Since the last episode of Dual Survival ended on Friday (repeat today, Sunday), I thought I’d give my overall thoughts on the series.
I really liked it.
That’s not too surprising. I liked Survivorman, and I watch Man vs. Wild (the latter has a bit too much showboating for my tastes, though).
In Dual Survivor they probably played up the “dangers” of bare feet a bit too much, but I guess that’s what sells. It seemed that at least twice an episode they had to make some sort of comment about the difficulty of going barefoot.
Yet Cody Lundin just kept trekking. It also seems to me that Dave Canterbury gained a whole lot of respect for Cody along the way.
A couple more comments. At one point in the Pacific Northwest episode, they were crossing a tree trunk, and Dave made some sort of comment about the slippery trunk and how Cody’s bare feet had better not slip off of it. I have found that bare feet are always really better than shoes. With my bare feet I can curve my feet around the trunk to get a really good grip. You just cannot do that with a rigid or semi-rigid sole.
They also seemed to me to be overly concerned about the few dings that Cody’s feet got. Yet, they never seemed to care much about the scratches or thorn pricks on the rest of both of their bodies. But that sells too, I guess.
Watching Cody walk, you could tell that he was not just tromping along. You could see that he mostly put the ball of his foot down first, for more of a stalking look. Generally, I don’t do that at all, even in the woods. Except, that’s exactly what I do when bushwhacking. And if you think about it, that’s exactly what Dave and Cody do throughout the entire series. They are not following any sort of trail at any time. Thus, if you thought that barefooting had to look weird, realize that, for that sort of bushwhacking, that ball-first step gives one the opportunity to check the footing and ground before one puts one’s full weight on it. Very useful.
One side note: it turns out that Dave Canterbury, who runs The Pathfinder School, lives within an hour or so of me, and has run classes in at least one of the state forests I regularly frequent, Tar Hollow State Forest. I’ve never seen him there (as far as I know.)