trekking news

Carbon County searchers receive report of possible sighting of missing hiker


Tatum Morell on a hike

An undated image provided by Red Lodge Fire and Rescue shows Tatum Morell on a hike. The picture was not taken on the Beartooth Mountain hiking trip that Morell began earlier this month and did not return from. 

Red Lodge Search and Rescue has received a report of a Friday, July 2, sighting of a lone female hiker matching the description of Tatum Morell, the 23-year-old woman who remains missing and is presumed dead after she failed to return from a hiking trip in the Beartooth Mountains earlier this month.

The sighting falls on the day search and rescuers believe Morell set out from her Shadow Lake campsite and did not return.

Anyone with information about the person, who was seen in the area of Spirit Mountain in the Beartooth Mountains, is asked to call the Carbon County Sheriff’s Office at 406-446-1234.

At this point search and rescue is still gathering information on the possible sighting of Morell and depending on what else comes to light search and rescue crews will decide what actions to take, according to Amy Hyfield, a public information officer with Red Lodge Fire Rescue.

“We certainly appreciate the public coming forward with any information they may have,” Hyfield said.

Morell, a graduate student from Idaho who was studying in Montana State University’s engineering program has been described by officials and family members as an experienced hiker who had completed similar trips before. This was Morell’s first trip into the Beartooth Mountains. She began hiking from the West Fork Trailhead on July 1 and had hoped to reach the top of five peaks above 12,000 feet during a trip expected to last less than a week.


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