UW-Stevens Point students survive 9 days in New Zealand bush

Police: students survived on trail mix, dips in hot springs

Two 21-year-old American students have walked out of the New Zealand wilderness after a snowstorm trapped them for nine days. Police say they survived by rationing their meager supplies of trail mix and warming themselves in hot springs.

Alec Brown and Erica Klintworth are both students from University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point who are studying abroad.

They had planned to hike and camp for a few days at hot springs on New Zealand’s South Island. But authorities say heavy rains and a snowstorm prevented the couple from being able to cross a river and return.

They met up with members of a search team on Sunday after making their way back out of the wilderness — famished but otherwise in good shape.