Hello everyone, Emily's Mom here.
We haven't heard from Emily for six days and, as you can imagine, we are concerned. She missed her check-in call on Wednesday and didn't pick up her resupply package in Idyllwild.
Today, (Friday) we contacted various rangers, park agencies, and outfitters to see if anyone had seen or heard from her. After speaking to Law Enforcement for Cleveland National Forest, I was almost ready to call the Riverside County Sheriff's office and ask them to sweep the trail with helicopters. We opened an incident report, but weren't quite ready for search and rescue.
Thanks to Officer Garret of San Jacinto State Park and Nomad Ventures in Idyllwild, CA we have some information. After checking the campgrounds and coffee shops in Idyllwild, Officer Garrett asked me to email her photo to Nomad in case some of the hikers who stopped there for resupply might have seen her. He really went above and beyond to do this and if he hadn't - we wouldn't know what we do now.
A few hours later, Adam, a fellow hiker called from Nomad. He had seen her at a "Hiker-friendly" house on Wednesday. Reportedly, several hikers were caught in a terrific storm on a ridge outside Warner Springs and elected to hike back down to stay at the house for shelter. Emily stayed on to dry out her equipment. So she's 25 miles from Idyllwild and is hiking more slowly. Most likely she won't get to town until Saturday.
Previous to this, Emily has had a GREAT TIME! She's averaged 18 miles a day, made tons of friends, and attended the big kickoff event. She took classes in Managing Bear and Mountain Lion incidents, health and safety on the trail, and mountaineering. Although she is a solo hiker, she has been walking and camping with others all along. I think she's made some really good friends along the way and has learned a lot! Despite the snow and cold, I know she's enjoyed the spectacular desert scenery in Southern CA.
I cannot say enough good things about all of the rangers I spoke with. For now, we sit and wait, and hope to close out the missing person's incident report very soon!