HE WON $500K ON A SURVIVAL SHOW: CLAY HAYES – Today we are giving you full access to Clay Hayes. He’s a YouTuber and Winner of Season 8 of History Channel’s Alone. He’s an amazing bow builder and family man. @clayhayeshunter #elkshape


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I met clay Hayes several years ago at a Mutual friend's house shooting bows fast Forward several years later I found Myself on my couch watching him on History Channel season 8 of alone Rooting for him episode after episode After tearing up on the couch watching His victory and cheering for his success I knew I wanted to go down he only lives A few hours away from me hang out with Him for the day and get to know the real Clay Haze and behind the scenes and of Course bring you all along it's time to Go home mate You've outlasted everyone I'm coming Home baby I'm coming home but as far as Like coming home for me it was not it Was just like coming home from a long Hunting trip with a greater appreciation For family and everything else that you Can tend to take for granted TD Tyler Denham we're headed to go see a Special guest bring him to the channel Today some of you are going to know him He's a big deal in my eyes and he's a Bow hunter guys welcome we are in Kendrick Idaho kind of uh we are on the Boonies and we're gonna go hang out with Clay Hayes he's got a YouTube channel But more importantly he won I think Season eight or nine of alone he's a Totally cool dude I've met him before Want to hang out with him and share his Story bringing you guys along let's go

Hey guys we've made it to Kendrick Idaho The dude clay Hayes I met you what like A couple years ago it's been yeah Several years yeah but since then you've Been doing some cool stuff I'm really Proud of you we'll get into that we're Gonna podcast today and really just Invade a space I want to kind of get a Behind the scenes of like your lifestyle I think it's pretty cool what you do but You're a bow hunter absolutely like a Real one I try versus me who like runs Around with training wheels compounds What hey whatever whatever makes you Happy man the stick the sticks make me Happy that's good now we'll get into That so uh since yeah we've been a few Years we've got a mutual friend Joel Turner yep shout out to Joel boy his Son's pretty freaking good at archery Have you seen that I have yeah I've been Tracking them they've been been tearing It up unbelievable but yeah we gotta we Met at a buddy's house his name is Richard Cote so Richard what's up he's Another badass bow hunter but uh since Then you've been on the grind man so Let's talk about YouTube okay YouTube is Uh is an interesting platform that's my Work I go and make videos about whatever I happen to be interested in that day Um and then I come back and and edit it Don't sell me in fact try to sell me on Not doing the kind of work you do for a

Living like what's all the stuff that Maybe makes you pause and question what The hell are you even doing The comments section on YouTube uh is Like a free-for-all you know if anybody Can post anything up there and it's all It's like it's like that across social Media most of my comments are really Good every now and then you get somebody That's just like venting or being Unreasonable or whatever I just ignore Those you could take those things to Heart I guess and like allow them allow People to like run you down I just Choose to ignore them and I picture them As just some sad person that needs this Outlet in some way as far as like why Not to do this it is a hustle I mean you Gotta stay on top of it it's not like You can't slack off and still get a Paycheck you know you have to have to Continuously put out content which is Fine for me because I do the things that I want to do anyway I'm just I'm just Documenting my life and putting it on YouTube it's a cool medium because You can put whatever you want out there For the Free World to see and it's Pretty much free for them to be Entertained or educated or annoyed with You yeah and there's all of the above so What is it about YouTube that you like YouTube allows us to I mean it gives us The freedom to live the life that we

Want to live I mean I when I first put Out my when I put out my first YouTube Video I had no intention of ever making A living doing that like never even Crossed my mind I just did it because I Like the creative aspect of making the Videos I was teaching like my first uh Videos were about bow building and I I Like teaching people about it I was good At teaching people about it and then you Know YouTube gave me a platform to do That and so I started uploading videos On bow building a single annual growth Ring and that's going to be the back of The bow you want that growth ring to be The same from top to bottom so that There's no overlapping like that because If you get that type of thing going on And you put it under tension it can lift A splinter All right then started doing some some Traditional bow hunting type stuff Uploading that got hooked up with BHA And did an educational series for those Guys really called Backcountry College It's still up there on their YouTube Channel you can look that up and it just Kind of started growing from there so This whole time I'm working full time For fish and game as a wildlife Biologist and in 2017 it had gotten to the point I can't Remember how many subscribers I had but It had gotten to the point where I was

