Episode 9: Hiking Like a Boss With Kim Nelson

Bison in Yellowstone National park. Photo by Daniel Mayer.

Bison in Yellowstone National park. Photo by Daniel Mayer.

We here at XX, Will Travel have no qualms about jet-setting around the world, hopping on trains, hitting the road and traipsing around cities. But actually interacting with nature? That’s a whole other issue. Which is why we invited our friend Kim Nelson to sit down with us and talk about the wonders of camping and hiking. Her adventures were so inspiring, we very well might grab a backpack and set up a tent in the near future.

Interested? Listen to our latest episode to hear Kim’s tips and recommendations for getting started as hiker, keeping up with hygiene and facing strange encounters with bison–and living to tell the tale. You can find all this and much more below:


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Meet Kim Nelson, Hiker and Camper Extraordinaire!


This Wednesday, we’ll be dropping our 9th episode about hiking and camping in the wilderness. Since neither Kathy nor I are familiar with the intricacies of the big outdoors, we asked our friend Kim Nelson to sit down with us and talk about the joys of nature. She is a writer, avid camper/hiker/kayaker, retired roller derby skater, and Bloody Mary enthusiast. She is also a regular contributor and co-editor of the literary blog Drinkers with Writing Problems. According to a Buzzfeed quiz, her spirit animal is a dog wearing sunglasses. You can follow her on Twitter @ponytailup.

1) Where have you traveled?

Most of my travel has been throughout the United States; I love the outdoors, so I try to visit as many state and national parks, forests, and wilderness areas as possible. Within the states, I’ve been as far north as Denali National Park in Alaska and as south as Key West. Someday, I’d love to to camp abroad too.

2) What’s been your favorite trip so far?

10 days of exploring Alaska in an RV. We flew into Anchorage, drove up into Denali National Park, then traveled down the Kenai Peninsula to Seward, Sterling, and Soldotna. We kayaked in Resurrection Bay and took a boat ride into the Kenai Fjords. In one day, we saw a temperate rainforest, glaciers, and active volcanoes. And definitely my honeymoon! We did a road trip through South Dakota, Wyoming, and Montana, and camped out in the Badlands and the backcountry of Yellowstone, and stayed in an original homestead cabin just outside Glacier National Park.

3) What are 3 things you always take with you when you travel?

A journal, a camera, and a Chipette (for a tradition I have with my sisters reenacting our favorite childhood movie, Chipmunk Adventure).

4) What’s your next destination?

I’m about to spend 2 weeks backpacking through the Yosemite and Emigrant Wilderness Area with my husband. I can’t wait! I’m going to get so filthy and smelly.

5) Give us 1 reason why you travel.

Adventure! I’m not the kind of person that seeks out the relaxation and minimal effort of an all-inclusive resort type of vacation; I truly enjoy the pre-travel planning and research. I want to experience something completely different and see a brand new corner of the world.

Stay tuned for our next episode where Kim share her favorite camping tips, stories of animal encounters, and the benefits of a good a pee rag.