Frenchman found after night in bush

A 25-year-old French tourist spent a cold and wet night ''hunkered down'' in the bush near the Routeburn Track on Tuesday night.

Senior Constable Chris Blackford, of Queenstown, said that the tourist failed to meet at a prearranged point after walking the Lake Sylvan Track and a search and rescue operation was later initiated. Police, search and rescue volunteers and Department of Conservation staff were involved in the overnight search.

Southern deployment co-ordinator Senior Sergeant Craig Brown, of Dunedin, said at 8.30am yesterday other tourists alerted police to the Frenchman's whereabouts.

Other than being ''cold and wet'', the man was fine.

The Frenchman, who did not have overnight gear, had been dropped off by a commercial operator at 6pm on Tuesday and was to be picked up at 8pm.

It appeared the man had walked in the wrong direction and become lost so he ''hunkered down for the night'', Snr Sgt Brown said.

The man was taken to Queenstown by Doc staff.