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Ice climber killed in accident was experienced

Posted at 6:01 AM, Jan 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-01 08:01:01-05

Authorities have released the name of a man who died in an ice climbing accident in western Colorado.

The Aspen Daily News reports 42-year-old Ryan Jennings' body was recovered from a backcountry area near Redstone on Thursday afternoon. He suffered severe trauma in the fall Wednesday.

Sheriff's investigators say Jennings headed to the area early Wednesday morning and was reported missing when he did not return. One of his friends went in search of him and came across his body at the bottom of an ice pillar that had broken loose.

According to a Glenwood Springs Post Independent article, Jennings accomplished the first ascent of one of the toughest routes in Alaska, Stairway to Heaven, on Mt. Johnson, with climbing partner Kevin Cooper. That 81-hour trek took place in May 2014 and covered more than 4,000 feet.