Missing US tourist found dead in El Chaltén

Neha Malla had been last seen on Tuesday morning crossing a bridge over Fitz Roy river

A U.S. tourist who had been missing for three days was found dead Friday in a national park in El Chaltén, a small mountain village in Santa Cruz province. Neha Malla (40) was last seen Tuesday morning crossing a bridge over the Fitz Roy river and had been the object of a large search operation ever since. 

Sources from the National Park Administration (APN) told Télam news agency that Malla’s body was found near a body of water called Lago de las Mellizas (Twins Lake) inside the Glaciars national park. They added that they were waiting for weather conditions to improve so that a helicopter from the Argentine army carrying medical personnel could land in the area. 

Malla was in El Chaltén along with a tour group. On Tuesday, they were given an off day, and she decided to take a walk by herself. She was scheduled to return to her lodging in the afternoon in order to continue on the group trip towards Chile. Once she failed to return, National Parks was notified she was missing and started the search.

According to park sources, early reports suggest the woman might have gotten lost due to poor weather conditions at the time. In addition to the wind and rain of th past few days, the site where she went missing is steep and difficult terrain. The Calafate criminal court is in charge of investigating the death. 

– with information from Télam


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