March often brings chilly, rainy weather to Humboldt County, California. When the clouds finally parted one spring day in 2019, sisters Leia and Caroline couldn’t wait to get out of the house and venture onto the trails of Richardson Grove State Park, which sits next to their family’s property. At first, they bugged their mother, Misty, to come out for a hike. Misty had some chores to finish, though, so she told them that they would have to wait. The girls, just 5 and 8 years old, didn’t want to hear that. They needed the fresh air, sunshine, and woods that they loved to explore.
When Misty finished her housework and packed a couple of bags for the hike, she went to find her daughters. She says that she didn’t worry at first because the girls often took short walks in the woods without supervision. They knew their way around, so she expected them to come back within a few minutes.
Unfortunately for the family, that’s not what happened.
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