Life Below Zero Challenge #3: Provide a Meal For Someone in Need

For the Arctic residents of Life Below Zero, complacency is not an option. Lack of preparedness means certain death. The stakes are high living on the outskirts of humanity, and for many in the lower 48, life can be pretty sedentary, pretty comfy and cozy… until now! [Cue Life Below Zero Weekly Challenges].

Tonight on Life Below Zero, winter is just around the corner. For Chip and Agnes Hailstone, it’s time to set out on a moose hunt. But they’re not just hunting for themselves, they hunt for their community’s survival. Every autumn, the Hailstones travel 26 miles from their home in Noorvik to Camp Kookoochaiq, where they acquire essential resources.


In isolated Noorvik Alaska, community is key. The Hailstones consider it their duty as adults to act as providers, and share the meat that they acquire. However, acquiring such meat is easier said than done. And this time, the Hailstones are having difficulty keeping up with the smart moose.


There are at least 20 houses in the Hailstone’s neighborhood that they will give meals away to after a successful hunt. Chip and Agnes make a point to look out for one another in the community, and they know that if they ever find themselves in need, their neighbors would do the same for them.

Chip and Agnes carry on with the hunt, and try not to get discouraged. “We got a date with a big fat moose somewhere,” Chip tells himself. But again, after tracking another bull, it suddenly disappears.


“A well educated moose, she was out of here like that,” Agnes laments. They continue their hunt, with the importance of their goal in mind. “We all reciprocate in one way or another—gasoline, meat, parts, babysitting, bullets. We’ve chosen to be happy, not rich, not full of money. We’re not in competition with other people. We like being providers, and sharing, and contributing.”

Eventually, their persistence pays off, and Chip and Agnes finally nab a moose; one that will provide many meals for both their family, and neighbors.


For the Hailstone family, spare meat goes a long way in a community that relies on trade. Today, they will share their harvest with their neighbor and long-time friend, Jeff.

For the third Life Below Zero Challenge… Can you provide a meal for someone in need?

Tell us! What inspires you about the way these folks live off-grid and on their own? Think you can try giving up some of life’s little luxuries and live a sliver of the Arctic lifestyle? Let us know if you are going to partake in the weekly challenges, and share your stories and experiences. We’d love to hear from you. 

Don’t miss new episodes of Life Below Zero, Thursdays at 9P… and be sure to come back next week for challenge #4! 


  1. Jule Westcott
    Nogal, NM
    May 1, 2014, 8:30 pm

    I miss the Potlachs and jelled moose lip sandwiches. That guy in Chandalar would not make it in the bush. U got to keep working constantly or die.

  2. Jeri
    Virginia Beach, VA
    May 2, 2014, 5:04 pm

    I love watching this show. It shows where we as a country have let each other down. We no longer look out for our fellow man, but instead for ourselves. This show makes me want to send food to their neighborhood to help out since they help everyone else.

  3. Rita Allen
    United States
    May 6, 2014, 5:55 pm

    I am a lunch lady in the Beaverton, OR school district and we are meeting this challenge every week. At the end of serving food to our kids we box up the leftovers that are then taken to a food pantry to distribution to those in need.

    • Meg Gleason
      May 7, 2014, 8:54 am

      That’s great Rita, thanks for sharing!

  4. Beth.
    May 8, 2014, 8:44 pm

    I would love to spend a season there! Not sure how to skin meat, but I can shoot good, and I can cook damn good also.

  5. Betty
    May 9, 2014, 8:31 pm

    How does Eric and Andy get enough fuel for their machines?

  6. Stan
    United States
    May 10, 2014, 9:51 am

    My family can’t wait to watch Life Below Zero every week. It’s really an eye opener.

  7. Angela Banfield
    Long Island,NY
    June 27, 2014, 11:08 pm

    I love this show. I think that chip and Agnes live a far richer life than most. Their sense of family and community can’t be bought with all the money in the world.