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Hypothermia kills popular outdoor writer on hike

Karen Sykes' body was found in Seattle's Mount Rainier National Park and her death has been ruled an accident


By Phuong Le
The Associated Press

SEATTLE — Authorities say a 70-year-old hiker whose body was found in Mount Rainier National Park over the weekend died of hypothermia.

The Pierce County medical examiner's office on Monday ruled Karen Sykes' death an accident.

This undated photo provided by Lola Kemp shows Karen Sykes. Crews searched Mount Rainier National Park on Friday, June 20, 2014, for Sykes, an outdoors writer, was reported missing late Wednesday while she researched a story. (AP Photo/Lola Kemp)
This undated photo provided by Lola Kemp shows Karen Sykes. Crews searched Mount Rainier National Park on Friday, June 20, 2014, for Sykes, an outdoors writer, was reported missing late Wednesday while she researched a story. (AP Photo/Lola Kemp)

Sykes was reported missing late Wednesday when she failed to meet up with her boyfriend as planned during a day hike on the east side of the mountain.

Park officials suspended three-day search efforts on Saturday when they discovered a woman's body.

Sykes, a writer, was known in the Northwest hiking community for her trail reviews and photographs and her book on hiking western Washington.

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