As the hunt for the cougar that killed Oregon hiker Diana Bober begins, the U.S. Forest has closed of over a dozen hiking trails in Mt. Hood National Forest.
In a statement today, USFS spokesperson Laura Bain Pramuk, mapped out the 14 Salmon-Huckleberry Wilderness trails that are closed for the duration of the cougar hunt.
In additional to the Hunchback trail where Bober's body was found, the following trails are currently closed:
- Green Canyon Trail
- Bonanza Trail
- Salmon River Trail
- Salmon Butte Trail
- Cool Creek Trail
- Veda Lake Trail
- Dry Fir Trail
- Jackpot Meadows Trail
- Linney Creek Trail
- Eureka Peak Trail
- Kinzel Lake Trail
- Old Salmon River Trail
- Boulder Ridge Trail south to the Bonanza Trail
All together, the wilderness-area closures total 21,034 acres.
"The area closure will remain in effect for 30 days and could be rescinded early or extended depending on circumstances on the ground," Pramuk notes.
A spokesperson for Oregon's Fish and Wildlife Department could not be reached for an update on the cougar search. But, according to a report from KGW, the agency is using hounds to track the cat. Searchers plan to kill the first cougar they encounter, and then test the animal's DNA for a match with the one that attacked Bober.
ODF watershed manager Brian Wolfer tells KGW the agency intends to be "as humane as possible" in its hunting efforts.