Naked Teen Disappears On ‘Spiritual Quest” Into the Washington Wilderness
Maureen Kelly was camping over the weekend with friends in Canyon Creek Campground at Gifford Pinchot National Forest in southwest Washington when she suddenly stripped and announced that she was going on anaked “spiritual quest.” The 19-year-old then traipsed off into the woods wearing only a fanny pack containing a compass, a knife, and some matches.
The Skamania County Sheriff's office has been busily working to find Maureen since her friends reported her missing just hours after she left for her quest. "She had talked about doing this spiritual quest for evidently quite some time," Undersheriff Dave Cox told ABC News. "The folks that she was with, they felt that this was something she needed to do."
The search for Maureen has been affected by the weather. A thick, gray cloud hanging over the million-acre forest is preventing an air search by helicopter, so authorities are continuing a very slow search by foot.
Cox fears that the temperature will be Maureen’s biggest hurdle as time ticks on. "The weather [Monday] night was in the mid to upper 40s," he said. "The cloud cover did move in, and so we're concerned that we might start getting some precipitation.”
"As this progresses, we get a little more concerned," he continued. "Especially because she doesn't have any clothing, hypothermia can set in a lot quicker."
At this time, the police have no reason to believe that drugs were involved.