Into the Wild


Jon Krakauer

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Chris’s Map Symbol Icon
When McCandless ventures into the Alaskan bush, he carries with him a crude and crumbled map that shows an obscure pathway to The Stampede Trail. But it fails to show a cluster of cabins, stocked with food and supplies, nearby Chris’s bus-campsite. Krakauer suggests that had Chris known about them, he might have looked to them for survival. In this way, Chris’s map is a symbol of his attempt to live off the map without help from the outside world and his ill preparedness for danger.
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Chris’s Map Symbol Timeline in Into the Wild

The timeline below shows where the symbol Chris’s Map appears in Into the Wild. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1 - The Alaska Interior
The American Wilderness Theme Icon
Risk and Self-Reinvention Theme Icon
Arrogance, Innocence, and Ignorance Theme Icon
...nearly dying off the coast of Mexico during a storm. He shows Gallien his “crude map” of the national park, pointing out his intended hiking route: the Stampede Trail. (full context)
Chapter 17 - The Stampede Trail
Arrogance, Innocence, and Ignorance Theme Icon
...line a year earlier he might have lived, but he refused to carry a detailed map. (full context)
Chapter 18 - The Stampede Trail
Luck, Chance, and Circumstance Theme Icon
Isolation v. Intimacy Theme Icon
Krakauer further observes that had Chris carried a map, he would have known that four cabins circled the bus site. Chris could have sought... (full context)