Two years he walks the earth. No phone, no pool, no pets, no cigarettes. Ultimate freedom. An extremist. An aesthetic voyager whose home is the road. Escaped from Atlanta. Thou shalt not return, 'cause "the West is the best." [Editor's note: This is quoted from Jim Morrison and the Doors song "The End"] And now after two rambling years comes the final and greatest adventure. The climactic battle to kill the false being within and victoriously conclude the spiritual pilgrimage. Ten days and nights of freight trains and hitchhiking bring him to the Great White North. No longer to be poisoned by civilization he flees, and walks alone upon the land to become lost in the wild."
- Alexander Supertramp, May 1992
“So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservatism, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality nothing is more dangerous to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secure future. The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.”
"My days were more exciting when I was penniless and had to forage around for my next meal, I've decided that I'm going to live this life for some time to come. The freedom and simple beauty of it is just too good to pass up. One day I'll get back to you, Wayne, and repay some of your kindness."
"But you're wrong if you think that the joy of life comes principally from human relationships. God's placed it all around us, it's in everything, anything we can experience. People just need to change the way they look at those things."
“Some people feel like they don’t deserve love. They walk away quietly into empty spaces, trying to close the gaps of the past.”
“The core of mans’ spirit comes from new experiences.”
""I don't want to know what time it is, I don't want to know what day it is, or where I am. None of that matters."
"I won't run into anything I can't deal with on my own."
“Rather than love, than money, than faith, than fame, than fairness… give me truth.”
“…henceforth will learn to accept my errors, however great they be…”
Nothing is more damaging to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secure future. The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure."
Chris McCandless, April 1992, 4 months before he starved to death in the Alaskan wilderness
"If we admit that human life can be ruled by reason, then all possibility of life is destroyed."
"Mr. Franz, I think careers are a 20th century invention and I don't want one."
"Greetings from Fairbanks!This is the last you shall hear from me Wayne. Arrived here 2 days ago. It was very difficult to catch rides in the Yukon Territory. But I finally got here. Please return all mail I receive to the sender. It might be a very long time before I return South. If this adventure proves fatal and you don't ever hear from me again, I want you to know your a great man. I now walk into the wild. Might be a very long time before I return South... I now walk into the wild."
Chris McCandless, in postcard sent to Wayne Westerberg in Carthage, South Dakota, from Alaska
"Conscious attention to the basics of life, and a constant attention to your immediate environment and its concerns, example- A job, a task, a book; anything requiring efficient concentration."
"What if I were smiling and running into your arms? Would you see then what I see now?"
"Is Anyone Watching This? God, Are You Watching This?"
"SOS, I need your help. I am injured, near death and too weak to hike out of here. I am all alone, this is no joke. In the name of god, please remain to save me. I am out collecting berries close by and shall return this evening. Thank you, Chris McCandless."
“I have had a happy life and thank the Lord. Goodbye and may God bless all!”
"In most ways Chris was a young man who, way ahead of his time knew who he was, and had to find a place that would accept him. Once he did that, he'd have the muscles to offer something back to a community, a family or a woman, to whomever. It was always on that basis that I approached him."
"'You could tell right away that Alex was intelligent,' - Westerberg reflects - 'He read a lot. Used a lot of big words. In fact, I think maybe part of what got him into trouble was that he did too much thinking. Sometimes he tried too hard to make sense of the world, to figure out why people were bad to each other so often. A couple of times I tried to tell him it was a mistake to get too deep into that kind of stuff, but Alex got stuck on things. He always had to know the absolute right answer before he could go on to the next thing."'
"Once Alex made up his mind about something there was no changing it. I even offered to buy him a plane ticket to Fairbanks, which would have let him work an extra ten days and still get to Alaska by the end of April. But he said, 'No, I want to hitch north. Flying would be cheating. It would wreck the whole trip.' (Westerberg)
"Chris didn't understand how people could possibly be allowed to go hungry, especially in this country - He would rave about that kind of thing for hours."
"I saw Chris at a party after his freshman year at Emory," remembers Eric Hathaway, "and it was obvious that he had changed. He seemed very introverted, almost cold. Social life at Emory revolved around fraternities and sororities, something Chris wanted no part of. And when everybody started going Greek, he kind of pulled back from his old friends and got more heavily into himself."