9 Podcasts to listen to while you’re ‘social distancing’

Trail Runner. Photo Credit: Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

With COVID-19 putting a bit more space between us than usual, you may be feeling a bit lonely. My recommendation to pass the time – podcasts!

Podcasts range from strictly educational to purely entertainment, and everything in between, often feeling more like listening to an old friend than an aging recording. My first recommendation is that you think of a topic that you enjoy and search for a podcast on that. With thousands of podcasts available for free, you’re bound to find something on nearly anything.

That being said, here are a few of my favorites, old and new:

Editor’s Note: Podcasts can be found on the Apple Podcasts app, the Google Play store, and Spotify, among a number of other places. Listener discretion is advised.

1. Criminal

Not the typical true crime show, each episode of Criminal details a different crime or criminal that’s odd or bizarre in one way or another. Hear about the counterfeiting of expensive whiskey, learn about the man living in the attic, discover how Steamboat Springs made a major contribution to forensic science, and more. Note that some of these episodes are creepy and some feature strong tones of violent crime. It’s easy to pick and choose with more than 100 episodes, but listener discretion is advised.

2. Serial, season 1

A podcasting classic, season one of Serial follows the story of a man convicted of a violent murder that he claims he didn’t commit. Follow Sarah Koenig and her crew as they dig for answers, interview people involved, and talk to the man himself. This podcast is particularly interesting because it’s several years old, which means events have transpired following the podcast related to the case. As you might expect, listener discretion advised.

3. Stuff You Should Know

Stuff You Should Know, also called SYSK, is one of those podcasts that has something for everyone. There are more than 1,400 episodes and they all cover a specific topic including anything from “Was there a real King Arthur” to “How grass works.” Want to learn about a few engineering topics, they’ve got a show on it. Curious about Jack the Ripper? There’s a show on that, too. Listener discretion advised for some episodes.

4. Global News Podcast

A BBC production, the Global News Podcast does a nice job of covering news around the entire planet. When it feels like all of American media is focusing on one topic, this show will keep you up-to-date on international happenings you might otherwise miss.

5. How I Built This

How I Built This dives into the story behind well-known and successful companies you’ve probably heard of already, from Stacy’s Pita Chips to 5-Hour Energy. Each episode is unique and interesting in its own way, always teaching me something new.

A few other shows I like:

Up and Vanished: (Listener discretion advised) This series looks at the different cases of people that have disappeared, including one case that takes listeners to Crestone, Colorado. Each case lasts an entire season. Listener discretion advised.

Motley Fool Money: This podcast is all about current news and hot topics in the financial world, presented in a conversation and lighthearted way.

Colorado Cold Case: The Colorado Springs Gazette covers locally infamous cold cases, including the case of Tim Watkins – a mountain biker found shot and buried trailside. Listener discretion is advised.

The OutThere Colorado Podcast: Obviously I have to plug my own show. Give it a listen if you’re curious about Colorado. New episodes are coming soon.

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