Episode 9 of History Channel’s Alone, Season 9, takes place over days 47-52. Four contestants remain at the start of the episode.
This is a recap and review of episode 9. At the end, I’ll provide some guesses as to who will last until the end and who might successfully hunt a bear.
Spoilers to follow!
As usual, Karie Lee’s positive attitude is just astounding! She begins the episode by singing a song a friend wrote for her. Afterward, she decides to go on a hunting hike but doesn’t catch anything. Still, when it starts to snow, she’s very positive about it, claiming it was a very peaceful day.
When we next see her, she informs us she’s changing her hunting to be more trapping and snares, as her aim is off due to muscle atrophy from malnourishment. She then shares a story that shaped her outlook on life: how she had a miscarriage at four months pregnant and that it showed her that her life shouldn’t be focused on successes and failures.
Later, she surveys the river and decides she’s done with fishing, then goes to check her traps. She finds a frozen squirrel in one, and as she eats it, she explains that wilderness survival is not about the skills but the attitude. Judging by how she never seems frustrated about the situation, there is likely a great deal of truth to that.
Meanwhile, Tiemojin is hacking into the frozen creek to get water and is hunting for squirrels. He claims his food cravings are growing very painful, and he’s lost 44-pounds since the start of the competition.
He spends a lot of his segment talking about his girlfriend, Gabrielle. He reminisces about how he met her at the hospital where they both worked and how thinking about her gives him strength. He clearly misses both her and his mom, but transforming his sadness over them into determination is an excellent method to keep the feelings from overwhelming him.
He spends time in this episode making bird traps on the beach. He also sets up more snares. His bird trap was triggered at the end of the episode, but it was unsuccessful. So, in typical Tiemojin fashion, he assesses the trap and redoes it, hoping to catch a raven.
The other contestants mentioned sleep deprivation in their segments, and Juan Pablo is no exception. As usual, he comes up with an interesting solution to the problem. He makes ear plugs from his shirt!
He spends some time making home improvements: he hangs a line for his sleeping bag and spends a few minutes fixing his bed to make it more comfortable. He also celebrates reaching Day 50 by wearing new wool socks. It might seem like a small thing, but keeping the socks for an occasion like that seems to boost his spirits and motivate him to continue.
After drinking unboiled water again (Juan Pablo! You’re killing me), he decides his new plan will be fasting for twenty more days. He explains that it’s a long game for him: “you don’t have to outrun the bear; you just have to outrun your friends.”
Adam also has trouble sleeping but rather than the wind it’s due to hunger pains. He explains that he spends 3-4 hours a day hunting but rarely finds anything. He’s down to 4/9 arrows too. While attempting to hunt again, he gets stuck in the brambles, falls, and gets furious about it. After taking a moment to decompress, he explains that he misses his family a lot and cannot shake it.
Things take a positive turn shortly after, as he shoots a grouse. Yet, he also claims he’s getting burned out on killing things, that the emotional strain is getting to him just as much as the hunger and missing his family. You can tell Adam is at the breaking point or, as he said, at a critical juncture.
He finally decides it’s time to leave. He isn’t bringing in enough food, and as he has a physical career, he can’t risk damaging his body. On the morning of his departure, a grouse wanders into his camp. He leaves it be, content just to watch it.
Adam survived 52 days in Labrador. He was initially pretty bummed out by tapping out, but in the end, he claims, “when you know you’ve done your best, losing at something doesn’t feel quite so bitter.” Good advice from Treefort Guy. He really did have an awesome shelter.
Three more contestants and two more episodes to go!
I was right about Adam leaving next, so I’m predicting that Karie Lee will win! I’m not sure whether Tiemojin or Juan Pablo will go next, but I’m hoping Karie Lee’s positive attitude keeps her going to the end. I don’t think anyone will hunt a bear at this point.
The next episode airs on July 28th on History Channel.