11 Apr 2014

Search refocused after hunter spotted

7:24 pm on 11 April 2014

The search for a hunter missing in Te Urewera National Park is being refocused thanks to new information indicating that he is alive and well.

Search and rescue teams were sent into the area on Thursay night after a 58-year-old man, who was one of a group of seven hunting in the area, didn't return to camp.

Detective Sergeant John Wilson told Radio New Zealand's Checkpoint programme another hunter reported coming across the man about 10km south of the campsite about midday on Thursday and found him in good spirits with food.

The man was given directions back to his campsite, but as he hasn't made it back yet police are refocusing their search efforts.

Mr Wilson said the terrain isn't terribly challenging, but it is easy for someone unfamiliar with it to get lost.

The weather in the park was described as very bad and was expected to worsen on Friday.