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Idaho survivalist competes on The History Channel's hit show 'Alone'

Posted at 2:00 PM, Jul 26, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-26 16:03:34-04

BOISE, Idaho — Idahoans are by nature outdoorsy. But how long could you last outdoors alone?

Every week on 'Alone' viewers tune into The History Channel to watch as survivalists challenge themselves in some of the most hostile and unforgiving places on earth.

Courtesy: The History Channel

Each time 10 contestants start. But only one wins the coveted $500,000 prize.

Courtesy: The History Channel

This season, two Idahoans and eight others left behind their modern lives and conveniences and traveled to Labrador, Canada — sharing space with polar bears, plunging temperatures and the temptation to just call it quits.

"I had no doubt that this was something I could do," said Karie Lee Knoke.

Courtesy: The History Channel

Knoke is from Sandpoint, Idaho and has lived in Idaho for 25 years. Since the show is still airing, Knoke cannot reveal who came out on top — yet.

But Idaho News 6 did ask, what prompted her to join the cast of Season 9.

"(History Channel) approached me a long time ago to apply and I am just getting on Season 9. It’s been the perfect season for me to be on. The timing was just right," she said.

Courtesy: The History Channel

Perfect timing for the primitive skills expert, who has a connection to the land that dates back to the early frontier.

"I have roots in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, which was the Pacific Northwest Territory. My ancestors moved here six generations ago in 1830s," she said, "My dad used to take us backpacking when I was six months old."

Week after week, viewers watch as Knoke hunts and gathers and makes the most of a home she quickly grows to love.

"I felt right at home as soon as I got there," she said,

She hopes her presence on the show proves you don’t have to be the strongest to stay the longest.

"I encourage any woman who has a desire to do it to try it and just start practicing skills, learning primitive skills and survival skills, bushwhacking skills, all of it."

So will she win, or will she tap out? That remains to be seen. Still, Knoke said pushing herself, meeting fellow survivalists, and connecting to the natural world means she’s already a winner and never truly alone.

Knoke is opening her own survival school this fall called Sacred Cedars Wilderness School. You can learn more about the school here.