Aussie Soldier Digs Snow Cave to Survive For a Week On New Zealand Mountain

It’s winter in the Southern hemisphere, and one very lucky soldier just survived its dangers.

Aspiring national park in winter, South Island, New Zealand (Getty)
Aspiring national park in winter, South Island, New Zealand (Getty)
Getty Images/Biosphoto

An Australian soldier who carved out a snow cave in Mount Aspiring National Park in New Zealand was rescued Friday after surviving there for a week, according to Time. The soldier set out for a weekend hike, though it’s unclear what kept 29-year-old Terry Harch from descending when he was supposed to.

The rescue operations reportedly combined three helicopters and a “snatch and grab” escape, in which the soldier and the four rescuers who had reached him by climbing the mountain were all whisked away before conditions worsened.

“Authorities said the man had survived strong winds, heavy snow and temperatures that, when the wind-chill was factored in, had fallen to minus-16 Celsius (3 Fahrenheit) in the Southern Hemisphere winter,” Time writes. Harch reportedly suffered minor frostbite form the ordeal.

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