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I, caveman - group survival and what it takes

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posted on Oct, 9 2011 @ 10:07 AM
I stumbled on a new show on the Discovery channel called "I, caveman" where they take a group of 10 people from various backgrounds and put them in to a survival situation with only the tools that were available 20,000 years ago.

While only one of the group has any hunting experience they have to deal not only with food, fire, shelter and water but the dynamics of a group where some do more work than others and where the attitude of one can nearly break down the cohesiveness the entire group. Far from a remake of any other survival show they allow the group to experiment and fail until they bring in an outside expert to help facilitate here and there. After repeatedly failing with hunting they are given atl-atls and shown how to use them.

Here's a link to some videos from the show, well worth watching in it's entirety.

Those of you who think it would be a walk in the park to simply wander off in to the mountains and live happily ever after are in for a rude surprise.
There is a particularly poignant moment where after 7 days of real hunger the group kills a bull elk. Like me, you may feel their mixed emotions at taking the life of such a majestic creature - the sadness in knowing you took it's life but the real gratitude that this animal will feed the entire group for several weeks. This is as close as you will get to knowing that experience without actually killing an animal for survival.

Morgan Spurlock of Supersize Me fame is on this show and possibly involved in the production. He takes it all in good humor as we've seen him do in various other films.
So far I've seen 2 - 1 hour segments, not sure if there's more. I'm hoping there will be as it's been the best TV I've seen in some time.
edit on 9-10-2011 by Asktheanimals because: for spelling errors

posted on Oct, 9 2011 @ 10:45 AM
When does this air? Do you know whether it is available on Discovery Canada.

posted on Oct, 9 2011 @ 10:47 AM
reply to post by Asktheanimals

Is it a sign of the times that programs of this nature (Survival) are gaining a lot of traction? I am seeing these topics more and more. Not only on TV, but other media as well. Thanks for the post, I'll be looking to watch this one.

posted on Oct, 9 2011 @ 11:29 AM
That was a great show.

without the help and the incredible luck they would have been in bad shape. It did highlight a lot of small and very important things though. Like figure 4 traps not working right away. I know Dave Canterbury would ague this one with me till 4am, but the success rate of traps where you handle them extensively in the wild is very small. If you have absolutely nothing, then you still have that brushcraft. but then again if you have absolutely nothing you were not in the game from the start. The other thing is its going to take you 3-4 days to make the parts and set up 12-15 figure 4 traps. Thats to feed one person with constant tending.

(Even wire snares are slow to work at first. Braided dacron tension snares that have been properly mudded down to kill the UV glow and scent will always work fastest. If they suspect anything is wrong they can touch them and feel a natural texture and pliability. but a loop is a loop and its too late.)

Watching the ratio of people who gave up in their heads was a very accurate portrayal. About 3-4 held on to the idea they would be successful, the rest had mentally checked out.

I was shocked their first weapons were looking like they were made in kindergarten. They highly underestimated the materials and buried their points under balls of fiber and sap. Properly done they would have worked normally and at least been usable.

The other shocker for them was not understanding that there are no static camps when you live entirely on game and forage. You have to be constantly moving if you intend on things like elk herds to sustain you. and you have to leave those herds and find new ones in rotation so you dont deplete your resources. They all wanted to be static like their normal lives, and thats a ticket to starvation in the wild.

Lots of good things to be learned from that show.

posted on Oct, 9 2011 @ 12:11 PM
I watched this show....

While it was entertaining and neat to see how people from different backgrounds react, i found it disappointing.....

I really thought the bow hunter in the group would have a lot more idea of how to adapt and apply wilderness survival.....

None of these people really implemented basic every day survival foraging and trapping mechanisms......

Yes, maybe a little here and there.............not only that, their tools were horibbly done, its like they tried TOO the end simple is key

Case in point, the guy with the rodent he tries for days to catch or kill, he knows where its coming in and out of he even blocked the holes..........hers an idea........smoke the thing out........snare trap at the hole, or even someone with a club or a bag........this could have worked for many ground dwelling animals

IMHO the experiment was a failure, at the end they made it seem like they did great adn it was a success because they got that Elk.........

Problem is, what would have happened if they hadnt? They had no back up plans and no other means of food.....

Interesting to see all together............but like i said, IMHO a failure by these people to thrive
edit on 9-10-2011 by ManBehindTheMask because: (no reason given)

posted on Oct, 9 2011 @ 01:01 PM
reply to post by Shadowalker

You and manbehindthemask make excellent points. Without the atl atls they would have been toast in a few days, all of them. Attitude can only carry one so far.

Biggest mistakes I saw made were:
Not drying out moccasins when they got wet.
Not setting enough traps.
Wasting time trying to spear a muskrat.
Hunting anything with a spear.
Allowing the fire to almost die,

The biggest mistake: Not selecting a leader and delegating duties for everyone.

While this might seem to be a random sampling of society it wasn't. Everyone was in fairly good shape, adult - young to middle age. No children, no pets, no old people, nobody with any disabilities. Not even someone who wore glasses. Aside from knowledge, this group should have had the best odds of survival but I doubt without the help of the experts they would last more than a month. This was also done during ideal weather conditions and they didn't have to deal with extreme hot or cold or rainy conditions.
This should be a wake up call to those who feel they "know enough already" to get by.
Our ancestors may have lived primitively but their skills set were any but.
I was shocked they even made fire with a hand drill as the bow drill offers much greater chance of success.
edit on 9-10-2011 by Asktheanimals because: added comments

posted on Oct, 9 2011 @ 01:08 PM

Originally posted by Noromyxo
reply to post by Asktheanimals

Is it a sign of the times that programs of this nature (Survival) are gaining a lot of traction? I am seeing these topics more and more. Not only on TV, but other media as well. Thanks for the post, I'll be looking to watch this one.

I think it is. Funny thing is 10 years hardly anyone gave a crap about the subject. I've been teaching since 1991 and couldn't find enough students to even put together classes several years. I have no idea whether this will be broadcast in Canada or not or whether there are more than 2 episodes.

posted on Oct, 10 2011 @ 03:09 PM
Hi all. Just wanted to give you a little feed back on the "I, Caveman" show you are talking about. It was actually an episode of a new show called "Curiosity" on the Discovery channel. I've seen it before and it's actually not a bad show at all. They have a celebrity host each week who hosts the show on different topics. One was Samuel L. Jackson counting down the 10 most probable end of the world scenarios, the one I saw last night was hosted by Brenden Fraser and was on new techniques being used to discover atrifacts, cities and other antiquities in Egypt.

So unfortunately, unless they do another survival type show, it does not look like they will be having another specific "I, Caveman" episode... sorry to be the harbinger of bad news.

Here is a list of the shows they have done to date: Discovery Channel Curiosity's Episode Listing

posted on Oct, 11 2011 @ 08:49 AM
reply to post by Asktheanimals

I actually u2ued this to GrandpaDave and 12m8keall2c last week.
I thought it was a very interesting idea.

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