When bluefin tuna season ends in Gloucester, Mass., it's just beginning in North Carolina's Outer Banks, a perfect opportunity to pit North vs. South in a pro fisherman contest for the ocean's most lucrative prey. Venturing south are the best crews from Gloucester to take on top local fleets in the treacherous Outer Banks, where the weather is more unpredictable than up north, and the seas can be extremely rough. The Gloucester rod-and-reel vets must master "greensticking" -- trolling artificial squid from a 30-foot fiberglass pole to lure the elusive species to the surface. Top-dollar bluefin can be worth as much as $20,000 each, but a short season and small government catch quota means explosive rivalries surface quickly.
The old Dolly Parton hit "9 to 5" isn't a tune worth humming for the blue-collar pioneers featured in "Filthy Riches." The series spotlights ingenious Americans who skirt a conventional workplace in favor of making a living in the deep rivers, soggy mud flats and wild backwoods of the U.S. Ray Turner, for example, has been catching eels in Delaware for 30 years. He uses a self-made smokehouse in the woods to cook the critters and sell them. Billy Taylor and his sons hunt for prized ginseng root in the Appalachians. Taylor, a fully licensed wild ginseng dealer, promotes sustainability by planting its berries. In Maine, Jim Campbell and Andy Johns make the coastal mud flats their office, as they dig for valuable bloodworms to sell to fishermen. And Greg Dahl and Albert DeSilva are burl hunters. A burl is a hard, unwieldy outgrowth on a tree, usually at the trunk. Burls have value because of the spectacular patterns found in them when cut open.
Extreme survivalists go head to head in a race across the Alaska wild. Using ingenuity, experience and just the gear they can carry in their packs, the participants have 60 hours to reach the finish point of each leg of the adventure -- the series features 13 legs -- and in addition to navigating treacherous glaciated river valleys, barren ridgelines, and high mountain peaks, the challengers battle hunger, dangerous predators and unpredictable weather. There is no grand prize awaiting each leg's winner, other than the pride of accomplishing a grueling feat. For season three, the 12 competitors are divided equally into four teams -- Military, Endurance, Alaskans and Lower 48.
Each year adventurers make Alaska's mighty Yukon River their home for five weeks. They float downstream on homemade log rafts to sell firewood and other supplies to remote villages. The reality-documentary "Yukon River Run" presents hourlong episodes tracking the progress of various crews. As harsh winter months approach and threaten both safety and success, stakes are heightened as rafters endeavor to cash out and escape from the cold.
The Guindons of Galveston, Texas, face year-round challenges to keep Katie's Seafood Market thriving. Acquiring the inventory is patriarch Buddy Guindon, brother Kenny and son Hans, who battle against long days, longer nights, a sea full of predators, and Mother Nature's quirkiness. Buddy's son Nick runs the business side of the company, juggling surpluses, shortages, and order deadlines while also processing a quarter of the Gulf's deep-water fish and spearheading initiatives to preserve their fishery. Through it all, the family built on traditional values always makes time for hearty laughs and home-cooked meals.