Searches in Queenstown area

22:38, Jan 07 2014

Police and search and rescue squads were involved in two operations in the Queenstown area yesterday.

Senior constable Chris Blackford, of Queenstown, said a female Israeli tramper was airlifted to hospital with suspected hypothermia after getting into difficulty on the Greenstone track.

A hut warden was concerned when she stopped walking and she appeared to be exhibiting signs of early-stage hypothermia, Mr Blackford said.

She was cold and exhausted and was airlifted from the Greenstone valley to Lakes District Hospital yesterday afternoon.

Police were also on their way to the Routeburn track car park this morning to speak to a 25-year-old French man who sparked an overnight search by police and Department of Conservation staff on the Lake Sylvan track.

The loop track is accessed from the Routeburn Rd before the Routeburn track car park.


Mr Blackford said the tourist was dropped off at the Sylvan track at 6pm on Tuesday and was meant to be picked up by a commercial operator at 8pm but failed to rendezvous.

He did not have any equipment, food or appropriate clothing so two police officers and DOC staff conducted an overnight search.

Police received a report this morning that the man walked out near the start of the Routeburn track and officers were on their way to interview him.

The Southland Times