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Mountain Men: Did History Channel cameraman steal Marty's gun?

Mechele R. Dillard's picture

A blatant production error in this week's episode of the History Channel's Mountain Men demonstrates why "reality television" is still "television," after all.

Benjamin Franklin said, in a 1789 letter to Jean-Baptiste Leroy, "'In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes;" seems that this is true even for a mountain man.

One thing—maybe the only thing—that makes it truly impossible for one to live completely “off the grid” is the fact that, even when we “own” our property, the government continues to get its piece, year after year, via property taxes. If we don’t pay those taxes, the government will eventually step in and take that property we “own.” Thus, even mountain men who live off the land have to come up with some way to bring in at least enough cash to pay those annual property taxes.

Eustace Conway went down to his mailbox on the latest episode of the History Channel’s Mountain Men to find a letter threatening to take his property if he doesn’t pay his taxes.

“What pisses me off,” Eustace says, “is crazy people focusing on foolish things like taking my land away that have no idea that the land is the most important, sacred thing in my life, period. The people that are suing me, I never even met the people, and yet they’re taking my land away? B*******.” But, Eustace isn’t taking the lien against his property passively. “What this land means to me is life. It’s about existence. This is home. I’m ready to die to take care of this mountain.”

Trapper Marty Meierotto is trapping his way through the episode, although he comes up empty-handed on the trip. If the careful viewer was paying attention, he saw a production error in the footage, as well. As Marty checked the first trap, he saw that it was empty. Clearly, he has a gun strapped to his back. As he rides up to his next trap—which, according to the voice-over, took him five minutes to reach after leaving the first trap—he notes that he sees wolf tracks around the empty trap. But, now, the gun is gone. “Marty’s been surrounded by a pack of wolves while crossing a frozen lake before,” the voice-over says. “He had to fire a shot with his rifle just to escape. This time, he’s unarmed.”

Well, if the wolves come along, maybe the cameraman will give him his gun back.

This is why “reality television” is, in fact, often more “television” than “reality.”

Will Eustace be able to cut enough firewood to sell for tax money? And, will Marty be consumed by a pack of wolves while he walks through the woods (his snowmobile broke down, as well, during the “he’s unarmed” scene), or will the cameraman have mercy and let him have his gun back to keep the pack away (and perhaps give him a ride on his own snowmobile so that he doesn’t have to walk 10 miles in the dark)?

Stay tuned.

UPDATE: Will Eustace keep his land in Season Two?

Image: Wikimedia Commons

Comments

Submitted by Mountainbilly (not verified) on
Go back to central park dork. You want to see some mountains and play mountain man come up to Silverton, CO. Climb some peaks, raft some some rivers, you would probably become a statistic. Don't worry, we won't make an ass of you like the history channel does of these guys. Marty is the only one on this show who has a clue, and even he is not so sharp.

Submitted by Ron (not verified) on
Don't know why my post posted so many times. I entered one post and hit save once. Wow. Guess it's true, you really do need a computer to screw up big! Please no hate mail. Don't know what happened...

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
I don't disagree with some of the comments here (regarding the "reality" of the show) but whatever has been said, I have to make a point that, seeing the photos of these Mountain Men in their younger days, and seeing that they stuck to their guns and took the big leap to live this life, to choose the road less travelled, and still living it, is very inspiring. That they do not completely live off the land without modern technology shows intelligence, because why would they not take advantage of technology, while remaining capable of not depending on it. Should Marty walk for a month instead of fly his plane? How many of us dare to live our dreams and fantasies? Let them be a bit strange or weird if that's what you think they are. We are all weird to others in some way I am sure. I just hope they don't regret sharing their lives with the world on this TV show and getting all these negative comments from people.

Submitted by Livin in Alaska (not verified) on
Watching last weeks episode it came to me that while harvesting his wifes caribuo seemed leagle, how every his was not.. He camped with family and hunted the next day, flew out and then flew back the same day and shot his wich is ileagle. When flying in you must wait until 3AM the next day, giving the time of year he was hunting it would have been dark at 3 am. especially as far north as he was. All other hunters must do this and spend a ton of money having to hold pilots extra time for the regs. He poached his.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
Did Marty REALLY take the animal illegally OR was that segment a farce . . . Just like the rest of the show?!

Submitted by JAS C (not verified) on
OH MY, SOMEONE MUST HAVE BEEN OFFENDED. WE ALL SAW THE NAME PAINTED ON THE ENGINE COWLING OF MARTY'S PLANE IN THE EARLIER EPISODES, BUT NOW "HIGH YELLA" IS BLURRED OUT. THAT'S KINDA LIKE LOCKING THE BARN DOOR AFTER THE HORSE GETS OUT. COME ON GUYS, THIS IS A REALITY SHOW. LIVE WITH IT

Submitted by Larry L (not verified) on
well, colored me humbled. I bought every bit of that show and was genuinely interested in season two...... operative word being "was". Must be the city slicker in me I reckon.. Thanks for the insights.

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