Search continues for British woman missing in New Zealand

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

Stephanie Simpson, 32, of Essex, has not been seen since last weekend when she had planned to head to Mount Aspiring National Park on the South Island for a camping adventure.

Police confirmed "items of interest" had been discovered by search teams while looking for the 32-year-old, who has been missing since telling friends she would be going for a hike at Mt Aspiring National Park on Saturday.

Exactly what has been found has not been revealed by police.

Police in New Zealand said the search was hard due to the size and terrain of the area.

"The search was extremely challenging at times, especially in consideration of the terrain, and the work of all involved is to be commended", Kirkwood said.

Police have thanked all those who helped out with the search.

The death would be referred to the Coroner.

Earlier this week drone and thermal imaging equipment were sent out to assist rescue teams.

New Zealand Police are conducting a search operation in a bid to trace the backpacker in the national park which is home to one of the country's highest peaks.

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Two dog teams, LandSAR staff, Alpine Cliff Rescue and a canyon search and rescue team are assisting with the search today.

Her brother-in-law, Sam Hazelton, told the New Zealand Herald that the worst thing was not knowing what had happened.

"This was something Stephanie would do most weekends, it was her main reason for staying in Wanaka in New Zealand as it offered so many different trails".

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

He added: "She is a fun-loving, kind, determined and adventurous woman".

The alarm was raised on Monday morning when she failed to turn up at her landscaping job.

"Stephanie is very competent and physically fit".

Ms Simpson has been living in New Zealand since October after travelling around Australia.

Simpson was tramping in the Mt Aspiring National Park.

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