Into The Wild
Chris McCandless's Story ~Chapter 16, 18, Epilogue~
"On July 5, however, the Teklanika was at full flood, swollen with rain and snowmelt from glaciers high in the Alaska range, running cold and fast" (Krakauer 170).
This image show exactly what Chris would have saw looking out at the Teklanika River. If the river was lower, he would have been able to cross it and possibly return home like he wanted to, however, this river was very high, the frigid water was below freezing, and he was a weak swimmer, so he was unable to cross.
AFTER EARTH Survival Tips- Episode 4: What to Eat (Pinkett).
"But despite this apparent munificence, the meat he had been killing was very lean, and he was consuming fewer calories than he was burning. After substituting for three months on an exceedingly marginal diet, McCandless had run up a sizable calorical deficit. He was balanced on a precarious edge" (Krakauer 188).
If Chris would have had access to the internet at this time, he would have found this video very helpful. This video shows things to eat in the wild, which would have been VERY helpful to Chris at this time, especially since he was not eating enough, and ended up dying of malnutrition and starvation.
What Are the Dangers of Alaskan Wilderness Survival? (Eblin).
"To McCandless's inexperienced eye, there was nothing to suggest that two months hence, as the glaciers and snowfields at the Teklanika's headwater thawed in the summer heat, its discharge would multiply nine or ten times in volume, transforming the river into a deep, violent torrent that bore no resemblance to the gentle brook he'd blithely waded across in April" (Krakauer 163).
"Reality however, was quick to intrude on McCandless's reverie. He had difficulty killing game..." (Krakauer 164).
There are many dangers in the Alaskan wilderness, and Chris was very naïve and unaware of these dangers and troubles. He was very unprepared for the journey he had taken. In the beginning of his journey, McCandless had very limited knowledge in terms of basic survival skills. He had no references to survival skills except for the hints picked up form people he met along the way. Chris was ill prepared at many points during his adventure.
Historical Weather for 1992 in Fairbanks, Alaska, USA (Smith).
"In his journal he now wrote, "Disaster...Rained in. River lookd impossible. Lonely, Scared." He concluded, correctly, that he would probably be swept to his death if he attempted cross the Teklanika..." (Krakauer 170).
Climate was a very big issue for Chris on his journey. Whether is was the below freezing temperatures or the frigid waters, it was an obstacle, overall, that McCandless could not overcome in the end. However, if Chris had done researched, he would have found this article beneficial. This bit of research would have taught him of the harsh conditions and the necessary equipment needed to face the weather in Alaska. This would have been found in Chris' journal because of the accurate knowledge of the Alaskan weather.
Henry David Thoreau Walden Quote (Thoreau).
"The heaviest item in McCandless's half-full backpack was his library: nine or ten paperback books..." (Krakauer 162).
Chris McCandles reads many books throughout his Alaskan adventure. Most of them he received from the many people who helped him make this journey possible. He read books by Thoreau, Crichton, Gogol and Tolstoy. The quote above is an excerpt from Henry David Thoreau's Walden. This quote describes McCandless Alaskan journey perfectly. He does exactly what Thoreau is doing in Walden; going out into the wilderness and living a life he wouldn't have gotten to experience before he died. Nature was going to teach him and he was going to learn from it. He was going to learn essential facts of life and live consciously.