Missing Hampshire Walker Found In New Zealand

15 February 2011, 10:31

British tourist James Esbester who has been missing in the Wangapeka area of Kahurangi National Park since last Thursday has been found.

A rescue helicopter searching in the area spotted Mr Esbester about 10km from Mt Luna and well off his intended route.

James, who's from Waterlooville, began his walk on the Wangapeka track in Kahurangi National Park, near Nelson on the country's South Island last Wednesday (February 9th).

He wrote his intention to climb to the summit of Mount Luna in the log book of an accommodation hut but hadn't been seen since.

Search controller Inspector Hugh Flower said the helicopter had been sent to check remote huts well outside the search area in order to eliminate them from the search, when the pilot spotted Mr Esbester waving.

He's been taken to Nelson Hospital with suspected mild hypothermia, but at this stage there is no indication he has suffered any injury.

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