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July 16, 2019
Dispatches: Bundyville, The Remnant
For the past few years, journalist Leah Sottile has been looking at the question of who owns public lands in the West. Her reporting began with the Bundy family, which infamously challenged the authority of the federal government on its ranch and then with an armed occupation of Oregon’s Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. That investigation resulted in the award-winning audio series Bundyville. Now, Sottile is back with a new project that begins with the case of a man named Glenn Jones, who in the summer of 2016 blew up the house of a friend and former coworker in the tiny town of Panaca, Nevada. To her surprise, she would come to learn that that bombing had roots in the very same conflict that began with the Bundys.
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62 min
July 2, 2019
The Doctors Prescribing Nature
In recent years, a grassroots movement of physicians have begun prescribing time outdoors as the best possible treatment for a growing list of ailments, from anxiety and obesity to attention deficit disorder and high blood pressure. Meanwhile, research institutes for nature and health are opening at major medical centers and a couple bold insurance companies are embracing the idea. For this third episode in our Nature Cure series, we sit down with science writer Aaron Reuben, who reported on this emerging trend for Outside magazine. The question now, he says, is what it will take to convince big health care that free medicine is the way of the future.
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28 min
June 25, 2019
Sweat Science: The Mysterious Syndrome Destroying Top Athletes
A while back, Outside contributor Meaghen Brown noticed a strange phenomenon among the elite ultrarunners that she was training with. Runners would come on the scene, win races and smash records, and then a few years later succumb to a mysterious ailment that left them a shadow of their former selves. Top athletes were suddenly lethargic, depressed, and unable to train, and doctors couldn't tell them why. Their problem, it turned out, was overtraining syndrome, or OTS. One researcher called it "The scariest thing I've seen in my time studying athletes." And it’s not just runners that are at risk. In this episode, we look at how OTS can afflict anyone who takes a more-is-more approach to their sport.
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44 min
June 19, 2019
Why a Walk in the Woods Cures the Blues
About six years ago, ecologist Chris Morgan was sitting in a doctor’s waiting room when he picked up a copy of Outside and read the cover story, “Take Two Hours of Pine Forest and Call Me in the Morning.” The article, written by Florence Williams, explored the scientific basis for something that Morgan had intuitively felt all his life: being in nature is inherently healing and leaves us feeling more alert, alive, and content. Ever since, he wanted to have his own guided nature experience. For this second installment of our Nature Cure series, Morgan shares a story from his new podcast The Wild, in which he goes forest bathing in the Pacific Northwest, then asks Williams, What happened to me out there?
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26 min
June 12, 2019
Science of Survival: Snakebit, Part 2
For the last 19 years, Tim Friede, a truck mechanic from Wisconsin, has endured more than 200 snakebites and 700 injections of lethal snake venom—all part of a masochistic quest to immunize his body and offer his blood to scientists seeking a universal antivenom. For nearly two decades, few took him seriously. Then a gifted young immunologist stumbled upon Friede on YouTube—and became convinced that he was the key to conquering snakebites forever.
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45 min
June 4, 2019
The Radically Simple Digital Diet We All Need
These days our smartphone addiction has gotten so intense that many of us now habitually use the devices even when we’re supposedly unplugging. We listen to podcasts on our trail runs and endlessly document our weekend adventures for Instagram. All this has author Cal Newport deeply concerned. Newport has made a name for himself as a sort of canary in the digital coal mine, writing about the perils of our screen-dependent modern lifestyles. Last winter he published Digital Minimalism, a manifesto that proposes a reimagining of our relationship with technology that begins with a 30-day digital diet. Outside editor Christopher Keyes talks with Newport about his radical—but very simple—approach to technology and how it can work for everyone.
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37 min
May 28, 2019
Science of Survival: Snakebit, Part 1
When Kyle Dickman set out on a spring road trip with his wife and infant son, he was fueled by a carefree sense of adventure that had defined his life. Then he got bit by a rattlesnake in a remote part of Yosemite National Park. The harrowing event changed his entire outlook on the world. Now he’s on a quest to understand the toxins that nearly killed him—and trying to come to terms with a world where everything slithers.
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40 min
May 15, 2019
Dispatches: Buried Treasure and Duct Tape
So you just found a buried treasure. Hooray! But wait, what do you do next? Are other treasure hunters going to stalk you day and night? Are you going to have to pay taxes on your new riches? How do you turn gold and jewels into usable money anyway? If these are the kinds of questions that keep you up at night, then this episode is for you. Or maybe you’ve been wondering about something more practical, like what’s the craziest thing duct tape has ever been used to repair? This week our friends at the show Every Little Thing, who are committed to answering listeners’ most interesting, least important questions, take on both topics.
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39 min
May 8, 2019
Dispatches: Bob Ross’s Strategies for Survival
Bob Ross is one of the most beloved painters of his generation, and he focused almost exclusively on the outdoors. Depicting the “happy trees” and “friendly mountains” of Alaska and the greater western US for his TV show, The Joy of Painting, he earned a following that has only grown since his death. But surprisingly little is known about his life. Famously private, he granted only a handful of interviews and never really spoke about his deeper motivations. So how should we remember Bob Ross, and what does his art say about the natural world? Data journalist Walter Hickey took on these questions, analyzing all 381 of the paintings Ross did for his show. What he found will have you looking at Bob Ross in a whole new light.
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22 min
May 1, 2019
Sweat Science: The Keto Conundrum
The ketogenic diet, a.k.a. “cutting carbs,” is all the rage in the fitness world. But is it better for you than any other kind of diet? And does it actually make athletes stronger or faster? These questions have been debated for hundreds of years, and every few decades the idea that cutting carbs can unlock your true athletic potential comes back into fashion. Canadian race walker Evan Dunfee was part of the most recent and most rigorous testing of the low-carb high-fat diet, which took him straight to the top of his sport. Just not for the reasons everyone expected.
