Eat the Rainbow! With the RRG Farmers Market Co-Founders!

Are you all ready for episode 2.0 with the RRG Farmers Market?! Exciting news is in store for the Market’s 3RD SEASON!! This week’s episode features special guests, Jann, Kevin, (and Aster), to talk about all things Red River Gorge Farmer’s Market.
Darren and Rachel recorded with Jann and Kevin a few years ago before the market’s first opening season, and it was so cool to get to sit back down and chat about how far the market has come since then, and where it is going. 

Some cool new things for this season:
First and foremost, the market has expanded to offer 2 market days per week! Wednesday markets are held at the Slade Welcome Center (the same place they have been in years past) and is 5-7PM. Saturday markets are now being held at Natural Bridge State Resort Park in the Skylift parking area from 10AM-2PM! There are returning vendors and new faces and we are excited for all of it. 
There are also several cool programs kicking off this season, including Kids Carrot Cash! Kids that are visiting the market will be given “Carrot Cash” vouchers that they can then use as money to spend with the local farmers. Other programs that are coming are a Walking Program with market vouchers, and a pilot program with USDA called VegU where there will be 10-minute educational sessions to learn all about a certain fruit or vegetable. The RRG Farmers Market was 1 in 3 markets across the entire country to be picked for this program, so that is a big deal!! 

To learn more about all of the awesome programs happening and to find general information about the RRG Farmers Market, you can visit their website
To donate to the market, you can hit the donate link on their website home page, or follow this direct link here
To stay up to date on everything happening and get information on what vendors to expect on each market day, be sure to follow their socials! Instagram @rrgfarmersmarket and Facebook Red River Gorge Farmers Market.

Psst – Darren and Rachel (and Pippin) will be set up at the Memorial Day Weekend Market on Saturday May 27th! Come say hi! 

Connections: Featuring Jen & Jordan of RRG Experiences

A long-awaited episode of Tread the Red featuring special guests, Jen Meunier & Jordan Byrnes, of Red River Gorge Experiences!!
Meet JEN (Founder, Guide, and Experience Facilitator of RRG Experiences): With her Appalachian roots (specifically eastern Kentucky and western Pennsylvania), Jen immediately fell in love with the Red River Gorge of Kentucky more than 15 years ago. Jen’s outdoor recreation experience began with her rural upbringing and family members who worked for the US Forest Service who taught her trail navigation at an early age. She has honed those skills along with environmental education, leave no trace training ethics, team building facilitation, event planning and hospitality management. The rich biodiversity of the plants and animals, the sandstone arches and cliffs, the waterways and the wonderful people who are the fabric of the Red River Gorge community is what make Kentucky home for Jen. Her desire to share the beauty and opportunities in the outdoors with others through inclusive and engaging experiences was the catalyst for the launch of Red River Gorge Experiences.
Meet JORDAN (Guide & Experience Facilitator of RRG Experiences): Jordan was born and raised in Kentucky. He has been visiting Red River Gorge for 25 years and living there for the last 8 years. He loves Kentucky so much he thru-hiked the 343 mile Sheltowee Trace National Recreation Trail twice! He also has experience hiking and backpacking countless other trails in Kentucky and all over the world! He brings a rich variety of experience to RRG Experiences including: working as a wilderness therapy guide, leading geology hikes, teaching backpacking and bushcraft lessons, teaching at the Red Oaks Forest School, and more!
RRG Experiences also is comprised of 2 other guides/experience facilitators, Sherry and Liana (maybe we’ll get to have them on a future episode of the pod!)

Red River Gorge Experiences is a woman owned hiking guide and trip planning service committed to getting all people outdoors. Whether through a guided hike away from the crowds, or their trip planning service to help you maximize your time in Kentucky’s Red River Gorge, they are here for you!
They specialize in guided hikes for individuals and small groups to experience transformative moments in nature and cultivate a sense of place and belonging in the outdoors. Their guided hikes are led on private property and in nature preserves in the Red River Gorge region.

