New Zealand Search and Rescue (LandSAR) have recovered the body of a tramper who went missing in Arthur's Pass on Saturday night.

The man's body was located by search crews at 3.35pm in the Mt Lancelot area of the National Park.

A police spokeswoman said the man's body was recovered in the hours since the discovery this afternoon.

He was tramping with two other people over the weekend who activated an emergency beacon when they realised he was no longer with them.

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A Rescue Co-ordination Centre NZ spokesman said the beacon was activated in the Jellicoe ranges area about 7pm yesterday.

The Jellicoe Ridge is located west of Arthur's Pass in the Southern Alps, running between Mt Guinevere (2042m) and Mt Lancelot (2112m).

Mount Lancelot is located west of Arthur's Pass. Photo / NZ Topo Map
Mount Lancelot is located west of Arthur's Pass. Photo / NZ Topo Map

Last night a rescue helicopter from Greymouth scoured the area without success.

This morning three LandSAR crews and an Alpine Cliff Rescue team were deployed to search for the man, the RCCNZ spokesman said. A Greymouth-based helicopter was also on standby.

Conditions today were cold and cloudy, he said.

The spokesman said the man was believed to be "reasonably well-equipped and reasonably experienced" with hiking in mountains.

The man's two friends were safe and sought refuge in a hut, he said.

Mount Lancelot is located west of Arthur's Pass. Photo / NZ Topo Map
Mount Lancelot is located west of Arthur's Pass. Photo / NZ Topo Map