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38 min
April 17, 2019
The Outside Interview: Bill McKibben on the End of Nature
No one has done more to sound the alarm about climate change than writer and activist Bill McKibben. He’s been doing it since 1989, when he wrote his first big scary book on the topic, The End of Nature. Thirty years later, he’s still at it, and climate change is even scarier. The result is the book Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Out? In many ways it’s his darkest book yet, drawing on even more scientific evidence while investigating new threats, like genetic engineering and artificial intelligence. Outside editor Chris Keyes wanted to know, is there any hope at all? The answer is, Yes, there is a scenario in which our species actually makes it out of this mess. Chris caught up with McKibben at his home in Vermont to talk about it.
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41 min
April 2, 2019
Dispatches: Can You Outrun Anxiety?
In 2008, Katie Arnold was hiking a trail near her home in Santa Fe with her baby daughter strapped to her chest when a man attacked her with a rock. Two years later, Arnold’s father died shortly after being diagnosed with cancer. Overwhelmed with grief and anxiety, she tried many remedies but the only one … Continue reading "Dispatches: Can You Outrun Anxiety?"
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30 min
March 19, 2019
The Outside Interview: Steven Rinella Wants Hunters and Hikers to Hold Hands
As the host and creator of the MeatEater podcast and Netflix series of the same name, Steven Rinella spends a lot of time talking about hunting, fishing, and cooking. He is a proud voice in what’s often called the hook-and-bullet crowd. But he’s also a staunch conservationist, a longtime contributing editor of Outside magazine, and the author … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Steven Rinella Wants Hunters and Hikers to Hold Hands"
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30 min
March 5, 2019
Dispatches: Sports Recovery Secrets from Scientists
Recovery is the new frontier of athletic performance. The quicker you recuperate, the more you can train, and pro athletes across sports have been revitalizing their careers by taking time off. Now a wave of new recovery technologies are being pitched to a broader market: boots that improve blood flow, cryochambers, infrared pajamas. Science writer … Continue reading "Dispatches: Sports Recovery Secrets from Scientists"
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39 min
February 20, 2019
The Outside Interview: Mindfulness for Peak Performance
Every day there’s more research showing the benefits of mindfulness. It reduces stress, lowers blood pressure, boosts the immune system, and may even slow the aging process. What we’re only starting to figure out, however, is how meditation might improve athletic performance. Outside Editor Christopher Keyes caught up with Pete Kirchmer, program director of mPEAK, … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Mindfulness for Peak Performance"
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32 min
February 12, 2019
Dispatches: The Mountain Bikers Fighting New Trails
Since the sport’s early days in the seventies, mountain bikers have carved illicit trails on public and private land. Pioneering riders create winding singletrack in their favorite nearby hills, then carefully share the location with only a handful of friends. But in recent years, as the sport has grown bigger and bigger, government agencies and … Continue reading "Dispatches: The Mountain Bikers Fighting New Trails"
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34 min
February 5, 2019
Dispatches: Bianca Valenti Is on a Big Wave Mission
Over the past year, professional surfing has undergone a remarkable and very unexpected evolution. Beginning in 2019, the World Surf League is offering equal prize money to men and women at all of its events, making it one of very few global sports leagues to do so. A key part of this story was the … Continue reading "Dispatches: Bianca Valenti Is on a Big Wave Mission"
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27 min
January 22, 2019
The Outside Interview: Using Pain to Reach Your Potential
Former Navy SEAL David Goggins has spent the past two decades exploring the outer limits of human performance, both in the armed forces and as an endurance athlete with more than 60 ultras under his belt. But what makes Goggins truly unique is the hardship he faced long before he began his athletic career. A brutally … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Using Pain to Reach Your Potential"
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36 min
January 8, 2019
Sweat Science: The 3100-Mile Run Around the Block
There are a lot of really tough endurance races out there, but perhaps none are harder—both mentally and physically—than the Sri Chinmoy Self-Transcendence 3100 Mile Race in Queens, New York. The whole thing takes place on a single city block, and in order to finish before the cutoff, runners have to run the equivalent of … Continue reading "Sweat Science: The 3100-Mile Run Around the Block"
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38 min
December 18, 2018
Dispatches: Can We Please Kill Off Crutches?
Almost everyone who’s used underarm crutches agrees: they are terrible. They’re hard on your wrists, they cause falls, they cause nerve damage. This is why almost every country in the world has abandoned them. Except the U.S., where if you go to the hospital with a leg injury, you’re most likely going to leave with … Continue reading "Dispatches: Can We Please Kill Off Crutches? "
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34 min
December 11, 2018
Sweat Science: Loving the Pain
There’s no more painful pursuit for a cyclist than the hour record.It’s just you, by yourself, on a bike, going as far and as fast as you can in 60 minutes. Eddie Merckx, considered by many to be the greatest pro racer in history, called it the longest hour of his career and only attempted … Continue reading "Sweat Science: Loving the Pain"
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38 min
November 27, 2018
Dispatches: What Dogs Really Think about Dog Gear
For more than two decades, Ruffwear has been reinventing gear for dogs. The brand makes booties, jackets, collars, toys, and pretty much anything else you could want for your pup. But how do you design something when the end user can’t give you feedback other than incessant tail wagging? And don’t dogs get just as … Continue reading "Dispatches: What Dogs Really Think about Dog Gear"
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28 min
November 20, 2018
Sweat Science: Don’t Waste Your Breath
Pararescue specialists—known as PJ’s in the military—are the most elite unit in the Air Force. But if you want to be a PJ you have to make it through Indoc, a brutal nine-week training course that’s designed to test your motivation and resolve. And there’s no easier way to make someone uncomfortable than sending them … Continue reading "Sweat Science: Don’t Waste Your Breath"
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45 min
November 14, 2018
Dispatches: Can Nature Heal Our Deepest Wounds?
