Seven young explorers relive the legend of Sir Walter Raleigh. The team's intense week of jungle training steps up a gear with lessons in emergency survival.
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Seven young explorers
are taking on the toughest challenge of their lives -
an extreme expedition in South America.
That is mad!
They're attempting a series of astonishing world firsts.
-Oh, my God!
-Going where no children have been before
to get to some of the most awesome places on Earth.
We've reached the top.
The team are following the footsteps
of the great Elizabethan Sir Walter Raleigh -
the first Englishman to explore Guyana,
as he searched for El Dorado, the lost city of gold.
Led by survival expert Ben Major
and record-breaking adventurer Polly Murray,
the epic journey will push the seven explorers to the limit and beyond.
It's all bad.
I hate this so much!
Is he having a laugh?
That was too scary.
Coming up, bugs and beasties on the lunch menu.
And Megan gets that sinking feeling!
It's coming over the sides!
Previously, the explorers headed to a training camp
in the Guyana rainforest
to begin a week of intense jungle lessons.
Some, like Sammie, weren't too happy to meet the local wildlife.
OK. Take him out.
Unlike Regan, who's a total rainforest enthusiast.
It's a bumblebee poison dart frog.
Rock the boat!
Regan fared worse in canoe training.
He failed to stay with his boat during a capsize drill
and had to be rescued by Polly.
The team were shocked to learn that the next phase of jungle training
would take them away from their base camp for 24 hours.
Tomorrow, you're going for a night out.
We believe there is a spiritual being.
But a tribal blessing to protect them from rainforest spirits
left everyone feeling more confident.
We have been blessed so, hopefully, I am ready to face the jungle.
It's the morning of the jungle training exercise.
The explorers will be camping in the rainforest.
Even in the relative luxury of base camp
there are unwelcome visitors...
Eugh! That's minging.
It's a huge tick and Doctor Fi tries to remove it.
Get it off me.
But the blood-sucking creature has a vice-like grip.
It's got strong teeth. It's locking in there.
It won't come easily.
We can always put Vaseline over it.
The petroleum jelly will hopefully suffocate the tick
so it drops off Sammie's back painlessly.
When Sir Walter Raleigh came to Guyana 400 years ago,
local tribespeople took him around by canoe.
In three days, the young explorers are going to take on
an epic canoe journey of their own.
They'll be attempting to paddle a record-breaking 75 miles
down the Burro-Burro River,
camping rough along the way in virgin rainforest.
So, the aim of this 24-hour training exercise
is to help prepare the explorers for life out in the wild.
They've got just a short paddle downriver into the rainforest.
But almost immediately, there's a problem -
one of the canoes has sprung a leak.
The boat is sinking by the second.
It's a submarine.
We're going down. Get your swimming caps on!
We're sinking and can't get out!
This is not funny no more!
We're sinking! It's coming over the sides!
Despite Megan's efforts at bailing,
they had to be rescued by Ben and Polly.
Our boat is just sitting at the bottom of the river now.
I think they're going to try and tow it out
but it just went "boof."
The hole in the boat kept leaking and we were going,
"It's going down." No-one believed us! It was coming up to my knees.
It was coming up to my knees...
Oh, bless Nikita.
Just be aware of these tree roots, guys,
because this is an ideal spot for snakes.
Before they start to make camp, it's time for lunch, jungle-style!
Let's see what we've got.
That's the one thing you said you wouldn't eat.
I won't eat a grub or anything that bursts in your mouth.
If you're hungry guys, you'd eat them. Who is feeling brave?
-Go on, Regan.
-Can I have half of one?
The trick is,
you hold its head and then just bite its body.
Hold its head, then...
Shut up and let me get in the zone.
He's got it. He's got it.
Don't spit it out immediately. Chew. Chew. Chew.
What do you think?
Did you hear that pop in his mouth?
-Is that minging?
-Bend over, for goodness sake.
I'm very impressed.
Most follow Regan's lead and try all sorts of grubs.
-Do you feel liquid coming out?
-That's well nice.
Chew, chew, chew. It's like cream cheese.
Kind of nice, actually.
-Megan, you go for that one.
-Go for it.
Chew. Chomp. Chomp. Chomp.
-It tastes of mud.
It gets even yuckier.
A beetle. A nice big beetle.
Sammie is up for the challenge.
Sammie, you're so brave.
That's minging me out.
Just suck all its body out of it. Get your chops round it. That's it.
-You're off your trolley.
-What does it taste like?
-How do you know what poo tastes like?
I'm just guesstimating.
Who's feeling even braver?
Polly has saved the worst to last.
Anyone for a spider?
Nikita, you can do this.
You're brave, Nikita.
