Chopper wreckage from 2004 crash

Wreckage from the Hughes 500 which crashed in the Humboldt Creek area of Fiordland 2004. Photo from NZ Police
Wreckage from the Hughes 500 which crashed in the Humboldt Creek area of Fiordland 2004. Photo from NZ Police
Police have confirmed that helicopter wreckage spotted in remote Fiordland is that of a Hughes 500 which went missing eight years ago with two people on board.

Seven specialist police staff and two alpine cliff rescue team members this morning flew into the Hollyford Valley in Fiordland where the wreckage was discovered in the Humboldt Creek area yesterday.

Police today confirmed it was the craft which disappeared in 2004 with pilot Campbell Montgomerie, 27, and 28-year-old English tourist Hannah Rose Timings on board .

Police would use DNA to formally identify the pair.

On January 3, 2004, the helicopter was en route in difficult weather conditions from Howden Hut to Milford Sound when it lost radio contact with the Milford Radio Tower shortly before 9am.

An extensive search and rescue operation was mounted the same day throughout the Hollyford Valley.

The scenario-based search covered the various routes that the helicopter might have taken from Lake Howden to Milford Sound and included over 200 flying hours and 2500 people hours.

Police said that the wreckage was found at the extremities of the original search area, which comprised "extraordinarily difficult'' and complex terrain.

Inspector Olaf Jensen said the thoughts of police were with the families and they hoped the discovery of the wreckage brings them some closure.