This Site is dedicated to all those families of the people that have tragically disappeared on flights in and around New Zealand. I  only hope that from all the effort in building this site and from all the effort of those taking part in this venture, that it will bear fruit in bringing ‘closure’ to their memories!
Gavin Grimmer
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From there we carried on down the Copland Valley and down to Haast where we landed and stayed at Sean’s friend’s house for two nights. While there I processed the photo’s on Sean’s laptop and found that of the seven photo’s that I’d managed to take, five of them were right on the spot. The only problem was the valley in question was under an estimated 30ft of snow! From there we headed home back to Hastings.
Right from the start have tried to avoid too many people knowing of my “discovery” as I have been very conscious of the pain that must surely be felt by the families of the people who were aboard the ill fated Dragonfly and I don’t want them to get their hopes up of some finality in this, only to find that it was just another “red herring”.
You can only imagine my shock when a day after I returned from my first trip down, I was contacted by Search and Rescue!!!
They were under the impression that I had actually found the missing aircraft and that I was withholding from them the location of it, which obviously would constitute a criminal offence as there are still five souls on board.
After some discussion, they came to realize that what I had found was still only a possibility and that if I could prove that it was actually there, then they would be contacted straight away. I was very concerned that if I found it, that they would go in and tear the place apart and seeing the historical nature of this, I feel that it would need to be well documented before anything was touched. They agreed that if it really was the Dragonfly, then they would allow me to be on board the first helicopter in.
I spent many hours trying to work out how you could find out the date that the Google Earth satellite photo was taken and after much research discovered it on a DigitalGlobe website and that it was 16-01-2004. Since then I have found that you can find it on Google Earth itself in the “layers” section by clicking on “more” and then clicking on  “DigitalGlobe Coverage”. From there you need to just keep clicking on the various “DG” icons and then “preview” and from there you need to compare the satellite photo shown, to that on Google Earth using things like shadows or clouds until you find the one that matches.
I flew down to Franz Josef airfield on the 20th December and the next day I sent this email to Richard:

Hi Richard,

I'm in Franz Josef and flew up to the site last night. Unfortunately I set the altimeter to 30' instead of 300' before I took off for the site so of course all my photo's were taken 270' lower than they should have been. One actually had the site in it but there was a cloud obscuring it!
I took off again at about 10.30 this morning but was unable to get up the valley as the cloud base was only at 2000' and it was raining lightly.
The good news is that the site was clear of snow but as the valley is quite narrow I was more interested in getting some good photo's and looking for it on them as I was more interested in staying in the land of the living. It was very daunting flying up a dead end canyon straight at a sheer cliff face that towered 3000' above you - and not a lot of room to turn around!                                                                                     
I'm hoping that the weather will clear this evening and I'll try again. Failing this, the weather is meant to be clearer tomorrow so maybe then....
Many regards,
Gavin

        My Aeroplane  (Maranda Super 14) at Franz Josef
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