Roll The Dice

"We started the trip without much of a purpose," writes Fil Corbitt. "We wanted to be pushed around. Wanted to find something we didn't know we were looking for. We wanted to take some small chance and see where we landed. And see which side was facing up." 

But how do you find that kind of serendipity when you only have a week? Fil created a game. Each morning, he and his friend would wake up and roll a single dice. The rules? A one meant go north. 2 = east, 3 = south, 4 = west, 5 = stay put and 6 meant to cross the nearest state border. The only rule? No backtracking. 

Today, we follow Fil as he and his friend Brian figuratively and literally roll the dice and see where they land. And which side is facing up. 


This episode originally aired as a six-part series on Fil's awesome podcast, Van Sounds. We cut quite a bit of material to turn it into a single piece. You can listen to the full version of the Dice series as well as other awesome travel stories, like the Freight Train episode, at:

Direct download: Roll_The_Dice.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:00am PST

Paul's Boots

We got a call from Australia. M'Lynn's husband, Paul, passed away this past July. He left behind three pairs of polished hiking boots and a backpack packed for his dream hike: the 2,190-mile Appalachian Trail. 

M'Lynn reached out to us. She had an idea for one final gift for her husband. "How good would it be," she asked, "for his boots to make the journey even if Paul could not?" We want to make it happen. Give a listen. We need your help.

Want to help? To learn more, click here. 

Direct download: Pauls_Boots.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:51am PST

The Shorts--If The Shoe Fits

"I followed my friend through the small, dark weight room in a crusty garage-like building left over from the station's army days and up a narrow, twisted staircase," Hilary Oliver remembers. "Behind the door at the top of those stairs hid a magical place."

Drudgery and boredom ruled most of Hilary's season at Antartica's McMurdo Station, but she also got an unlikely introduction--one that opened up a whole different world. 


You can find more of Hilary's writing at

Direct download: If_The_Shoe_Fits_2.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:00am PST

Everybody Loves LeeRoy

God told Steve Wescott to walk from the Space Needle to Times Square, NYC, with a goat named LeeRoy, to raise $200,000 for an orphanage in Nairobi, Kenya. Or at least that's the elevator pitch. In truth, when Steve started out of Seattle in 2011, it had much less to do with God, and much more to do with running away from himself and the mistakes he had made as a Christian rock star and sex-and-love-aholic. You probably don't want to listen to this one with your kids. 

To learn more about Steve's project and the orphanage, Uzima Outreach, visit:

Direct download: Everybody_Loves_LeeRoy.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:00am PST

The Shorts--Powder and Hookah Smoke

"In the end, Iran's spirit took me completely and pleasantly by surprise," writes Greg Buzulencia. "The benevolence I received inspired me to approach every situation with a more open mind. Doing so opened up the world in a way I hadn't expected." Greg left for the Middle East with dreams of powder turns, but returned with the best gifts that travel can offer: new friends, shattered assumptions and a refreshed perspective on the world and the people in it. 

Direct download: Powder_and_Hookah_Smoke.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:00am PST

Tales of Terror Vol. 6

Phantasmal footsteps, strange silhouettes, inexplicable movements and unaccountable sounds. In our sixth annual Tales of Terror, Bix Firer, Lorraine Campbell and Kealan Sojack share three stories of 'What the *&@! was that'? A dream? Or an indication that, perhaps, we are not as alone in the woods as we like to think. Happy Halloween. 

Direct download: Tales_of_Terror_Vol._6.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:30am PST

The Shorts--Commit Fully

"Our four seater plane touched down on a small gravel bar in the heart of the Brooks Range. We unloaded. The engine roared back to life, and the plane disappeared down valley into the blue-gray mountains. Then, the mosquitos came," writes Fitz Cahall. In May, Fitz received an email that contained a golden ticket--a float trip down the Kongakut River through the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. There was just one problem: the timeline collided with prior commitments to family and friends. How one email, one trip and one decision to say yes crystallized Fitz's commitment to responsibility and desire. 

Direct download: Commit_Fully.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:00am PST

The Shorts--Squalls

"This was one of those rare moments in life where you must act or die and everything was therefore very simple--although the outcome remained unclear," writes Kim Campbell. "If I lived, I knew that I could manage what followed. It was like a dare and a promise." 

Today, we bring you the story of Kim's first sailing trip, of horizontal masts and lightning strikes and, in her words, a "kernel of confidence that bloomed over the years." 


