Security guards are blocking the entrance to an off-road area on State Highway 38 where forensic teams - involved in the police investigation into the disappearance of Rotorua woman Michelle Hoffman-Tamm - are searching.
A tent has been put up and officers in white suits can be seen searching a nearby area of forest and bush.
It is understood teams could be there for some days.
Meanwhile, a 44-year old woman has appeared in Rotorua District Court charged with assaulting Ms Hoffman-Tamm, who went missing 16 days ago.
The Rotorua woman, who was granted interim name suppression, did not enter a plea when she appeared before a Community Magistrate and was remanded in custody to reappear in court on December 3.
Police have stated further charges are likely.
Ms Hoffman-Tamm, 51, disappeared after leaving her Phillip St home by bicycle to visit a friend on November 7.
Police said last night they were examining the rural spot close to SH38 between Rotorua and Murupara, while a house in Rotorua was also undergoing forensic examination.
Ms Hoffman-Tamm's red bike was also found yesterday at a different location in a Rotorua suburb.