publication date: Sunday, October 17, 2021 (part of Fall 2021)

category: Controversy

clue: Whether he was a heroic explorer in an American rugged-individualist tradition, or a fool who got himself killed through insufficient supplies and underestimating Alaska's harsh natural conditions, when it came to controversy, he didn't miss the bus.

explanation: In 1992, McCandless was a recent college graduate who hitchhiked to Alaska and attempted to live off of the land with few supplies and no survival experience. He either starved to death or ate poisonous berries, and was found inside an abandoned bus. The book and movie Into the Wild documented his story and led to polarized opinions about him. more…

difficulty: medium

solved by: Russ Wilhelm, Steve West, LaVonne Lemler, Chris Lemler, Samir Mehta, Richard Slominsky, Matthew Preston, Denise Sawicki, and Scott Horowitz


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