Making Fair money on like the YouTube Stuff I wasn't making a lot of money on Like ad Revenue type stuff but there was A lot of stuff around YouTube that was That I was making fairly good money at And I was spending about five percent of My time doing it and so I thought like That's what I really want to be doing Maybe I should flip those around if I Spent 95 of my time doing this YouTube Type stuff I know I can make it November Of 2017 I walked into my supervisor's Office gave my two weeks notice And two weeks later I walked out the Doors and I was unemployed The best decision I ever made like Closing in on a hundred days of being Away from my family and that's not That's not fun toughest part has always Been not a word from them nothing uh any Motivation to win the money or was it Always just about the experience I never Thought about the money at all and I've Said it before I would have done it had There not been any money I would have Done it just for the challenge of seeing If I could do it because it's something That it's like the ultimate challenge You know for skills that I've tried to Develop my whole life that's a really Nice clean piece I would say there's no So this all this sapwood on this Osage Is going to come off I've been in the woods doing this stuff

Since I was 18 years old now you have This opportunity to actually put all Those things to the test and figure out If you're as good as you think you are I Hope that inspires people because I I do Get a lot of messages I'm sure you do as Well like there's a lot of unhappy People in dead-end jobs that don't have Any fulfillment maybe it's a good Paycheck but you and I both know it Ain't about the money I mean it's uh I Think you got to be okay with taking Risks because it is a huge risk that Certainty that that of a paycheck going Into direct deposit the security of Having insurance and all that stuff like It's a very comfortable secure Thing And when you Like go away from all that stuff you're Out in the freaking wild west I mean It's all up to you to make it but big Risks big rewards that's cool man yeah And you're passionate about the bow and That's never wavered yeah Which you know is cool because there's Always a possibility of becoming a Sellout and people snip that out Right like I'd say audiences are like I Always tell anyone who helps me on my Channel you say one thing inaccurate It's gonna show up like they're going Like you can't pull the wool over any YouTube viewers like they're really

Smart they're sharp and they're actually Hoping you make a mistake they want to Point it out but um yeah so you got to Be authentic you got to be yourself Uh elk shape similar story side hustle For sure since 2013 but I do remember The day where I was like I think I'm Just gonna try to do like I'm spending Five percent of my time on elk shape and It's kind of like blossoming and I Really like it Um I think I'm just gonna so I sold a Gym that I had ran for 11 years and was Like I didn't take that money and go invest It I just kind of like set it aside Wasn't a lot but I was like This is my insurance money I'm gonna try To do elk shape for a couple years and I Put I gave myself an expiration date Yeah and if I Couldn't make it happen I was gonna take That money like and start living off of It and get a real job and punch clock And work for somebody yeah but I'd Rather do my own dream and build my own Dream than someone else's 100 agree yeah I was the same way and right here if you Look at the way it's bending it's been a Little bit too much right in this area And so what I would do is take wood off Of everywhere other than this weak spot To make everything match and bend evenly We can kind of see the overall Bend and

Then you can see that this part is Bending more and then you can focus on That part there's just a little bit too Much Bend right there so I would before Finishing this bow off I just need to Correct that by taking wood off of these Stronger areas my oldest boy and I did a Backpacking trip into one of the Wilderness areas here in Idaho koi Struggles with letting big picture Overwhelm him like if he wants to Accomplish something it's easy for him To get overwhelmed and on that trip like It was a hard trip you know it was first Big backpacking trip we backpacked into An Alpine Lake did some fishing and and That type of thing on our way back out Of there and we came up and we're Sitting on this Bluff and we're looking Back across this you know Misty valleys And and ridges that we had climbed over And I pointed and I said that way over There that's where we just came from and I looked and I asked him he's probably 10 at the time I asked him before you Did that would you have thought that you Could have done that he said no I looked Back at him and I asked how did you do That he put his head down between his Knees and he thought for a minute he Looked back up and he said one step at a Time and I'm I'm tearing up thinking About that moment That's powerful

Um So that's I mean That's one of my favorite videos In the first joint yep slide that up Until your tab just touches the bottom Of that bottom knock and that's going to Be your your strengths out of your hook You're going to come back to full draw And you're not going to over draw this Bow no no doubt Um your anchor finding you're just going To have to find whatever anchor works Good for you where you can get you're Probably going to need to turn your hat Backwards I put my index finger on that Bone right there yep and then my other Anchor is just my back tension like you Know I can't rotate any farther without Like pushing the shoulder into the String you know Yeah this is real bow hunting right here There you go it's a whole new world There's a whole new anchoring it's a Whole like I don't know how to be Robotic with it right like I can't I got No continuity I'm like each one of those Felt different so that that's that comes Like when and it's easy for me to Understand new Shooters when when I try To shoot left-handed because I don't Have any of that feel I have to go way Down in Bow weight yeah but if I get Like a 30 pound bow and I try to shoot It left-handed like I don't know what