Interested in booking a trip with RRG Experiences?
Check out their website,, contact them by email at, or by phone at (859)379-8328!

Surf Man Miguel

Another Darren & Rachel Fun-Time Adventure-Time Gorge-Time episode! We’re sorry we’ve been so sporadic in recording and uploading new podcast episodes for y’all lately – we are in a transitional period of our lives and finding good spots to record has been a struggle! BUT – we have a good one for you this time! We talk about an arch that has never been featured on the podcast yet – Rango Arch!!

Overall, we briefly talk about Powder Mill Branch Trail to Blackburn Rock Overlook (including Powder Mill and Wolf Pen Arches), and then our hike to Rango Arch! We have a backlog of stuff to talk about, so as soon as we can record again, we’ve got more. 😉

Things happening!
April 15th – RIAD (Red in a Day)
April 21-22 – 2023 Herpetology Weekend! Woohoo!!

We are coming up on the opening weekend of the Red River Gorge Farmers Market as well! All things good happening here in the Red. 😀

Surprise!! A Tread the Red Compilation

YOU ALL. Darren SURPRISED me with this episode he recorded/compiled on his own for my 31st birthday! He said he wanted to both make something that was just a mix of a bunch of our random funny side conversations, but also as a way to show how far Tread the Red has come over the years. I can’t even imagine the time it took to listen through previous episodes and pull out all of these conversations – it was the best gift ever!!
Even though this is not our “usual” episode, I still wanted to share it because I thought some of ya’ll might get a kick out of it too (and if you are new here, this is a good preview of the chaotic mess that is Tread the Red) 😉

Follow us for Red River Gorge information and hiking inspiration! Instagram and TikTok @tread_the_red, or check out the website, You can visit my shop on there and keep an eye out for new shirt preorders that are in the works!

Thank you for listening and please subscribe, rate, and review if you listen and like the podcast! ❤

Guest Feature: Red Oaks Forest School

Hi and welcome to Tread the Red – a Red River Gorge Podcast! This episode features a very special guest – Tina Brouwer, Director of Red Oaks Forest School!
You can listen to learn all about Red Oaks, all that they are doing, and how you can get involved! Their mission is “…to foster a deep and lasting connection to nature and community through exploration, education, and play.” Be sure to check out their website (linked above) and you can also check them out on Instagram @redoaks_explorers and Facebook at Red Oaks Forest School.
Also, consider signing up to participate in their Zugunruhe event that invites everyone “to listen to their personal inner stirring and make a commitment to spend time in nature this spring by going on their own journey.” Registration is open and the event kicks off on the Vernal Equinox on March 20th!
You can donate to support their organization through their website! I will also be hosting a fundraiser on my Instagram for Red Oaks during the remainder of March!

Thank you so much for listening and hope everyone gets to plan some outdoors time for yourself! ⍋⋆

Not A Science Podcast

Hi and welcome to Tread the Red!! Thank you for being here 😉
We recorded this one a few weeks ago and Rachel is just now uploading it, but ALAS – we are talking about some cool trails during this episode!

Trails Featured:
* Jailhouse Rock Trail – we’ve covered it before and we’re covering it again because it is really cool and has some premium overlooks. It also has a *little* of a rock scrambly section to keep things fun, but we navigated it with two medium-sized dogs during this trip.
* Star Gap Trail featuring Star Gap Arch & Sky View Arch – This is the first time we have ever covered Sky View Arch on the podcast because it was the first time Darren and Rachel hiked to it! Some things to note about this side excursion off of Star Gap Trail: A)The soil is loose and non-compacted on the trail to the arch. This means that you should save this trip for dry weather. B) Watch how much weight you are placing on the rhododendrons while executing the initial “scramble” – their roots help stabilize the soil, so we don’t want to be tearing them out on our to-and-from trips to this arch. 😉 C) Always always always plan ahead and prepare before hiking – especially unofficial hikes! Make sure you are prioritizing safety and Leave No Trace principles. 🙂

We also have a little BONUS section at the end of this episode where we do a “Tread the Red ELSEWHERE” segment: As in, some hikes in the Cumberland Falls region of Kentucky! I know they aren’t the Gorge, but it’s still some cool hiking in the proximity that we think y’all will like to hear about and possibly go to check out.

