SANDY — The U.S. Forest Service has closed a vast swath of the Oregon wilderness to the public as authorities search rugged terrain for a cougar that killed a hiker.
Nearly 47 square miles and 14 trails in the Hunchback Mountain area could remain closed for at least 30 days.
There was no sign of the cougar in the first full day of searching Thursday.
Diana Bober is the first person known to have been killed by a cougar in the wild in Oregon and the second in the Northwest this year.
The 55-year-old avid hiker from Gresham was reported missing Sept. 7.
Bober’s sister says she had defensive wounds and fought the cougar with a stick, repellant and a sharp object.
Authorities will kill any cougar they track down and then check for a DNA match with DNA left on Bober, an Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife official said Wednesday.