mystic_1 wrote:So the best way to descend a gentle slope is pole vaulting?
The best way to move across rooftops is parkour?
No, he's not trying to teach anyone practical survival skills, the entire show can be summed up as "Look at how cool Ed Grylls is."
Watch how he "teaches" you about all the gross things you should eat in the wild. Note how he always makes quite sure to dribble whatever it is all over his face as he does so. Entirely engineered to get the audience to feel "Eeew! Look how gross that is!".
Like squeezing water out of elephant dung. Instead of pointing out that the elephants themselves require massive amounts of water and spend a lot of their time moving from one water source to water source, he hoists a huge double-handfull of hung up over his head and rains shit water all over himself.
I tend to agree with you on MvW. It is more a showcase of Bear/Ed than real teaching. The best teaching from the show comes from learning what not to do, most of what Bear shows is perfect examples of what not to do. Look up the wiki page on Bear Grylls and you see he has constantly done publicity stunts, including rowing a bathtub while completely naked, he does seem to like getting naked. He seems quite attention needy. Bear is constantly going into caves with just a primitive torch, following underground rivers is a very dangerous thing to do and never should be done in a survival situation. Climbing over or down things when in a real survival situation you want to go around.
Les Stroud seems much more authentic. Much less ridiculous risk taker while in survival situations. Les often will not take possible opportunities because he knows he is alone and in survival, if he gets hurt etc he is alone. I really like Les's Beyond Survival series, where he goes and learns from indiginous peoples the skills they still have. While the show sort of over hypes the "These people are dying out and the skills with them" angle. Les himself while hanging out with the people seems quite genuine.
Just to throw another couple guys into the debate, Duel Survival seems much more of a presenting a survival situation and here is how to get out of it. Much more education based on how to deal with said situation and what to do and what not to do. I find it funny how the two, Dave and Cody, conflict so much in philosophy of survival, but it does show how there are quite different ideas of how to survive.
As for products from survival shows, Les definately has my respect. His Bushman axe from Wetterlings will of course live up to the Wetterlings name. The Temagami knife has had plenty of good reviews, and would be a worthy bushcraft knife. His less expensive Camillus knives seems reasonable for what they are, however I am not a fan of the plastic handled knives, though I am guessing that was a way for them to keep costs down and mass produce them.
The Gerber Bear Grylls knives have pretty much been shown to be junk by reviews of people who know knives. While I am not a hater of Gerber, I have seen their products loose quality over the years. Gerber used to be fairly decent production company for knives but now has lost a lot of that quality and is trading more on their name these days.
Since I brought up Duel Survival, Dave has his Pathfinder stuff. Most of it is just rebranded high quality stuff from someone else. Like Duluth canvas packs or 2Hawks tomahawks, there is no difference between the products those companies sell regularly and the ones with the Pathfinder logo on them. They are even priced the same for Pathfinder and nonPathfinder. I give Dave respect for picking decent quality gear to put the Pathfinder logo on, and for at the same time preaching "Common man items" including plastic drum liners as emergency shelters and military surplus gear.
For further examples of products, the bushcraft ledgend Ray Mears has his own line of gear. Including a bushcraft knife much like Les's (or Les's might be like Ray's) however Ray's knife is over $500 USD, ouch! Ray Mears has put his name to a lot of gear too, Ray Mears Folding Griddle, Ray Mears Folding Trivet, Ray Mears Campfire Tripod, Ray Mears Canvas Pouch, Ray Mears Binocular/Camera Harness, Ray Mears Quick-Release Lanyard and so much more. See http://www.raymears.com/Shop_By_Brand/Ray_Mears_Bushcraft/
for more. It seems Ray Mears has put his name on a bunch of stuff that really has little need of his name, a bunch of cooking gear? I always said Ray Mears' shows are more cooking shows that happen to be in the out doors
But Bino/cam harness, quick release lanyard? LOL, sort of pointless to buy an official Ray Mears version of these products except for the bragging rights to say you have one from the Ray Mears collection.
I think a lot of these survival shows tend to inspire product endorsement as the viewers think they can trust the gear these hosts endorse for similar survival, for the hosts, it makes for some hard choices, take the easy money or stand up for quality and only put your name to what you would trust your life to. I think Les Stroud has done a great job of staying true to quality, I imagine he has had a lot of offers, yet he has very little with his name on it. What he does have is fairly decent.
As I started out this thread saying
Ineffableone wrote:Normally I don't get too excited about celebrity designed gear. Usually it ends up pretty cheesy and over priced.
I am though a bit excited by this Les Stroud and Wetterlings team up to make an axe.