You can find more of Kim's writing at:

Direct download: Squalls.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:00am PST

Maps. We've all studied them. Stuffed them into backpacks or the seatback pocket of our car. Maybe we've even been led astray by a map. But have you ever thought about the person who made that map? Or how that person might influence your initial impression of a landscape?

"A map in not a perfect representation of a landscape. It's an abstract representation." says cartographer Marty Schnure. Today, we have a sotry about a mapmaker, Patagonia Park, and the process Marty uses to create a map--a map that she hope will connect you to a place.  

Direct download: Beyond_the_Lines.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:00am PST

"By midweek, I can't focus on my duties at work, and spend most of my time on Summitpost and Mountain Project," writes Niki Yoblonski. "There are so many things in the world I want to see--so many mountains to climb, things to discover. I have to get out of there." Yet, inevitably, Sunday evening has her praying for the trailhead, a burger and a soft bed. Niki's theory on achieving the work-outdoor life balance? Just turn the hourglass. 

You can find more of Niki's work at: And you can listen to her previous Short, "By Slim Chance." 

Direct download: The_Hourglass.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:00am PST


"I was looking for no less than a new way of living in this world for our entire society," says Clay Shank. "Like, 'What's the alternative to this capitalistic system that we have here'?"

Today, we bring you "700," the story of Clay Shank's ambitious goal to find a new way of life and his unlikely method: skateboarding 700-miles through the state of California, hiking the 210-mile John Muir Trail, climbing Mt. Whitney and Half Dome and, all the while, capturing a video portrait of the people living in California. But, first, Clay had to learn to talk to strangers.

You can find Clay's videos, including his newest film "Up To Us" and the trailer for his feature-length film "700-Miles" on his website:

Direct download: 700_Miles.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:30pm PST

The Shorts--Painkillers and Perspective

"All of my friends kayaked. All of the trips we went on were kayaking trips. When not kayaking, we talked about kayaking," writes Sarah Paul. In the four years since she left home, Sarah had constructed her whole identity around whitewater kayaking. Then, on the first day of a whitewater rafting guide course, she felt something shift inside her shoulder. In a bad way. As recovery dragged on, Sarah had to figure out who she was-- other than a kayaker. 

Direct download: The_Shorts--Painkillers_and_Perspective.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:00am PST

Live from 5Point Vol. 8

In our fifth annual "Live from 5Point" Film Festival, we interviewed Frank Sanders and Tommy Caldwell. 

Frank spent his youth climbing on the East Coast. His path took a turn in 1972, when he hitchhiked west and saw Devil's Tower for the first time. Now, at 63, Frank owns and guides out of Devil's Tower Lodge. He shares the story of his journey and what it's like having found his place. 

Over the last seven years, Tommy has spent months at a time focused on climbing The Dawn Wall, the hardest big wall climb in history. On January 14th, he and his partner, Kevin Jorgenson, pulled over the top of El Capitan into a swarm of cameras and microphones. He talks to Fitz about what it's like to end a seven-year relationship with a project and how his life has changed now that people outside the climbing world recognize him. 

Direct download: Live_from_5Point_Vol._8.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:00am PST

The Shorts--Sleeping Bag Metamorphosis

"After a summer of bussing tables and lifeguarding, I had saved up enough and I was finally going to get it. My ticket to anywhere I wanted to be," writes Anya Miller. "I was a little worried about the money, but I was in complete realization that anything I actually wanted to do in life -- literally, anything -- depended on it." Today, Anya shares the story of her first sleeping bag, and the person she became with the help of the women's medium, right-hand zip cocoon. When you can sleep anywhere, you can go anywhere. 

Direct download: Sleeping_Bag_Metamorphosis.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:43pm PST

In the golden days, dirtbags lived to climb. They didn't work, have permanent addresses or sponsors. They ate leftovers off of tourists' plates and slept in beater cars or caves. They stayed in one place only as long as teh weather allowed for climbing. Now, our modern world of fees, time limits and locked dumpsters has made it nearly impossible to live that way anymore. Dirtbagging is dying-- or at least that's what some people claim. 

Join Matt Van Biene for a day on Yosemite's Camp 4 as he talks to climbers of all different ages, nationalities and backgrounds. Is dirtbagging dead or alive? And what does the modern dirtbag look like? Tune in. 

Direct download: The_Modern_Dirtbag.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:08pm PST