A view from the Highline Trail in Glacier National Park. Overall visitation dropped more than 50 percent in 2020 compared to 2019, according to a park spokesperson. But October hit an all time record. (Keila Szpaller/The Daily Montanan)
Glacier National Park released the names of two Montana men who died in a climbing accident in the park on July 26.
Brian McKenzie Kennedy and Jack Dewayne Beard, from Columbia Falls and Kalispell, respectively, started their Dusty Star Mountain climbing trip on July 21.
Kennedy and Beard were long-time members and did substantial work with the Glacier Mountaineering Society and were reportedly well-known in the Flathead Valley community. Park staff who knew the men personally said the men have been summiting peaks in the park for decades and were considered expert climbers.
The 67-year-olds planned to hike out to the mountain on July 22 and were reported missing on July 24. Park rangers found their vehicle at the trailhead on the same day, according to a National Park Service news release.
Two Bear Air, a search and rescue service, searched the area all day and night on July 24, and Minuteman Aviation with NPS spotters took over the search on July 25. The crew located the bodies on the morning of July 25 and Two Bear Air recovered the bodies later that day.
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