Details of Disappearance Johnsen Hughes moved from Hawaii to California in June 2020 and embarked on a solo camping trip. She may have planned to hike towards Yosemite. She last had contact with her family on June 26, 2020, and was last seen near Johnson Meadows in the Sierra National Forest on July 4. The hikers who saw her then noted she was barefoot and had a bruise on her face, and offered to help her, but she declined any assistance. This is the last time anyone saw or heard from her.
On July 5, Johnsen Hughes's campsite was found deserted and in disarray, with her belongings scattered, as if her car had been emptied out carelessly. It's uncharacteristic of her her to leave her campsite in this condition. That same day, her silver Saab 9-5 was found in Chiquito Creek, less than five miles north of her campsite. It appeared as if it had crashed into a tree at a relatively low speed, less than 20 miles per hour, then rolled into the ravine.
There was a possible sighting of Johnsen Hughes on August 9, over a month after she was last seen; two hunters saw a woman leaving against a tree along Road 5S01 near Beasore Road, in the area of Chiquito Creek near Portuguese Overlook. The woman matched Johnsen Hughes's physical description except she was visibly thinner. She didn't appear to be distressed and didn't attempt to contact the hunters.
Johnsen Hughes is trained in wilderness survival; she had studied to be a park ranger in college. Her case remains unsolved and the circumstances of her disappearance are unclear.
- Madera Sheriff's Office
Updated 1 time since October 12, 2004. Last updated July 15, 2021; casefile added.