Are you going to go for it? Good girl.
That is really disgusting.
Go for it. A survival situation, yes, you just chew it, chomp it, yum it.
What does it taste like?
Are you going to puke?
It's all creamy and disgusting, but it tastes like off cream.
I just ate a spider!
To sleep in the rainforest, it's best to get off the ground,
away from the bugs and beasties.
So the team will use a hammock strung between two trees
with a rain cover and mosquito net for protection.
For God's sake!
Why have I picked the only place in this forest
with the most ants in it?
We're going to have to move you, cos this one's dead.
It's rotten completely, with fungus growing on it.
Where are we going to go? There's nowhere else.
We'll find another spot. There's plenty of spots.
After nightfall, the jungle comes alive
and the explorers feel very vulnerable in their hammocks.
All I keep hearing
is these horrible noises like wood crackling and stuff.
It will be hard to get to sleep, but I'm going to try.
Hopefully snakes don't really like me.
I don't mind if snakes don't like me, or spiders,
or anything that wants to kill me.
I hope they stay well away from me. Night!
Most of the explorers have a surprisingly cosy night,
but Nikita is so freaked out, she climbs in with Sammie.
Put your feet in. Put your feet in. That was OK.
I woke up and started hearing this weird growling noise.
It was really horrible.
I was really scared so I literally ran around here
and I ended up in Sammie's hammock.
-I'm pretty comfy!
-I'm pretty comfy!
Next morning, the leaders have an exercise to highlight
one of the rainforest's biggest dangers - getting lost.
Everything looks the same, so it's vital to work and stay together.
This will be interesting because you have to navigate out of here, OK?
It is just 800 metres back to the river and Ben and Polly
have broken down the route into small sections.
The first one is 200 degrees for 80 metres.
-It is not that way.
-It's not, it's that way.
-It's that way.
Nobody seems able to agree on the direction, but they head off anyway.
You are going to get so lost.
You're going the wrong way Sammie!
-I was sent this way.
-Left. Left. Stop.
170 is that way.
This was meant to take maybe an hour-and-a-half, two hours.
Not a chance.
You're going the wrong way.
You've got to go that way. Stop!
I think we're going the wrong way, but they don't, so they keep going.
The boys insist on taking the lead
and blindly take them into the thickest part of the jungle.
Ow! Ow! Ow! Ow! Ow!
I've just been bitten by a massive thorny thing in my leg.
We can't get through. We're all stuck.
They're now completely lost and tempers are fraying.
They're just not working as a team and the girls are trying to
put their point forward, but the boys aren't really listening.
I want Nikita at the front...
No, cos I can't do it. You should know that.
It's just hilarious.
-You went, "We're here."
No, cos you did do that, so you thought you were clearly there.
-You thought you could clearly do it when you couldn't.
-Let other people talk sometimes.
-No, I'm not.
-Yeah, so shut up.
-Don't take it all out on Regan.
-I'm not, I'm just saying...
Trying to blame it all on me.
Why are we arguing about it? We obviously weren't there.
Now we're here, so let's just go.
The leaders decide it's high time to step in.
-Nikita, do you want to take lead of the next one?
-I can't do it.
-Of course you can. Want to give it a whirl?
BEN: How can you complain if you can't do it yourself?
-I can't do it so I don't want to.
-Why don't you go with the two girls?
Polly gives them directions to get back on course.
123 degrees for 65 metres.
It's the girls' chance to show the boys they've got what it takes.
Guys, I think we've found it.
And they reach the next compass point in no time.
We think we're here.
-Girls, I think that was amazing.
Fantastic. Well controlled. Really good.
-It's a tall order to live up to, isn't it?
Josh, you're on.
So can the boys do any better this time?
Josh, look straight ahead of us. There's a little route we can go up.
They decide on a direct route across a stream.
Are you OK there?
Guys, I don't think you need to go up there.
-You need to go straight along there.
Despite the girls' earlier success,
the boys refuse to listen to Megan's advice.
It's completely pointless.
I won't be able to get up that. No way, I can't get up this.
And even worse, they don't bother to wait
for Megan and Sammie to catch up.
-Where is everyone else?
-They've just gone.
-I don't have a clue where the girls are.
-They've run off somewhere.
I won't be able get up there.
Pass your bag. They're completely gone.
The boys have broken the most important jungle safety rule -
that the whole team always sticks together.
Where's everyone gone? They left us.
You're supposed to stop and wait for the rest of the group.
We've to find our way back now, cos we don't know where we're going.
It's just not funny.
-They've left Nikita as well.
-I don't know where the boys are.
They were in front and I said to stop cos the girls aren't with us
and they just carried on. So, don't know....
-There they are.
-Megan, come on. Is that Nikita or Megan?
