Body of missing British tramper Stephanie Simpson found

Clay Curtis
February 14, 2020

Searchers have found the body of British hiker Stephanie Simpson nearly a week after she went hiking in a New Zealand national park.

Her body was found at about 1.40pm in the Pyke Creek area.

It was not immediately clear how exactly she died, and her death has been referred to the coroner.

Ms Simpson, 32, went hiking in the park last weekend and was reported missing on Monday after failing to arrive at an appointment, police said.

Mount Aspiring National Park hosts a sizable mountain range, with the highest point rising to almost 10,000 feet.

Sergeant Mark Kirkwood says they pulled out technology they don't usually use to help the search, including the RECCO device that can help track some brands of hiking clothes mostly made in Europe.

"Police would also like to thank everyone involved in the search since it began on Monday for their considerable efforts to locate Stephanie", he said.

It comes after search teams zeroed in on the area after finding her backpack and hiking boots earlier in the day.

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A helicopter had been used on Monday evening and inquiries helped them narrow down the search area.

LandSAR search and rescue staff have been joined by two dog teams, the Alpine Cliff Rescue crew and a canyon search and rescue team from Wanaka in today's search.

A missing poster at Mount Aspiring National Park.

Simpson's brother-in-law, Sam Hazelton, previously told Sky News the last time the family heard from her was on the family WhatsApp group early on Thursday morning last week.

"She is relatively experienced in outdoor activities and has already completed a number of hikes".

According to her Facebook account, she had been living in the Wanaka area since November and was working as a landscaper.

The body of a British hiker who went missing in New Zealand has been found, police have said.

Mr Hazelton said: "You can't imagine, it's pretty very bad".

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