McCandless came from a well-off family. After graduating college, he set out on a journey of self discovery. After hitchhiking throughout the United States he began his fateful journey toward Alaska. After graduation, he gave away his possessions and life savings, fueled by idealism and the urge to test himself.
Youthful idealism brought McCandless to an abandoned bus on the Stampede trail, in the Denali National Forest wilderness near Fairbanks. He may have survived and lived to tell the tale, had he but prepared. He took almost no gear, not even a compass. He even turned down an offer to get the proper gear from the man who gave him his last ride to the trail.
His ill-preparation was his downfall. McCandless died 112 days later from starvation. Author Jon Krakauer chronicles the years, months and finally days leading up to the sad day, using McCandless' own diary entries to tell the tale. Whether you see McCandless as foolish or not, you will no doubt be moved by his tale and the motivating factors behind the tragedy as uncovered by Krakauer.
“Into the Wild” is not just the story of a young man, but a warning to all looking to test themselves against the Alaskan wilds – for this is a test that could very well take your life.