Newlywed tourist dies drowning on the way to ‘Into The Wild’ bus

A woman attempting to reach the abandoned bus from the book and film Into The Wild died drowning in a raging Alaskan river. She was reportedly with her husband at the time.

The newlywed couple from Belarus is among the many tourists who go on the dangerous trail to visit Fairbanks Bus 142 where Chris McCandless died in 1992.

Veramika Maikamava and husband Piotr Markielau, both 24, were on their way to the vehicle when they attempted to cross the Teklanika River along the Stampede Trail. Alaska State Troopers say Maikamava was swept by the water in the swollen river and drowned. It is believed that recent rainfall caused the river to run high at the time.

Troopers say that Markielau was able to retrieve his wife’s lifeless body less than 100 feet downstream. He then called officials last Thursday to report his wife’s death. The young couple had been married less than a month according to troopers spokesman Ken Marsh.

The abandoned bus was made famous by Jon Krakauer who chronicled McCandless’ trip into the Alaskan wilderness in the 1996 book, Into The Wild. It was later adapted for film by Sean Penn starring Emile Hirsch.

McCandless abandoned his possessions after graduating from college as a top student and athlete to live in the wilderness. After 113 days in the area, he attempted to return to civilization but he was not able to cross the same swollen river that killed Maikamava. McCandless died of starvation in the abandoned Fairbanks Bus 142.

Ben Hornery
Ben Hornery
Ben is is a senior journalist and sport columnist for Best in Australia. He previously worked for the BC and other radio stations.
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