The "Into the Wild Bus" is gone

Every year, adventurous (and oft-unprepared) hikers who are fans of Jon Krakauer's book "Into the Wild" (1996) or the move based upon it have attempted the treacherous 20 mile trek on Alaska's Stampede Trail to the abandoned bus where Chris McCandless found refuge (until his death) in 1992. And frequently, hikers making the pilgrimage have had to be rescued. Two people have died during their trips to see the bus. From the New York Times:

The tourist trap is now gone though. Last week, the Alaska Army National Guard used a Chinook helicopter to airlift the bus out of its remote resting spot to an undisclosed location. State officials say they are considering putting it on public display.

The crew also removed a suitcase from the bus that held sentimental value to the McCandless family, according to the Alaska Army National Guard.

Carine McCandless, Mr. McCandless’s youngest sister, said the suitcase did not belong to her brother, but may have contained journals she and others had left behind on their own journeys to the bus.[...]

“Though I am saddened by the news, the decision made by Alaska D.N.R. was with good intentions toward public safety, and it was certainly their decision to make,” Ms. McCandless wrote in an email. “Bus 142 did not belong to Chris, and it doesn’t belong to his family. As for those that followed in his footsteps to where it rested, at the end of the day, their journey wasn’t about a bus.”

More from US Army: "Alaska Guard airlifts 'Into the Wild' bus from Stampede Trail"

image: Alaska National Guard