Watch Moonshiners

American History is an interesting, sometimes sordid tale, that relies on bloodshed, crime and sometimes illegal activities. That, while seemingly cold and callous is what the United States was built on; of course not exclusively, but it played a part. "Moonshiners", a show featured on the Discovery Channel, is a reality show the delves into the world of moonshine production.

Moonshine, for those not in the know, is a type of alcohol that is made and sold without the legal licenses and authority. It is often created deep in the woods of the deep south. Moonshine is differentiated from other liquors by its distinct taste, high alcohol content. Moonshine is generally 180 proof to 190 proof.

The show is currently in its second season. The first season and introductory episodes used footage from a 2002 documentary that took a look at modern-day bootlegging. The Documentary was aired on PBS and Discovery legally bought the rights to use it. The documentary took a look at illegal bootlegging operations and the reason people continue to produce such liquor regardless of the legal issues. The documentary featured a bootlegger who was arrested in 2009 for illegally distilling alcohol. He was sentenced to 18 months in jail and later committed suicide.

The bootleggers shown in the show are believed to be "recreating" what one would do if they were bootlegging. The government of Virginia, were much of the show is being filmed, has stated publicly that if any illegal activity was actually taking place that arrests would be made. It would appear as though the Discovery Channel has recreated, for the public, the deep underbelly of a society that simply does not want to the world to know they exist.

Regardless, "Moonshiners", is an interesting, captivating and thrilling look into one of the businesses that has quietly existed under the radar for decades and the culture that surrounds it. Moonshining, for some, isn't just a business or activity; it is a passed down tradition and a way of life.

Wednesday 10:00 PM et/pt on Discovery Channel
6 Seasons, 97 Episodes
December 6, 2011
Crime, Drama, Reality
5.8/10
Cast: Jeremy Schwartz, Josh Owens, Mark Rogers, Tim Smith
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Moonshiners Full Episode Guide

  • While fixing a 1950 Packard, Mark and Digger reminisce about the automobile's affect on the moonshining business. Their conversation is a walk down Moonshiners memory lane as we revisit some of the series' greatest hits as related to the automobile.

  • Pittsylvania County's most wanted, Steven Ray Tickle, takes a trip down memory lane remembering the people and events that shaped his life and led him to become the model backwoods shiner and outlaw he is today.

  • Mark Rogers has been self reliant by living off the land, hunting, fishing and making liquor. Mark heads into the mountains of Appalachia to track a black bear and also to dig ginseng, a rare medicinal root that he wants to infuse with moonshine.

  • Winter hot on their heels, shiners aim to cash in. A legendary partnership comes to a bittersweet end as Jeff, Mark and Lance head their separate ways. Tim gets to spend time with and old friend. Patti and David end their season with a boatload of shine.

  • Tim Smith, who delivered his father's illegal shine recipe from the backwoods of Virginia to America's store shelves, takes us back in time to his humble beginnings. Accompanying him to locations of his memories, we glance into his life as a moonshiner.

  • Winter sets in as shiners try to finish their seasons strong; Mark and Digger clash with the law; a breach from an intruder leaves Josh and Chuck deep in debt; and Chico and Sondra's operation is burned.

  • Josh and Chuck wrestle with winterizing their site; Mark and Digger bring their two-pot still out of retirement; and Mark and Mike have enjoyed a string of successful runs, but delivering the goods could prove to be more difficult.

  • An ingredient has Josh and Chuck ready to throw in the towel; Mark and Digger band together with JB to run their signature spirit; Tim puts his turbo-aged whiskey to the test; and Chico and Sondra have their sights on a new brew.

  • Jeff and Lance attempt to salvage their absinthe recipe; Mark puts his new partner to the test; rough labor and lack of profit threaten to leave Josh up the creek without a paddle or a partner; and Patti and David are without their key ingredient.

  • Mark and Digger recruit a moonshine legend to increase production. Later, Josh and Chuck use an old power source to prolong their operation; Chico and Sandra get ready for their first big sale of the season; and Tim sacrifices money to save his operation.

  • Josh and Big Chuck go underground to build a new stash site. Mark and Digger venture out of the Smokeys and into the big city for the biggest sale of their careers. Patti and David follow nature's harvest to make a sweet new brew.

  • Josh and Chuck aim to get back on top but circumstances could leave them dead to law. Money threatens to eliminate an age-old partnership for Jeff, Mark and Lance. Mark and Digger painstakingly craft a special brew for a high rolling customer.

  • Tim Smith intends to put a whiskey time machine to the test. Chico and Sandra hope that a new recipe will jump start their stalled season. Mark and Digger opt to experiment with distilling an old classic on their high-speed rig.

  • Josh and Big Chuck attempt to revive their season with a new still site. Mark and Digger are ready to put their still design to the test. Mark and Mike take their first steps grab at a new territory.

  • Tim must rescue his operation, challenging the laws of nature and time; Mark and Digger incorporate a high-tech addition to their operation that could double their output; Jeff and Lance make a once-banned liquor.

