Pair rescued from Gillespie Pass were hypothermic

Two trampers were suffering from hypothermia when they were rescued in challenging conditions at Mt Aspiring National Park over the weekend.

In a media release, police said an emergency locator beacon was activated at 1.30pm on Saturday, at the top of the Gillespie Pass.

The beacon had been hired from the Department of Conservation by a 63-year-old man and 59-year-old woman, both of Katikati.

The Rescue Coordination Centre tasked Aspiring Helicopters and two teams from Wanaka Search and Rescue to head to the location, but extreme winds prevented the helicopter landing and the first rescue team had to be dropped about 9km away.

After covering challenging terrain on foot, rescue staff located the trampers.

Constable Deane Harbison, of Wanaka, said the pair were were suffering from hypothermia.

With help from the rescue team the trampers were able to reach Young Hut about 10pm before being flown out about 7am the next day.

‘‘While we commend the trampers for hiring a locator beacon and checking the weather forecast thoroughly, this is an example of how changeable the conditions can be,” Const Harbison said.

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