Just as a follow-on to my previous post about the Shingle Slip Knob plane wreckage having been stolen, it seems that the wreckage has now been discovered in an aerodrome at Masterton, care-of the NZ Sport and Vintage Aviation Society who intended to display the wreckage in a the George Hood Aviation Museum which they’re building.
Apparently they had no idea that they might be breaking some kind of law by fly into conservation land and taking things! I’m not sure why — if I wanted to reconstruct a New Zealand back-country hut for a museum in my back yard, would it be okay for me to fly in with a helicopter and take that from conservation land too? Perhaps the leave-it-as-you-found-it rule isn’t quite so obvious for people who don’t spend a lot of time in or near New Zealand’s conservation land.
It sounds as if it was some kind of misunderstanding and I haven’t exactly figured out what I think about this at the moment. Supposedly DOC’s lawyers and the families of the pilots will decide what happens next.
There seems to be a continuing discussion about this issue over at the NZ Tramper website.