Out There was launched in 2015 after host Willow Belden quit her job at Wyoming's NPR station and thru-hiked the Colorado Trail. The five-week solo trek through the Rockies did all the things that wilderness journeys are supposed to do: it helped Willow process a lingering grief over her mother's death, gave her the confidence to risk a new career path, and made her fall in love with life again.
For many of us, spending time in nature can bring about important life realizations. But not everyone gets to go on grand adventures. Out There bridges that gap by giving listeners a chance to hear about the transformative experiences that others have in the outdoors. In the same way that going out into nature can help us see our lives in a new way, stories about the outdoors can help us evaluate what we’re doing with our lives, and how we inhabit the world.
If that sounds kind of high-brow ... well, maybe it is. On a more concrete level, what we’re doing is telling stories. Stories that make you laugh and cry and think about things a little differently than you did before.
Out There was recently listed as the #1 outdoors podcast in iTunes, and our stories have made guest appearances on Outside Magazine's podcast and WHYY's The Pulse. In 2016, we received a national award from PRNDI, an association of public radio journalists; and this year, we won two awards from the Colorado chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.
Willow Belden is the host and founder of Out There. Before launching the podcast, she was a reporter and host at Wyoming Public Radio. She has written for newspapers and magazines across the U.S. and internationally, has contributed stories to NPR, and has won several national awards. Willow is an avid cross-country skier, mountain biker, and hiker, and she's conquering her fear of heights by learning to rock climb.
Becky Jensen is a columnist for Out There's advice segment, The Nature Fix. She’s worked in Los Angeles, Denver and Boulder for corporations and environmental nonprofits, and today she thrives as a freelance writer in Fort Collins, Colorado. Becky is a hiker, road tripper, and proud mama bear of twin sons Jake and Dane. She’s currently writing a memoir about thru-hiking the 500-mile Colorado Trail and road rash earned along the way.
Alex Eggerking is the marketing and business development director of Out There. Alex recently traded in the beautiful beaches and outdoor lifestyle of Sydney, Australia, for New York’s hustle and energy to help grow media organizations and startups. She is looking forward to exploring America’s national parks and beaches, and loves squeezing in a weekend away skiing when she can.
Angus Chen is a columnist for Out There's advice segment, The Nature Fix, and a freelance reporter and producer based in New York City. He's published work with NPR, WNYC Radio, Science, and Scientific American magazine. If he's lucky, he can boulder V5. Right now, he's surfing on a 6'2" Pyzel Ghost and a 5'10 Tim Stamps Kai-Zen Twin Fin. You can find him on Twitter @angRchen.
Jared Arnold wrote the theme music for Out There. Jared is a composer and sound designer based in Brooklyn, New York. Originally a French horn player, he now performs on a wide range of instruments, and his compositions merge classical training with electronic experimentation. When he’s not scoring a podcast or video game, Jared releases electronic music as Ink Jet.