Wilderness therapy has been used for decades to help troubled teens and addicts, and recently all kinds of people are seeking out guided nature experiences to detox from their hyper-digital modern lives. The classic approach of such programs is to push participants to challenge their limits in order to build character. That can work great, … Continue reading "Dispatches: Can Nature Heal Our Deepest Wounds?"
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39 min
November 8, 2018
Sweat Science: The Pull-Up Artists
John Orth is a violin maker from Colorado. Andrew Shapiro is a college kid from Virginia. They have little in common except that for the last two years they’ve been trading back and forth the world record for the most pull-ups in 24 hours. Over the summer, they both set their sights on 10,000 pull-ups. … Continue reading "Sweat Science: The Pull-Up Artists"
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48 min
October 30, 2018
Dispatches: One Fork to Rule them All
In this first episode of a new series exploring how gear gets made, we investigate the origin of arguably the most refined fork in history. When designer Owen Mesdag was a graduate student in the late-1990s, he fell in love with a particularly clever spoon. Engineered by outdoor brand MSR, it doubled as a stove … Continue reading "Dispatches: One Fork to Rule them All"
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16 min
October 23, 2018
Dispatches: Alex Honnold on “Free Solo”
The new movie Free Solo is arguably the greatest film about climbing that’s ever been made. In just over 90 minutes, it chronicles Alex Honnold’s astonishing no-ropes ascent of the 3,000-foot sheer face of Yosemite’s El Capitan, which he completed one morning in June, 2017. Even more impressively, it captures the unique mindset of Honnold, … Continue reading "Dispatches: Alex Honnold on “Free Solo”"
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23 min
October 9, 2018
Dispatches: Wild Thing
Journalist Laura Krantz doesn’t believe in Bigfoot. She’s trained to be skeptical, and all the best Sasquatch sightings and photos have been debunked. Except, then she heard about Grover Krantz, a serious academic and long lost relative who had spent his career researching the possibility that an upright, bi-pedal homonid had once roamed the forest. … Continue reading "Dispatches: Wild Thing"
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33 min
September 25, 2018
Science of Survival: Burnout
Maybe you saw the fire coming, maybe you didn’t. Maybe you were ready for it, maybe you weren’t. Maybe you did everything right. Maybe not. Maybe you just lost everything. Maybe that’s not even the worst of it. For this final episode of our  wildfire series, we asked fiction writer Joseph Jordan to imagine the experience … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Burnout"
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24 min
September 11, 2018
Science of Survival: The Future of Fire
To reduce the intensity of megafires in America, we’d need to treat and burn about 50-80 million acres of forest. So, how do we do it? What would it cost? How long would it take? Is it possible? In this episode we look at whether or not there’s anything we can do about wildfires in … Continue reading "Science of Survival: The Future of Fire"
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31 min
August 28, 2018
Science of Survival: Fighting Fire with Fire
How do you protect yourself from wildfire on a warming planet? You burn everything on purpose. No, seriously. Thanks to climate change, the whole world is a tinderbox. Fire season now starts sooner and ends later, and scientists say lightning will become more frequent, and winds more powerful. Our only defense may be intentional fires. In this … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Fighting Fire with Fire"
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23 min
August 14, 2018
Science of Survival: The Sky is Burning
There are between eight and ten thousand wildfires in the United States each year, but most quietly burn out, and we never hear about them. The Pagami Creek Wildfire in Minnesota’s Boundary Waters Canoe Area was supposed to be like that. It was tiny and stuck in a bog that was surrounded by lakes. It was the kind … Continue reading "Science of Survival: The Sky is Burning"
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36 min
July 24, 2018
Dispatches: The Hidden Graves of Kuku Island
Carina Hoang grew up in a wealthy family in Vietnam. She had a nanny to take care of her and a maid who cleaned up after her—she didn’t even wash her own hair. But when the Vietnam War broke out, she and two siblings fled the country on a boat, landing on Kuku beach, in … Continue reading "Dispatches: The Hidden Graves of Kuku Island"
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46 min
July 11, 2018
Science of Survival: Struck by Lightning
Most of the time, when lightning makes the news, it’s because of something outlandish—like the park ranger who was struck seven times, or the survivor who also won the lottery (the chances of which are about one in 2.6 trillion), or the guy who claimed lightning strike gave him sudden musical talent. This is not … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Struck by Lightning"
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42 min
June 26, 2018
The Outside Interview: The Simple Secrets to Athletic Longevity
Everyone gets older, but not everyone bows out of competition in middle-age. Journalist Jeff Bercovici wanted to know: Why? Why do some athletes flame out in their 30s and 40s, while others are still going as senior citizens? Is it genetics? Special training? Diet? And could amateur athletes achieve similar results? Outside editor Chris Keyes talks with … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: The Simple Secrets to Athletic Longevity"
