Helicopter search fails to find British tramper

MISSING: Andrew Wyatt was heading to Arthurs Pass.
MISSING: Andrew Wyatt was heading to Arthurs Pass.

Police have serious concerns about an overdue British tramper after a helicopter search failed to find any sign of him.

Andrew Ian Wyatt, 41, arrived in New Zealand on November 21 intent on walking the Te Araroa Trail, which links tramping routes from Cape Reinga to Bluff

He was last seen on December 15, when he left Blue Lake Hut about 6am. He was due to pick up a food package at Boyle Village in Lewis Pass on December 16, but he never turned up.

Wyatt's parents in Cornwall, England have not heard from him since December 12.

A helicopter spent three hours yesterday visiting all of the huts in the area. Police search and rescue coordinator senior constable Gerry Tonkin said there were a lot of trampers on the tracks, but no sign of Wyatt.

Today police would focus on tracing Wyatt's bank and telephone records, to eliminate the possibility he had left the area and was unaware of the concerns for his safety.

Tonkin said police were hopeful Wyatt had changed his plans and had left the area.

"If he is still in that area then we have serious concerns for his welfare, given that he was last seen almost 10 days ago."

Tonkin said the weather was expected to deteriorate from today.

Police would like to speak with anyone who was tramping in the Blue Lake, Sabine Valley, D'Urville Valley area of Nelson Lakes National Park between December 13 and 19.

Wyatt is 6ft 1in tall, with ginger hair and was carrying light equipment.

Anyone with any information that may be relevant to this search should contact Nelson Police, Ph 03 546 3840.




The Press