A woman thought to be missing on the Ben Lomond track overnight has been found.

The American tourist called police at 6.15pm yesterday evening, saying she was lost near the track - but then her mobile phone battery died.

While Queenstown police launched a search and rescue operation, the woman bumped into two other tourists who escorted her off the mountain.

Acting Senior Sergeant Steve Watt, of Queenstown, told the Otago Daily Times he was happy the woman was safe but disappointed she hadn't contacted police to call off the search.


A team of six, including SAR members and volunteers, spent a number of hours on the mountain looking for the woman. The search was called off about midnight due to safety concerns - and was planned to resume first thing this morning.

"Obviously a lot of police resources go into looking for missing persons. If she had let us know she was out that would have been very beneficial for all the officers involved."

Police received a call from an accommodation provider, where the two other tourists were staying. He told police the pair had guided an American woman off the mountain, aware that she might be the person police were looking for.

The woman phoned the station at 9.15am after she saw reports of the search on local media.