Study Guide

Into Thin Air Epilogue

By Jon Krakauer


Seattle, November 29, 1996, 270 Feet

  • Everyone is readjusting to life in their own way. Lou Kasischke is trying to look on the bright side of things, having been inspired by the example of Beck Weathers.
  • Weathers's "right arm" (E.5) required amputation and his face a great deal of plastic surgery; he doesn't even know if he'll be able to practice medicine again. Still, he seems remarkably optimistic given his ordeal.
  • Krakauer is still shaken up, though. Much of this has to do with the magazine piece he wrote about the disaster immediately after returning. Although that piece provides the foundation for the book we're now reading, there were many facts that he got wrong—namely, the status of Andy Harris.
  • He received plenty of angry letters about these mistakes, but none were quite as heartbreaking as the scathing words he received from Lisa Fischer, sister of Scott.
  • There are plenty of tragedies, too. Sadly, Lopsang Jangbu dies in an avalanche while climbing Everest later that year, and Boukreev gets into a crazy bus accident.
  • Even Neal Beidleman, who was instrumental in the survival of five people, is haunted by the experience. To this day, he can still vividly remember the feeling of Yasuko grabbing his arm as he left to get help.