You can follow Tread the Red on Instagram/TikTok @tread_the_red and check out our website! You’ll find a link to our shop on the website with neat things to support the Podcast and general work we do putting together information for the RRG such as stickers, shirts, dog bandanas, and postcards! Go check it out. 🙂

As always, thanks for listening and gooooodbyyeeee.

Bogus Booty

What is your ideal fantasy situation of living in the RRG? Like, if you could live within the forest? For Rachel, it involves something with huge trees with ornate doors carved into the bottom and the inside is filled with moss and ferns and pretty glass bottles with potions and plants…and then a whole treehouse community too, and more?!! Anyway, just THINKING.
Moving on, welcome to Tread the Red Podcast! A podcast all about the Red River Gorge in KY (and some banter, because we know half of y’all are only here for that. HAH)
We’ve got some new trails to cover on this episode! We finally checked out Military Wall & Left Flank trails and they DID. NOT. DISAPPOINT. Lets just say, if you are hiking Rough Trail along the Martin’s Fork area, don’t pass these up! They are super short hikes and lead to some really cool areas! Technically, climbing walls, but like, some super cool stuff to hike around and check out too.
Overall, trails covered in this episode:
* Military Wall Trail
* Left Flank Trail
* Whistling Arch Trail
* Angel Windows Trail
* Sky Bridge Trail

Also, some updates on the RRG area:
* The RRG Farmers Market Vendor Applications are currently OPEN until March 15th! If you are interested in vending, get yours filled out by heading over to their website.
* More RRG Farmers Market news! This year there will be TWO market locations! One on Wednesdays at the Slade Welcome Center from 5-7PM and one on Saturdays at Natural Bridge (the lawn area near the gift shop/skylift parking lot) from 10AM-2PM. Opening day will be Saturday, May 6th, so mark your calendars!

Tread the Red Updates:
* We now have our shop up and running again and you can check it out HERE. Any proceeds made through our products goes towards funding Tread the Red (the podcast, the trail information, etc. etc.!) And we REALLY appreciate everyone who contributes by buying some cool stuff and/or by listening to the podcast and supporting us on social media! Y’all are awesome.

Happy hiking!!

Smokey the Bear is a Zaddy

Hi and welcome to the chaotic space of Tread the Red. 😉
This is kind of a unique episode because the first half covers the Red River Gorge (per usual) and THEN we do something SCANDALOUS and cover somewhere else during the second half. Don’t worry, we are still a Red River Gorge Podcast, but we thought some of our listeners might like to hear what hikes we did while visiting North Carolina (+ an extra in KY that isn’t RRG)!
During this episode we cover:
* The Hive – (Your Friendly Neighborhood Cult) + Smirk
* QA Trivia at Skybridge Station
* Some cool spots at The Hive (a rock shelter and nifty arch)
* Rocky Branch Overlook Trails
* Privy Trail

*Black Mountain/Montreat: Lookout Trail
*Gorges State Park/Pisgah National Forest: Rainbow Falls/Turtleback Falls Trail
*DuPont State Recreational Forest: High Falls, Triple Falls, & Hooker Falls + covered bridge Trail

A Kentucky EXTRA (Not RRG):
* Pine Mountain State Resort Park: Chain Rock Trail

First Time at the Gorge?

I originally made this video as a response to someone on TikTok who asked for hike recommendations as a first time visitor to the RRG, but I wanted to share on the Tread the Red website as well! I know how daunting planning a trip in a new area can be, and with SO MANY trails to pick from, I wanted to highlight a handful to check out.

