Search Suspended For Naked Woman on 'Spiritual Quest'

Maureen Kelly, 19, of Vancouver, Wash., was last seen Sunday evening.

ByABC News
June 12, 2013, 11:53 AM

June 12, 2013— -- Authorities said they have suspended the search for a naked 19-year-old woman who went missing while on a "spiritual quest" in the Washington forest wearing only a fanny pack.

Maureen Kelly of Vancouver, Wash., has not been seen since she left Canyon Creek Campground at Gifford Pinchot National Forest in southwest Washington on Sunday evening, according to Skamania County Undersheriff Dave Cox.

"We are continuing to look for her, but as far as an organized search, we have suspended that," Cox told today.

"We will take a look this weekend and see where we're at and see if she has come back from her spiritual quest," he said.

Cox said authorities do not suspect foul play in Kelly's disappearance.

Kelly's friends who were with her at the campsite expected her to return within a few hours on Sunday, Cox said. While she did not indicate when she would return, her friends called the sheriff's office just after midnight Monday morning to report her missing.

Cox said it is believed Kelly only had a knife, a compass and matches with her in the fanny pack.

"She had talked about doing this spiritual quest for evidently quite some time," he said. "The folks that she was with, they felt that this was something she needed to do."

Gifford Pinchot National Forest spans more than 1 million acres. Cox said a person in good physical condition can travel about five miles a day if they were working hard, but the Canyon Creek area where Kelly went missing is particularly steep.

"It's a rough remote area with a lot of timber and brush," he said. "It's going to be a tough go for her, especially with no shoes."