5 Jan 2015

Tramper missing at Mt Aspiring

6:03 pm on 5 January 2015

A Search and Rescue official says he is confident a man missing in a gorge in Mount Aspiring National Park has not been swept down the river.

Police and Search and Rescue are looking for a tramper, who has not been named, who disappeared in the Wilkins River area after he took a shortcut and separated from his group.

"He decided that he would see if he could take a short cut through the gorge and follow the river rather than climb up the track that goes well above the river and back down again - we're not sure what happened after that."

The man was last seen at 6.30pm last night, and Search and Rescue teams were deployed this morning.

Wanaka Search and Rescue management team member Phil Melchior said downstream from the gorge were shallow river flats which became four shallow strands.

Mr Melchior said they were confident if the tramper was in the river the water was too shallow for him to have swept through without a trace.