Backpacker Radio #212 | Mandy “Veggie” Redpath and Kevin “Karma” Savage on 30,000+ Trail Miles, the Low to High Route, Scottish National Trail, and Camino de Santiago

In today’s episode of Backpacker Radio presented by The Trek we are joined by Mandy “Veggie” Redpath and Kevin “Karma” Savage.  Combined, the pair have accumulated more than 30,000 trail miles, and an endless number of stories to boot.  We get a detailed breakdown comparing a few different variations of Camino de Santiago- Frances, del Norte, and Primativo, a serendipitous hitchhike which kick-started their romantic journey, their first shared trek on the Pacific Northwest Trail, the Hayduke Trail, Oregon Coast Trail, Low to High Route, Scottish National Trail, Grand Enchantment Trail, and more.  In a nutshell, if you like trail stories and beta, you will dig this chat.

We wrap the show with a Trek propaganda presented by today’s guest on why you should thru-hike trails other than the AT PCT or CDT, the triple crown of things that you eat when you’re sick, and the ways in which we align with the boomers.

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Interview with Mandy and Kevin

Time stamps & Questions

00:04:42 – QOTD: What makes you go, “I’m with the boomers on this one”?

00:06:18 – Reminders: Support us on Patreon!

00:07:42 – Introducing Veggie and Karma

00:08:27 – Give us your trail resumes

00:11:47 – We Love Love: tell us about how you met

00:15:40 – Tell us more about falling in love

00:18:08 – Tell us about the start of the Pacific Northwest Trail

00:19:50 – Was the spark there on the CDT?

00:21:56 – What did you do after the Pacific Northwest Trail?
00:23:56 – Tell us more about the various Camino routes you’ve done

00:27:46 – How much do the different routes overlap?

00:29:00 – Give us a pitch for each of the routes you did

00:32:11 – What did you use the trail guide for?

00:34:06 – Describe the water situation

00:35:00 – Describe the lodging

00:37:40 – What’s the language barrier like?

00:39:13 – What drew you to doing the Camino multiple times back to back?

00:42:02 – What did you do your thesis on?

00:43:00 – What type of injuries do people get?

00:44:51 – Give your best elevator pitch for the Camino

00:48:50 – Tell us about hiking the AT

00:51:00 – How did the AT compare to the Camino?

00:54:30 – What standout story do you have from the AT?

00:58:20 – Do you have any beginner mistake stories from the AT?

00:59:35 – Tell us about the Colorado Trail

01:05:37 – How did you get accustomed to dealing with afternoon thunderstorms on the CT?

01:06:14 – Tell us about the Pacific Crest Trail

01:08:09 – Describe PCTAZDKO

01:09:04 – Did the ice ax lessons come in handy?

01:11:00 – How did you navigate the PCT in 2012?

01:13:02 – Do you have any strong feelings about people’s dependence on Far Out?

01:15:03 – Have you ever needed a compass in addition to paper maps?

01:17:20 – Discussion about wildfires on the PCT

01:19:00 – Any standout stories from the CDT?

01:22:32 – How bound to the red line were you coming from the AT?

01:25:07 – How did the CDT last year compare to 2015?

01:27:15 – Why is the Wyoming Basin awesome?

01:29:35 – How did you first get into wildlife photography?

01:31:38 – Why do you like bird watching?

01:34:00 – Discussion about bird songs

01:37:21 – What is the best part about hiking with your partner?

01:39:30 – How do you help the other person when they’re having an off mental day?

01:43:58 – Any standout stories from the Hayduke?

01:46:00 – Zach and Chaunce have a fight

01:49:07 – What made you decide to do the Oregon Coast Trail?

01:51:55 – Tell us about the remoteness of the Oregon Coast Trail?

01:54:23 – How does the scenery change as you progress along the trail?

01:55:08 – What section of the trail would you hike again if you could?

01:56:12 – Tell us about the Kalalau Trail in Hawaii?

01:58:57 – Is the permit process difficult?

01:59:54 – Tell us about the Wonderland Trail

02:01:45 – Tell us about the Low to High Route

02:06:05 – Tell us about your scorpion encounters

02:08:40 – Has anyone gotten stung by a scorpion?

02:10:15 – What was the weather like on the Low to High Route?

02:13:01 – How did the AT compare going sobo instead of nobo?

02:14:35 – Any standout stories from the Arizona Trail in 2019?

02:16:04 – Tell us about the Scottish National Trail

02:18:18 – What is the Scottish take on Braveheart?

02:20:00 – Give us the pitch for the Scottish National Trail

02:21:32 – How often did you resupply?

02:22:00 – Tell us about being vegan and finding food options internationally

02:25:14 – Why did you decide to become vegan?

02:29:20 – Do you adhere to vegan gear and apparel as well?

02:30:25 – What is the most annoying thing about hiking with the other person?

02:33:14 – What’s your best gear idea?

02:33:52 – Tell us about the Grand Enchantment Trail

02:37:35 – Give us your top wildlife photography pictures you’ve taken

02:41:05 – How do you finance your hiking?

02:45:20 – Do you have any recommendations for making hiking a lifestyle?

02:47:10 – Are you pursuing any additional passions or careers?

02:49:05 – When are you getting engaged?


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