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Out There: A Podcast about the Outdoors

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Laramie, WY




My Own Way

Carolyn McDonald adores trees. She even spends time pondering what trees would say if they could talk. But she’s not the typical outdoorsy type; the very idea of camping gives her the shivers. On this episode, Carolyn shares her story. She takes us from rural North Carolina to the streets of Paris, and explores what it’s like to love nature in a manner that defies society’s expectations.


Pleasure in Pain

Most of us want to speed through the hard times; we want to get to a place where life feels smooth and easy. But what if the line between good times and bad isn’t so clear? What if hardship can actually be enjoyable? On this episode, Heather Daya Rideout takes us from the beaches of Thailand to the mountains of Maine, and tells of a an encounter with strangers on the Appalachian Trail that completely changed her perspective on pleasure and pain.


That's Just Not Me

Growing up, Adrienne Lindholm was dead set against having children. She didn’t like kids, and she felt that parenthood would force her to give up the things she loved most in life. But as time went on, her husband became more and more determined to start a family. Eventually, she was faced with an ultimatum: have kids, or lose her relationship. Adrienne wrote a memoir called It Happened Like This, which chronicles her life in Alaska and her dilemma surrounding motherhood. She joins us on...


Before It's Too Late

Shannon Prince comes from a family with a rich relationship to the natural world. Her Cherokee ancestors were skilled at using plants to heal the deepest of wounds, and Shannon grew up with the understanding that nature could — quite literally — save you. But her family’s eco-literacy had been stripped away over the generations, and by the time Shannon came along, there wasn’t much left to teach her. Yearning to rediscover forgotten knowledge, Shannon traveled across the world, to a...


Noise for the Soul

We often hear about people escaping to nature as an antidote to stress. Quiet places can help us find inner peace, we’re told. But what if it isn’t so simple for everyone? What if some people need busier urban environments — and not just for the career opportunities, or the lifestyle — but in order to feel at peace? This episode draws us into one woman’s realization that living in a big city — a place that assaults your senses every time you walk outside — a place where the concept of...


Controlling Chaos

This episode is about control: control of wildfires, and control of your own life. My guests are Alex Jablonski and Kahlil Hudson, producers the film Wildland. We talk about the deeply personal forces that draw people to wildland firefighting; about the mental highs that come with the job; and about the surprising bonds that form between people who seem to have nothing in common. Finally, we discuss how controlling nature can help you gain control over your own life, too.


Single in Your Thirties

Most of us want a life partner. But what if your soulmate never materializes? On this episode, writer and photographer Mara Kuhn shares a story about being single well past the age when most of your peers are paired off. It’s a story that takes us from the deep south to the highest peak in Colorado, and it explores why being single might actually make you happier.


In the Name of Love

We hear it again and again: relationships require compromise. But what happens when you realize you’ve been letting your own identity slip away, for the benefit of a relationship? Today’s story, by Dani Harris, is about young love and a cross-country road trip, and it shows just how hard it can be to stand up for yourself when you care deeply about another person.


The Truths We Hold

This is a story about our beliefs — about things we’re brought up to know to be true. Beliefs so strong and powerful that they shape the identity, culture, and attitudes of an entire nation. We all have these kinds of beliefs — things we’ve been taught our entire lives. But what causes us to begin to question them? On this episode, we have a guest story from Kerning Cultures, a podcast dissecting the complex narratives of the Middle East. It’s a story about what happens when we’re faced...


Becoming a Secular Pilgrim

Beth Jusino was neither outdoorsy nor religious, but, craving a break from her hectic life, she set her sights on the Camino de Santiago, an ancient pilgrimage route through Europe. Her book Walking to the End of the World chronicles the trip, and she joins us to talk about it. Beth’s story is a testament to the beautiful things that can happen when you stop saying, “I could never do that.” And it’s a reminder that disentangling ourselves from our responsibilities and compulsions can help...


