World-class alpinist Hayden Kennedy and his partner, Inge Perkins, were skiing in Montana on Saturday when an early-season avalanche on Imp Peak near Bozeman took the couple by surprise at 10,000 feet, reports the Bozeman Daily Chronicle.
She was skiing with 27-year-old Hayden Kennedy, her boyfriend, who did survive the avalanche, but then took his own life after Perkins' body was recovered.
The area had received a foot (0.3 meters) of snow since October 1, which was on top of about 4 feet (1.2 meters) of dense snow that had fallen over the previous two weeks, according to the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center.
This area received one foot of snow since October 1st, which was on top of 3-4 feet of dense snow that fell since September 15th.
The Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center recovered Perkin's body on Saturday.
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The accomplished mountain climber who killed himself after his girlfriend died in an avalanche in Montana had seemingly been at a breaking point prior to her death, writing weeks before on a climbing blog that the sport is "either a handsome gift or a curse".
'Hayden survived the avalanche but not the unbearable loss of his partner in life, ' Michael wrote. A sudden avalanche hit the two of them, Hayden was successful in freeing himself, but there was no sign of Inge anymore.
Hayden Kennedy, who famously climbed Cerro Torre of Patagonia in South America in 2012, was remembered by his family as an "uncensored soul whose accomplishments as a mountaineer were always secondary to his deep friendships and mindfulness".
"He chose to end his life", Michael Kennedy wrote.
There was no reporting on how Kennedy took his own life nor the timeline.
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"There's no easy way to say this, but half that team is now dead", Kennedy wrote. "Their absence from this world is felt by so many who are left in a wake of confusion, anger, and frustration".
"This is the painful reality of our sport, and I'm unsure what to make of it". I see both light and dark in climbing.
The son of two outdoor industry professionals, Hayden's father Michael Kennedy - a noted alpinist himself - is a former Editor of Climbing magazine and former Editor-in-Chief of Alpinist magazine and his mother Julie is the founder of 5Point Film Festival.
Kennedy was working on his EMT certification and Perkins was working on her bachelor's degree in mathematics and education at Montana State University before they passed.
"An awareness of mortality prompts us to focus on what's important: developing a strong community of family and friends", he wrote.
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Hayden was a highly talented and respected climber with all-round abilities in the mountains, having made noteworthy ascents worldwide, from hard rock routes near his home in Colorado to new routes on Himalayan peaks.