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37 min
June 19, 2018
Dispatches: Shelma Jun Can Flash Foxy
Climbing was Shelma Jun’s fallback sport. A snowboarder and mountain biker, she found her way into a climbing gym after injuring her shoulder and looking for an activity where she wouldn’t risk more impact. As a friend told her, you can’t fall very far if you’re attached to a rope. In 2014, she created an … Continue reading "Dispatches: Shelma Jun Can Flash Foxy"
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22 min
June 12, 2018
Dispatches: Knox Robinson Crafts Running Culture
Knox Robinson grew up watching his dad run and went on to race track himself at a Division I college, but he was never defined by the sport. He’s more of a renaissance man. For years, he gave up athletics, studying and living in Japan, then managing rock stars and rappers in New York City. … Continue reading "Dispatches: Knox Robinson Crafts Running Culture"
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23 min
May 29, 2018
Dispatches: Ayesha McGowan Wants to Be First
Ayesha McGowan came late to competitive cycling. An accomplished violinist, she didn’t enter her first organized biking event until after college. Despite riding an old steel bike with a milk crate on the back and wearing jean shorts in a peloton of spandex, she impressed the other women, who encouraged her to start competing. A … Continue reading "Dispatches: Ayesha McGowan Wants to Be First"
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25 min
May 22, 2018
Dispatches: Mikhail Martin is a Brother of Climbing
When Mikhail Martin started climbing at a Brooklyn gym in 2009, he was one of very few African Americans to rope up. Today, his group, Brothers of Climbing, is working to change that. BOC is tackling diversity in rock climbing, which includes bridging the gaps in lingo, jargon, and etiquette that keep people of color … Continue reading "Dispatches: Mikhail Martin is a Brother of Climbing"
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17 min
May 15, 2018
Dispatches: Bundyville
In 2014 the federal government rounded up Cliven Bundy’s cattle over a matter of unpaid grazing fees. So the Bundy family gathered a posse and took them back, at gunpoint. Two years later, they took over the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. The Bundys are making a habit of taking on the federal government and winning. … Continue reading "Dispatches: Bundyville"
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45 min
May 8, 2018
Dispatches: Kellee Edwards’s Story is a Trip
Kellee Edwards had a dream of getting her own show on the Travel Channel. She also had a plan. As a black woman trying to break into the overwhelmingly white and male world of travel television, she figured she would have to be overqualified to get noticed. So she got certified as a scuba diver, … Continue reading "Dispatches: Kellee Edwards’s Story is a Trip"
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24 min
May 1, 2018
Dispatches: Alexi Pappas Dreams Like a Crazy and Runs Like One, Too
Distance runner Alexi Pappas is the rare dual-threat of Olympic athlete and movie star. In the 2016 film Tracktown, which she wrote, directed, and plays the lead character in, she set out to capture the running-obsessed culture of Eugene, Oregon—a place where recreational runners share the trails with pros, and local farms and butchers step … Continue reading "Dispatches: Alexi Pappas Dreams Like a Crazy and Runs Like One, Too"
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22 min
April 24, 2018
Science of Survival: A Very Old Man for a Wolf
One day in 2005 or 2006, a young wolf in Idaho headed west. He swam across the Snake River to Oregon, which was then outside the gray wolf’s range. After he established a territory, he became the most controversial canid in the state. Dubbed OR4 by Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, he was the … Continue reading "Science of Survival: A Very Old Man for a Wolf"
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43 min
April 17, 2018
Dispatches: The Woman Who Rides Mountains
Mavericks, the monster surf-break off the Northern California coast, has long been a proving ground for the world’s best big-wave surfers. But the big wave surf contest held there most years has never included any women, despite the fact that female surfers have been dropping in on giant swells for decades. In fact, the first-ever … Continue reading "Dispatches: The Woman Who Rides Mountains"
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30 min
April 10, 2018
Dispatches: Kris Tompkins’s 10-Million-Acre Life
After building Patagonia into an internationally renowned apparel brand, the company’s first CEO, Kris Tompkins, walked away from the job, following her heart to South America. She landed on a small farm in Chile, where she and her soon-to-be husband, The North Face founder Doug Tompkins, set to work conserving one of the last wild … Continue reading "Dispatches: Kris Tompkins’s 10-Million-Acre Life"
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22 min
April 3, 2018
Science of Survival: “F/V Destination, Do You Copy?”
It was the kind of disaster that wasn’t supposed to happen anymore. On February 11, 2017, the fishing vessel Destination disappeared in the Bering Sea on its way to crab grounds. It was a boat with an experienced crew, in unremarkable weather conditions, but there was no mayday, no life raft and no survivors. For … Continue reading "Science of Survival: “F/V Destination, Do You Copy?”"
