotes and wolves around since when they have greater numbers they are not shy about attacking canines.

Totally agree on the depressing number who believe what they are spoon fed on tv. Whatever happened to commonsense? If the critters were that dangerous, those who live and work in that area would have killed them off by now. You would think such shows, being geared towards those who are interested in the outdoors, would attract enough people with actual experience that the truth would out. Sadly, not so. There had to have been at least some scripting, or at least expectations set by the producers. I suspect they chose several of the contestants because they seemed likely to produce spectacular failures. Would not be surprised if they helped things along a bit. Notice Josh was scared of bears while still in the boat! Think it was accident he was dropped off near a bear den? Or that the guy who is afraid of dogs was dropped off near a wolf den site? Things that make you go "Hmmmm..."

29-10-2015, 03:24 PM
The guy that "filtered" water by pouring in on a moss covered rock was a complete idiot. If you packed a 12' long hollow log full of sphagnum moss and let the water soak in it for an hour... I would still boil it. He was just looking for an excuse to bow out that he thought would lose him the least respect. Epic fail.

As far as the loneliness (the major premise of the show), it affects each individual differently. A few are barely bothered by it, while most these days have serious issues with being alone. They were supposedly "experts" (What does that even mean? I have forty years of actively researching and doing yet I learn more every year.) so they ought to have become used to time alone in the woods. Heckfire, most of us cannot find time for enough!! On top of that they had many classes and at least two shake out sessions where they had to apply what they had learned in the field and stay out overnight. (They were paid for those and while being on the show so the financial burden was mitigated.) Some people attacked them for whining about missing their family when they had "only been on the island for two weeks". Well, hold on now. They had spent months, especially the five weeks prior to drop off, doing interviews, classes, finding and prepping gear to the regulations (some talked about frantically hitting stores because their personal gear that they had brought did not meet the producer's specs), etc. They were away from their families for much of that time. Which was easy to infer for most of us and was confirmed later on.

You have another great point about it being a contest. Rather than going tool heavy, as I normally do, I think going food heavy would have been the way to go on that show. Alan tipped us off early on with his "burn as few calories as possible" speech. Ever wonder why Sam spent so little time hunting and trapping or why he never fished? He had 5lbs of pemmican as one of his 10 Items. You could last for months with 30lbs of pemmican, and that was a valid option according to the rules and gear lists that have been published.

It comes down to the old bear joke - I don't have to be faster than the bear, I just have to be faster than YOU!! They just had to outlast each other, not actually live off the land. I think most of us were hoping to see them live off the land... and were extremely disappointed.

Funny thing is, the fame (infamy??) paid off. There were vids of Joe teaching classes shortly after his spectacular fail. Which amazes me. Are there so few instructors out there that a scared little kid (which is why he bailed) who didn't even try to press on through adversity is the best people can find?? He mentioned that he intended to put a lanyard on his ferro but never got around to it. Very poor bush skills to not attend to high priority tasks nor keep track of mission critical (in his mind) gear. Guess it's true that there is no such thing as bad press.

I will slightly disagree with the show being a complete waste. Mostly a waste, for sure. Got at least a few of us thinking about what it would be like to do things like that. Books and movies can be good for that. I have done things like that so it brought back a lot of memories. Always fun to sit around a fire and discuss gear lists and strategies, which several of us did after some of the episodes. Last but not least, they showed video of some beautiful landscapes and I for one appreciated them.