Back tension feels like left-handed yeah With shooting like this it's like it's Like in there yep and it's just I know What it feels like with this it's like I Don't know if I'm in alignment or not or What but that's probably what you're Experiencing right now but you know you Just keep shooting and you'll eventually Get there yeah no it definitely feels Pure like just it feels it's pretty cool Experience honestly what's it going 150 Feet a second 160. these with these Arrows probably mid 160s it's pretty Cool Tyler come get you some But once you hit your anchor you know Just just get into that you want your Forearm to be in line with that Arrow as Best you can Bam freaking killers Foreign There you go so this is like your Recreate or what'd you call it a just a Just a nice little way to have some PTSD Of missing your family however long were You gone from start to finish I was in The woods for 74 days but before that This was right when covid was getting Ramped up and so we had to do a two-week Quarantine plus a 10-day orientation Yeah so we had an additional you know Almost month added on to that so I was Going what 100 some 100 days or 100 and Something days all the season was this Nine eight a season eight yeah yeah that

Wasn't that long ago man and so did you You decided I'm going to recreate what I Lived in well I did this for a YouTube Video and I had the had the boys help me Oh cool so we all came out here and Built it just exactly with the same Tools that I would have had they gave You one of the things that they gave you Was a an a 10 by 16 tarp and I use that You know to cover the shelter and Everything but this is this is what I Spent 74 days in so this this would have Been This would have been covered with a with A tarp and so you wouldn't have been Able to see all this stuff but it's a Small I mean It's less than six feet wide tall enough To stand up comfortably I wanted Something where I could get off the Ground I didn't want to be sleeping on The ground the whole time I wanted Somewhere I could sit down and you know Work on projects have my little Fireplace in here had a dutch oven as One of my 10 items and so I would cook Rabbits grouse Whatever I had in that Dutch oven and uh Sit here and work on carvings or Or whatever spent a lot of time in in This Little Shelter Had a piece of sinew this is sinew on The back by the way what kind of piece To send you right here delaminate and it

Caused the bow to take on a weird shape The tiller got all messed up so here Recently stripped all the old sinew off And then redid it this is a piece of Just backs in you off of an elk so I Just took that sinew scraped all the Meat and fat off slapped it right on There waiting for this to dry and I'll Grind it down how long does it take to Dry a couple weeks okay it's probably Ready right now it's been a little while Since I redid it but then I'll put Snakeskin over it and it'll end up Looking more like like this one which is Probably what I'll end up hunting with This year Okay so where did the snake come from Roadkill here around here yeah there's Rattlesnakes right there in the canyon Pacific okay Diamondbacks everywhere I Go in Idaho I run into snakes they're Everywhere so if you if you get down to The you know divide dividing things People will call you like if you call This a self boat people would call you Out on it Because it's a self bow if you hear that Term means self-backed there's no Additional backing on it okay so this is Just a piece of wood gotcha this is a Self bow okay this is a wooden bow but It's actually a composite because it has Sinew on the back of it and the sinew The reason I put sinew on the back is

You know when a bow is drawn and shot it Has to subjected to both tension on the Back and compression on the belly yep The belly of the bow being what faces You and so sinew is very good at Withstin with standing tension that's What it does in the body okay the belly Side back here on this Osage Osage is a Very compression resistant wood and so Those two materials when you put them Together come out very they make a very Good bow nice little pair this is Pacific you right here and you see There's two different shades of wood Here yes there's the the Heartwood which Is the darker wood on the on the belly And then the sap wood on the back it Just so happens that Pacific U the Sapwood is very good at tension okay it Sucks in compression right but the belly Wood is good in compression so you've Got to come basically a natural Composite bow here that's pre-made in The tree so to do a self bow it's got to Be the right wood the two top tier bow Woods or Pacific U and Osage orange okay Um but I mean there's There's other Woods like this is Hickory And Hickory on its own doesn't make a Very good self bow because it's not very Good in compression yeah it's great Intention like you can't break the stuff But you see the dark the belly on this Is really dark I put it over a fire and

And just basically cooked it and that Hardens the belly wood and makes the Belly side more resistant to compression So you've got the really good tension Forces on the back and then you've got The good hardened wood on the belly so You can make a really good bow out of Hickory too with just a little bit Different techniques like I don't ever Do that the fire hardening on Osage or Sure for you because it's not necessary Y'all hear the difference in the sound Of that that's making if you notice That crunchy That crunchy there's a in the Osage There's between the uh so you've got the Sapwood and the Heartwood but then Within the Heartwood you've got What's called Lakewood and early wood And the early wood is laid down in the Springtime and that's like this really Crunchy layer and so you've got this Crunchy layer between the late wood Layers which are really hard and dense So that gives you a good place to stick That knife and kind of pry one layer off Of the other one With this Stave being as clean and Straight as it is if I really hustled I Could probably have a bow shooting It would be rough but I could have a bow Shooting Within under two hours probably Tell me about these projectiles coming Out of the stick bow like yeah take me

