Abandoned ‘Into the Wild’ Bus Airlifted From Alaskan Wilderness
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The infamous bus in which Christopher McCandless, the subject of John Krakauer's 1996 book "Into The Wild", took refuge and eventually starved to death was helicoptered out of the Alaskan wilderness on Thursday.
Fans of the book and its subsequent 2007 film adaptation, directed by Sean Penn, have been on the bus for years, risking their lives. According to the US Army, 15 people had to be rescued and two died on their hikes to find what they call "The Magic Bus".
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The bus has become such a security risk that the Department of Natural Resources has decided to remove it from its resting place near the Teklanika River in Alaska.
"We encourage people to enjoy Alaska's wild areas safely, and we understand the impact this bus has had on people's imaginations," Corri A. Feige, Alaska Natural Resources Commissioner, told the army. “However, this is an abandoned and deteriorating vehicle that required dangerous and costly rescue operations, but most of all it cost the lives of some visitors. I am glad that we have found a safe, respectful and economical solution for this situation. "
The bus was flown by a CH-47 Chinook helicopter and placed in a safe place. The crew found a suitcase in the vehicle, which they will send to the McCandless family. Discussions are underway to potentially expose the bus to the public in a safe place.
Krakauer, who himself visited the bus in 1993 when he wrote Into the Wild, told the Washington Post that he was "stunned" to find out how far the bus was. During his visit to the bus, Krakauer said he had found him untouched and that many of McCandless's items were still inside.
Those who followed him were not as respectful when Krakauer said the bus has since been destroyed and various parts stolen.
"This place was desecrated and now it has been wiped out," Krakauer told the Washington Post. "But it's really tragic that people keep dying when they do stupid things."
Krakauer also confirmed that he feels responsible for the people who tried to find the bus, including those who were at extreme risk.
"I wish the bus could have stayed the way it was," said Krakauer. "But I wrote the book that ruined it."
Watch the distance of the bus below.
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