The Dateline episode “Into the Wild” investigates the 2013 disappearance of McKenzie Morgan, a 17-year-old girl who was training to become a pilot. After three weeks of training, she took off from her last test, her second solo flight (five hours including three landings) before getting her pilot’s license. She comes from a family of pilots: her uncle lent her his Cessna 172 and her grandfather paid for her flying lessons. But Mackenzie, a natural according to her flight instructor, didn’t return from that long solo flight. She crashed the plane near Francs Peak outside Meeteetse, Wyoming, near a cabin that was built for Amelia Earhart. After her disappearance in 1937, the cabin was never finished.
After her second landing, leaving Greybull, Wyoming, Morgan became disoriented and started flying in almost the opposite direction of her route which lead her into “really rugged terrain” where she was surrounded like mountains. She couldn’t turn the plane around. When a wind blew her down, the plane’s wheel hit a mountain and the it landed upside down. She was found by two hunters in the park. She survived with minor injuries. Afterwards, Morgan told Billings Gazette, that she still loves flying. “(You) can’t let one really bad occurrence tear you down,” she said. Dateline NBC airs Sundays at 7pm.