The Modern West: Podcast

The Modern West is a monthly digest of news and cultural stories from the Mountain West. Through features, interviews, oral history, readings, and more, the podcast offers a snapshot of Western life. Saddle up on Apple Podcasts!

Supported in part by a grant from the Wyoming Cultural Trust Fund, a program of the Department of State Parks and Cultural Resources.

The Modern West 27: Dark Side Of The Moon

Sep 19, 2017
GreatAmericanEclipse.com

August’s total solar eclipse drew hundreds of thousands of people to Wyoming for a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

The Modern West 26: Going To The Movies

Aug 15, 2017

Wyoming is the setting for many a Western—even if the films aren’t shot on location. But even if big studios pass the state by, Wyomingites are making their own movies. 

The Modern West 25: Take A Trip On The Lincoln Highway

Jul 18, 2017
ERIN DORBIN

The Lincoln Highway was the first road to run coast-to-coast. Join us for a road trip with stops at some of the quirkiest roadside attractions along Wyoming’s stretch of the highway. 

The Modern West 24: The Native West, Part 2

Jun 20, 2017
Melodie Edwards

Part two of a two-part series on the Wind River Reservation, focusing on housing issues on the increasingly populated Wind River Reservation. 

The Modern West 23: The Native West, Part 1

May 16, 2017
Aaron Schrank

Part one of two-part series, featuring stories that take us into the heart of the Wind River Reservation.

The Modern West 22: Climate Change In A Fossil-Fuel State

Apr 20, 2017
Ken Koschnitzki

Wyoming’s economy revolves around energy production. But climate change raises questions about what role fossil fuels will play in the state’s future.

The Modern West 21: Wyoming's Immigrants And Refugees

Mar 23, 2017
Caroline Ballard

Wyoming is home to many immigrants, migrants, and former refugees. It is the only state, however, without a refugee resettlement program. But the current political climate has immigrants questioning their place in Wyoming and the U.S.

The Modern West 20: U.S. Citizens Incarcerated In The West

Feb 20, 2017
Discover Nikkei

It’s the 75th anniversary of an executive order that incarcerated thousands of Japanese Americans in internment camps across the nation. This episode includes first-hand accounts from this era. 

The Modern West 19: Women Run The West, Part 2

Jan 18, 2017
Caroline Ballard

In the final part of this series, we ask why Western women still lag in political power even though they got the right to vote almost 150 years ago?

The Modern West 18: A Look Back And A Look Ahead

Dec 20, 2016
whytoread.com

It’s a new literary edition, exploring Wyoming’s past, present, and future through conversations with authors. 

The Modern West 17: Western Coal On The Rocks

Nov 14, 2016
Stephanie Joyce

It’s been a tough year for the coal industry and the communities that depend on it. Can Wyoming adapt?

The Modern West 16: Women Run The West, Part 1

Oct 17, 2016
Jennifer Pemberton

Women are running, but they aren’t winning the West. Western women got the right to vote almost 150 years ago, so why do they still lag in political power?

The Modern West 15: Out In The West

Sep 19, 2016
Aaron Schrank

How equal is the “Equality State?” This month’s show explores progress and problems for Wyoming’s LGBT citizens.

The Modern West 14: Children Of The West

Aug 15, 2016
Melodie Edwards

  

The back-to-school episode. Young Wyomingites experience opportunities and challenges.

The Modern West 13: The Poets Of The Prairie

Jul 19, 2016
Anna Rader

Wyoming’s vast landscapes and rugged lifestyles offer plenty of poetic inspiration. 

The Modern West 12: Wide-Ranging Sounds On The Open Range

Jun 20, 2016

  

The old saw may be “We play both kinds of music, Country AND Western,” but melody in the mountains is more than guitars and campfires.

The Modern West 11: Eats And Drinks

May 16, 2016
Bob Beck

This month we’re putting specialty coffee, locally distilled spirits, and goat meat on the menu. Hear what’s happening in the Western kitchen. 

The Modern West 10: Writing In The West

Apr 19, 2016
Hannes Grobe

    

Western authors write about more than just cowboys. In this episode, we hear about writers exploring topics ranging from women’s issues to dying languages.

The Modern West 9: Western Art Beyond The Sunset

Mar 14, 2016
AARON WALLIS

Western art isn’t only paintings of horses and sunsets. This month, we’ll explore contemporary expressions of the Modern West. 

The Modern West 8: The Contemporary Black Western Experience

Feb 16, 2016
PALACE OF THE GOVERNORS PHOTO ARCHIVES 050884

In honor of Black History Month, we’ll hear about the highs and lows of the black experience in the Modern West. 

Melodie Edwards

Viewed from Interstate 80, the Red Desert appears to be an empty wasteland. But it’s actually home to diverse populations of desert animals, dramatic landscapes…and oil rigs.

The Modern West 6: Outdoor Recreation In The Wyoming Wild

Nov 16, 2015
Wikimedia Commons

On this episode, we’ll have adventures in the woods and follow trails in the snow in Wyoming’s great outdoors.

The Modern West 5: Wild Horses—A Western Icon In Trouble?

Oct 19, 2015
Dan Hayward

There's no cowboy without his trusty steed, so this month, we explore the role of horses in the Modern West.

The Modern West 4: The Good, The Bad, And The Endangered

Sep 14, 2015
Jeannie Stafford / USFWS

  

Wyoming’s human population is low—and its animal population is high. But that doesn’t mean they don’t clash. This month: endangered species in The Modern West.

The Modern West 3: Riding For Glory At Cheyenne Frontier Days

Aug 17, 2015
Bob Beck

Take a trip to the great Western extravaganza: Cheyenne Frontier Days. Meet bullfighters and carnival barkers, rodeo queens and pow wow dancers, and discover where history and legend meet.

The Modern West 2: Rodeos And Pow Wows

Jul 14, 2015

Cowboys and Indians are icons of the old West. But how do they live in the modern West? 

The Modern West 1: The Year Yellowstone Burned

Jun 30, 2015
Wikimedia Commons

  

In 1988, Yellowstone National Park was engulfed in flames. Hear what it was like—and whether an inferno like that could happen again.