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40 min
March 20, 2018
Dispatches: Bear Grylls Will Never Give Up
Apparently nobody told Bear Grylls that reality TV stars never have long careers. A dozen years after the cheeky Briton exploded onto American television, the king of survival entertainment is charging harder than ever, guiding A-list stars into the wild for his NBC show, Running Wild with Bear Grylls, while launching innovative new series for … Continue reading "Dispatches: Bear Grylls Will Never Give Up"
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30 min
March 6, 2018
Dispatches: Cheryl Strayed’s Wild Creativity
In her acclaimed 2012 memoir, Wild, Cheryl Strayed delivered a fresh take on outdoor writing—a redemption story set on the Pacific Crest Trail. The book spent seven weeks on the New York Times Best Seller List and reminded people everywhere that a grueling journey through the wilderness can help us overcome almost anything. At last … Continue reading "Dispatches: Cheryl Strayed’s Wild Creativity"
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97 min
February 20, 2018
Dispatches: An Amazingly Crappy Story
In 2009, Canadian researcher Geoff Hill asked park managers across North America what problems did they needed solved? Every single one of them said, “Human waste.” Since then, Hill has been on a quest to figure out what to do about the fact that each year national parks in the US and Canada get hundreds … Continue reading "Dispatches: An Amazingly Crappy Story"
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31 min
February 6, 2018
The Outside Interview: Your Hungry Brain is Making You Fat
If you’ve ever beaten yourself up after eating an entire pint of ice cream, know this: it’s really not your fault. According to obesity researcher and neurobiologist Stephen Guyenet, author of The Hungry Brain and founder of the wellness and science blog Whole Health Source, millions of years of evolution have hardwired us to seek … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Your Hungry Brain is Making You Fat"
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33 min
January 23, 2018
Dispatches: Red Dawn in Lapland
On the 833-mile border between Finland and Russia, a band of elite Finnish soldiers are preparing to defend the country if Russia decides it wants to again redraw the map of Europe. With tensions still high after the Kremlin’s invasion of Crimea and Ukraine, writer David Wolman went to Finland to find out what this … Continue reading "Dispatches: Red Dawn in Lapland"
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22 min
January 9, 2018
The Outside Interview: Susan Casey Might Have Gills
To write her three bestselling books about the ocean, Susan Casey went deep with great white sharks in California, followed big-wave surfing icon Laird Hamilton in Hawaii, and chased wild dolphins around the world. Her willingness to literally immerse herself in the topic of the ocean—she’s a former competitive swimmer—has allowed her to craft captivating … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Susan Casey Might Have Gills"
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35 min
December 19, 2017
Science of Survival: He That is Down Need Fear No Fall
Falls are the leading cause of death in the backcountry. Nothing else comes close. And while many are freak accidents that amount to nothing more than bad luck, some are more nuanced and interesting—and personal. If you found yourself stuck at the bottom of a canyon with a broken leg, what would you do? And … Continue reading "Science of Survival: He That is Down Need Fear No Fall"
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45 min
December 12, 2017
The Outside Interview: The Whole Life Challenge Is Easier Than You Think
Andy Petranek and Michael Stanwyck know fitness. Petranek was a former adventure racer and RedBull Athlete before founding one of the first CrossFit gyms. Soon after, Stanwyck walked in looking for a new type of workout and quickly became CrossFit LA’s manager. But while their classes made gym members stronger, the pair longed to have … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: The Whole Life Challenge Is Easier Than You Think"
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41 min
December 5, 2017
Science of Survival: Bee Still My Heart
Bee venom is similar to a rattlesnake’s. It rapidly disperses in your tissue, and when you’re stung the pain you feel is a combination of proteins and peptides attacking your cell membranes. Each sting contains enough venom to incapacitate a small mouse, but bees won’t really hurt you unless you’re allergic. Or at least, that’s … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Bee Still My Heart"
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31 min
November 28, 2017
Science of Survival: Dangerously Delicious
There are several thousand species of mushroom, but only a handful that will kill you. And the toxins found in poisonous mushrooms are some of the deadliest natural poisons on Earth. Just seven milligrams—one quarter of a grain of rice—is enough to kill an adult, compared to a full teaspoon of cyanide. When you picked … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Dangerously Delicious"
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28 min
November 21, 2017
Dispatches: The Secret History of Biosphere 2
What if you could opt out of society and go live in a completely self-contained glass bubble in the desert? You and your team would be cut off from the rest of society. For two years, you’d have to grow every morsel of food that you wanted to eat and fix anything and everything that … Continue reading "Dispatches: The Secret History of Biosphere 2"
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27 min
November 14, 2017
Science of Survival: Adrift
What happens to people who are swept out to sea? Some survive for months and even years, alone in life boats eating whatever they can catch and drinking rainwater. In this episode we ask you, the listener, to imagine a surfing session gone very wrong when a strong offshore wind blows you out into the … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Adrift"
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31 min
November 7, 2017
Science of Survival: Frozen Alive Redux
As we get ready to roll out new Science of Survival episodes beginning on November 14, we wanted to replay the one that started it all. This thrilling re-creation of the classic Outside feature by Peter Stark leads the listener through a series of plausible mishaps on a bitterly cold night: a car accident on … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Frozen Alive Redux"
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28 min
October 31, 2017
The Outside Interview: Can’t Hack It? Gene-Hack It
Peak performance has always been about getting as close to your genetic potential as possible. The limits of your training, nutrition, and recovery are dictated by your DNA. But what if they weren’t? What if you could change the genetic code you were born with? As sequencing DNA gets cheaper and faster, and gene-editing tools … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Can’t Hack It? Gene-Hack It"
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29 min
October 24, 2017
The Outside Interview: Doc Parsley Solves Your Sleep Crisis
If you want to understand sleep deprivation, you want to talk to a Navy SEAL, who go nearly a week without rest during training. And there’s probably no better Navy SEAL to talk to than Dr. Kirk Parsley, the physician who started noticing all sorts of problems with his fellow elite soldiers. They weren’t recovering … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Doc Parsley Solves Your Sleep Crisis"
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34 min
October 17, 2017
Dispatches: Can Humans Outrun Antelope?
Several decades ago, radio producer Scott Carrier and his brother Dave tried to chase down an antelope on foot. That might sound crazy, but Dave was an evolutionary biologist and had just come up with a radical idea: that during the heat of the day humans could outrun most any creature, even one of the … Continue reading "Dispatches: Can Humans Outrun Antelope?"
