The Greenlea Rescue Helicopter was tasked by NZ Police to assist with a search for a woman who hadn’t returned from a days skiing.
The woman had exited the ski area boundary at Turoa on her last run, having followed the wrong valley and with the onset of darkness she become lost. She was able to contact a friend to say she has aiming for the ski lodge. However, when she didn’t arrive the alarm was raised.
Lead by the NZ Police and the Turoa Ski Patrol, a search was undertaken with assistance from Ruapehu Alpine Rescue, LandSAR volunteers, and the Greenlea Rescue Helicopter providing an aerial view.
The woman was eventually found at approximately 2.30am in deep snow drifts, huddled on the edge of a tree line at about 4800 feet, well outside of the ski area boundary.
The rescue helicopter was able to hover load a RARO team member to a relatively close to the woman’s location. He then assisted the woman back to a suitable location for the helicopter to hover load her aboard.
Aside from being extremely cold and tired she appeared to be uninjured by her ordeal.