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Chris Walker

Chris Walker joined 5280 as an associate editor in June 2022, and contributes stories for both 5280 Magazine and As a rule, he’s always on the hunt for stories that make him go “wow.” Chasing those stories has taken him around the globe; Walker’s award-winning reporting has spanned four continents for publications including The Atlantic, Playboy, the Atavist, VICE, NPR, Rock and Ice, Backpacker, Forbes, and LA Weekly – among others. In 2020, he released the narrative podcast series The Syndicate, about skydiving drug smugglers, which peaked at #9 on Apple’s top show chart. Prior to that, Walker was a staff writer for Denver’s alternative-weekly, Westword, where he specialized in feature stories. Those ranged from investigative pieces about immigration detention and police surveillance to more adventurous dives into secret LSD laboratories and anti-government militias. More information about Walker’s work, including a list of journalism awards, can be found at

Articles By Chris Walker

A woman running on a mountain trail.

How Social Media is Complicating Verification of Fastest Known Times

Buzz Burrell, a pioneer of the Fastest Known Time movement, says the controversy last month surrounding Erin Ton’s (now disputed) FKT claim on Instagram is indicative of larger problems with social media when it comes to confirming athletes’ speed record claims.

Will You Commit to a Week Without Driving? Pedestrian Advocates Want You to Try.

During Denver’s first-ever Week Without Driving challenge, which takes place from October 2 to 8, Mile High City motorists are encouraged to test out different modes of transportation.

The Surprising Way Farming Shaped Gregory Alan Isakov’s New Album

Appaloosa Bones, the recently-released sixth album from Gregory Alan Isakov, took five years to produce because, in part, the folk artist was also busy running a farm. Isakov reveals here why tending to the soil is an essential part of his music.

A New Trapeze School in Westminster Teaches Coloradans to Soar

At Fly Mile High, the state’s only trapeze and aerial fitness school, you don’t have to be an acrobat to channel your inner Cirque du Soleil.

Rita the Rock Planter in the hills of Victor

Meet the Artist Behind the Breckenridge Troll (and New Victor Troll, Too)

Danish sculpture artist and sustainability activist Thomas Dambo built a giant wooden troll in Breckenridge in 2018. Now, he’s back with another fantasy creature hidden in the hills above Victor.

7 New Laws That Went Into Effect This August Every Coloradan Should Know About

State lawmakers passed more than 400 pieces of legislation earlier this year, many of which went into effect on August 7. Here, we break down the new laws that will impact you most.

How Hollywood’s Strikes Are Impacting Colorado’s Film and Television Industry

In some ways, Colorado is well-suited to weather the writers’ and actors’ strikes upending Hollywood—including how it already caters to indie films. But there’s also a lot outside of filmmakers’ control.

7 of the Best Social Bike Rides Around Metro Denver

Cycling doesn’t have to mean pedaling grueling stretches of pavement or conquering mountain trails with knobby tires. Organized social rides let you spin casually on your cruiser while dressed up as a zombie instead.

Is the National Cycling League and Its Denver Branded Team About to Revolutionize Bike Racing?

A Denverite has helped create a new competition to get Americans excited about professional cycling. Millions of dollars of investments are on the line as the new sports league aims to catch on with everyday sports fans, including a race at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park on August 13.

Could Functional Mushrooms Become the Next CBD?

It’s not just psychedelic shrooms that are catching on. Longmont-based Umbo is betting that fungi such as reishi and lion’s mane are the next big wellness trend.

5 Key Takeaways From the Largest Psychedelics Conference in History

The Psychedelic Science convention drew thousands to Denver for a celebrity-studded event that, more than any gathering before it, signified psychedelics’ entrance into the mainstream.

Into the Underbelly: Kiltro’s Second Album Is a Chilean Folk and Psychedelic Dream

The ascendant Denver band takes an opposite approach from its first album with the sophomore release, Underbelly. The results are moving.

Big Head Todd and the Monsters, Hazel Miller to Be Inducted Into Colorado Music Hall of Fame

The blues-rock quartet and 69-year-old R&B singer will receive the honor during a special event at Red Rocks on June 10. Ahead of their show-slash-ceremony, we asked the honorees to chart their vaunted careers.

A gray wolf in Washington state.

Can Wolves and Humans Peacefully Coexist?

Spokane-based reporter Eli Francovich’s newly released book, The Return of Wolves, explores the wolf-human divide and includes interviews with experts who can teach Coloradans what to expect when Canis lupus is reintroduced to the Centennial State.

A Trucker’s Kidnapping, a Suspicious Ransom, and a Colorado Family’s Perilous Quest for Justice

A community of freelance truckers known as transmigrantes transport used cars and other goods from the United States to Central America. When one of them from Colorado got kidnapped, an international investigation shifted uncomfortably close to home.

Colorado’s Oldest Photography Nonprofit Opens Brand New Headquarters

After decades of bouncing between locations, the Colorado Photographic Arts Center is shooting for stability by moving into a new home—and its timing is picture perfect.

A person walks past a Bitcoin crypto billboard.

Did Any Coloradans Pay Their State Income Taxes in Crypto?

This tax season, the Centennial State was the first to allow payments using cryptocurrencies. We found out who chose to cash in.

The Biggest Winners and Losers of the 2023 Denver Election

And we’re not just talking about which candidates are primed for the June runoff or which ballot measures passed. Who came out ahead—or got left behind—during Tuesday’s municipal election in Denver?

Gangbuster Chronicles a Denver DA Who Took on Mobsters, Conmen, and the KKK in 1920s

Philip Van Cise, the focus of a new nonfiction book, was as fearless as he was fascinating. So why, author Alan Prendergast wondered, has he been all but forgotten?

An Interfaith Climate Resilience Hub Has Taken Over an Old Church in Denver’s Northside

Shared Ground is a cooperative congregation of artists, entrepreneurs, gardeners, neighbors, and friends building an authentic community in the gentrifying West Highland neighborhood.

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