You absolute spoons.
We asked you to wait. Megan was like, "I can't get up."
I had to take off my bag, help her with her bag.
Can you try and keep up?
We couldn't because she couldn't get up the hill.
-Why didn't you push her up?
Ben is not amused.
I could see Megan struggling to clamber up the bank of the river
and there was about 150 metres in between you.
If it wasn't for Nikita coming back to the halfway point to go,
"Where are the other girls? I can't find them,"
she'd have been hundreds of metres away and straightaway, you're lost.
In the end, it takes the explorers a total of four hours
to cover the 800 metres back to the river.
-Not quite. We need to get down still.
They weren't working as a team. It was very much the girls and the boys.
At the beginning it was terrible.
When the girls took over, we were amazing and whizzed through it.
In this instance, the girls were miles better than the boys
and if they'd been listened to, we'd have been here two hours ago.
We're too impatient, we don't stick together. Good on them.
Hopefully we'll get back at them sometime later in the trip.
As they head back to base camp,
Ben springs one last surprise exercise on the explorers.
The middle of the river, guys. Right in the middle.
It's a safety drill to see if they've water-proofed all their kit.
We're going to do a capsize drill with full kit, OK?
-I don't want to get the letter wet!
-From my mum.
-It's in your waterproof bag.
If they're sealed properly you'll be fine.
Two nights ago, the team got packages from their families
and several have precious letters and photos in their rucksacks.
Come on! Tip, you stupid boat!
Start working together. We need to get that boat upright.
The golden rule is to stay with the canoe and get it back afloat.
That's it, Sammie. Well done. Nikita, what are you doing?
But Nikita is more worried about trying to rescue her own bag.
Get in that water and start helping that boat, yes?
That's it, guys, well done, get it into the side.
Get it into the side.
Josh, Michael and Megan worked really well together
and it was quite a slick drill.
The second team, these guys tried to sort out their kit
and there's huge safety implications.
Back to camp.
It's the moment of truth.
How well did the explorers waterproof their rucksacks?
I'm worried about all my layers and my photos getting soaked.
If they are, I'm going to cry.
Everything inside should have been well sealed in waterproof bags.
-Well, it's not too bad.
-Not waterproof, OK.
-The sweets are all right, that's what matters.
The pants are dry.
-And that's important.
-I'm going to be OK! They're dry!
-Megan, absolute star.
All my things are wet. Sleeping bag, mosquito net, socks, wash bag.
And like Jake, Sammie's bag is also soaked through.
My letters are almost ruined.
I really don't want them to be ruined.
I don't care about anything else, just my letters.
Shall we do Nikita next?
-She looks very quiet.
-You're not doing mine.
-Are you worried everything's wet?
BEN: What's the problem?
I want to do it by myself.
You will do it by yourself.
By myself away from everyone.
-What are you trying to hide?
-Why don't you do it?
I want to check my photos are all right.
If you're worried, we need to get them out now
-and dry them.
-I'll do it by myself! I don't want everyone there.
BEN: Nikita, Jake is doing his, Sammie is doing hers.
I'll do mine.
I'm being serious, go away.
Why did I get this job?
Why did I get this job?
We have got a slight issue here, another strop.
After Nikita cools off, Polly persuades her to come back.
I want to rescue your photos, is that what you're worried about?
-OK, come on.
Things are nowhere near as bad as Nikita fears.
Good girl. Let's take them out.
Let's take them out.
They look good. Let's dry them.
Her photos are all absolutely fine.
They're photos my family sent me.
I thought they'd be soaking and ruined.
And I'd end up crying if they were.
I didn't want everyone to see me cry.
-This isn't too wet, either.
-You've done really well.
-It's all right. Have more faith in yourself.
I've the driest stuff out of everyone!
It was so funny because she just flipped her lid again
and it's like having a time-bomb in the camp.
You never know when she's going to blow.
After spending last night out,
their rainforest shack seems like five-star accommodation.
This is like luxury jungle.
This is nice. You've got a hut to sleep in.
We love our little house.
Even here, they can't let their guard down for a second.
They've ate my packed lunch.
Someone left a lunch bag open and now it's been destroyed by ants.
They've strewn the plastic all the way across the camp.
Oh, my God. How did they get in? I'd done it up.
How can I get rid of all these ants?
Oh! Oh! Oh! Argh!
I've been bitten by about ten.
That's it. You're all dead.
They bit me everywhere.
Aw! God, he got me again.
Jungle training is about to step up a gear.
With just two days left before the epic canoe journey,
they move on to emergency survival.
What is your number one survival priority to keep yourself alive?
They don't know that they'll be putting the lessons into practise
sooner than they think.
