Alaska is a popular destination for reality show producers. The state's mostly rugged living conditions combined with residents who embrace a pioneering way of life present ready-made storylines. "Railroad Alaska" is a perfect example. It follows, according to Destination America, an "elite crew of workers who battle against ferocious weather and treacherous terrain to keep the state's critical 650-mile long railroad rolling to deliver life-sustaining supplies." The characters -- brakemen, engineers, construction crews, mechanics and train drivers -- risk their lives doing such tasks as setting off controlled avalanches to prevent catastrophes, because if one occurs that renders tracks impassable, locals won't get food, fuel or even home. Viewers also meet fascinating people who live off-grid, and find out why they chose a fully independent life away from civilization.