Into the Wild bus moved to Alaska

Movie Novel
Fans of Into the Wild all remember, the bus in which Christopher (Emile Hirsch) lives has become mythical, but also a source of trouble for local residents and rescuers. Since 18 June 2020, it has been moved to an unknown area.

It’s the story of a bus

It all starts with a mine rich in antimony, a metalloid mainly used to color fireworks or glass but also, allied to lead, for shotgun cartridges or for printing characters.

In the 1930s, miner Earl Pilgrim decided to chart a trail, the Stampede Trail, to the mine. In the early 1960s, it was decided to turn this track into a route. By the time this work was carried out, the contractor Yukan bought old buses out of use and created temporary housing for his workers. Once the work was completed, two of his buses were repatriated, but the third remained on site.

Bus 142 then becomes a refuge for hunters or trappers during the fall or winter. No one uses it in the summer, until Christopher McCandless arrives.

Christopher McCandless and bus 142

In 1990, Christopher McCandless graduated from Emory University in Atlanta with a degree in history and anthropology. Immediately after his graduation, the young man decides to donate all his money to the humanitarian organization OXFAM America and leaves his family. Inspired by Jack London’s novel, The Call of the Forest,he set off for Alaska. He crosses many states and experiences multiple adventures such as engulfing his car in Arizona in a riverbed that he thought was drained or an arrest trying to return to the United States without identity papers after a brief stay in Mexico.

On May 1, 1992, Chris McCandless, who had adopted the nickname Alexander Supertramp, settled into this abandoned bus to live there for a hundred days. It feeds on small animals or roots. One day, the young adventurer ingests a germ, considered edible in his guide to edible plants, but in reality toxic. The poison makes it too weak to walk, hunt, pick… He dies on the bus, wrapped in his sleeping bag. His body was found on September 6, 1992 by a young couple, who were themselves found frightened near their bodies by three hunters.

Birth of Into the Wild and a Nightmare

Into the Wild is not only the film released in 2007, but above all the title of the biographical story that inspired the feature film. Written by Jon Krakauer in 1993 in Outsideand published in 1996, the author tells the full story of this young man deciding to leave everything to return to the wild. The author was one of the first to show that Christopher McCandless died as a result of poisoning when many were leaning for malnutrition.

Moved by this story, Sean Penn made in 2007 the famous film dealing with this extraordinary adventure. Before embarking on this project, the filmmaker waited for the full agreement of Christopher McCandless’ family. Played by Emile Hirsch, who performed his own stunts, the hero wears a very special watch. It was that of Christopher McCandless himself, a gift given to the actor by the family of the deceased.

But while the story, and then the film, were hugely successful, the bus also benefited from this spotlight, much to the chagrin of the residents of Healy and its rescuers.

Indeed, as soon as the article is released, which later becomes a book, hikers multiply to reach the famous abandoned bus. Only this one is in a high-risk area.

To reach the famous trail, hikers, hunters and other trappers must pass through the Teklanika River. Fast, icy and above all unpredictable, many tourists succumbed while trying to cross it.

In 2010, a couple of adventurers, a 29-year-old Swiss woman and a 27-year-old French man, attempted to reach the bus across the river. They lost their footing and were swept away by the current. The man had managed to escape, but the woman died.

The same thing happened in 2019, a young Belarusian woman, accompanied by her husband, drowned while trying to reach the 142 bus. This pro-democratic activist was recognized within Belarusian civil society, notably for the making of a documentary about the mothers of young people convicted of using a little cannabis, heavy sentences, in force in the country.

In addition to these tragic disappearances, more than 15 rescue operations were carried out between 2009 and 2017. Hikers trying to make the same route, caught in the current, surprised by the weather conditions or still too equipped for such an adventure. Exasperated, rescuers and locals have been calling for the dismantling or removal of this coveted wreck for nearly thirty years.

No more bus

Reluctantly, because this is a real piece of history, the competent authorities composed of the departments of transport, natural resources and military affairs carried out, jointly, the extraction of bus 142.

Photo credit: News-24.fr

With the help of a helicopter, a tug truck and an aircraft, the various services took turns taking care of the wreckage and moving it to a secure site kept confidential. The various actors of the territory and the inhabitants hope to reduce and even eliminate any temptation to reach the point of bus 142. Some believe that the site will undoubtedly attract some reckless, but, the wreckage less, many will turn back.

For the most disappointed, it should be noted that a faithful reproduction of the 142 bus is to be found in the parking lot of the 49th State Brewing Co, far from the dangers of a deadly hike.

The Fantrippers Buying Board

Cult! movies: 100 mythical places of cinema [French Edition]

Since the dawn of cinema, films have invaded the world and highlighted sometimes unexpected places. Every film location has its secrets. The latter are sometimes as exciting as the feature films themselves.

Did you know that the cemetery where the final duel of The Good, the Bad and the Ugly was built from scratch and that no body lies there? Or that the bus ofInto The Wild has been moved to discourage fans from spending the night there? From the story of the construction of The Bridge on the River Kwai to the incredible encounter during the shooting of the last scene ofIndiana Jones and the Last Crusadeembark on an exciting world tour with the greatest stars of the seventh art. Shiver in the real haunted house ofAmityville and discover the terrifying anecdotes of the making ofApocalypse Now in the Philippines. Visit the building of Blade Runner before stopping at Hogwarts and finally landing in Jurassic Parkin the middle of the Hawaiian archipelago. What if we also took you behind the scenes of the making of the Hobbits’ village of Lord of the Rings ?

Produced by a team of pop-culture specialists and enhanced by numerous anecdotes, Cult! movies tells the secrets of the places that made the history of cinema.

Fantrippers' opinion
Content quality

Interest for fans

Value for money

Facebook Twitter Instagram

By Damien Duarte

Friday, June 19, 2020

Passionné par la culture pop depuis son enfance, ses références vont de Donald Duck à Batman en passant par Marty McFly. Fantripper dans l'âme, voyager sur les traces de Ghostbusters, James Bond ou des héros de romans comme Cotton Malone fait partie d'un séjour idéal et réussi !

Let's discuss this article

Notify of

0 Commentaires
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments