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Live Free or Die

Live Free or Die

Photo Credit:  National Geographic Television/Mike Diaz
  • Premiered: 
    September 30, 2014
    (Click date to see TV listings for that day)

  • Network: Nat Geo
  • Category: Series
  • Genre: Reality
  • Type: Live Action
  • Concept: 
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Plot Synopsis

LIVE FREE OR DIE is a one-hour reality series that follows individuals who are re-wilding by living in the country's backwoods and swamps with few of the trappings of modern society. Freed from the constraints of a technology-fueled existence, they are modern-day pioneers who rely only on skill and intuition to harness the natural environment. They live almost completely off the land, in simple homes without any electricity or running water. The woods furnish their rugged lifestyle, and wildlife populate their dinner plates, bringing significant challenges that often require quick and innovative solutions in their constant struggle to survive. They are faced with natural obstacles like brutal weather and depleted food sources and must find ways to subsist that don't violate the strict code they hold themselves to in order to remain self-sufficient. It is this very code, the difficulty of keeping it and the potential to triumph over nature that fuels their desire to remain on these modern-day frontiers. The five individuals in Season 1 are: Colbert, a former financial advisor and expert woodworker, who abandoned his mainstream existence after raising two daughters by moving to the swamps of Georgia, where he hunts, traps and forages for food, herbs and medicinal plants, using only what the swamp provides for his survival; Thorn, a former schoolteacher with a five-year-old daughter, who lives on 120 acres in a remote corner of the Blue Ridge Mountains, where he relies on the forest -- even his hut was built entirely from materials found in the woods; Tony, who bought a seemingly barely habitable plot of land on a Blue Ridge mountainside seven years ago and built a home on it with his own two hands, and his wife, Amelia, who moved to the mountains 10 years ago -- together, they turned their hillside into a garden that meets most of their needs; and Gabriel, a nomad in the mountains and near the sea of California, who lives a simple life with his wife, Luna, in a cabin with no running water by the coast for the majority of the year, but leaves for the mountains to live off the land for a few months. Season 2 of LIVE FREE OR DIE premiered on Tuesday, September 15, 2015 at 9pm ET/PT on Nat Geo, with newcomers Derik and Tobias and returning re-wilders Colbert, Thorn and Tony & Amelia. In the season opener, "Rising Waters," Colbert begins the work to rebuild the cabin he lost last year in the woods of Georgia. In the Blue Ridge Mountains, Thorn is working hard to transform his camp into a forest homestead, but a curious black bear causes concern for his daughter's safety and his own. Also in the Blue Ridge, Tony and Amelia rush to finish their indoor rocket mass heater to protect their baby livestock. In Colorado, Derik attempts to bring his mules back home but is thrown from the saddle by the skittish team, forcing him to change plans. Then, the second episode introduces Tobias, who sets off on an 80-mile journey north to establish a new primitive base camp in the deserts of Arizona.
Season 3 of LIVE FREE OR DIE premiered on Monday, July 25, 2016 at 10pm ET/PT on Nat Geo, with newcomer Matt Graham joining returning re-wilders Tobias, Colbert, Thorn and Tony & Amelia. With winter approaching to open the new season, the re-wilders must get creative to gather enough food and resources to make it through the harsh, bitter season. There are only a few days left of deer hunting season in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, and Tony and Amelia need meat to get them through the cold winter. Plus, the pair struggle to wrangle two separate bee swarms. Colbert has taken advantage of deer season in the swamps of southern Georgia, and then he heads into town to make a trade with his blacksmith friend. In the woods of northern Georgia, Thorn and Delia are running low on food, and Thorn needs to clear trees before he can plant his forest garden. Tobias puts all his energy into building a shelter that will protect him from the desert's extreme temperature changes. Finally, big game hunting season has ended in Utah, so Matt must turn his attention towards small game in order to survive.

Production & Distribution

  • Produced by National Geographic Studios