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47 min
October 10, 2017
The Outside Interview: Dr. Michael Gervais on Mental Mastery
For most athletes, achieving peak performance means training hard, eating right, and maybe some stretching. But when you get to the elite level, where everyone’s doing that, it’s the mental game that makes winners and losers. How hard can you push your body? How much pain can you tolerate? How can you avoid getting psyched … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Dr. Michael Gervais on Mental Mastery"
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34 min
October 3, 2017
Dispatches: Captain Jackass
Kevin Fedarko is a celebrated and well-heeled journalist, accustomed to dropping in on an exotic place and extracting a story, often in less than a week. But in 2004 he left his job at Outside and went looking for something deeper and more meaningful: a story forged over months and years. He ended up at … Continue reading "Dispatches: Captain Jackass"
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58 min
September 26, 2017
The Outside Interview: Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece on the Extreme Edge of Fitness
More than two decades after he radically transformed big-wave surfing, Laird Hamilton is still a dominant force in the sport. As detailed in the new documentary Take Every Wave, Hamilton is again pushing the edge with his new obsession, hydrofoil surfing. His wife, Gabby Reece, is a former professional volleyball player, model, author, and currently … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece on the Extreme Edge of Fitness"
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32 min
September 20, 2017
Dispatches: The Fine Art of Weaponizing Critters
Killer frogs! Forest-destroying moths! Bird-eating mongooses! These may sound like biblical plagues, but they’re all the result of bad human decisions. After an invasive species shows up in an ecosystem and wreaks havoc, our response is to import another species that will eat the first one. Then, of course, the predator turns out to be … Continue reading "Dispatches: The Fine Art of Weaponizing Critters"
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33 min
September 6, 2017
Dispatches: Jack Johnson Loses His Cool
Jack Johnson is known as the world’s mellowest pop star. A surfer raised on the North Shore of Hawaii, his acoustic strumming has been the default soundtrack to good-times beach living for more than 15 years. But these days, something’s up with Jack Johnson. He’s decided that in the current political and social climate, quietly … Continue reading "Dispatches: Jack Johnson Loses His Cool"
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22 min
August 23, 2017
XX Factor: 1200 Miles on Blood Road
Rebecca Rusch is called the “Queen of Pain” for a reason. She’s a three-time world champion in the 24-Hour Mountain Bike race, the 2011 National XC single-speed champion, and she’s won the Leadville 100 mountain bike race four times. But a couple years ago, Rusch decided to take on an entirely new kind of pain. … Continue reading "XX Factor: 1200 Miles on Blood Road"
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23 min
August 9, 2017
XX Factor: Vanessa Garrison Walks the Walk
In 2012, Vanessa Garrison co-founded GirlTrek, an organization with a simple goal: get women walking for 30 minutes a day. Now 100,000 walkers strong, GirlTrek is a national force. The story of GirlTrek is about health, justice, power, and survival. But mostly it’s the story of trying to change your community, and the world, through … Continue reading "XX Factor: Vanessa Garrison Walks the Walk"
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22 min
July 25, 2017
Science of Survival: A Very Scary Fish Story
The swamps of Alabama are one of the most biodiverse places on earth. They’ve been called America’s Amazon for the remarkable number of species of fish, turtles, mussels, and other aquatic creatures. Not so long ago, the Alabama sturgeon was a staple of life in these parts. The funny looking fish swam here for millennia, … Continue reading "Science of Survival: A Very Scary Fish Story"
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28 min
July 11, 2017
XX Factor: How the Sports Bra Changed History
When it comes to important innovations in sports technology, few inventions can compete with the sports bra. In the 1970s, women’s interest in athletics was surging following the passage of Title IX. There was just one problem—actually, make that two problems: breasts. Boob bounce hurts, as women getting in on the jogging craze quickly found … Continue reading "XX Factor: How the Sports Bra Changed History"
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26 min
July 5, 2017
Dispatches: Andy Samberg’s Tour de Farce
Nearly every sport can point to a classic comedy film taking aim at its flaws. Hockey has Slap Shot. Car racing got Talladega Nights. Skiing will always have Hot Dog. And dodgeball has, well, Dodgeball. Now cycling can claim its own: HBO’s Tour de Pharmacy, featuring executive producer Andy Samberg and a laundry list of … Continue reading "Dispatches: Andy Samberg’s Tour de Farce"
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19 min
June 27, 2017
Science of Survival: Racing a Dying Brain
When something goes wrong in the wilderness, someone needs to evacuate and get help. When that someone is you, and every minute counts, the stress is enormous. And you just might not be fast enough. Scott Pirsig and Bob Sturtz were on a spring canoeing adventure in the Boundary Waters, a million-acre wilderness in northern … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Racing a Dying Brain"
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40 min
June 13, 2017
XX Factor: The Ice Queen Cometh
You hear sometimes about how the Arctic changes people — how It can lead them to lose their minds a little bit, or make dumb mistakes. Then there are those rare adventurers like Sarah McNair-Landry who are at their best on the ice. McNair-Landry grew up near the Arctic Circle, on Baffin Island. At 18, … Continue reading "XX Factor: The Ice Queen Cometh"
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23 min
May 30, 2017
Science of Survival: Drinking Yourself to Death
Water is life, we’re told. But what if you drink too much? As it turns out, there’s a little-discussed flipside to dehydration called hyponatremia—and it’s been on the rise, killing athletes and otherwise healthy people every year. And while you may think you know how much you need to drink, chances are you’re wrong.
