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The Year in Outdoors: Our Favorite Creators, YouTubers, and Podcasters of 2023

There’s an entire world of online content creators in the outdoor sphere. Some are fun, some are serious. Some are safety and gear-oriented, some are more about pushing yourself and growing as a person. No matter what your flavor is, there’s something for everybody. Depending on your favorite outdoor activities, you can zero in on a specific media creator for you. Climbing? There’s a podcast for that. Running? Alpinist? There’s a Youtube channel for that. Snowboarder? There’s a little girl in a tutu out there who is absolutely 10 times better than you. Here’s Outdoors.com’s favorite outdoor content creators of 2023.

Podcast: The Adventure Sports Podcast

For great interviews with people doing the most incredible stuff in Adventure Sports, this is the podcast for you. With a huge backlog of episodes, you could spend a lot of time diving into their content. There’s such a wide variety, too, that there’s something for everyone. Would you rather hear from Michael Neal who climbed Mt. Everest from sea level? Or from Allan Karl, who traveled China, Europe, and Iceland by motorcycle? Join host Mason Gravley for exciting interview, hair-raising tales, and an all-around good time.

Creator: National Park Service

The National Park Service’s X (formerly Twitter) account is such a great place for information, beautiful natural imagery, and most importantly, absolutely unhinged tweets and captions. They offer invaluable advice, such as, “To avoid crowds, visit areas that are less crowded.” Or, “If you come across a bear, never push a slower friend down…even if you feel the friendship has run its course.” With advice like this, you should feel more than prepared to step out into our nation’s beautiful National Parks. Believe it or not, this iconic account is actually a one-man show. Matt Turner is the mastermind behind this particular brand of outdoor content, and we can’t thank him enough.

Youtuber: Elina Osborne

Not long ago, Elina had a documentary about her PCT thru-hike go viral. Since then, she’s continued thru-hiking and making top-tier video content about her experiences. Filmmakers of Elina’s caliber are hard to come by. Her videos have professional production quality, stunning cinematography, and beautiful narrative. They are superb, the videographer’s equivalent to slow fashion, designer quality. Last year found her on Te Araroa, New Zealand’s long trail, and her releases this year have covered her experience on the Hayduke. The Hayduke, more of a route than an official trail, is a one-of-a-kind experience. If care and attention is love, Elina is surely showing through her meticulous filmmaking the love she has for that part of America.

Podcast: Dirtbag Diaries

If you’re looking for a podcast with high production value, fantastic storytelling, and the vibe of your best hiker trash, ski bum friends, here it is. It’s not like you’ll quite feel like you’re sleeping in the dirt listening to this podcast, but it’s really nice to have a podcast that feels generally in touch with our actual outdoor culture. The main appeal of this podcast is grounded, high-quality storytelling. They choose compelling stories to feature, and they take good care of those stories. They have a great confluence of adventure narratives and the human side of things. Think NPR-quality storytelling, but outdoors-focused and dirtbag-centered.

Creators: Chasing Sage

Chasing Sage has their highest number of followers on TikTok, but they have an Instagram and a Youtube presence as well. No matter where you’re seeing this family and this absolutely fearless kid, it’s a joy to watch. Not only does Sage say the darndest things, she absolutely rips it down the slopes. At 5 years old, Sage has been donning the coolest outfits and getting outlandishly good at snowboarding over the last couple years. It’s awesome to see Sage do her thing, but it’s even cooler to see her learn and challenge herself in the snow. Sometimes skiing and snowboarding can be scary, but she follows her parents’ lead and manages to do Black Diamond-level challenges. This family is a joy to watch.

Youtuber: Dave Searle

Dave Searle is a British IMFGA mountain guide based in Chamonix, France. He’s a qualified mountain guide for just about any terrain in the world. Alongside incredible natural vistas and videography, he also offers helpful coaching, advice, and gear breakdowns. He’s well-versed in equipment and how to properly use it. If you’re the type to get into the techy side of skiing, climbing, paragliding and more, this is a great channel to check out.

Podcast: Freetrail Podcast

When looking for a podcast that covers a special interest of yours, you run into one of two options: an amateur interviewing an expert or two experts talking freely. Freetrail is the latter option. Host Dylan Bowman has had a successful ultrarunning career himself, being a Red Bull runner with some notable victories under his belt. He gets into it with other notable ultrarunning personalities, such as Courtney Dauwalter and Lucy Bartholomew. For a podcast with its finger on the beat of ultrarunning and the outdoor industry in general, this is our pick.

