ITW Travel Map

  • Annandale, VA, USA

    This is the town Chris grew up in.
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    Annandale, VA, USA - Stampede Trail, AK

  • Emory University

    Emory University is the college Chris graduated from. His college graduation was also the last time his family saw him.
  • Detrital Wash, AZ, USA

    Here is where Chris's car was discovered after being thrown around in a flash flood. He decided to abandon his car when the flood rolled in.
  • Dallas, TX, USA

    Dallas was Chris's first stop out west.
  • Houston, TX, USA

    After getting his money stolen in Dallas, he decides to bury his money outside of Houston.
  • Lake Tahoe

    Chris hitch hikes up to Lake Tahoe over the course of several months.
  • Red Bluff, CA, USA

    From here, Chris spends a few weeks off the map hiking the Pacific Crest Trail and living off the land.
  • Orick, CA, USA

    An old hippie sees Chris along the side of the road and offers him a ride. Chris spent a few days camping on the beach and became very close to them. However, a few days prior, Chris received a hitch hiking ticket and he gave the officer his parents address in Annandale.
  • Astoria, OR, USA

    Chris stops from town to town while heading up the pacific coast.
  • Cut Bank, Mt, USA

    While traveling through Cut Bank, Chris meets a man named Wayne Westerberg.
  • Carthage, SD, USA

    Chris comes back to South Dakota with Wayne where Chris works for him for several months. He stays here until September.
  • Needles, CA, USA

    Chris catches a ride from someone all the way down to Needles, CA where he hikes along the Colorado River.
  • Topock, AZ

    Chris walks for twelve miles until he reaches Topock, Arizona, where he finds an old aluminum canoe for sale. He decides to use it to paddle down the river all the way to Mexico
  • Parker Strip, AZ, USA

    Near Parker Strip, Chris gets off his canoe for a day to track a herd of wild horses. He comes across a sign that warned him that he was trespassing on Highly Restricted Government Proving Grounds.
  • Yuma, AZ, USA

    Finally Chris is getting near the Mexico border. He stops in the city of Yuma to replenish his supplies and send a postcard to his friend Wayne in South Dakota.
  • Los Angeles, CA, USA

    For the next six weeks after coming back to the U.S., He roams the western united states and enters Los Angeles to get an I.D. and a job but he feels like he doesn't belong so he hits the road.
  • Salton City, CA, USA

    McCandless spends the next few weeks in the desert until he meets an old man named Ronald Franz near the Salton Sea. The two even drive to San Diego together, where they part ways for a brief time. Not much later, Chris calls Ronald from the nearby town of Coachella, California asking for a ride back to Salton City.
  • Detrital Wash, AZ, USA

    After escaping Los Angeles, Chris returns briefly to Detrital Wash where he recovers his license plates and a few other items that he buried nearby.
  • Las Vegas, NV, USA

    It is recorded in his journal that on February 27th, 1991, McCandless buried his money and I.D. in the desert outside of Las Vegas and entered the city to find a job. He works in an Italian restaurant for a few months until he again feels displaced in society and goes back on the road.
  • Grand Junction, CO, USA

    Ronald drives Chris up to Grand Junction, Colorado where the two part ways forever. Chris promises to return and visit after his trip to Alaska, but this proved to be their final day together.
  • San Diego, CA, USA

    Chris is caught by immigration authorities trying to slip across the border just south of San Diego, and he spends a night in custody. Eventually, without needing to show I.D., he re-enters the U.S. but is not allowed to keep his .38 handgun.
  • Carthage, SD, USA

    Chris's final major stop before he heads north to Alaska. He goes back to Carthage to visit Wayne Westerberg, who he met a year and a half earlier. He spends the last half of March, 1992 working for Wayne in a grain elevator. In the very end of March, he begins hitchhiking north.
  • Dawson Creek, BC, Canada

    A quick pit stop on his journey north.
  • Liard River, British Columbia

    Chris waits out a 3 day blizzard at a truck station in Liard River, BC. He is picked up by a trucker named Gaylord Stuckey who drives him up to Fairbanks, a 3 day drive.
  • Fairbanks, AK, USA

    He spends 3 days in the library at the University of Fairbanks, studying up on edible plants and wildlife in the nearby region. He buys a .22 rifle, a rather small caliber gun for the Alaskan wilderness. Finally, Chris sends his last postcard ever not to his family, but to Wayne Westerberg.
  • Healy, AK, USA

    Chris begins hiking south along the Alaskan Highway towards Mt. McKinley, where he is picked up by Jim Gallien. Jim gives him a ride all the way to Healy, Alaska, to the edge of the Stampede Trail, and becomes the last person to ever see Chris alive.
  • Stampede Trail

    It crosses two large rivers which can only be crossed when there is very little water or a solid layer of ice. Chris comes across an abandoned bus. Chris spent the next five months living out of this bus, surviving off of chipmunks and wild plants. By early August, his health diminishes and his only journal entries are about how weak he is becoming. It is estimated that he died on August 18, 1992.