Les Stroud – Survivorman
Survivorman – Season 1


“Behind the Scenes” is an intimate one hour look at the making of the series, Survivorman Season One. We go behind the scenes of this ground breaking show, taking a look at never before seen footage, outtakes, and survival training. Les shows us how he films such incredible footage for the nine episodes of Season One, while surviving in some of the harshest climates in the world.


Living “off the land” takes on a new meaning as Survivorman Les Stroud casts off for a week at sea. With no food and only a bare minimum of equipment, Les will be set adrift in an inflatable life raft off the coast of Belize. Battling hunger, thirst and the Caribbean heat, he must also keep his cameras dry to film the ordeal. To top it off, not only does the life raft have a few bad water leaks, needing constant bailing but it also leaks air, requiring Les to frequently reinflate it using only a hand pump.
Survivorman is in for a busy 7 day adventure.


In the remote winter bound forests of Northern Ontario, a crashed plane lies in the snow beside a frozen lake. But this plane didn’t crash here. The plane wreck has been air dropped from a helicopter to provide the perfect conditions for Survivorman to simulate being the victim of a plane crash. For a week Les will have to survive in this brutally cold and snowy wilderness with only an axe, multi-tool and a single blanket to aid him.


The spectacular red landscapes of Utah’s canyonlands are as beautiful as they are inhospitable. Like outlaws of old who were known to eat their own horses out of desperation in this forlorn place, Stroud will cannibalize the mountain-bike he has ridden into the middle of nowhere. As well as these scavenged bike parts to aid him, he also has a multi-tool, a magnesium flint stick and an old energy bar that he uses for a purpose other than eating.


This episode sees Les air dropped onto a snow covered peak in the Canadian Rockies, courtesy of the Canadian Mountain Air Rescue Service. They’ll come looking for him in seven days. Until then, Les is entirely on his own; save for the grizzlies, cougars and wolves that also call this place home. To emulate a real life survival scenario, in this case a heli-hiking expedition gone wrong, Les has with him only a few readily salvageable items, among them a broken camcorder and tripod. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure!


Pond Inlet, on the northern reaches of Baffin Island provides one of the most challenging landscapes our planet has to offer. Over 700 km north of the Arctic Circle, it sits amidst grinding, ever-shifting flows of sea ice where polar bears roam in search of fresh meat. In this severe climate, Les has been equipped with a bare minimum of raw materials to aid him for the next 7 days; a hunk of uncooked seal liver, some oil-rich blubber for heat, a seal hook, three matches, and a knife.


The Boreal Forest of Northern Canada is a vast tract of wilderness stretching from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific. It is home to 85 species of mammals including; moose, deer, bear and wolves. Crisscrossed by rivers and lakes, the Boreal forest is frost-free for only about three months of the year. Les intentionally tips his canoe in mid-stream and crawls from the icy waters onto shore where he does a quick inventory of his supplies. A handful of cashews, beef jerky, a solitary match, multi-tool and 50 lbs of camera equipment to document the next seven days in the bush.


The Sonora Desert in the south western United States covers an area of approximately 120,000 square miles. It is an arid, seemingly barren environment with scorching daytime highs and freezing overnight lows. Riding a dirt bike out into the official middle of nowhere, Les simulates a break-down scenario. He empties out the contents of his pack; half a gallon of water, a snack bar and his multi-tool, is all he has with him for the next 7 days.


A Costa Rican getaway – as far removed from everyday living as you can imagine; lush rainforests and deserted tropical beaches. Marooned on Costa Rica’s Osa Peninsula, Les “Survivorman” Stroud has only a few items to aid him for the next 7 days: swimming goggles, 3 ballpoint pens, a multi-tool and the clothing on his back. On top of keeping hydrated in the intense humidity and relentless heat, Les must cope with deadly snakes, enormous spiders, land crabs and scorpions.


The swamplands of Georgia’s Altamaha River Basin are all that one would expect of a primordial bog; dank, menacing, swimming with slithering creepy crawlies and of course, alligator infested. This is the welcoming environment Les will be immersed in for seven sweaty days and bone chilling nights.

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