Chris McCandless is a Tragic Hero

1005 Words 5 Pages
In what could have been Chris McCandless’s last contact with humanity he tells his new comrade, Wayne Westerberg, “If this adventure proves fatal and you don’t hear from me again I want you to know you are a great man. I now walk into the wild” (Krakauer 3). For 112 days Chris lived off the harsh Alaskan land. For anyone who is brave enough to travel on the stampede trail and cross the treacherous Teklanika River you will come across the Fairbanks City Transit System Bus 142. Once a backcountry shelter for hunters, trappers, ranger patrols, and for a short time Chris McCandless, Bus 142 now serves as a memorial for Chris McCandless. Travelers will make the trip to witness the basic resources Chris had at hand and the courage it took to …show more content…
If you attempted to talk him out of something, he wouldn’t argue. He would just nod politely and then do exactly what he wanted” (Krakauer 182). Chris did exactly as Carine stated he would when someone tried to stop his trip to Alaska. Chris understood what the trip to Alaska would entail but decided to continue anyway. He was confident in his abilities and constantly felt the need to challenge those abilities. According to Jon Krakauer, “He had a need to test himself in ways, as he was fond of saying ‘that mattered’. He possessed grand- some would say grandiose- spiritual ambitions” (Krakauer 182). Although Chris’s ambition is surely admirable it also could be credited as his tragic flaw. Chris strived for perfection in everything he set his mind to. He refused to listen to individuals who were trying to help him when saying he was ill prepared; instead he ignored their efforts and went into the wild. Chris’s unpreparedness could later be identified as the cause of his death but in his mind, his supporters would like to believe, it did not matter. Chris died doing what he loved, living in isolation with nature being his only companion.

Chris’s family and teachers knew early on he would always be considered mature for his age. Chris never quite fit in and fully embraced that quality of himself. Charlie reports, “Nice guy, yeah, a pretty nice guy. Didn’t like to be around to many people though. Temperamental. He meant good, but I
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