Fall killed tramper, autopsy shows

00:41, Mar 04 2014

A man found dead on a remote West Coast beach died as a result of a fall, police say.

The findings came after a preliminary autopsy was carried out  on the body of David Hutton, 72, of Ruby Bay, near Nelson.

Two trampers found Hutton's body on a beach near the mouth of Kahurangi River yesterday.

It was near the Kahurangi lighthouse, on the Kahurangi Point Route, a three-to-four hour unmarked route along the beach that the Conservation Department described as along ''a wild and often windswept coastline in a vast, isolated landscape''.

Its route information warned that weather, sea and tide conditions could make travel dangerous ''and in some cases impossible''. The route includes crossing several rivers and its start is accessed from Golden Bay.

Police spokeswoman Barbara Dunn said police flew from Greymouth by helicopter to collect the man's body.

Last August, the body of Karamea man Andrew Ross White, 58, was found on a West Coast beach, near the end of the 78.4km Heaphy Track, further south of Kahurangi Point Route towards Karamea. It is believed he had drowned while tramping the four-day track.


The Press