A Bozeman woman was killed Saturday morning after getting caught in an avalanche while skiing in southwest Montana. And a man who survived the slide later took his own life, according to his family.
According to information from the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center and the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office, 23-year-old Inge Perkins and her boyfriend 27-year-old Hayden Kennedy were skiing on Imp Peak in the southern Madison Range, about 20 miles southwest of Big Sky.
The two hiked about six miles from the Upper Taylor Fork trailhead to the north couloir of Imp Peak. Near the bottom of the couloir around 10,000 feet elevation, they triggered an avalanche.
Both skiers were caught. Perkins was fully buried while Kennedy was partially buried.
Kennedy searched for the woman but was unable to locate her. He then hiked out of the area.
On Monday morning, Gallatin County Search and Rescue recovered Perkins’ body, which they found buried under 3 feet of snow.
Following the avalanche, due to the “unbearable loss” of Perkins, Kennedy took his own life, his family said in a statement.
According to the Kennedy family, Perkins was working on her bachelor’s degree in mathematics and education at Montana State University and Kennedy had recently moved to Bozeman to work on his EMT certification.
“Hayden truly was an uncensored soul whose accomplishments as a mountaineer were always secondary to his deep friendships and mindfulness,” the family wrote in a statement.
Memorial arrangements for both Perkins and Kennedy are pending.
Folks with the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center were on scene and will be releasing further information in the coming days.
According to the avalanche center, the area had received a foot of snow since Oct. 1, which was on top of 3 to 4 feet of dense snow that had fallen since Sept. 15. The avalanche was a hard slab of wind-driven snow that collapsed on a layer of soft, old snow underneath.
Source : Bozeman Daily Chronicle