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Search continues for missing hiker, Tararua Ranges

Police continue the search in the Tararua ranges today, after a man in his early 70s went missing while hiking Monday morning.

Police received the report that afternoon and a search has been underway since.

LandSAR along with a Police Dog have been in the area conducting area searches for the man this morning.

A helicopter is due to be launched around lunch time for Aerial searches, weather dependant, and enquiries remain ongoing to determine potential areas of interest and locate the man.

If you were hiking in the area between Waiopehu and Gable End Ridge between 5am and the afternoon on Monday 26 February, or if you have any information that may assist Police in locating him please contact Police on 105 and reference event number: P057910138.

Update at 3.01pm today

Family and friends have joined the search operation this afternoon and their efforts are being coordinated by Police and LandSAR.

Police would like to stress that all search efforts must be coordinated to avoid compromising ongoing search activity.

Police and LandSAR have been searching the Waiopehu Hut area since Monday afternoon.

The Royal New Zealand Air Force hasprovided valuable assistance with NH90 helicopter support and accommodation at Base Ohakea.

LandSAR groups from Wellington, Tararua, Horowhenua, Wairarapa, Palmerston North, Whanganui and Turangi have provided trained and experienced searchers and Amateur Radio Communications (ARERC) have provided communications support.

Search activity has included trained LandSAR trackers, Police and LandSAR search dogs, and aerial search by NH90 and Amalgamated Helicopters.

Police would like to hear from anyone hiking in the area between Waiopehu and Gable End Ridge 5am Monday to the afternoon on Monday 26 February.

If you have any information that may assist the search, please contact Police on 105 and reference event number P057910138.

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