Missing Hiker in Olympic National Park Presumed Dead

by Megan Molseed
(Photo by Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

A missing hiker who disappeared while hiking in the Olympic National Park is now presumed to be dead, officials note. This move comes as experts note that the hiker’s “survivability is not expected.”

The missing hiker, Laura Macke was reported missing on Wednesday, November 2. According to reports, the thirty-five-year-old woman set out on her hike in the popular national park area at the end of October. Family members grew concerned when Macke’s return from her hike in the Olympic National Park was overdue when she didn’t return on November 1. Reports also note that the hiker had a backcountry permit pass for October 30 through the 31st.

The Missing Hiker’s Family Speaks Out About Search For Macke

Laura Macke’s family shared a Facebook post last week, noting that rescue crews have announced Macke’s “survivability is not expected”. This conclusion was made by the rescuers after considering where and when and where Macke went missing.

In the family’s statement, they note that “Limited Continuous Searching will occur as technology and weather conditions align”. Additionally, Macke’s family expressed their thanks to the Olympic National Park as well as “the many Search and Rescue [personnel]” who have tirelessly searched for their loved one.

Macke Planned A Hike Along The Park’s Enchanted Valley Trails

According to reports, Laura Macke was planning a hike to the Olympic National Park’s Enchanted Valley. She was also planning a stop to camp in the Pyrites Creek area. The Enchanted Valley area is located about 13.5 miles from the Graves Creek trailhead near the park’s Lake Quinault. Reports note that the missing hiker told her family and loved ones she would be returning from the backcountry on November 1. However, they grew concerned when Macke didn’t return.

By November 3, rescue crews had set out into the wilderness throughout the Olympic National Park area, searching tirelessly for the missing hiker. Additionally, the U.S. Coast Guard stepped in to help in the efforts. They hit the air doing a preliminary search of the area as well.

Anyone who may have information about the missing hiker or persons who were also in the Lake Quinault, Graves Creek, or Enchanted Valley areas between Oct. 1 and Nov. 1, is urged to call with any information they have.

People with any information are also encouraged to call or text the National Park Service Tip Line at 1-888-653-0009. Tips can also be submitted to officials online on the National Parks Service website.