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East Idaho represented on Discovery Channel’s ‘Dual Survival’


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IDAHO FALLS – The new season of Discovery Channel’s “Dual Survival” features a Pocatello man and a Ucon knife-making company.

Dual Survival“, which started in 2010,” puts two people in an extreme situation with very little gear, and they are required to work together to survive.

The two stars this season — which premiered Wednesday — are Jeff Zausch, a Pocatello native, and E.J. Snyder. They met each other when they were on “Naked and Afraid XL” together, and now they consider themselves brothers.


Jeff Zausch, right, and E.J. Snyder on ‘Dual Survivor.’ | Courtesy Jeff Zausch

Zausch says that he and Snyder don’t put themselves in these situations because they are fun, but because they want to be able to show people skills that everyone could use in a real-life situation.

“That would be the ultimate goal, to save a life with this television show. To have someone see a skill that we implement on TV and for them to actually use that in real life to stay alive,” he said.

TOPS (Tactical Operational Products) Knives, based in Ucon, is the manufacturer of the knife that both guys carry on the show this season.

“We make very good tools that don’t fail,” said Craig Powell, general manager of TOPS Knives.

Zausch has been using TOPS Knives for a number of years.

“The No. 1 quality for me in a TOPS knife is their durability and their reliability,” Zausch said.

Different models of TOPS Knives have been used and carried through many different episodes of “Dual Survival” as well as “Naked and Afraid.”

“Anytime an episode airs, we sell some knives,” Powell said.

TOPS Knives currently has more than 250 models of knives.


Courtesy Jeff Zausch

“If you’re proud of being from southeast Idaho, check out the show. You got a guy from Idaho and you’ve got a manufacturer from Idaho representing survival,” Powell said.

These two best friends hope that the viewers learn something from watching the show. Zausch told that the number of viewers determines how many more seasons of the show they will get to do, and he wanted to thank the viewers for this opportunity.

“E.J. and I, really we are getting to live our dreams, we’re getting to do the thing that we love to do most which is to survive in the wild. And the viewers are really the people who give that opportunity to us,” Zausch said.

The show airs every Wednesday night at 7 p.m. on the Discovery Channel.