Seeing the Forest through the Trees

Overachievement. The word conjures up specific kinds of feats: high grades, promotions, success in the traditional sense. Things that are unambiguously good. But what happens when you realize the quest to achieve has been holding you back? On this episode, producer Noam Osband shares the story of something surprising that happened while he was researching his PhD dissertation. His story that takes us from the hills of Arkansas to the forests of Canada, and introduces us to the world of...


Meet the Ambassadors

Post-partum depression. Anxiety over gender identity. Anorexia. Struggles with weight. A cancer diagnosis during pregnancy. The first cohort of Out There ambassadors have very real challenges to talk about, despite some of the gorgeous photos they’re posting on social media. Our ambassadors are listeners who are volunteering their time to help spark discussions amongst the Out There community, and introduce the show to new listeners. Today, we let each of them tell you a little about...


Well-Meaning But Clueless White People

Part of our mission at Out There is to make the concept of ‘the outdoors’ more accessible to all. But so far, we don’t have a great track record. Contrary to our intentions, this has become a show mostly about white people — and while we’re at it, mostly straight, upper middle class white people. On this episode, Host Willow Belden and Business Development Director Alex Eggerking sit down for an honest conversation about how we got here, and what we hope to change in the future.


Beyond Repair?

Adrian Fernandez thought he would never speak to his father again. His dad had ruined everything, and the situation seemed hopeless. But sometimes, the people who hurt us most are the only ones we can turn to for help. On this episode, Adrian shares his story. It’s a story of anger, desperation and longing. It takes us from suburban New Jersey to rural Montana, and it explores the surprising things that can happen when you feel you’ve hit rock bottom.


Crag Rats

On this episode, we have a guest story from the podcast Hear in the Gorge, about what happens when something goes terribly wrong in the outdoors. Producer Sarah Fox brings us the story of an accident that happened to a 10-year-old boy in Oregon, and she gives us a behind-the-scenes look at the Crag Rats, the oldest mountain search and rescue team in the U.S. They’re the people who get called to save lives in places where ambulances can’t get to. And they’re all volunteers.


Perfect Strangers

Bill and Linda Ware live in the middle of Maine's notorious 100-Mile Wilderness. The only people they see on a regular basis are thru-hikers on the Appalachian Trail. On this episode, we explore why people would choose to live like that — totally removed from friends and family. How do you keep from getting lonely, when your only human interactions are with hikers who stay a night or two at most? Can the magic of strangers really sustain a person?


Keeping It Fresh

When Halimah Marcus moved to Brooklyn, she took pride in getting to know Prospect Park. Running the park’s 3.5-mile loop over and over, as she trained for half marathons, was a comfort — a way to clear her mind. But eventually, her little oasis lost its luster. After logging hundreds of miles on the same loop, she knew every twist and turn, every tree. There was nothing new to look forward to. On this episode, Halimah shares her story. It’s a story about finding adventure when...


Into the Blue

In 2015, Tiffany Duong was living the life — she’d finished law school, moved back to L.A. to join a big law firm, and traveled as much as she could. She worked hard and played harder. And yet, she was miserable. Then, on a whim, Tiffany signed up for a scuba diving trip to the Galapagos Islands. At the time, it seemed like just another bandaid — a way to escape her angst for a few days. But what happened on that boat, and in the wild blue ocean currents, ended up changing her life...



It’s been just over a year since Hurricane Harvey hit the Texas Gulf Coast. The Category Four storm devastated small coastal communities and dumped 51 inches of water in Houston. Harvey flooded over 200,000 homes and nearly burst major dams. But that’s just the physical impact. Natural disasters can have deep emotional effects for us, too. On this episode, Houston-based journalist Laura Isensee reflects on how powerless she felt to do anything useful during the storm. It’s a story that...


Fractured Self

Monica Gokey was an avid whitewater kayaker. Paddling had stolen her heart, shaped her identity, and given her a tribe to belong to. Then she had kids. These days, Monica’s kayaking life has been replaced by the routine of caring for three small children. The adventurous side of her has been eclipsed by her new identity as a parent. And some days, that new identity is tough to swallow. On this episode, Monica shares her story. It’s a story about the parts of ourselves we give up when we...