Police find body of hiker who went missing in Australia's outback

Phu Tran and Tamra McBeath-Riley were found after weeks lost in the outback. Source AAPMore

Phu Tran and Tamra McBeath-Riley were found after weeks lost in the outback. Source AAPMore

A body has been found in the search for a woman lost for more than two weeks in Australia's arid outback, police said on Wednesday (Dec 4) after two of her friends were rescued.

The body has not been identified but it is believed to be 46-year-old Claire Hockridge, Northern Territory Police said.

Tran was found on Tuesday in the area of the Palmer Valley by pastoralist Ted Fogarty.

The 46 year-old went missing on November 19 during a drive into the remote terrain near Alice Springs with her partner Tamra McBeath-Riley, 52, and family friend Phu Tran, 40, who were both found alive.

Police Superintendent Pauline Vicary told the ABC earlier on Wednesday she feared Ms Hockridge had run out of water.

McBeath-Riley and Hockridge, both Alice Springs locals, had taken Tran out for a drive and afternoon trek more than two weeks ago, heading to a region south of Alice Springs, when their ute became bogged in a river.

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Ms Hockridge was last seen by Mr Tran at the boundary fence of a station south of Alice Springs two days ago, where the two had parted ways and he made a decision to follow the fence line.

The trio was stranded after their vehicle became bogged in a riverbed.

Mr Tran had said he had left Ms Hockridge behind in a good condition on Sunday.

Tamra McBeath-Riley, Phu Tran and Claire Hockridge were reported missing in the Northern Territory.

"Ted, the landowner near the cattle farm, he's a battler, he's got 1,000 head of cattle and he dropped everything to make sure I was all right", Tran told reporters.

"We are really concerned".

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Ms Hockridge, 46, was in a group of three people who became stranded in the central Australian outback a fortnight ago.

Ms Hockridge's partner, Ms McBeath-Riley, was found at a waterhole east of the Stuarts Well area, south of Alice Springs, late on Sunday December 1.

Daytime temperatures in the Australian outback often exceed 40C (104F), with temperatures plummeting after sundown.

For a few days, the group stayed close to the auto, surviving on the limited supplies they had packed, McBeath-Riley said.

His account had narrowed the search for Ms Hockridge, police said, and they later found footprints believed to be hers. "At night they could sleep in the vehicle".

Ms McBeath-Riley spoke outside hospital on Monday, saying she was "worried to death", because she thought the pair - who had a Global Positioning System and compass with them - would have earlier reached the Stuart Highway.

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