Backpacker Radio #158 | Kathryn Miles on Attempting to Solve the Shenandoah Murders
In today’s episode of Backpacker Radio presented by The Trek brought to you by RTIC, we are joined by Kathryn Miles. Kathryn is an award-winning journalist, science writer, and the author of five books, most recently “Trailed: One Woman’s Quest to Solve the Shenandoah Murders”, which is the focus of today’s chat. We go deep on everything to do with this case, including the gruesome details of the murders, why this was not a random act of violence, why this case has yet to be solved, who Kathryn believes to be the perpetrator, and much more. A warning to listeners, this one goes into some pretty horrific details on the subjects of sexual assault and murder. If either of these subjects are especially triggering to you, we encourage you to skip ahead to the segments for this one.
We then pivot from rape and murder to the triple crown of ice cream toppings. Typical backpacker radio stuff.
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Interview with Kathryn Miles
- Kathryn Miles Website
- Kathryn’s Instagram
- Buy Trailed: One Woman’s Quest to Solve the Shenandoah Murders or at your local bookstore
Time stamps & Questions
00:05:23 – QOTD: How was your day today?
00:11:37 – Introducing Kathryn Miles
00:12:12 – What’s your hiking background?
00:12:53 – Anything else you want to add about the hiker designations?
00:13:52 – Can you tell us about your journalism career?
00:15:23 – Did you always know ‘Trailed: One Woman’s Quest to Solve the Shenandoah Murders’ was going to become a book?
00:17:01 – Can you give an overview of the case?
00:19:11 – What were the challenges with writing this?
00:21:36 – Do you eventually develop thicker skin towards these stories?
00:22:45 – Going into this project, were you afraid of the side effects others experienced after digging into similar stories?
00:24:08 – Did you have a background or past interest in true crime?
00:25:44 – When you’re researching something like this, where do you start?
00:27:40 – How do you focus on the killer when you don’t know the killer?
00:29:44 – Amateur sleuthing
00:30:32 – Do you worry about bringing a new potential killer into the story?
00:32:45 – Did you lose your love for the outdoors and hiking after writing the book?
00:35:12 – Did you end up viewing the photos?
00:36:40 – Could you share some more details around this being a premeditated murder?
00:39:58 – What will readers learn through the book that they wouldn’t through the police reports?
00:42:01 – What were some of the most interesting things you found in the reports?
00:47:37 – Can you speak to the general safety of the trails?
00:50:37 – Do you think there’s anything nefarious with that?
00:53:15 – Are park rangers part of a union?
00:54:01 – Tell us more about the culture clash in the involved parties
00:55:59 – Were there any thru-hiking suspects?
00:56:48 – Did you ever find out why he had a bloody knife?
00:58:18 – Can you tell us more about the second character?
01:00:24 – What were the similarities between the two murders?
01:01:01 – Was there a purpose to wrapping a body in a sleeping bag?
01:02:53 – How do they determine who’s vibrator it was?
01:03:52 – What did he do to modify it?
01:05:54 – Is there any scenario in which the murderer wants to be caught?
01:08:59 – What’s your personal opinion on who the killer is?
01:10:10 – What is Darrell Rice doing these days?
01:11:11 – Did you try to reach out to Darrell Rice?
01:12:12 – Is he still missing?
01:13:30 – What convinced them it was Darrell Rice?
01:16:28 – What do you think it will take for the FBI to pick up this case again?
01:16:53 – Where should phone calls and letters be sent?
01:17:39 – What are the odds that the person who did it, isn’t either of the two focused on in the book?
01:18:45 – How do you see the Shenandoah murders fitting into a culture of misogyny?
01:20:34 – Could you tell us more about your research into women being excluded from the outdoors?
01:22:18 – How do you instill confidence into those still out hiking near the Shenandoah?
01:24:26 – How was it hiking the AT during that time?
01:25:14 – How did it change the vibe of the trail?
01:26:49 – Do you think it would have impacted the outcome if the women were in a more public camping area?
01:28:21 – Are there other documented crimes specifically against non-binary hikers on trail?
01:30:22 – Is there any research on non-binary hiker crimes?
01:32:01 – Where should people get your book?
01:32:30 – Any projects in the pipeline we should know about?
01:33:37 – Wrap Up
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