  • Mark and Digger get in the holiday spirit by playing Santa Claus for kids in need; Patti and David prepare special treats for a festive holiday feast; Bill and friends get ready for Christmas caroling the Carolina way.

  • Mark and Digger can't seem to get things right with a special recipe for a shine legend. Big Chuck tries to redeem himself after destroying Josh's operation. Chico and Sandra continue working on their still site, but disaster strikes.

  • A rookie mistake could ruin Josh and Chuck's operation and Tim travels across the Atlantic to teach an old Irish distillery about making moonshine. Mark and Digger's mash test is interrupted by an unwanted visitor.

  • A catastrophe leaves Josh desperately in need of a helping hand. Chico and Sandra's moonshine partnership puts a strain on their relationship. Mark & Digger furnish their still with an innovation, but their operation has attracted an unwanted visitor.

  • Josh finds himself in desperate need of help following a catastrophe and Chico and Sandra's moonshine partnership puts strain on their relationship. Later, Mark and Digger get innovative with their still, but the operation attracts an unwanted visitor.

  • Patti and David search for a clean-water source for their operation and Mark ventures into unfamiliar territory to secure new buyers. Later, Mark and Digger employ an old trick to drive intruders away from their still site.

  • In the sixth-season premiere, Josh begins the moonshine season on his own, but working solo has the potential for catastrophe. Later, former outlaw Tim Smith trains his son to help run his legal outfit.

  • Winter closes in as shiners aim to finish their seasons strong; Mark and Digger clash with the law; a breach from an intruder leaves Josh and Chuck deep in debt; and Chico and Sondra's operation is burned.

  • Josh is determined to improve his dirt track skills with the help of a speedway pro. Tyler searches for the perfect bootlegging car. Mark & Huck take their haul off-road to deliver across state lines. Mark & Digger aim to revive a heritage car.

  • Tim prepares to deliver the order of a lifetime; Mark and Digger are caught off guard during a shine sale; Josh works on one last score.

  • Patti and David scramble to sell off their stash before a local fracking operation ruins their season. Jeff, Mark and Lance hope that a classic recipe will save their season. A calling card from the law may bring Mark & Digger's season to an end.

  • Josh is missing his help; production is stopped at Snags' distillery; Chico and Sandra go mountain shining; Patti and David hurry their run as the hunting season starts.

  • The stakes get higher as shine season nears its end. Mark and Digger leave disaster behind for a new still site as Patti and David's jalapeno whiskey drives them to sell in unfamiliar territory.

  • Tim works to fill a large international order. Elsewhere, Tickle goes to court in Virginia.

  • Patti and David work on a fiery, new brew. Elsewhere, the feud continues between Josh and Bill.

  • With summer winding down, shiners are doubling their efforts to turn a quick profit. Tim Smith traverses the Atlantic on his quest to dominate the international shine market, but his pitch could be lost in translation.

  • In North Carolina a behemoth threatens to undo months of construction for Josh and Bill. A nocturnal prowler threatens Patti and David's clandestine operation and battle lines are drawn in Kentucky as Chico and Tyler clash over creative differences.

  • With a revolutionary still pot design and the help of Jim Tom, Mark & Digger have crafted 150 gallons of brandy. Now the pair must deliver their shine to their customers.

  • Josh and Bill are almost done with the bunker; Jeff, Mark and Lance lose a batch of mash and are in the red when they begin making the highland scotch.

  • The shiners embrace the holiday spirit.

  • With the moonshine season in full swing, Josh & Bill race to finish their still site and make their first run. Intruders interrupt Mark & Digger's rye test. A deadly disaster leaves Tim rattled and rethinking his plans to expand.

  • Shine season is underway, but Josh & Bill have yet to find themselves a still, a home base and some shine. Mark & Digger enlist a whiskey legend to find out why their first run went awry. Mark, Jeff & Lance undertake construction on an ambitious still site.

  • Shiners attempt to stay off the grid as the outside world encroaches on the backwoods. Tim breaks the news about the fate of Climax Moonshine. Jeff, Mark and Lance search for a new site before rivals can grab hold of the market.

  • With shine season underway, the outlaws are eager to turn a profit before the officials close in. Josh & Bill's first run leaves a bitter taste. Jeff, Mark, & Lance scope out the competition as Mark & Digger come up with a revolutionary still design.

  • Moonshine season has begun. Shine is in demand and the law is on the hunt. Tim faces a dilemma that jeopardizes his legal business. Jeff, Mark and Lance aim to double their profits while the law threatens to end Josh and Bill's season early.

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Moonshiners Video Clips & Extras

Moonshiners | All New Episode Wednesday @ 10pm * Clip (00:31) Moonshiners Sneak Peek | Wednesdays at 10PM e/p on Discovery* Clip (01:01) Moonshiners Sneak Peek | Premiering Tuesday, December 6 at 10PM e/p on Discovery* Clip (01:01) Season Finale | Wednesday, January 4* Clip (00:31) These Moonshiners Are Making A Pre-Dawn Run Through The Bayou To Deliver Their Goods Clip (02:37)