Two Australian climbers die on New Zealand's seventh-highest mountain

By @EditorNwriter on
Aussies
The dead bodies of Melbourne mountain guide Stuart Jason Hollaway, 42 and his partner, Dale Amanda Thistlewaite, 35, were found roped together near the top of New Zealand's seventh-highest mountain. Facebook/Dale Thistlethwaite

Two Australian climbers have been killed after falling off a mountain in New Zealand's Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park. The bodies of Melbourne mountain guide Stuart Jason Hollaway, 42, and his partner, Dale Amanda Thistlewaite, 35, were found roped together near the top of New Zealand's seventh-highest mountain.

The duo's last radio contact was made on Dec. 28 during the climbing trip. Their bodies were traced by the search teams on New Year's Day at the bottom of the eastern slopes of the 3300m Mt Silberhorn, The Guardian reports. According to police, the experienced climbers fell off the steep mountain to their deaths early on Dec. 29, but the rescue teams waited till Jan. 1 to recover them due to melting ice present in the area. Their bodies were still tied together when discovered.

According to The Age, the pair had considerable mountain climbing experience and lived in New Zealand since early December 2015. The couple lived in East Brunswick. They were honorary life members of the Melbourne University Mountaineering Club and ran a company called Vertical World Mountain Guiding.

Hollaway's expertise was in ice-climbing. He also taught avalanche awareness courses in New Zealand and Australia. He was also a member of the International Federation of Mountain Guide Associations and taught avalanche awareness courses in New Zealand

Authorities have reportedly informed their families about their tragic deaths. It is not the first time that mountain climbers from Melbourne have fallen off the slopes in Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park. On Dec. 23, 28-year-old Melbourne resident  Nicola Anne Andrews died when she fell 300m from the side of The Footstool on to the Eugenie Glacier.

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