Hunter lost for two nights in Blue Mountains vows to return

By Vaughan Elder

Kayne O'Connor was found in a stretch of dense native bush, wet, extremely cold and disoriented. Photo / ODT
Kayne O'Connor was found in a stretch of dense native bush, wet, extremely cold and disoriented. Photo / ODT

A Dunedin hunter who got lost and spent two nights in freezing conditions in the Blue
Mountains has vowed to return to the area for some unfinished business.

Kayne O'Connor, 27, who moved to Dunedin from Auckland a few months ago, was found in a stretch of dense native bush, wet, extremely cold and disoriented, but otherwise unhurt, about 2.30pm Monday after failing to make it out with two fellow hunters on Saturday.

He described his ordeal yesterday and vowed to return to the area northwest of Balclutha,
saying he had unfinished business after failing to shoot a deer.

Mr O'Connor said he kept himself warm by staying on his feet during the day and digging a pit and covering himself in bark at night.

At one point he wrote the word "cold" in to the snow _ which was later found by searchers along with his footprints.

Despite being soaking wet and having feet and hands numb with cold he managed to get some sleep, waking up to find himself surrounded by snow.

"I had a few dreams about eating hot food."

It was a feeling of relief when his searchers finally found him.

"I was surprised to see them because I hadn't seen anyone for two days.

"They were quite happy to see me ... they thought I might have been dead."

- Otago Daily Times

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