Through like the setup for building this Arrow so this that's a hit called a hex Head that's just for walking or you know Small game or walking around out in the Woods shooting pine cones whatever which Is something I'm constantly doing when I'm in the woods you have to right yeah I love it I'm not like stump shooting And stuff while I'm trying to get close To an elk but if I'm just hiking or Something like that yeah I'm always Picking out different things I mean it Helps keep you sharp helps with your Range estimation and like for me I don't When I shoot I don't know ex what the Exact distance is it's not important for Me to know what the exact distance is It's just important for me to know what It looks like at that distance you know What my sight picture exactly and so you Know constantly going around shooting Stuff just keeps that this is your Rangefinder exactly okay so that's that These errors were actually made by Andy Uh over at addictive archery addictive Archery yeah he's um I call him the rain Man of arrows he asked him any question About arrows and he just rattles off Numbers this the I don't know if I doubt I'll elk hunt with these heads I got These for pigs down in Florida they're Pretty wide that's pretty wide yeah it's A double bevel yeah it's the ones that I Typically hunt with are these tough

Heads right there they're single bevel Pretty narrow long more of that well There's there's a Um those are Grizzlies right there I got Some I got freaking broadheads Everywhere it's a cut on contact single Bevel yeah that 301 ratio yep okay that Makes sense like what's the weight of Your arrow 650 650 and what do you do on The back end these are four and a half Inch fletchings probably half inch you Got some helical in there yep dug fur Ther You see this rough looking stuff yes Okay I'm about to scrape that off and You're going to see a line form between This growth ring and the one below it Okay this crunchy stuff is the layer Between the growth rings got it Can you see the line yep okay you've got One growth ring here and then you've got The next one on top of it we're taking Trying to take this one off of this one Using that crunchy layer as that guide To separate this from this you don't Want to get down into this one because If you go if you break this one then you Have to go to the next one all the way Up and down it oh yeah so stay back up On that Peak There you go If you watch right here I'm just gonna I'm gonna pop this little piece off okay See that how how I started separating it

Yep there you go that's what you need to Do right there Yep This growth ring is pretty small but if You move down they get fatter So probably what I would do is end up I Would take off these top ones and just Get down to maybe this one right here so My Point on distance if you've looked into Like aiming these things there's a Difference way to shoot them some people Shoot them just purely what they call Instinctively where they're just like They describe it as throwing a baseball Sure I personally suck at that yeah I Can't throw a baseball Yeah so at some point I back if I back Up you know starting at the Target if I Back up enough you know my point of aim Is going to raise until it's pointing on Where I want to hit yeah and for this Bow and arrow that's about 30 yards for Me right this is the tab that I've been Shooting okay um I've shot gloves the The what I have on my fingers doesn't Really affect my shop very much as far As like going through my shot cycle I'm basically doing what Joel's talking About in that little I've got a little Metal tack right there and I'll hook my Finger now right there come back to full Draw and just start putting pressure on That and when that thing pops off that's

My cue to release and that just keeps me Like if I don't do that I'll start to Anticipate the shot and with a Traditional bow there's no you don't Have the release where you can kind of Fudge it a little bit like you start Anticipating with this you you know you Do like that and you spend all that time Setting up a shot and it's like having a Rifle on a bench and just like punching The trigger well you just screwed Everything yeah all that time you spend Aiming is worthless because how cool is That that some of the jewel stuff has a High degree of transferability to the Stick bow guys too oh yeah I mean he Joel's Um I mean that's his main deal yeah now And the the stuff that Joel talks about Is real it's not a new thing I mean People if you look it back at some of The old archery writings from Saxon Pope And art young I mean they're talking About the same thing but Joel explains It much better yeah like some of the Some of the old writings from Pope he's Talking about drawing back until the Barb of the arrow touches his finger It's a psychotrader same thing yeah same Thing Jules talking about so we had Horses and then we had cows We had uh so we had milk cow so Liz was Doing all that stuff we had pack goats Yes

