A 24-year-old woman who went missing near Opunake last night has been found in a cave on the beach this morning.
She is uninjured but being checked over by paramedics at a nearby house and may have mild hypothermia.
A full-scale search and rescue operation was launched last night and police search and rescue staff, Land search and rescue (LandSAR) teams, the Palmerston North rescue helicopter and farmers from the area were out all night looking for the woman.
Senior sergeant Matt Prendergast said a family member had found the woman in the cave shortly after 8am.
He said at first glance it appeared she may have been trapped by the incoming tide, but police are yet to talk to her.
The woman is from Tauranga but has family ties to Opunake and the farm where she was staying.
She had left the property mid-afternoon yesterday and told people she was going for a walk to the beach.
She was seen with a large white blanket wrapped around her.
When the woman had not returned by the evening her family rang police around 7pm and the search began a short time later.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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