Skip to main content

The Manual may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

Joel Lambert of Discovery Channel’s “Manhunt” Grew Up in the Worst Town in Washington

Joel Lambert
Joel Lambert, Discovery Channel’s resident escape and evasion expert and star of Manhunt, is an exceptionally-skilled former U.S. Navy SEAL who constantly seeks out new endeavors that test the limits of his ability. Today he tell’s us about his career and personal style.

I grew up in a small logging town on the Columbia River in the Pacific Northwest, right on the border between Washington and Oregon. Beautiful place, but not a lot of opportunity. In fact, my hometown consistently rates on the Ten Worst Places in Washington to live, so there’s that. I felt the need to prove myself, start a journey, do something exceptional when I was in my early 20s, and that ended up being a career in the SEAL teams. It was an incredible experience, it changed my DNA. When people ask me what I would have done had I not been a SEAL, I can’t answer, because I don’t know who that man would be…the one who was never a SEAL.

After serving and deploying to places like Kosovo and Afghanistan, I came back and did a couple years of Instructor Duty. While I was there in San Diego, I got pulled back into the world of film and TV, which I had been involved with before the Navy.

Joel Lambert “Lone Target/Manhunt” Season One/ Image used with permission by copyright holder

Moving up to LA, I began working behind the camera, doing military advising and weapons work, training actors, that sort of thing. While I was doing this, I was working in front of the camera as well, doing small parts in TV shows and in movies. A friend of a friend then contacted me, he was putting together a show for Discovery International, an escape and evasion show. I had a strong background in survival and escape and evasion, would I be interested? I sent him my stuff, and through a long process, Manhunt (Lone Target in the USA) was born. I did a few seasons of that show, which aired worldwide, then another series called Predators Up Close, which is airing in the USA on Animal Planet, as well as a two-part special on Fukushima…among other things.

As for my personal style:

Jeans: I really love to wear old, broken-in clothing. I’m not much of a “dress-up” guy, though I always think I look stylish. I think my clothes should serve, or at least not hinder, a purpose.
I love Kuhl pants. I wear ‘em until the holes in awkward spots are too big to ignore, then I reluctantly retire ‘em. I have a pair of RRL jeans that I love, that I wear all the time as well. Paige used to have a cut that I loved, but they’ve since discontinued them. I’m not much for the skinny jeans. I don’t like the baggy ones, but I’m fairly muscular so I like a little bit of room, and if I have to move aggressively, I want to be able to do so with ease. I actually have trouble finding denim I really like.

Shirts: Again; I have several button down flannel shirts from RRL that I love, the material and style of that line really speaks to what I like. Old leather, flannel, denim, oil stains…it’s my favorite fashion line. I love the unique material James Perse uses in some of his tee’s. They don’t last long, but the feel is excellent.

For dress shirts; I have a few from Theory that fit well, and a couple from Ermenegildo Zegna. I tend to wear lots of old concert shirts from my favorite bands though!

Pants: I just got a great pair of outdoor slacks (is there such a thing?) from the Royal Robbins line. They look AMAZING and feel great! They look like wool but are not, and have a very 40s cut to them. Pair them with a nice button down or great solid tee and I’m stylin’. Royal actually just passed away this year….he was a legendary big wall climber based out of Yosemite.

As far as other non-jeans pants go, Kuhl all the way. Such a great brand.

Suits: I have several that I love…I have a Hugo Boss semi-formal black suit that gets a lot of use, a beautiful wool jacket from J. Lindeberg that fits and hangs so well, a couple of slouchy jackets from Hugo Boss again, and a fantastic light brown linen single-button suit from Reiss that I got about eight years ago and still looks just exceptional.

Shoes: My absolute favorite shoes are my old leather jump boots I was issued in about 1998 as I was graduating from SEAL selection and heading to Army parachute school. They’re 100% leather, and had a few details that made them specific to the regulations in Army Airborne Training. Most of us got rid of them after that, but I held on to mine, and after almost 20 years of occasional use, what used to be stiff leather is now worn, full of character, and absolute buttah.

As far as outdoor foorwear goes, I’m crazy about Arc�Teryx ’s foray into the hiking boot world. I’ve used them in winter in Mongolia, summer in the Arctic on floating sea ice, in the mountains of Uganda and the depths of Lapland and they’ve been exceptional. Not cheap, but they’ve paid for themselves many times over.

