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Search for Missing Woman Underway at Point Reyes National Seashore

McClures Beach area

The McClure's Beach area at Point Reyes includes some very rugged terrain. NPS photo.

A search for a missing California woman is into its third day at Point Reyes National Seashore. Her vehicle was found in a trailhead parking lot above an area of steep cliffs along the Pacific coast.

On Friday, January 8, rangers at Point Reyes noted a brown Ford Ranger in the parking lot for McClure's Beach. When the vehicle was still there the following day, they began an investigation and determined that the owner of the truck, 37-year-old Katherine Truitt, had not been seen by her roommate since Thursday morning. Truitt is a resident of Alameda, California.

Rangers contacted the Marin County Sheriff's Office and requested assistance with the search for Ms. Truitt. Information on the park's website describes McClure's Beach:

A short, steep, downhill hike leads visitors to this small but exciting cove with intense surf. The rocks at either end of the beach add to the drama and danger. It is tempting to venture around the southern corner to explore the adjacent beach, but use caution! This area can only be safely accessed during the outgoing low tide.

According to park spokesman John Dell'Osso,

"There are rocky promontories that go out into the ocean, and you can walk around those from one beach to the other at low tide, but if you are on the wrong side of them, you can't go around them or scamper up the cliffs because they are so sheer and rocky.''

Point Reyes National Seashore, which is located a short drive north of San Francisco, contains approximately 80 miles of shoreline and has about 150 miles of hiking trails.

Local media sources say friends and family members of the missing woman describe her as an avid outdoorswoman who has hiked in the area for more than 20 years. Marin County Sheriff's Sergeant Debra Barry said there was no indication of foul play.

Approximately 40 people, including members of the Marin County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue team, as well as members of the California Rescue Dog Association and a helicopter from the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office assisted with the search on Saturday.

The search for Ms. Truitt expanded on Sunday and Monday. About 80 people were involved in the effort, including members of the US Coast Guard, the Marin County Urban Search and Rescue team, and members of Search and Rescue teams from around the Bay Area.

According to the Marin County Sheriff's Department, Ms. Truitt is 6’0” tall, weighs 145 pounds and has dark, shoulder length hair. She was last seen wearing blue jeans, a light-colored sweatshirt and black shoes. She was carrying a green or black backpack.

Anyone who may have any information about the incident or who has seen Ms. Truitt since last Thursday is encouraged to call the sheriff’s office at 415-479-2311.


Has there been any updates on this article?

Dottie -

I've been holding off on posting an update, pending some significant - and hopefully good -news. Thus far there hasn't been much.

The Marin County Sheriff's Department released a statement that despite the intensive search in the McClure's Beach area, Ms. Truitt has not been located, and "The search is now taking a different direction, with investigators now looking at phone records, computer records, etc. in an effort to glean any information that might be helpful in locating Ms. Truitt. In addition, rangers from the National Park Service are working in collaboration with the Alameda Police Department on this case."

My understanding is that the search in the park itself has been greatly scaled back, which is not unusual this far into such incidents.

OK, so now I am REALLY curious as to what happened. Maybe we don't have to worry and pray, but wish her luck somewhere instead.

There have been 2 disappearances and 1 death. Any updates? I am female and hike Mt. Whitenberg all the time as well as run Bear Valley trail and I am frightened.

I love Point Reyes, but there is a lot of rather crumbly cliff area all around the seashore area. I remember hiking along Tomales Point Trail. There were some decent viewing areas that led almost to the edge. I frankly refused to get closer than four feet from the edge just in case it gave out with me possibly sliding down a hundred feet and finally into the Pacific. Sometimes the tides can be unpredictable too.

I remember a young woman who fell off a cliff in the Marin Headlands. Apparently she was a little bit carefree, wanted to get a better view, and got right up to the edge when the cliff just crumbled from her weight. Sometimes these incidents seem rather senseless, with lots of people asking why someone died because of something so simple.

Of course we don't know for sure what happened to these recent lost hikers in Point Reyes.

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