If you feel light headed, dizzy, nauseous, no energy...
Tomorrow, they'll face the ultimate survival exercise -
a whole day and night in the jungle completely on their own.
You're looking for four trees, all right.
The first survival lesson is about building an emergency shelter.
This horizontal piece, this will form part of your roof.
It's just trapped against the uprights by the V-shaped sticks.
Do you see that? Yes?
You're going to need palm to make the roof.
With no idea of just how soon they'll need these vital skills,
they're finding it hard to concentrate.
This one's backwards.
It is a very humid, overcast day and it's sapped everyone's energy.
-You chopped it too short.
-It doesn't reach.
I don't think anyone was paying attention to that last demonstration
and that makes it all the more worrying for what lies ahead, really.
How are we going to do this bit?
Right, moment of truth. Lie down.
Ah, no, it's come undone!
You've broken it, Michael.
You've trashed it!
The second essential for survival is water.
Local tribesmen show how it can be found
in the most unlikely places,
such as inside some types of bamboo shoot.
-Does anyone want to test the water?
Good. It's a really funny taste, but it is nice.
-Tastes of bamboo. It's been cleansed by the growing process.
-That is rank.
Another important survival skill is making fire.
I can't get this flint thingy to work.
Without matches, they need to make a spark
using a flint block and steel striker.
Josh, move the block, not the striker. That's it.
It's not easy though, is it, guys?
-It's lighted loads of times.
-It is so annoying.
It'd be interesting if this were real whether they'd survive or not.
No, we wouldn't.
The final survival ingredient is food.
The tribesmen can set some fiendish animal traps.
They've rigged it and we've set it to double the chances of hitting.
Shall I be the animal?
-The animal goes past. ALL:
There's your dinner for tonight.
With survival training completed,
it's time to fill in the explorers on the extreme challenge ahead.
Tomorrow, we are going to be doing something
we've never done before with a bunch of people your age.
We're going to bung you into the rainforest to survive by yourselves.
POLLY: You're on your own. BEN: You're on your own.
-Oh, my God!
-How are we going to do that?
You've been taught the necessary skills today,
from gathering water, to hunting, trapping and getting food.
I couldn't start the tiniest fire. I can't fish.
I can't set traps. I'm terrible at stuff like that.
I think it'd be really amazing to see
if we are we are tough enough to stay in the jungle by ourselves.
But not everyone will take part in the survival challenge.
One lucky explorer will instead get an amazing treat,
helping with a unique survey
to monitor black caimans, a huge type of crocodile.
There is an opportunity to do a caiman project...
also to stay in an amazing lodge,
We'll go out and hunt a caiman.
-That sounds so cool.
-I really want to do it.
Regan can't believe his ears.
Back home he keeps reptiles as pets
and he's long dreamt of just this kind of opportunity.
Before I came, every day I was looking up stuff about black caiman.
Who here would really like to do the caiman thing?
All of you. Fine, if that's the case then we'll just go round.
It's down to the explorers to vote on who deserves the treat the most.
I'm voting for Jake because I think he deserves it.
Thanks for that Nikita.
I say Regan because he's all into that crocodiley caimany stuff.
The voting's incredibly tight.
I am going to vote for Megan.
-I'm going to vote for Jake.
-I'm voting for Megan.
I'm going to vote for Josh.
With six votes cast, Regan's just one behind Jake and Megan.
It is all down to Michael.
Sorry to one of you, but it's nothing personal at all,
it's just what I feel and I'm going to vote for Jake.
It really means a lot, guys. I can't explain how much it means to me.
There is another twist.
-It's a good one. You're going to be joined by someone else.
Your choice, buddy.
It gives Regan a small ray of hope.
This is really hard.
I've got down to two people.
It's Regan and Josh.
I know Regan just loves reptiles and snakes and stuff like that
so he'd really enjoy it.
But I'm going to pick Josh on this one.
BEN: It's your decision.
I'm going to have a really fun time and it is going to be fantastic.
I had a good think because Regan loves this stuff,
but I knew Josh would learn a lot from it.
That's why it was a hard decision.
I'm happy for them,
but I am a bit upset about it because...
out of everyone in the group
I think I would have got the most out of the caiman project,
but it was more about who's your mate,
who do you like the most, who do you want to have a good time?
But what can you do?
Next time on Serious Explorers...
Freaked out in the forest -
the explorers struggle to make it through the night.
We can't survive!
And face-to-face with a killer crocodile.
You can see its teeth!
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
The team's intense week of jungle training steps up a gear with lessons in emergency survival, from eating bugs and beasties to making shelters and fire. The explorers are shocked to learn that they will be putting their new-found skills into practice with a survival night on their own in the rainforest.