1) Take a drive through the Nada Tunnel (pronounced “Nay-duh”) – I know, this isn’t a trail, but it is known as “The Gateway to the Gorge”, so it’s a must for a first timer to experience! This 900 ft long tunnel was made by blasting through solid sandstone, and used to function as a railroad tunnel.
2) Auxier Ridge Trail – This is an out-and-back trail (about 4.2 miles round trip) and features some of the best views of the RRG! The second half of this hike is exposed ridge-walks with iconic landmarks surrounding you (such as Haystack Rock, Ravens Rock, Double Arch across the way, and Courthouse Rock at the end). You can also combine other trails with Auxier Ridge Trail to make a longer loop or balloon loop!
3) Rock Bridge Trail – This is a 1.5 mile loop trail and features the iconic “Creation Falls” and “Rock Bridge”. Rock Bridge is the only sandstone arch that spans water along an official trail in the RRG! Despite some elevation change (hiking down on the way in and then back up on the way out), this trail is very popular among all age groups and kids and dogs will LOVE the sandy “beach” area next to the waterfall!
4) Grays Arch – The names of the trails in the official trail system are a little confusing, but just know you have to take Grays Arch Trail for 0.25 miles until its intersection with Rough Trail, and then you branch right/straight ahead and stay on Rough Trail until you take the prominent “side” trail to the underside of Grays Arch. If you hike in to see the arch and then turn around and hike back out, it is about 2.25 miles round trip. You can use Rough Trail and some others in the vicinity to make a decent length loop trail though! While this one can be a little difficult for some because of the elevation gain on the way back out, it is still a super popular spot that most people check out. Just make sure to pack enough water and snacks and hike at your own pace! The arch itself is HUGE, measuring 50 ft tall and 80 ft wide.
5) Skybridge Trail – This is a 0.68 mile loop trail and features Skybridge arch! This is an awesome arch that features cool views from the top and an impressive underside! My favorite is to save this hike for around sunset because the underside of the arch lights up with the setting sun rays! It is really magical. I would not rate this one as difficult by a long stretch, but it does have some metal stairs you have to tackle on the way in or way out. Just a heads up if you have a bigger dog (that you can’t just scoop up and carry) that dislikes them because they are the metal slat stairs and some dogs have problems climbing them with their paws!
6) Chimney Top Overlook Trail – This is a super short and more easily accessible overlook trail in the Gorge! It is only about 0.5 miles round trip (out-and-back) and at least half of that is paved. This overlook is PREMIUM. You can see Half Moon, Hanson’s Point, Pinch-em-Tight Gap + Revenuer’s Rock, Ravens Rock (it is way in the distance and I didn’t notice you could see it until I got new contacts – haha), and Cloud Splitter! Also, the Red River is winding down below you as well. This one is also easy to check out close to sunset. Just make sure you bring headlamps or flashlights if you think you’ll be there after dark!

I’m including a few “unmarked”/unofficial RRG trails to this list as well:
1) Copperas Falls Trail – This is about 3.52 miles round trip out-and-back trail and features the beautiful Copperas Falls. The trail pretty much winds back and forth following along Copperas Creek for the most part and ends at this waterfall. Even though this trail has gotten very popular, it still feels more secluded and “off the beaten path”.
2.) Hanson’s Point Trail – To reach Hanson’s Point, you have to hike Pinch-em-Tight until you turn left onto Rough Trail and then reach the side trail turn-off for Hanson’s Point before you make a hard left and begin descending downhill. Overall, out-and-back, it is about 5.5 miles. This trail is not super difficult and the views you get from Hanson’s Point are unmatched! You can get a new perspective of Chimney Top Overlook (straight across the way), and several of the other landmarks that you could also see from Chimney Top. If the trees aren’t too thick, you can usually see the gravel parking lot for the Sheltowee Trace Suspension Bridge below as well! This is also a very popular spot for backpackers because there are several large campsite areas along the way.

If you want more specific information on any of the trails listed, just check out my Trails of the Red section on my website! I also have them linked above as well. I also want to mention that you can always stop at the Gladie Visitor Center to pick up maps and chat with the folks there about the RRG official trail system!