25 Dec 2012

German tramper's body found in national park

10:02 pm on 25 December 2012

Police say a steep and challenging part of a saddle in Mt Aspiring National Park has claimed another life.

The body of a German tramper was found on Christmas Day after a ground and aerial search that started the day before.

The search began after the police were contacted by the tramper's friend on Sunday, saying he was overdue from a tramp he had started at the end of November.

The body of the 38-year-old tourist has been recovered from the Cascade Saddle area.

Police say it appears he fell on a snow patch near the top of the climb and slid down over the edge of a ridge into a gully.

They say there have been deaths on the saddle before, and climbing it requires a high degree of skill.

Tramper missing in Kahurangi park

Meanwhile, a tramper missing in the Mt Owen area of Kahurangi National Park had not been found by late on Christmas Day.

Alistair Levy, who is 54 and from Palmerston North, was due back from a tramp on Monday.

An aerial search of the area on Tuesday failed to locate him and a ground search is planned for Wednesday morning.