Uh but when we started when I when I Left my job and we started traveling More it's like stock and not being here Doesn't really doesn't mix very well nah I get comments you're talking about the Comp uh toast and ghost earlier I I Spent a lot of time like I looked Through a bunch of the comments and I Respond to as many of them as I can And inevitably when I show a lot of Shitty ones I I mean if it's just some Guy that's ranting or something I don't Know I just ignore them yeah but like The positive comments I I really try to Respond to those but like there's always And sometimes there's people that like Ask legitimate questions like they don't They don't understand like on this last Bear hunting video I got there was Quite a few questions like why you why Do you hunt bear you just shoot them and Leave them it's like no then you take The time to explain no like bear meat is Actually really good to eat yeah and so That's why we're out here doing this Um but as far as the trees go like every Time I make a bow building video or Something that shows me out in the woods Cutting down a tree I always get Comments about you know from people that Must live in some like heavily you know Populated area where there's just not a Lot of trees because they're always like On me about cutting trees down I'm like

You should like pull yourself out of Your little world for just a minute and Look around because there's There's a bazillion trees here and I've I've planted thousands of them you have Like these are only about three years Old really and the ones that are in the Shelter belt are 10 years old and these Are doing so much better because the Deer Bypass this they walk the fence line Around and they browse everything yes so Just a little bit of browse pressure So you self-film that's tough for YouTube because it takes twice twice as Long if not longer yep you don't always Know if you got the right angle the Right shot the right lighting you find Out in post when did you kind of start Honing your skills on Bushcraft Um your whole life is just the right Body of work I mean I can remember just as a You know 10 year old being out building Traps and Doing that type of stuff Little Mike dead Falls and spring traps A lot of crap yup the only thing that Um every now and then We'll get log trucks that come down this There's a hill right there and they'll Come down jake break it up for you Usually it's right when you're in the Middle of a video

And you're like damn it yeah I know I'm Filming in my house I got to buy an Airport So I'm constantly swearing that planes And helicopters not in that check this Out Tyler Oh yeah you're gonna have some of those On you Number 900 this year Man these ones out here like um all the Ticks I've ever had on me in the west It's like you just pull them off super Easy man there's ones down south you can You can freaking pull your skin out like That man they're not coming out yeah all Right my name is Liz Hayes I'm the wife Of clay Um I just got back from town to get more Jars because we are in the middle of Butchering pigs and part of that I like To smoke a pig and then can the meat and Of course I was out of jars so we just Made the two hour round trip to get more Jars we're gonna take these to the porch Get the smoker going again and then get This started We started this pig earlier and then we Ran out of pellets so I just went just Got back from that this has been going For a couple hours I'll probably smoke This for like 12 hours and then I'll put It in a big roaster and then just make It so it falls off the bone and then I'll pull all the meat off the bone and

And then I'll use the juice from the pig That was in The Roaster and put into the Kittens So we pretty much live off the land we Either hunt or grow the vegetables in my Garden or we raise animals here on the Farm as to what we eat this little Building behind me is where I keep all My canned foods this is the house to our Pump so it absolutely cannot freeze so Everything that I'm worried about Freezing goes into this little building It is packed full of food it's like my Only grocery store so when I get ready To go grocery shopping I just come in Here and get all the ingredients I need And I'm able to make a home-cooked meal So this here is all canned meat we can a Lot of meat because we only have one Freezer and we kill you know several elk Deer a year and then we just put up Three pigs plus vegetables for my garden And so we don't have enough room in There so we can a lot of meat this is Canned elk it's fabulous all you have to Do is just open this up and add to your Ingredients fajitas you can use this as Stew meat roast put it over potatoes With gravy rice you can mix it with eggs In the morning it's fabulous and then This is pork we did last last year lard We always have cooking lard from our we Melt the fat from the pigs down and that Gives us lard but this is their own

Little grocery store Um you know it's a lot of work to put All this stuff up but that's what my Channel is about I teach you how to do This stuff you know how we live off the Land some really fun things you know About How we do our day-to-day life fun trips That we take on and you know all that on Top of teaching all this it will make Great memories for our kids one day to See all the adventures that we went on My channel is called it's just Liz Hayes Not the Aussie reporter you'll have to Scroll down a little bit but you can Find me there and I'm also on Instagram At life like Lizzy over there the man Clay Hayes thank you so much Hospitality just the lifestyle you live I think a lot of people look up to that I know I do proud of you he doesn't know What day week it is his kids are Homeschooled he's got ducks Just garden and he builds bows and he Just keeps his Sim keeps it real like Your your breath of fresh air man a World the world needs more clay Haze so Thank you well thanks for coming out I Had a good time good time shooting with You yeah that's cool we appreciate you Guys check out his channel link right Here check it out he's got Um a wealth of Knowledge from kind of Homesteading and

Just survival Bushcraft and boat like go Check them out and then uh if you're Here lurking smash that sub for us as The kids would say we appreciate you Guys we'll catch you on the next one [Music]

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