Hunter lacked basics

Police say a hunter missing overnight in the Nelson Lakes National Park was ill-prepared and showed a lack of judgment.

Tony Manson, 35, walked out of the national park to a farmhouse about 9am yesterday cold and wet, but otherwise fine.

Nearly 40 people had searched for him after he failed to arrive at the Sabine Hut, at the southern end of Lake Rotoroa, at 1pm.

Mr Mason, who had been hunting alone, had no food, compass, map or wet-weather gear, said Senior Sergeant John Maxwell, Nelson police search and rescue incident controller.

"I am constantly amazed at the lack of social conscience some people continue to display."

He was glad Mr Manson was found fit and well, but criticised his lack of judgment.

"The New Zealand geography is a minefield of risk, which is exacerbated without the fundamental equipment and essential skills required to survive."

Mr Maxwell said it was an individual's right to enjoy New Zealand bush, but "with rights came a social burden of responsibility".

Eight police, 29 search and rescue volunteers, two search dogs and a rescue helicopters were involved in the search for the missing tramper.

Mr Manson walked 20km to reach the farmhouse, despite a hut being only 4km away.

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