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33 min
May 17, 2017
XX Factor: Diana Nyad Goes the Distance
What does it take to swim from Cuba to Florida without a shark cage? According to Diana Nyad, the answer is passion bordering on obsession. Nyad first attempted the 111-mile crossing in 1978. Thirty-five years later, at the age of 64, following four failed efforts that left her devastated, she became the first person to … Continue reading "XX Factor: Diana Nyad Goes the Distance"
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27 min
May 2, 2017
XX Factor: Snowboarding While Iranian
Mona Seraji is the first snowboarder from the Middle East to compete professionally in the Freeride World Qualifier, a series of big-mountain events that attract the best riders in the world. She’s also a talented surfer, rock climber, and mountain biker. All this is more impressive when you consider the fact that in her home … Continue reading "XX Factor: Snowboarding While Iranian"
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35 min
April 26, 2017
Science of Survival: Cloudbusters
Human beings spent centuries trying to control the weather. Then, about 70 years ago, we figured out the basics of what it takes to make it rain. Now, we’re controlling more weather than you might think—and on the brink of a technology that may save us from the effects of climate change. But only if … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Cloudbusters"
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32 min
April 19, 2017
Science of Survival: The Death Blow
Science can’t fully explain why and how tornadoes form. But on May 31, 2013, all the factors we do understand pointed towards off-the-charts risk in central Oklahoma. Hundreds of amateur storm chasers, professional meteorologists, and thrill-seekers flocked to the area expecting an incredible storm. What actually touched down blew them all away.
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38 min
April 12, 2017
XX Factor: A Woman’s Place is on Top
Back when men still believed the “weaker sex” were inferior climbers, Arlene Blum led an all-women’s ascent of Annapurna, the world’s tenth-highest peak. The 1978 climb put the first women—and first Americans, period—on the summit, but the death of two climbers sparked controversy. Outside contributing editor Florence Williams talks with Blum and Alpinist editor in … Continue reading "XX Factor: A Woman’s Place is on Top"
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30 min
April 5, 2017
XX Factor: Beth Rodden Unpacked
In the 90s, Beth Rodden was a climbing prodigy, celebrated for her athletic gifts and unwavering discipline. Then, while on an expedition in Central Asia in 2000, she and her small team of friends were kidnapped. That terrifying ordeal—and their daring escape—changed her life in ways she has only recently begun to understand. In a … Continue reading "XX Factor: Beth Rodden Unpacked"
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27 min
March 30, 2017
Science of Survival: After the Crash, Part 2
Once Joe Stone learned how to use his paralyzed body, he immediately set an audacious goal: he would race in an Ironman triathlon—despite the fact that no quadriplegic athlete had ever attempted the event. And after that? Well, Joe decided he could go much, much bigger.
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46 min
March 21, 2017
Science of Survival: After the Crash, Part 1
Joe Stone doesn’t do anything halfway. Back when he was a skater, he went big. When he partied, he went hard. When he took up skydiving and speed-flying, he flew almost every day. Then one day he crashed and became a C7 quadriplegic. What do you do when you’re addicted to adrenaline but confined to … Continue reading "Science of Survival: After the Crash, Part 1"
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46 min
March 7, 2017
Science of Survival: The Everest Effect
On the morning of May 25th, 2006, Myles Osborne was poised to become one of the last climbers of the season to summit Mount Everest. The weather was perfect, and it seemed nothing would stop his team. Then a flapping of orange fabric caught Osborne’s eye. He believed it to be a tent—until the fabric … Continue reading "Science of Survival: The Everest Effect"
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34 min
February 21, 2017
The Outside Interview: Florence Williams on The Nature Fix
Outside magazine contributing editor Florence Williams speaks with Editor Chris Keyes about the fascinating science behind the restorative power of wild places.
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34 min
February 7, 2017
Science of Survival: Treed by a Jaguar
In the summer of 1970, Ed Welch and Bruce Frey put in a canoe at the headwaters of the Amazon and shoved off into the current. Their only plan was to travel downstream until it wasn’t fun anymore. They had a rifle, they had a machete, they had a vague idea of how to survive … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Treed by a Jaguar"
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29 min
January 24, 2017
Science of Survival: Line of Blood in the Sand
Denmark’s rugged Faroe Islands are known for sheep, rowboats, and a brutal tradition called “The Grind” in which Faroese men butcher hundreds of pilot whales by hand, on the beach, in full view of locals and tourists. Reporter Joel Carnegie traveled to the islands last summer to try to understand the cultural forces that sustain … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Line of Blood in the Sand"
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23 min
January 10, 2017
The Outside Interview: Mark Sundeen on the New Pioneers
Writer Mark Sundeen spent the last three years chronicling the lives of three couples who have dropped out of mainstream society, trading cars, technology, and electricity for freedom and hard work on the new American frontier. The result is his latest book, The Unsettlers: In Search of the Good Life in Today’s America, a fascinating, … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Mark Sundeen on the New Pioneers"
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37 min
December 13, 2016
Dispatches: Call of the Wild Things
Wolf howls, bird songs, , crickets, frogs—soundscapes contain clues to not only what’s going on around us but also who we are. Not just as individuals, but as human beings. Or at least, that’s what Bernie Krause says. Krause is a soundscape artist who’s spent decades collecting the sounds of the natural world and contemplating … Continue reading "Dispatches: Call of the Wild Things"
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25 min
November 29, 2016
The Outside Interview: Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell
“If you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu,” says Sally Jewell. Hopeful, thoughtful, slightly ticked-off, and surprisingly emotional, the outgoing Secretary of the Interior talks with Outside editor Chris Keyes about the presidential election and what it means for the future of public lands. Can environmental protections be dismantled? Will they? Are we … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell"
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43 min
November 15, 2016
Science of Survival: Cliffhanger, Part 3
