About Us

Welcome to Sounds of the Trail! This is a podcast about the ups, downs, and switchbacks of trail life. Follow along with our contributors as they hike on the Appalachian Trail and the Pacific Crest trail, and send back transmissions, updates, and interviews with other hikers. We cover a different bit of trail life in all the episodes, and we only give bad advice.
– By Hikers, For Everyone –

The Sounds of the Trail Team:

Gizmo – the host and producer of SOTT. All audio quality problems are her fault. She hiked the Arizona Trail in 2016 and the Pacific Crest Trail in 2014. When she’s not podcasting, she’s sticking to her day job and rock climbing on the weekends.

Yeah, it snows in AZ

2016 Trail Correspondents – The Appalachian Trail Crew

Hey Girl (previously known as Laura) – 13 years after her first steps on the Appalachian Trail, she is back – this time for the thru. She is passionate about spending time in nature (and getting others to do so). Off the trail she is an environmental professional who has spent the last eight years working in international environmental conservation.


Wanderer (aka Juan Durer) – He’s out in the woods, and he’s got his banjo-lele. You might hear him coming before you see him. A long-term traveler, Wanderer been around the globe, but still couldn’t resist the draw of the Appalachian Trail.

Juan Durer

Cornelius Rumblejunk – his words: “I don’t think too hard, I just have fun with things.” Yes, that’s his real name.


2016 Trail Correspondents – The Pacific Crest Trail Crew

Hollywood (previously known as Lesley) – she’s got a grimy past, a sunny disposition, and an undoubtedly bright future. Between an aggravating inability to stay in one place for too long and a costly obsession with ultralight gear, thru-hiking the PCT seemed like the thing to do.

The slow ascent continues ...

Droplet (aka Lafe) – he’s been a wilderness ranger with US Forest service for the past couple years, but dreaming of hiking the trail for a lot longer. Almost ten years of plans later, he’s finally making a thru happen.


Morning Glory
(aka Kim) – Australian born, Midwestern raised, she ended up in LA where she got her intro to the PCT. She’s taking a break from being a middle school Assistant Principal to do a bit of walking instead.


2016 Trail Correspondents – The Continental Divide Trail Crew

Homework – he enjoys brewing beer, whittling spoons, getting tattoos, picking up litter, making popcorn, reading hiker blogs, and hanging out with his family, dog, and tribe of friends. When’s he got some extra time, he likes to hike too. He hiked the Pacific Crest Trail in 2014, and now’s he taking on the big bad CDT.


2015 Trail Correspondents:

Kimchi – our official Appalachian Trail correspondent. Her trail name is Kimchi because, as she says, she’s “spicy, delicious, and maybe a little bit foul”. She also hiked the Pacific Crest Trail in 2014 (where she met Gizmo), and you can read about her PCT 2014 thru-hike here: Part i, Part ii, Part iii, Part iv, Part v. When she’s not podcasting, she’s hiking, obviously.


Saina – our first official Pacific Crest Trail correspondent, (spoiler alert) she hiked the Pacific Crest Trail from the southern monument almost to the Sierras before an on-trail injury ended her 2015 thru-hiking attempt. You can check out her blog here.


Par 3 – recruited mid-trail, Par 3 is our second official Pacific Crest Trail correspondent. He attempted to thru-hike the Pacific Crest Trail in 2014 (when he met Kimchi) and settled for a 1000 miles under his belt. He’s back on the trail this year to do the entire thing.


Leave a Reply

  1. This podcast is awesome! My friend and I are hiking in Central Asia atm and are loving listening to your podcast on trains, buses amd planes in between hikes. Thanks Gizmo, Kimchi and Saina for all the work you’ve done. Lovin it!

  2. I just listened to episode 22 with Hakuna Matata, Blue Bird, Spicy Guy (and his twin siblings) and Sock Ninja. I decided to go back to the beginning and listen to more episodes. Keep up the great work.

    Walk, wherever you are!

  3. Just stumbled upon you on iTunes, and it’s great hearing your tales! Wish I was along for the trip, but I’m enjoying listening. Hope Kimchi didn’t get eaten by bears! (Just finished the third installment lol).

  4. Wow! How awesome it must be to be in the wild. I really love the idea of the thru hike and so appreciate this podcast for breaking it down to the nitty gritty. I love your intro and all the great interviews. I’m really inspired and a thru hike of the AT is now something I’m setting my sights on. Your podcast was the first glimpse of who really does this. Thanks!!!

  5. Enjoying the podcast immensely. I am looking forward to the 2016 adventures. Keep up the good work! Planing a section hike, inspired by your work.

  6. I’m totally hooked on your podcast! I’m usually an audiobook junky, but yours is the first podcast I have ever listened to. I’ve been benge listening to it since this last Friday, I’m on episode 22 now. I’ve been dreaming about doing the AT for years and listening to your podcast has inspired me to get off my butt and do it. I plan on starting to section hike it this October starting in Georgia on my 40th birthday. Thanks so much , and keep doing what your doing. Also, let Saina know I lover her laugh it makes me smile every time I hear it.

  7. Just finished the 2015 “ups and downs” episode. Way to make lemonade, ladies. Can’t wait to plow through last year’s podcasts and start listening to your 2016 feets. I mean, feeds. 😉

    I’ve dreamed of through hiking in the Sierra for decades. Now, I am planning. Thanks for providing the final nudge that I’ve apparently needed.


  8. Hey! Just discovered this podcast, and I love it! I’ve spent nine summer seasons working in various national parks and hiking/backpacking quite a bit, and it is so great to hear a podcast that relates to that lifestyle. Excellent work! I’m currently biking New Zealand and have been listening non-stop while I ride. Thank you again for a great podcast!


  9. Are y’all doing episodes for 2016??? I’m about to start at Walker Pass on the PCT May 25th and would love to have some sounds of the trail for my sounds on the trail!

  10. I absolutely enjoy every single episode of SOTT!!! It has been a wonderful inspiration, lots of great tips before my very first hike on the Finger Lakes Trail…! And now my life is “ruined” with trail magic and an urge to be outside!!! Thank you all for a great effort!!!! ✨?✨

  11. I discovered your podcast 2 days ago and now I’ve gone through 12 hours worth of content. You’ve made me miss the AT so much I’m planning a weekend trip to my favorite shelter at Long Branch. I’m going to try and get my friends addicted to the trail during the trip and will be telling everyone about your podcast. Thanks for everything!!!

  12. Yo just wanted to let you know this is a great podcast. I’ve done a cross country bike tour and have been wanting to get into a big thru hike. This podcast is only helping motivate me and giving me good advice for when I do decide to do it.

  13. Love the podcast even though I’m not a hiker:) I’d like to be a trail angel near markleeville/Kirkwood hwy 88…. When would be the best time of year. I assume there aren’t many hikers coming thru the sierras at this time… cheers!

  14. I have never been a podcast person until a week ago. I was told about a couple different podcasts so I went looking for more and stumbled onto this one. I haven’t even went back to the first podcast I started with! I started back at the very beginning so I wouldn’t miss anything. I am now on episode 29! I listen all day as I walk my mail route and dream of the day I can make it to the trails. We hike on vacations and on the weekends but dream of the long thru hikes. I really enjoy this podcast, keep up the good work!

  15. I’ve been listening to your podcast, getting psyched for a Colorado Trail throughhike this summer.

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  17. My biker friend, Barry Sutton, turned me on to this in 2019. So I started to listen in 2020, and listen daily now in 2021. Married, 58 years old, male, with 3 grown children. Prostate cancer survivor, who wants to be inspired by hiker stories