Exploring Chris Mccandless: a Brief Summary of His Journey

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About this sample

About this sample


Words: 479 |

Page: 1|

3 min read

Published: Jun 13, 2024

Words: 479|Page: 1|3 min read

Published: Jun 13, 2024

Table of contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Body Paragraph
  3. Conclusion


Christopher Johnson McCandless, who later adopted the name "Alexander Supertramp," has fascinated and perplexed many through his life story, which was immortalized in Jon Krakauer's book "Into the Wild." McCandless's journey from a promising young graduate to a wanderer who perished in the Alaskan wilderness has been the subject of extensive analysis and debate. This essay aims to provide a brief summary of McCandless's life, focusing on his motivations, experiences, and the ultimate consequences of his choices. By examining his journey, we can gain insights into the complex interplay between youthful idealism, existential quests, and the harsh realities of nature.

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Body Paragraph

Chris McCandless was born on February 12, 1968, in El Segundo, California, into a relatively affluent family. His early life was marked by academic excellence and a strong sense of independence. After graduating from Emory University in 1990, McCandless chose to sever ties with his family and societal expectations. He donated his savings to charity, abandoned his car, and embarked on a journey across America, seeking a life of simplicity and self-sufficiency. His actions were driven by a desire to escape what he saw as the materialism and hypocrisy of modern society.

During his travels, McCandless adopted the moniker "Alexander Supertramp" and kept a detailed journal of his experiences. He traversed various terrains and met a diverse array of people who influenced his perspective. His journey took him through the deserts of the Southwest, the wheat fields of South Dakota, and eventually to the rugged wilderness of Alaska. Throughout this period, McCandless's writings reveal a deep admiration for authors like Henry David Thoreau and Jack London, whose works espoused the virtues of living close to nature.

In April 1992, McCandless ventured into the Alaskan wilderness with minimal supplies, aiming to live off the land. He set up camp in an abandoned bus, which he referred to as the "Magic Bus." Initially, he managed to survive by hunting and foraging, but as time passed, he faced increasing difficulties. His journal entries from this period reflect a growing sense of isolation and desperation. Tragically, McCandless's inexperience and inadequate preparation led to his demise. He succumbed to starvation and possibly poisoning from ingesting toxic plants. His body was discovered by hunters in September 1992.

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Chris McCandless's story is a poignant reminder of the allure and dangers of seeking an unencumbered life in the wilderness. His journey encapsulates the essence of youthful rebellion and the quest for authenticity, but it also underscores the perils of underestimating the power of nature. While McCandless's life was cut short, his story continues to resonate with many who grapple with similar existential questions. By examining his journey, we are reminded of the delicate balance between pursuing one's ideals and acknowledging the practical realities of survival. McCandless's legacy serves as both an inspiration and a cautionary tale, urging us to reflect on our own paths and the values that guide us.

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Dr. Oliver Johnson

Cite this Essay

Exploring Chris McCandless: A Brief Summary of His Journey. (2024, Jun 11). GradesFixer. Retrieved July 23, 2024, from
“Exploring Chris McCandless: A Brief Summary of His Journey.” GradesFixer, 11 Jun. 2024,
Exploring Chris McCandless: A Brief Summary of His Journey. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 23 Jul. 2024].
Exploring Chris McCandless: A Brief Summary of His Journey [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2024 Jun 11 [cited 2024 Jul 23]. Available from:
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