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NATURE: Siberian Tiger Quest

Airs Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2015 at 8 p.m. & Sunday, Aug 30 at 3 p.m. on KPBS TV

Above: Raised in captivity, this adult male tiger is seen lying on a man-made lookout. As in the wild, he uses this high point to sit and watch across his territory. In the wild he would use cliffs, even large trees and hill tops in Victor Yudin's tiger neclosure, Spassk, Primorsky Krai, Russia.

Experience the splendors and compelling stories of the natural world from all over the globe. NATURE delivers the best in original natural history films to audiences nationwide.

Meal times on the trail can be basic. Having to carry everything they will want during a day's hike Chris Morgan is seen here in tiger country, pouring a cup of tea for his companion, Korean filmmaker Sooyong Park.
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Above: Meal times on the trail can be basic. Having to carry everything they will want during a day's hike Chris Morgan is seen here in tiger country, pouring a cup of tea for his companion, Korean filmmaker Sooyong Park.

This adult female tiger was raised in captivity and is 19 years of age, an age that would be extremely rare in the wild in Victor Yudin's tiger neclosure, Spassk, Primorsky Krai, Russia.
Enlarge this image

Above: This adult female tiger was raised in captivity and is 19 years of age, an age that would be extremely rare in the wild in Victor Yudin's tiger neclosure, Spassk, Primorsky Krai, Russia.

Hunted almost to extinction, the last wild Siberian tigers can only be found in the forests of the far eastern Russian frontier – but not easily. And they had never been filmed in the wild, until one man went to new extremes in order to succeed where all others had failed.

Filmmaker Sooyong Park left friends and family in Korea to spend more than five years alone in the wild, confined for months in tiny pits in the ground or 4-foot hides in trees, watching and waiting for even a glimpse of the elusive creatures.

Then, in 2005, after incomprehensible hardship and devotion to his task, Park emerged from the frozen forests with over a thousand extraordinary hours of wild tiger footage that told the story of three generations of a Russian tiger dynasty.

NATURE’s 2012 season premiere, "Siberian Tiger Quest," joins bear ecologist and conservationist, Chris Morgan, recently featured in NATURE’s "Bears of the Last Frontier," as he travels to Siberia to meet with and spend time with Park, retracing his daunting journey, and learning first hand just how hard it would be to replicate Park’s remarkable accomplishment.

Having tracked large predators in some of the wildest and most remote places on Earth, Morgan hopes to fulfill his own lifelong dream to find and film a Siberian tiger in the wild.

Chris Morgan Wildlife is on Facebook, and you can follow @MorganWildlife on Twitter.

NATURE is on Facebook, Tumblr and you can follow @PBSNature on Twitter. Past episodes of NATURE are available for online viewing.

Video

Preview: NATURE: Siberian Tiger Quest

Video

Filming Wild Tigers

Video

Siberian Tiger Quest: Alone With Tigers