Dan and Isaac are back from searching through the wreckage of Eastern Airlines Flight 980 on a remote mountain in Bolivia, but their findings have prompted a whole new set of questions. Will anyone look at the material they brought back to the U.S.? Who hired climber Bernardo Guarachi to get to the crash site … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Cliffhanger, Part 3"
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41 min
November 1, 2016
Science of Survival: Cliffhanger, Part 2
Since colliding with a Bolivian mountain in 1985, Eastern Airlines Flight 980 has been frozen inside a glacier perched on the edge of a 3,000 foot drop. With wreckage now melting out of the ice at the base of the cliff, Dan Futrell and Isaac Stoner travel to the debris field at 16,000 feet, battling … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Cliffhanger, Part 2"
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39 min
October 18, 2016
Science of Survival: Cliffhanger, Part 1
It’s one of history’s greatest aviation mysteries: on New Year’s Day in 1985, Eastern Air Lines Flight 980 was carrying 29 passengers and a hell of a lot of contraband when it crashed into the side of a 21,112-foot mountain in Bolivia. For decades conspiracy theories abounded as the wreckage remained inaccessible, the bodies unrecovered, … Continue reading "Science of Survival: Cliffhanger, Part 1"
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34 min
October 5, 2016
Dispatches: National Parks Don’t Need Your Stinkin’ Reverence
John Muir rhapsodizing about Yosemite is one thing, but Outside contributing editor Ian Frazier has had it with people calling their favorite outdoor spots “cathedrals,” “shrines,” and “sacred spaces.” When he made his case in an issue of Outside, it struck a major nerve with readers. Here, Frazier explains his argument, reacts to reader letters, … Continue reading "Dispatches: National Parks Don’t Need Your Stinkin’ Reverence"
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23 min
September 20, 2016
Dispatches: The Sound of Science
Scientists are compiling huge amounts of data on the impact of global warming, but the story of that data often gets lost. Enter Nik Sawe, a researcher at Stanford who is transforming big data into music.  Two parts science, one art, data sonification turns the numbers we tend to ignore into a very human story, … Continue reading "Dispatches: The Sound of Science"
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23 min
September 7, 2016
The Outside Interview: The Hard Lessons of Climbing Superstar Conrad Anker
For two decades, Conrad Anker has been at the forefront of climbing, evolving into America’s best all-around alpinist. With skills on rock, ice, and big peaks, he’s now something of an elder statesmen and mentor to a new generation of elite athletes. Though perhaps best known for finding the body of legendary British mountaineer George Mallory on Mount Everest in 1999, he is … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: The Hard Lessons of Climbing Superstar Conrad Anker"
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42 min
August 24, 2016
The Outside Interview: The Secret History of Doping
Author Mark Johnson argues that performance enhancing drugs are hardly a recent phenomenon. In his new book, “Spitting in the Soup,” he traces doping all the way back to the 1904 Olympic marathon in St. Louis and shows how doping and sport have been fundamentally intertwined for more than a century. The only thing new, … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: The Secret History of Doping"
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41 min
August 10, 2016
The Outside Interview: Tim Ferriss Overshares
Tim Ferriss is many things. A bestselling author. A kickboxing champion. A horseback archer. The first American in history to hold a Guinness World Record in tango. He has built an enormous following by doing just about everything—and, more importantly, figuring out how to do it all better than most experts and then sharing what … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Tim Ferriss Overshares"
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47 min
July 26, 2016
The Outside Interview: Jason Motlagh on the Darién Gap
Jason Motlagh and his crew were the first journalists in years to successfully cross the Darién Gap, a lawless, roadless jungle on the border of Colombia and Panama. Teeming with deadly snakes, drug traffickers, and antigovernment guerrillas, it has become a pathway for migrants whose desperation to reach the U.S. sends them on a perilous … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Jason Motlagh on the Darién Gap"
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43 min
July 13, 2016
The Outside Interview: Robert Young Pelton
Robert Young Pelton has made a career of tracking down warlords and interviewing people in the most dangerous places in the world. He’s been kidnapped in Colombia, survived an assassination attempt in Uganda, and joined the hunt for Osama Bin Laden in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Outside editor Chris Keyes wanted to know how spending that … Continue reading "The Outside Interview: Robert Young Pelton"
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45 min
June 28, 2016
Science of Survival: In Too Deep
Michael Proudfoot was SCUBA diving on a shipwreck in Baja, Mexico when his regulator broke. He survived by finding an air pocket in the wreck, where he spent two days eating sea urchins and drinking fresh water from a teakettle before rescuers arrived. It’s one of the most incredible undersea tales of all time—if it’s … Continue reading "Science of Survival: In Too Deep"
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41 min
June 14, 2016
Science of Survival: Under Pressure
When you’re stuck underwater in a submarine, the number of of ways you can die is long and varied—crushing, burning, asphyxiation, exploding, the list goes on and on. Escaping alive requires maintaining calm and focus. Unless your name is Wilhelm Bauer, whose survival story includes the first undersea fist fight.
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16 min
May 17, 2016
Science of Survival: The Devil’s Highway, Part II
In the spring 2001, a group set out from Mexico to cross the border into Arizona. The tragic result of their journey—and many others like it—helped researchers develop the Death Index, a new model for predicting dehydration fatalities.
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29 min
May 3, 2016
Science of Survival: The Devil’s Highway, Part I
On a brutal route through the Sonoran Desert in southern Arizona, thousands have died from dehydration and thirst. But one man’s journey through hell led to a breakthrough for science.
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27 min
April 26, 2016
Science of Survival BONUS: Whatever Happens, Happens
One of the most famous accidents in wingsuit history.
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7 min
April 11, 2016
Science of Survival: Struck by Lightning
When Phil Broscovak was struck by lightning, his world got turned upside down.
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42 min
March 24, 2016
Science of Survival: Frozen Alive
The cold hard facts of freezing to death.
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30 min
March 22, 2016
Science of Survival
Welcome to the Show
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1 min
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