Major search for British hiker missing in New Zealand for five days

A major search and rescue operation is under way for a British hiker in New Zealand who has not been heard from for several days.

Darren Myers was traversing the Tararua Ranges on the North Island alone when he fell out of contact with his family.

The 49-year-old, who is from the UK but lives in Wellington, was reported missing after he failed to arrive at the end point on Saturday afternoon.

His brother-in-law, Duncan Styles, told local media outlet Stuff that Mr Myers was "really thorough" and enjoyed solo expeditions.

Rescuers are attempting to locate Mr Myers by land and air, although their efforts were hampered on Wednesday by wintry weather .

Search co-ordinator Anthony Harmer told local media outlet Stuff: "We have a missing male up in the Tararuas.

"We're primarily looking at the northern crossing area and we've got approximately 50 searchers out in the field.

"We're throwing all available resources into the right areas as we know from experience is the right thing to do.

"We're looking at other options also, including infrared resources later in the day."

Mr Styles said his brother-in-law's disappearance had been "very, very difficult" for their family.

"We're all still very upset by the whole thing. It's a very difficult process because there's no real end in sight and we've got a grave sense of loss," he said.

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