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7/24 Missing Hiker Alert PCT Hiker

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7/24 Missing Hiker Alert PCT Hiker
July 24, 2017 04:00PM
Facebook PCT:


ALERT!! For the purpose of a "Hotline" to be released to the general public, through Facebook or any other public forum, contact can be made via the Investigative Services Branch (ISB) Tip Line at 888-653-0009. Anyone can call this number at any time and leave messages. On July 7th, Rika Morita aka Strawberry, a 32 yo NOBO PCTer from Japan was last heard from family and last seen on the trail by other hikers on July 8th. Yosemite SAR have been alerted and currently searching for her. Below is information from a post from one of friends who is flying out from Germany to join with other friends to search for her, gave her last whereabouts and what her NOBO plans were. "Gathering all information the situation is as follows: We have a “Search for Rika” team now consisting of Gehn Shibayama, Christopher Lynch and me. Rika’s father doesn’t speak English. So Gehn joined in our team and got in direct contact with him. He’s fluent in English and Japanese. They had some phone calls in between. From this phone calls we learned from his father that Rika’s plan was to go the following route: Bishop – Muir Trail Ranch (MTR) – Red’s Meadows Resort (RMR) – Toulumne Meadows (TM) - Half Dome – Yosemite Valley – Toulumne Meadows – South Lake Tahoe. She had planned to do this in 11 days, but according to her plan she was overdue already 5 days in Bishop. Anyway. Rika was last seen by Aidan Dahler, Rachel Hopke, Greg Strachey and Justin Myers on July 8th 4 miles behind Glen pass. After fording a creek Rika went on solo while Greg and Justin were reorganizing their backpacks. On leaving Rika had announced to ask for their support (as she’s only 5 feet tall) at the next critical fording situation. The situations came, but Rika wasn’t there. Jonathan Szakacs saw her last on July 7th between 08:00 and 10:00 am when both they ran out of Bishop back on the PCT “but [she] pushed away”. They haven’t seen her since, and now they are in Toulumne Meadows. Neither in MTR, nor in VVR or RMR. TM itself is the place where Rika should contact Ted Hall who has got two boxes for Rika at his house in NorCal. By now there hasn’t been any call. It provides a little modicum of reassurance that actually it is impossible to make any calls from TM (no signal, public phone is out as PO is closed). As her plan was to go from TM to Half Dome we are now trying to find out if she obtained a permit for it. But officials in Yosemite are very slow, we are waiting for hours now for them to answer our request. To find out where Rika resupplied, we gathered the following information: We wrote an email to MTR to see if there was any sign of Rika. Still waiting for an answer. We called VVR to see if there was any record of her regarding resupply or if anybody has seen her. The answers was no. We contacted Moderne Hostel and Davison St Guest House in Mammoth Lakes to see if she checked in or has reservation. The answers were no. We contacted Sonora Resupply and Kennedy Meadows Resort to see if she was there or has sent resupply. The answers were no. We contacted Yosemite's Wilderness Office to see if she had overnight (necessary to hike down to Yosemite Valley) and Half Dome permit. She never obtained overnight permit. They are still researching Half Dome permit. John Godell checked Mammoth Lake Motel 6, but the answer was no. Regarding Donna L-Rod Saufley’s great idea to check her credit card records her Father told us that he doesn’t know which card she uses. Putting all this together, we don’t have any idea where she is or where she has been after the morning of July 8th. Please keep on helping. Gehn, Chris and Ingo"
Official Update
July 25, 2017 06:58PM
avatar Re: 7/24 Missing Hiker Alert PCT Hiker
July 26, 2017 12:46AM
The body of the missing hiker was found submerged in the south fork of the Kings River. RIP.


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