I’m partial to boots. Even my formal shoes are usually some kind of boot. I have some suede Chelsea boots that I love, and a couple pairs of Fryes . Can’t go wrong with Frye.

Accessories: I always wear a ball cap. I like beanies too. Depends on the weather. I have my own line of logo ball caps and beanies  so I wear one of those, or one of my old ones from my days in the SEAL Teams.

I don’t wear a lot of jewelry, I have a pounamu from New Zealand that was given to me by a dear friend and SAS operator…they’re given as tokens of respect, so it means a lot to me. I wear that.

As far as watches go, I always wear one. I have several really nice watches, but I always find myself wearing my Garmin Tactix Bravo. It’s a GPS watch with all sorts of tactical apps on it, sunrise/sunset, moon phase, tides and currents, skydiving apps, and is compatible with night vision , and also extremely stylish! I almost don’t wear anything else anymore.

Outerwear: I have a light down jacket from Haglof’s which is great. Whenever I’m in Scandinavia I tend to buy outerwear there. They really, really know what they’re doing. I also wear a lot of Arc’Teryx’s LEAF (Law Enforcement/Armed Forces) line. Simply the best, most rugged outerwear I’ve ever used. Period.

I have a light jacket from Kuhl that I love, and a few other light ones from James Perse.

Favorite cologne: Bois d’ascese by Naomi Goodsir. It smells like campfire and road tar. It’s difficult to find and it’s my favorite smell EVER! Women really love it, surprisingly.

Next style/gear purchase: Just put some great new off road bumpers and a winch on my Ford Raptor, I’m messing with the suspension as I’ve been spending a lot of time bashing it around up at Hungry Valley.

Cator Sparks
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Cator Sparks was the Editor-in-Chief of The Manual from its launch in 2012 until 2018. Previously, Cator was covering…
Theory sweaters, pants, and more, are up to 40% off today
theory deals bloomingdales february 2024 and uniqlo collaboration

Your new and fashionable spring wardrobe is just a few clicks away. If you are on the hunt for contemporary, stylish and high-quality clothing, look no further than Theory. Right now, you can get up to 40% off select apparel from the brand at Bloomingdales.

Shop t-shirts, cashmere sweaters, pants, jackets and button-down shirts that are all available in classic, muted and curated colors. No matter what you buy during the sale, you will be adding capsule pieces to your wardrobe that you will continue to wear on repeat. Click the button below to start shopping.

Read more
This special edition of the Zodiac Sea Wolf dive watch is 25% off
huckberry x zodiac titanium super sea wolf dive watch deal february 2024

For one of the best dive watches at a great price, check out the Huckberry x Zodiac Titanium Super Sea Wolf Dive Watch that’s currently on sale through Huckberry right now. It usually costs $1,795 but it’s currently down to $1,346 which is a great price cut of $449. You get fantastic quality while saving plenty of cash. If you’ve been waiting for this deal, you know what to do -- hit that buy button. It won’t be this price for long. If you’re not entirely convinced though, keep reading and we’ll tell you all about it.

Why you should buy the Huckberry x Zodiac Titanium Super Sea Wolf Dive Watch
The Huckberry x Zodiac Titanium Super Sea Wolf Dive Watch has been made to stand out. Huckberry has teamed up with Zodiac to present the Super Sea Wolf Titanium Skin Diver to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Zodiac Sea Wolf. It’s cast in pure titanium so it’s twice as light as stainless steel with the material used in all kinds of things such as submarine hulls to yacht propellers.

Read more
Canada Goose parkas are up to $260 off this weekend
A man wearing a Canada Goose parka jacket.

For those who are constantly in wintery and cold weather, a warm and resilient jacket is an absolute must-have. If you have been on the fence about investing in a jacket for the winter months, now is the perfect time. Gilt is having a major Canada Goose sale where you can score up to $260 discounts on the brand's popular outerwear -- including many of the best Canada Goose jackets for men.

Get ready to tackle the cold weather will all of these outerwear choices from Canada Goose. For outdoor adventurers, shop the Carson Down Heritage Parka for $1,400, the Langford Parka for $1,350, the Expedition Parka for $1,300, the Chateau Down Parka for $1,270 and the Snow Mantra Parka for $1,200. Pair all of these parkas with the best turtlenecks for men and you've got a classy and stylish outfit. For those who prefer puffer coats, you can browse the Armstrong Jacket for $760, the Crofton Hoody for $800, the Hybridge Coat for $840, the Summit Down Jacket for $690 and the Down Jacket for $790.

Read more