They told me it would be difficult to produce a podcast from the trail, and they were right. It’s been a huge challenge to balance hiking, recording, editing, resting, and enjoying myself. Episode 5 was delayed for over a week when I lost my voice. Episode 6 was a couple days late as I was still trying to catch up. Episode 7 was on time, but I was working on it up until the last minute. Episode 8 is now two days late, but for an entirely unexpected reason– my Android smartphone (which I use for editing and other post-production) automatically updated its operating system, and now some of my software no longer functions properly.

I am confident that I will find solutions to this challenge, but so far it’s been a major headache. Please bear with me while I figure it out. Although Trailside Radio is 100% free, and I’m not beholden to any sponsors, it’s still important to me that I manage to release weekly episodes consistently. Unfortunately, I have to play it by ear this week, even though I have lots of great content that I’m excited to share. One way or another, I aim to have Episode 8 out by the end of the week. Hopefully once I get this wrinkle ironed out, I’ll be able to get back– and stay– on schedule.

Thank you to everybody who is listening, especially those who have reached out to me with comments and emails. My hike is going very well– if a bit slowly– and I’m having the time of my life. An extra-special thank you to the few folks who noticed the new PayPal link on the website and sent a few dollars my way. I already have enough money saved up to keep the podcast going while I hike to Canada, but I’m doing so on a shoestring budget– so these contributions are definitely appreciated.

I promise I’ll have the next episode up as soon as I can get my phone to behave itself!

– Ratatouille



Ratatouille at the Southern Terminus of the PCT

First, the bad news. Episode 5 is going to be late. I thought I had considered most of the obstacles that might get in the way of podcasting from the trail, but somehow laryngitis didn’t make the list. I’ve lost my voice. I can hardly speak, and it hurts to try. Worst of all, it happened because I haven’t done a good job of taking care of myself. Much too much coffee, a little too much beer, not enough water, too much campfire smoke, and lots and lots of talking were more than my vocal chords could handle.

Now, the good news. I’m on the PCT. I’m having the time of my life. My voice will return. I got to the monument at the start of the PCT last Tuesday night and arrived at Lake Morena (mile 20) early the next day. The next five days were a whirlwind of workshops, interviews, new friends, and a little bit of partying. I interviewed a lot of people– enough for several episodes of Trailside Radio. While I hadn’t planned on it, I stayed for both sessions of the PCT Kick Off because I kept finding more amazing people to interview. Unfortunately I wore myself out and now I’m unable to finish any episodes with the necessary introductions and segues, at least for a few days. I promise, the wait will be worth it!

I intend to release episodes every Tuesday, so most likely I’ll delay Episode 5 by one week. If my voice comes back in the next couple days, I may consider releasing it sooner, but I’m not going to promise anything before May 5. By then I should have three episodes locked and loaded, ready for weekly release. Staying a few episodes ahead is the only way I’ll have any hope of consistently releasing episodes every Tuesday while I’m on the trail. I won’t always have internet access out here, not to mention all the other things that can go wrong. Hopefully this week will be the last without a new episode until I finish this adventure. Consistency is important to me, however it still takes third place on my list of priorities.

Ratatouille’s List of Priorities

1. Stay safe and healthy.
2. Have a positive and fun experience.
3. Get an episode out every week.
4. Make it to Canada.

I’m now back on the trail heading north towards Canada. Last night I cowboy camped (meaning without a tent) under a half moon and a clear sky. We got a lot of rain in the last couple days, but of course the drought is still a harsh reality here in southern California. I’ve already met people from all over the world, and we’re all brought together by a singular purpose: hiking the Pacific Crest Trail.

I promise you’ll be able to join me vicariously next week!