Crews searching for missing man near Mount St. Helens

Crews are searching for 40-year-old Matthew Matheny who left to go to Mount St. Helens Thursday and never came home. The vehicle he was driving was found near the Blue Lake Trail Saturday. Photo courtesy Cowlitz County Sheriff's Office

COUGAR, Wash. – The Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office is searching for a man who was last seen heading to Mount St. Helens Thursday morning.

Crews have been searching for 40-year-old Matthew B. Matheny from Warren, Ohio since Saturday morning.

Matheny was last seen around 7 a.m. Thursday when he left to go to Mount St. Helens. He was driving a local friend’s gray Subaru Outback. His friends filed a missing person report with the Clark County Sheriff’s Office when he did not return from the trip.

"We're all really worried to be honest with you," said Michael Bush, Matheny's friend and owner of the Subaru.

Crews are searching the Blue Lake Trail off Forest Road 81 after they located the Subaru at the Blue Lake Trailhead Saturday.

The Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office says Matheny is a white man, 6 feet 4 inches tall. He weighs 230 pounds and has brown hair and blue eyes. He might be wearing a gray Cleveland Browns sweatshirt, shorts and sandals.

Ground crews and unmanned aerial surveillance operators are helping with the search. The team will start searching again Monday at 8 am.

The normally quiet mountainside was interrupted by the sound of a circling helicopter Sunday. People said they wouldn't want to be caught unprepared.

"I myself, I'd be out in the open and up on the highest point and just just sit. Let people spot me," said Ed Roane, a nature photographer from Vancouver.

Friends helped look for Matheny. Bush told KATU News the 40-year-old was not prepared to spend a night in the woods. He said his friend didn't have warm clothes, shelter or enough food.

"He's resourceful. I'm hopeful he's hiding out somewhere, taking shelter at night time and finding a source of water," he told KATU News.

Anyone who may have seen Matheny or the vehicle since Thursday should call the Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office.