Family desperate after British hiker Stephanie Simpson goes missing in New Zealand

British Tourist Found Dead In New Zealand After Being 'Swept Away in Creek'

Stephanie Simpson's body has been discovered in Mount Aspiring National Park, Sergeant Mark Kirkwood of West Coast Search and Rescue said.

It was not clear if Simpson's hike at the Mount Aspiring National Park, home of one of New Zealand's highest peaks, was affected by the rain.

Earlier, searchers had found items in the area thought to belong to Simpson, including a pack and a pair of boots.

"The family are understandably grieving and they have asked media to respect their request for privacy during this hard time", Sergeant Kirkwood said.

Police are due to increase the search for Ms Simpson who was reported missing on Monday.

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

Kirkwood did not indicate there was anything suspicious about the death, which he said would be referred to a coroner.

Police extended their condolences to her family at this tragic time, he said.

Search and rescue teams scoured the rugged terrain with teams on the ground, dogs, helicopters and drones with thermal imagery.

British tourist stephanie simpson found dead
The body of 32-year-old Stephanie Simpson from Essex has been found in the Mount Aspiring National Park in New Zealand

Her brother-in-law Sam Hazelton had described her as an extremely fit and experienced tramper.

"She's an extremely determined, strong-willed person", Mr Hazelton said.

"She's someone that's done triathlons, running races, marathons, she's really sporty and picks up new skills quickly".

Thousands of hikers visit New Zealand each year to explore its mountains and wildlife.

It is believed she headed out to Mt Aspiring National Park after work on Friday and was expected to return on Sunday.

In an unrelated matter, the bodies of two trampers were found in the Makarora River on the weekend.

This story was first published on the New Zealand Herald and republished with permission.

Her boss, Doug Peddle, contacted police on Monday morning when she failed to turn up to her job as a landscape gardener at Doug the Gardener in Wanaka.



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