Kevin “The Animal” Koski on the 2,300-Mile Four Corners Loop (BPR #241)

In today’s episode of Backpacker Radio presented by The Trek we are joined by Kevin Koski, known on trail as “The Animal.” Kevin is the man behind the Four Corners Loop, a new 2,300 mile route circling the four corners region across Colorado, Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico. We learn all about this route and Kevin’s hike, including how he mapped it, his favorite stretches of trail, his favorite towns- which he saw as a standout feature of the trek, some very entertaining stories, and Kevin’s vision for this one day becoming a national scenic trail. Kevin is an engaging storyteller, you think you’ll really enjoy this one.

We wrap the show by teasing some news about a live podcast we’ll be putting on in Denver this spring, words we think would make pretty baby names if not for the meaning already attached to it, the triple crown of tips to improve sleep on trail, and a new cinnamon court on whether a listeners method of cleaning their hands with spitwater is sanitary.

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Interview with Kevin “the Animal” Koski

Time stamps & Questions

00:04:17 – Reminders: Live podcast in Denver is in the works, the hair wall launches TODAY, get exclusive content on Patreon, and sign up for BPR’s email list to get a free sticker!

00:08:04 – Introducing Kevin

00:10:27 – What’s your background in the outdoors?

00:14:26 – Tell us about your CDT hike in 2004

00:17:06 – What’s the story behind your trail name?

00:18:51 – What’s the most luxurious thing in your pack?

00:20:04 – What was the CDT like in 2004?

00:23:20 – What accounted for the big gap between the CDT and PCT?

00:26:08 – Tell us what made the PCT a “walking party”?

00:29:25 – How did you transition from the main trails to doing more isolated ones?

00:32:42 – How did you plan the specific Four Corners Loop route?

00:37:40 – Did you plan it to be a trail others could replicate?

00:39:30 – Tell us more details about the route

00:44:40 – Discussion about the Arizona portion of the route

00:46:00 – Discussion about the Utah portion of the route

00:48:30 – Discussion about the trail magic along the route

00:51:18 – What was the typical length of your water carries?

00:54:00 – Continuation of the Utah portion of the route

00:58:58 – Discussion about resupplies and pacing along the route

01:02:20 – Discussion about hiking into Colorado

01:05:10 – Story about almost falling off a cliff and rerouting the trail

01:06:30 – Discussion about the Colorado portion of the route

01:10:50 – Discussion about hiking from Salida to New Mexico

01:14:04 – How much of the trail was road walking?

01:14:30 – Discussion about the New Mexico portion of the route

01:17:33 – What was your typical water source in the dry sections?

01:20:17 – What’s the optimal weather window for this trail?

01:22:15 – Discussion about cell service along the route

01:23:20 – What was your favorite trail town in each state?

01:24:16 – Is the route well outlined enough for someone else to follow?

01:25:44 – What are some of your standout stories from hiking?

01:29:03 – What one week stretch of this trail would you relive or eliminate?

01:32:10 – Do you have tips for someone getting into route finding?

01:33:30 – How much of this route is on no trail at all?

01:34:24 – Tell us your best poop story

01:35:41 – Where can people go to keep up with you?


Trek Propaganda: Top Tents and Shelters on the Appalachian Trail: 2023 Thru-Hiker Survey by Kate Richard

QOTD: Which word do you think would make a pretty baby name if it didn’t mean what it meant?

Triple Crown of things that improve your sleep on trail

Cinnamon Court

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A super big thank you to our Chuck Norris Award winner(s) from Patreon: Alex & Misty with Navigators Crafting, Andrew, Austen McDaniel, Austin Ford, Brad & Blair (Thirteen Adventures), Brent Stenberg, Bryan Alsop, Christopher Marshburn, Coach from Marion Outdoors, Dayne, Derek Koch, Eric Casper, Erik Hofmann, Greg Knight, Greg McDaniel may he bring honor to his name, Ironhike endurance productions, Jason “Snail” Snailer, Liz Seger, Patrick Cianciolo, SPAM, Timothy Hahn, and Tracy “Trigger” Fawns.

A big thank you to our Cinnamon Connection Champions from Patreon: 12 Trees Farms, Dcnerdlet, Emily Galusha, Hailey Buckingham, Jeanie, Jeanne Latshaw, Jeff LaFranier, Joann Menzer, Keith Dobie Jr, Peter, and Ruth S.

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Comments 2

  • Jovani Johnston : Feb 20th

    Maintain optimal oral health with regular check-ups and cleanings at our Visalia practice.


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