Out There is a podcast that explores big questions through intimate stories in the great outdoors.
The Thru-Hike of Misery
When Paul Barach embarked on his first thru-hike, he was expecting a life-changing experience. The Shikoku Pilgrimage, which traverses Japan’s most rural island and takes visitors past 88 Buddhist temples, promised to be a spiritual and meditative journey, as well as an epic adventure.
But the reality wasn’t so nice.
On this episode, Paul tells the story of what happens when the adventure of a lifetime doesn't turn out the way you'd hoped. How do you make peace with the worst parts of hiking, when those parts never end?
Vulnerability is a Strength
Climbing a mountain can be a lot like coming out.
That’s a metaphor filmmaker Devin Fei-Fan Tau explores in his new documentary Who’s On Top. The film follows four LGBTQ climbers who set out to summit Mt. Hood. It explores their connection to nature and their efforts to challenge stereotypes about gender and sexuality — and it offers an inside view into the literal and metaphorical mountains they face.
Devin joins us on this episode to talk about it.
WATCH THE FILM: Apple TV | Vimeo
SUPPORT OUT THERE: Patreon | Venmo | Other
As more people get vaccinated and the world starts opening up again, many of us are reflecting on the unprecedented isolation we’ve experienced over the past year. Extreme isolation was new for many of us, and we’re looking forward to getting back to normal.
But not everyone can escape their aloneness.
This is the story of a runner named Luanne Burke, who has been dealing with deep isolation for decades and will continue to experience it, even after much of the world returns to a “new normal.”
SUPPORT OUT THERE: Patreon | Venmo | Credit Card
Why Do We Stay?
In the wake of natural disasters, those affected are faced with a tough decision: do you leave and go somewhere safer, or stay put and try to rebuild your life?
How do you navigate that choice? And for those who decide to stay: what seals the deal? Why do we remain in disaster-prone areas, after losing so much?
This episode takes us to an island in North Carolina and tells the story of one man who finds himself firmly rooted to place, despite growing environmental threats.
FOR FURTHER LISTENING: Check out our playlist "After the Storm," which explores why we live where we live, as the climate warms.
SUPPORT OUT THERE: Patreon | Venmo | Credit Card/PayPal
The Right to Complain
In 2015, Australian journalist James Bennett moved to India, to take up a long-coveted role as a foreign correspondent.
James was an outdoorsy type: he liked to cycle, camp, and fish. So he knew moving to India's crowded capital city would be hard. What he didn’t realize was how the experience would change his perspective on speaking up about your problems.
This story first ran several years ago but feels surprisingly relevant again now.
Introducing the Atlas Obscura Podcast
On this bonus episode, we introduce you to a new podcast we think you'll love. It's called the Atlas Obscura Podcast, and it takes you on an audio journey to discover new, strange, and wondrous places from all over the world.
This particular episode is about Pyramiden, an abandoned Soviet mining town, frozen both in time and in ice.
Thanks to its Arctic climate, scientists predict that it will resist decay longer than any other human settlement in modern history.
Congrats on the success of your podcast. From one podcast host to another. I was pulled in by your Nice Guys Finish First episode. That’s the name my book, Nice Guys Finish First, hope to have you tune into my podcast too The Nice Guys on Business.
So Much Potential
So many of these episodes seem self-important and very, very earnest. Proselytic and righteous that tends toward the ridiculous. Drama. This kind of storytelling would have me planning a pre-dawn escape to the trail and a hasty pace to gain separation. True, some folks will revel in this social drama; I’d rather get out there.
Just what we need more of
Well told stories that get us outside, make us think, and make us happier. Out There is my much needed respite from work and stress. Keep up the great work Willow!