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    Was it Love? Climber killed himself after girlfriend’s death in an avalanche

    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 beautiful gift or a curse.”

    Hayden Kennedy, of Carbondale, Colo., was found dead Sunday at a residence in Bozeman, Mont., one day after his girlfriend, 23-year-old Inge Perkins of Bozeman, died during an avalanche on Imp Peak in the southern Madison Range.

    Kennedy — who was once considered possibly the “best young climber on the planet” by Elevation Outdoors — said in a Sept. 26 post on mountain climbing blog Evening Sends that the “true, lasting meaning” of the sport he loved was the “friendships and partnerships” he found along summits and valleys.

    “Over the last few years, however, as I’ve watched too many friends go to the mountains only to never return, I’ve realized something painful,” Kennedy wrote. “It’s not just the memorable summits and crux moves that are fleeting. Friends and climbing partners are fleeting, too. This is the painful reality of our sport, and I’m unsure what to make of it. Climbing is either a beautiful gift or a curse.”

    Kennedy’s post continued with an anecdote about climbing a “big-wall route in Mexico,” an “incredible” experience with three good mountain climbing friends, two of whom would later die.


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