You’ve heard of his amazing ascents in Pakistan, Patagonia, and even Indian Creek. You’ve seen the videos, headlines, and photos. But do you really know the person behind the name?
We’ve asked Edelweiss athlete, Hayden Kennedy to step off the rock and expose who he really is, what makes him tick, and to share some personal things about himself.
Q: We know your name, but what is your nickname?
A: The HK Collective.
Q: How old are you?
Q: Where were you born?
A: Carbondale, Colorado.
Q: Where do you currently reside?
A: Carbondale, Colorado.
Q: What is your profession?
A: Christmas light expert/installer, rigger, and climber.
Q: Are you married?
Q: Do you have any children?
A: No, but my Mom really wants a grandchild.
Q: What languages do you speak?
A: A bit of Spanish
Q: What schools did you attend and do you have any degrees?
A: Got my High School education and a degree from the Open Road School of Life.
Q: What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?
A: I wouldn’t mind being a Master builder or a badass guitar player.
Q: What profession would you not like to do?
A: Truck Driver
Q: Where is the most interesting place you’ve ever lived?
A: I had a great time living in Kentucky one fall.
Q: When did you start climbing?
A: I started climbing when I was 14.
Q: Why do you climb?
A: Climbing offers so much from the obvious physical challenge but there is such a powerful lifestyle attached that is truly amazing.
Q: What types of climbing do you enjoy?
A: I enjoy all types of climbing -- banging into ice, hip dislocating high steps, pulling crimps, OW and snow slogging.
Q: What’s your favorite type of climbing?
A: Rock climbing
Q: What’s your least favorite type of climbing?
A: I don’t really enjoy ice cragging much, to be honest.
Q: What are some of your favorite climbing areas?
A: Indian Creek, Yosemite, The VRG, Shuteye Ridge, Rifle, The Needles, Zion, Smith Rocks -- there are just so many!
Q: What climbing area is your least favorite?
A: I wasn't super impressed with American Fork in Utah.
Q: What has been your favorite climb/ascent?
A: There are to many awesome routes I have done to single out just one. However, most recently I went to Mexico and climbed this 38-pitch sport climb on El Gigante called Logical Progression and it was truly off the hook.
Q: Any idea how many first ascents you’ve put up?
A: Not really sure.
Q: What are your favorite route names?
A: Living in Fear, Push the Juice, and Waiting for 21.
Q: What’s your most memorable climb/ascent?
A: I had a very wild adventure on the Ogre 1 in Pakistan in 2012.
Q: If you couldn’t climb anymore, what other sport would you pursue?
A: I really enjoy skiing and kayaking.
Q: What is your most embarrassing moment?
A: Once I lost a card game and had to shave one of my eyebrows.
Q: What are your five most favorite movies?
A: Dumb and Dumber, Jackie Brown, Taxi Driver, Way of the Gun, and Kill Bill.
Q: What are your five most favorite books that aren’t about climbing?
A: Lonesome Dove, The Tiger, Keith Richards Life, The Giving Tree, and The Things They Carried.
Q: What are your five most favorite bands?
A: Eric Clapton, Soulive, Tribe Called Quest, Stevie Wonder, and Black Sabbath.
Follow the vertical exploits of Hayden Kennedy on this blog as we share reports, videos, and photos of his latest adventures.
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