24 May 2020

Bad weather affects search for missing trampers in Kahurangi National Park

5:37 pm on 24 May 2020

All but one of the teams searching for two trampers lost in the Kahurangi National Park have been pulled back due to bad weather.

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A Defence Force helicopter helps search for missing trampers in Kahurangi National Park. Photo: NZ Defence Force

Six groups including police, Defence Force and specialist search and rescue teams had been in their sixth day looking for Jessica O'Connor and Dion Reynolds, both 23 years old.

The search has been focussed in the Kahurangi National Park, west of Nelson, where the pair tramped into 15 days ago and didn't return when expected.

Police say searching is not likely to take place at all tomorrow as heavy rain in the Tasman region is expected to prevent teams doing so safely.

A heavy rain warning is in place, with up to 100 millimetres of rain expected to fall overnight in the Tasman region and temperatures are expected to sit around 2 to 3 degrees in alpine areas.

Search teams have found more historical footprints and camp sites in the search area, but it is not yet known if they belong to the missing trampers.

So far extensive searching has not uncovered any solid sign of them.

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