Bear Grylls is a seasoned adventurer who served with the Special Air Service, a special forces unit of the British army, where he was trained as a survival expert. His experiences include climbing Mount Everest, crossing the freezing North Atlantic Ocean in a small, open boat and climbing a Himalayan peak described by Sir Edmund Hillary as 'unclimbable'. He has been places and done things that would defeat most normal people. But now, he is up against something completely different.
In each episode of Man vs. Wild Bear strands himself in popular wilderness destinations where tourists often find themselves lost or in danger. As he finds his way back to civilization, he demonstrates local survival techniques, including escaping quicksand in the Moab Desert, navigating dangerous jungle rivers in Costa Rica, crossing ravines in the Alps and surviving sharks off Hawaii.
Bear Grylls and the crew receive support when they are in potentially life threatening situations, as required by health and safety regulations.
On some occasions, situations are presented to Bear so he can demonstrate survival techniques.