An elderly Wellington tramper and his dog have been winched to safety after falling in the Tararua Forest Park.

The man in his 70s was rescued by the Westpac Rescue Helicopter about 6pm yesterday after setting off a personal locator beacon.

The Westpac Rescue Helicopter found the experienced tramper near a stream off the Waiotauru River Track.

Life Flight helicopter crewman Julian Burn said they found him within 90 seconds of arriving at the park.


"If he didn't have a beacon we could've spent hours up there looking for him."

A paramedic was winched down to assess the man's injuries before he was lifted into the helicopter.

The tramper was then taken to Wellington Hospital and treated for minor injuries.

Crews also rescued the man's dog, using a speciality harness to winch her into the helicopter.

Burn said the dog couldn't be left at the hospital so was taken to the Life Flight base near Wellington Airport.

"Often when you get animals in a helicopter they freak out because it's noisy, vibrates a lot, and is an environment they're not familiar with- but she was awesome.

"She sat in the back like a good girl and just had a look out the window."

Burn said once they arrived at the base, the dog was treated to leftover sausages and water.


"She was in doggie heaven for about half an hour until the family came to pick her up."