Creator: Pattie Gonia

Drag queen, environmental activist, and community organizer Pattie Gonia is no stranger to the news. They are often slaying online in some way or just generally doing the most for good causes. This year, Pattie teamed up with Ahtna Athabascan and Iñupiaq songwriter, Quinn Christopherson, and world-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma to release a hit single called “Won’t Give Up.” The song focuses on connection, perseverance, and hope in the face of climate change. It received widespread coverage and acclaim. Most recently, Pattie created a free resource for Queer folks looking for jobs in the outdoor industry.

Youtuber: Outdoor Boys

These guys seem to pop up everywhere. If you’re looking for a channel that sits at the intersection of family, outdoor survival, and crazy adventures, this is the one for you. They enjoy “foraging, camping, campfire cooking, fossil hunting, magnet fishing, metal detecting, goofing around,” and whatever else they may feel like doing. They enjoy challenging themselves in Alaska, Travel and Adventure, and the sickest Nerf wars you ever did see.

Podcast: Evokecast

The official podcast of the Evoke Endurance collective, Evokecast focuses in on key information for mountain sports. Based in education, Evoke is a great asset in helping athletes succeed in their goals. Coach Scott Johnston himself, the host, is a great resource in and of himself. An accomplished skier, climber, and mountaineer, he is well-versed in a mentorship role. His life experience makes for quality education based on firsthand experience. When you add in the interviews he holds with fellow experts, this podcast becomes an invaluable resource.

Creator: Melanin Basecamp

Danielle Williams founded Melanin Basecamp in 2016 and Diversify Outdoors in 2018. She did so with the intention of increasing ethnic minority and LGBTQ+ participation in the outdoors. What she found in the process, though, was that there were already people from these minority groups participating in every part of outdoor culture. The mission of Melanin Basecamp, then, became highlighting Black people, Indigenous people, Queer folks and any people of color out there doing the thing. They’re telling vital stories and increasing visibility with every post.

Youtuber: HowNOT2

This is a great podcast for gearheads. Focusing on climbing, slacklife, canyoneering, caving, and more, this is a great resource for any questions about equipment. They’re in-depth, they have a lot of know-how, and besides being thorough, they’re fun. For people trying to get really in-depth, they offer courses on their website as well. If you’re an extreme sport amateur or enthusiast, this is a great resource for you. 

Podcast: The Enormocast

For a podcast that loves climbing as much as you do, this is the one. We all know climbers love talking beta, and this podcast sure reflects that. Tuning into this is also a great way to stay abreast of the climbing world. Interviews range from topics and techniques in the world of climbing to accounts of incredible, hair-raising adventures. Host Chris Kalous is clearly passionate, and connects easily with his guests. We all know a climber who’s partner or friends just wish they would stop talking about climbing for once, and this is the podcast for them. Dive deep, get stoked, and you won’t be disappointed.

Creator: Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation

Following in the footsteps of Matt Turner of the NPS, the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation’s X account is a similarly unhinged, enjoyable follow. Perhaps because they have less national visibility, they can get a little wackier in their posts. One contest, surely official, went like this: “If this gets 1M likes our boss will let us name her baby ‘Armadillo.’ Twitter do your thing.” Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like that one worked out. Regardless, if you’re looking for another dose of solid outdoors info mixed in with wild humor and advice, this is a great account to check out.

Youtuber: Brave Wilderness

Look into the big, wild world around you. Get up close and personal with animal encounters with this Youtube channel full of all-stars. Coyote Peterson, Mark Vins and Mario Aldecoa take you along with them on exciting, educational experiences. From wolves to sea turtles, from rattlesnakes to rhinos, this channel has something for everybody. Get into the “Venom Files” for a taste of what could really, seriously mess you up outdoors. As if the gorillas weren’t dangerous enough. Coyote Peterson’s Wild Field Trip is a great resource for kids, too, making this channel a great option for the whole family.

Podcast: Outside Voices

This podcast centers real stories in the outdoors from people who are classically underrepresented out there. They’re working to “redefine outdoorsy.” Most recently, they launched a new bi-monthly roundtable conversation among the hosts called “Walkie Talkies.” As a podcast, they are focused on unlearning many of the things we’ve been taught about the outdoors in order to reconnect to lost, ancestral knowledge and healing. In pursuing ethical storytelling, they work hard to make sure that all those that join them to stare shories are well-respected and represented in the way they want to be.

Creators: Homegrown Handgathered

Ever thought about trying subsistence living? Want to try living off the land as much as possible? Jordan and Silvan of Home Grown Hand Gathered are your one stop shop. They have been trying in earnest to grow and forage as much of the food that they eat as possible. They’ve been doing it for years, and they’ve gotten really good at it. They cite a lot of their sources, too, doing their best to strip away the air of inaccessibility that living like this can have. It’s amazing what you can do by reading and learning some Indigenous know-how. Check them out for tips on gardening, foraging, and cooking with local ingredients. 

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