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Naked and Afraid exclusive: A pride of lions awaits survivors down by the watering hole

On Sunday’s Naked and Afraid, the harsh realities of the African jungle are made clear as four tired, thirsty and hungry survivors are seeking a potable water source.

And as luck would have it, they find one, except these four humans are not the apex predators guarding the watering hole. A pride of lions are, along with a herd of elephants. Perhaps other big cats too.

The need for water is a life and death necessity for all, and yet the pursuit of it makes these four naked and tired stragglers feel like a nervous zebra or gazelle approaching the edge of the water.

The lions will protect their territory no matter what, and fierce in nature too are the elephants.  They will stampede and charge anyone that comes near their herd, especially their young.

What are the four Naked and Afraid contestants going to do?

In our exclusive clip, we meet up with Derrick Roberts, Lauren Fagen, Rod Biggs and Dannelle Tomarchio. They are navigating dry grasses and prickly bush vegetation to find water and spot clues that lead them to the large emerald green water hole.

But how to access it? They survey the edges and then out of the canopy of the vegetation, they start spotting the lions, and there are a lot of them, a whole pride including a large maned male and his fierce lionesses, perhaps cubs nearby.

The group knows that if they are spotted and get too near, the lionesses will work like a wolf pack to circle them and kill them all.

Then there are the elephants. Not a herd of animals easily dismissed. Elephants are merciless when enraged and will charge and kill anything that threatens their group.

Unseen but also a threat if we are listing all the dangers are the crocodiles that live in the watering holes of Africa.  They come up and snatch animals who bend their timid heads to sip at the edge of the water. They even attack the big cats if they get the shot.

Tonight on Naked and Afraid

This is going to be a unique four-person challenge in Africa.

Surrounded by lions, crocodiles and cape buffalo, the tribe of four, including former contestant Lauren who struggles with vivid memories of an attack, will deal with constant threats and each other as they try to survive in a dangerous kill zone.

Fagan is a brave lion attack survivor, as she returns to Africa to face her fears after a vicious attack from two lions in 2013.

Previously on Naked and Afraid, we met a brave RN who beat breast cancer who rose to the series challenge. Now on Sunday’s episode, we will see if Lauren can sail through this challenge and not suffer from PTSD.

What are the dangers of the watering hole?

Lauren Fagen, Dannelle Tomarchio
Parched, and afraid are Lauren Fagen and Dannelle Tomarchio whose thirst puts them in the path of lions. Pic credit: Discovery

Let’s talk about those real dangers.

Back in 2013, poachers were discovered to have filled a watering hole with cyanide to kill elephants easily.

Watering holes in Africa are where all life gathers to drink precious water. It’s a ballet of many species coming together in a trepidatious dance of life and death. But it is also a hunting ground for apex predators like big cats and crocodiles that lurk in the water.

There have been human deaths in Africa for those who also got too near a watering hole, caught unaware.

Naked and Afraid airs Sundays at 8/7c on Discovery Channel.

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