The pensioner discovered the leg during a hike in the Tieftalbach area and immediately informed the mountain rescue and police.
The body part has been handed over for investigation to the forensic institute in Innsbruck, which will use DNA tests to find out if the leg is that of the missing German. Results should be available in “two to three weeks”, the institute said.
“Just before Christmas, a German cross country skier went missing in the Tyrolean mountains – and it could be that we have now found him,” police spokeswoman Marlies Zoglauer said.
An initial investigation suggests that the body part may have fallen from a great height during a landslide into the valley below. A search team is now examining the area for further human remains.