Rescued woman 'lucky' to avoid serious injury from fall down Mt Ruapehu crevasse

Police say a mountain climber is "lucky" to have escaped serious injury after she fell over 10 metres down a crevasse while on Mt Ruapehu yesterday.

Mount Ruapēhu. Source:

Police said they received a distress call from a mountaineering group around 2:40pm to say a member of their group, a woman in her 20s, had fallen 15m down the crevasse in the Whangaehu Glacier on the eastern side of the mountain.

The climbers said they couldn't see the woman at the time but they could communicate with her.

Police launched a rescue operation immediately, with the Greenlea Rescue Helicopter sent to the glacier from Taupo via the Chateau Tongariro Hotel where it picked up members of the LandSAR Ruapehu Alpine Rescue Organisation.

Tukino ski field staff were also on standby to assist in case weather began to hinder efforts or the helicopter's ability to get to and from the situation.

The helicopter arrived at the crevasse around 5pm and crews proceeded to use ropes and harness equipment to lift the woman out.

The woman was reportedly in "good health and good spirits" after she was rescued around 6:40pm.

Police added they were impressed with the mountaineering group for their preparedness before and calmness during the operation.