Menu Schedule Links

Outdoor Explorer Archive

Birds Make Their Annual Invasion of Southcentral Alaska

Birds Make Their Annual Invasion of Southcentral Alaska

The birds are coming back. Shorebirds invade Southcentral Alaska on their migrations about now, and festivals are planned in Homer and Cordova where, if the timing is right, you can see clouds of birds descending on the beaches and mudflats. On today’s show, we’ll talk about the pleasure and interest of birding, and where you can do it here in Anchorage, around our region, and across Alaska.

KSKA: Thursday, April 23, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

April 17, 2015
Selecting a Bike

Selecting a Bike

On today’s show we’re going to talk about how to buy a bike. We’ll focus first on the high end and the creative stuff that hardcore cycling folks are doing these days, building crazy bikes and putting together the perfect bike. Then we’ll focus on the practical details of getting the right bike for you at a price you can afford, whether you buy new or on Craigslist.

KSKA: Thursday, April 16, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.

Download Audio

April 10, 2015
Gray Whale Migration

Gray Whale Migration

One of the first signs of spring in coastal Alaska is the appearance of gray whales, who pass our way on their annual journey from Mexico to the Bering Sea. Along our uninhabited shores, the whales get a lot more privacy than they do down south, but you can see them from boats and coastal towns, and tour boats from Seward go out to view the whales through April. On today’s show, we’re talking about going out to see the whales this spring, and the biology of the whales and their amazing migration.

KSKA: Thursday, April 9, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

April 3, 2015
Geocaching

Geocaching

Geocaching is sort of like outdoor treasure hunting, and it’s getting really big in Anchorage. Host Charles Wohlforth gave it a try with his daughter. They had an iPhone app and a mission to look for hidden caches logged on a website powered by GPS equipment. The result? A fun, and somewhat addicting, new hobby. Join us on air to learn more about geocaching.

KSKA: Thursday, April 2, 2015, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

March 27, 2015
Go North

Go North

It is plenty common for people to make their way to Alaska on behalf of a significant other or for a job, but in this show, three guests share their stories of making the trip north by unconventional means. They came here by air, land and sea — and we’ll hear stories from their adventures heading north.

KSKA: Thursday, March 26, at 2:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

March 20, 2015
Scuba Diving

Scuba Diving

If you love the ocean, Alaska’s waters offer a fascinating world to explore as a diver. On the next Outdoor Explorer, we’re headed under water with three Alaska scuba divers to hear about the sport and what it’s like here in Alaska.

KSKA: Thursday, March 19, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

March 13, 2015
Making Your Own Equipment

Making Your Own Equipment

A theme encountered on Outdoor Explorer is that Alaskans invent a lot of stuff to do what they want outdoors. On this show, three guests who build their own gear, whether it be skis, bike accessories or mountaineering equipment, explain why they find it to be so rewarding and the benefits of stuff Alaskans have invented.

KSKA: Thursday, March 12, at 2:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

March 6, 2015
Making the Musher

Making the Musher

Rookie mushers come and go. It takes countless hours and training to become an Iditarod great. On the next episode of Outdoor Explorer, we’re talking to a handful of mushers who are on that journey. They scoop poop. They cut up a lot of raw meat. It’s not glamorous work, but they’re chasing down a dream as Iditarod sled dogs gun it for Nome.

KSKA: Thursday, March 5, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

February 27, 2015

An Interview with Alaska musher Aliy Zirkle

Aliy Zirkle didn’t grow up thinking she would become a famous musher. But she always loved the outdoors. And when she was studying biology at the University of Pennsylvania, she walked into a lab one day saw this sign on the door: “Why are you studying biology in downtown Philadelphia when you could be in Alaska?”

A few years later, she was mushing her first team of dogs in the Interior community of Bettles. On the next Outdoor Explorer, Join host Annie Feidt for an interview with this remarkable musher.

KSKA: Thursday, Feb. 26, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

February 20, 2015
Runners David Johnston and Shawn McTaggart laugh it up a mile into the 2014 Iditarod Trail Invitational.  Photo courtesy of David Johnston.

Iditarod Trail Invitational

On the next Outdoor Explorer, we’re talking about the Iditarod Trail Invitational race, which claims to be the longest winter ultra marathon in the world, sending racers by foot, bike or ski either 1000 miles from Knik to Nome, or 350 from Knik to McGrath.

KSKA: Thursday, Feb. 19, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

February 13, 2015
Iron Dog

Iron Dog

On the next Outdoor Explorer, we’re talking about the Iron Dog, billed as “the world’s longest, toughest snowmobile race.” We’ve got racers in the studio who have done it, and won. And we’re going to talk about how you put on a race of this scale, which starts Feb. 21, and for the first time this year, will take off with a ceremonial starting line in Anchorage.

