Outside's longstanding literary storytelling tradition comes to life in audio with features that will both entertain and inform listeners. We launched in March 2016 with our first series, Science of Survival, which was developed in partnership with PRX, distributors of the idolized This American Life and The Moth Radio Hour, among others. We have since expanded our show and now offer a range of story formats, including interviews with the biggest figures in sports, adventure, and politics, as well as reports from our correspondents in the field.
Life and Death Among the Polar Bears
There are few places on earth where humans aren’t at the top of the food chain, but the Arctic sea ice is one of them. Photographer Kiliii Yuyan saw this firsthand while documenting the Inupiat people’s spring whale hunt. A hungry polar bear began stalking the party, forcing the hunters to defend themselves. The dramatic experience was a harsh lesson in the realities of survival in a truly wild place, but Yuyan was even more impacted by what he witnessed in the aftermath. As the Inupiat continued to move among more bears during the hunt, they treated their fellow predators with respect, awe, and admiration. This episode of the Outside Podcast is brought to you by the all-new 2021 Ford Bronco Sport, a 4x4 SUV with seven available G.O.A.T. modes that enable it to go over any type of terrain. Learn more at ford.com/bronco
A Bold Plan to Make Pro Cycling Cool Again
American road racing has struggled in the past decade. Following the downfall of Lance Armstrong, road racing became almost synonymous with doping, sponsors walked away, and fans became disenchanted. But new energy is emerging again in the longtime American discipline of crit racing, or criterium, which has riders hammering out laps on courses through city streets. It’s fast, rowdy, and full of crashes—cycling’s version of Nascar. “If you love football, if you like watching people get smacked and running into each other, getting dunked on, it has the same feel,” says top crit rider Justin Williams. Known as an outspoken advocate for diversity in the sport, Williams is now on a quest to create a whole new fan base for road riding by making it a commercial sport for the masses.This episode is brought to you by Sta-bil, maker of America’s number one fuel stabilizer treatment as well as a growing number of exceptional products that keep the vehicles we depend on for our adventures running the way they’re supposed to. Learn more at stabilradio.com.
When an Athlete Refuses to Be Broken
For survivors of harrowing events, the most challenging part of the saga often comes after they’ve lived through what seemed like an impossible scenario. Such was the case of Joe Stone, who was a high-flying athlete addicted to the thrills of sports like skydiving and BASE jumping before a brutal accident left him paralyzed from the chest down and with limited fine motor skills in his hands. And so he faced a giant question: What am I supposed to do now? His answer was to do things that everyone told him would be impossible. Joe’s story, one of our favorites from the Outside Podcast archives, offers a remarkable lesson in resiliency that feels fitting for a moment when the whole world is wondering how we’re supposed to move forward after a really hard time.
Embracing a Fear of Falling
If you’re a climber, the risk of falling is always there—it's an essential fact about the sport. And for a lot of climbers, this is actually part of the appeal. That was definitely how Brendan Leonard saw it. Today Leonard is best known as a trail runner and the creator of Semi-Rad, where he publishes essays and illustrations about life as a nonprofessional athlete. But back in his twenties, climber was the identity Leonard latched on to while he was recovering from alcohol addiction and trying to figure out what kind of person he was going to be, despite the fact that climbing scared him. Leonard wanted to face his fears and put them in their place. But then he was involved in an accident while climbing near Moab, Utah, that forced him to reckon with his identity once again. In this first episode of our new series, The Wild Files, we look at what happens when you decide that you’ve had enough of being afraid. This episode of the Outside Podcast is brought to you by the all-new 2021 Ford Bronco Sport, a 4x4 SUV with seven available G.O.A.T. modes that enable it to go over any type of terrain. Learn more at ford.com/bronco
How the Ski Bum Was Made
It’s the ultimate mountain-town caricature: the shaggy semi-athlete who lives in a van (or truck or crowded apartment), works a number of crappy jobs (pizza delivery, barback, liftie), and skis 100 days every winter. This is the ski bum: a hero to some, a loser to others, and an enigma to everyone—until now. In this episode, bona fide ski bum Paddy “Paddy O” O’Connell presents irrefutable evidence that the campy ski flicks of the eighties and nineties—cult classics like Hot Dog , Ski Patrol , and Aspen Extreme —are what inspired so many vulnerable youth to drop everything and head for the hills. He should know. As a young man, Paddy O fell so deeply under the spell of one very special film that, despite never having skied before, he abandoned his life in the Midwest and ran away to the Rockies forever. This episode of the Outside Podcast is brought to you by the all-new Ford Bronco Sport, an adventure-ready 4x4 SUV with seven available G.O.A.T. modes that enable it to go over any type of terrain. Learn how you can outfit it to match your lifestyle at Ford.com .
A Desperate Need for the Mountains
People are drawn to the mountains for all kinds of reasons—the desire to challenge themselves physically or emotionally, a hunger for risk or perhaps solitude, the need for a sense of accomplishment. But for some, the appeal is both deeper and far more complicated. So it is with Sequoia Schmidt, whose father and brother died on K2, the world’s second-tallest and most dangerous peak. That tragedy ultimately propelled her into the mountains herself—to, as she says, “find my soul.” In this episode from our friends at the Strangers podcast, we take a remarkable journey with Sequoia, one unlike any other climbing story we’ve ever heard. This episode is brought to you by Belize, one of the world’s great adventure destinations and a country that’s created a comprehensive and common sense COVID-19 safety system for travelers. Learn more about how you can safely experience the wonder of Belize at travelbelize.org