KSKA: Thursday, Feb. 12, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

February 6, 2015
Photo taken from Wikimedia Commons

Trapping in Alaska

When Russians first came to Alaska in the 1740s, they were seeking fur, and fur-bearing animals were an important element of Alaska’s economy for more than 200 years. Today, Alaska still has thousands of trappers, both those who make a living at it and those who do it for fun. On the next Outdoor Explorer, we’ll hear more about an activity as old as Alaska itself.

KSKA: Thursday, Feb. 5, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

January 30, 2015
Arctic Warriors

Arctic Warriors

On the next Outdoor Explorer, we’re talking about Arctic Warriors and the skills they learn and practice. We have two officers in the studio whose military training has helped them make it through Alaska’s harshest weather. One was on a caribou hunt on North Slope when the weather took a dangerous turn. The other led a successful Denali ascent over the summer. What does the military teach about surviving outdoors? We’ll get into that question on this show.

KSKA: Thursday, Jan. 29, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

January 23, 2015
Winter Sports and Climate Change

Winter Sports and Climate Change

If winter defines us as Alaskans, as skiers and outdoor enthusiasts, what happens when we start to lose winter? Strange weather is becoming the new normal and we’re forced to adapt to climate change, because we don’t have a choice. On the next Outdoor Explorer, we’ll look at what that means from scientific and a practical perspective.

KSKA: Thursday, Jan. 22, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.

Listen Now:

January 16, 2015
Alone in the Wilderness

Alone in the Wilderness

Whereas having somebody else along is often safer and more fun, solo trips into the wilderness can sometimes be the most memorable. Whether by choice or necessity, these experiences offer a chance to get to know oneself better. We’ll speak with three guests about what it’s like being truly alone in the great outdoors.

KSKA: Thursday, Jan. 15, at 2:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.
Listen now:

January 9, 2015
Going the Distance With Your Nordic Skiing

Going the Distance With Your Nordic Skiing

Nordic skiing is a great sport for non-athletes and truly a life-long activity that you don’t have to give up as you get older. Although it provides a total workout, it doesn’t put much strain on joints and muscles. And in the endurance events, middle-agers can do quite well. Our topic today is training for distance races, including our famous Tour of Anchorage, not because you ever expect to win, but because you want to go the distance and share a big accomplishment with many friends and neighbors.

KSKA: Thursday, Jan. 8, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.
Listen now:

January 2, 2015
O'Malley Peak Star Trails: Canis Minor Rising -- Oct 22, 2014: Canis Minor is the smallest constellation: the white star at the horizon is Procyon (Alpha Canis Minoris), the Little Dog Star, and the blue star above that is Gomeisa (Beta Canis Minoris), Arabic meaning "the bleary-eyed (woman)" -- photographed with a Nikon DSLR camera. Copyright 2014 Jane E Gnass.

Stargazing

The night sky is infinitely interesting, and, like any experience in nature, knowledge only makes the experience deeper. On the next Outdoor Explorer, we’re going to learn about the stars and watching them as an outdoor Alaskan activity.

KSKA: Thursday, Dec. 18, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.
Listen now:

December 12, 2014
Outdoor Filmmakers

Outdoor Filmmakers

If you really love what you do outdoors, its natural to want to document that with pictures or video. Outdoor filmmaking is exploding as young people deploy equipment that is much less expensive than it used to be. This week on Outdoor Explorer we talk to adventure filmmakers. It goes beyond strapping a GoPro to your helmet.

KSKA: Thursday, Dec. 11, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.
Listen now:

December 5, 2014
Photo of a willow ptarmigan in transitional plumage. Photo by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

Small Game Hunting

Small game can be an entry for young people into hunting, but it’s also is a tradition for sportsmen going back centuries and shows up in classic literature from all over the world. On the next Outdoor Explorer, the topic is hunting upland game birds and small mammals.

KSKA: Thursday, Dec. 4, at 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.
Listen now:

November 26, 2014
McCandless and the Ethics of Risk

McCandless and the Ethics of Risk

Why and how we take risks is a constant topic on Outdoor Explorer. On this edition, we take it head on, with Craig Medred, the controversial and outspoken outdoor writer who has often commented on others’ backcountry mishaps. In particular, we’ll be discussing the Chris McCandless story, which is the subject of another new book and a PBS film. The topic is risk, reality, media fantasy, and how they interact. Join us for a lively hour of radio.

KSKA: Thursday, Nov. 20, 2:00 and 9:00 p.m.
Listen now:

November 14, 2014