Uncovering the Truth: The

Uncover the mystery of Jason Chase’s death in New Zealand’s Rahinay Range. This true crime thriller reveals dark secrets and unexplained events in Nettle Gully.

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Jason Chase was found lying on his left side, his legs stretched out, with no shoes. The scene was peaceful, as if he had simply fallen asleep in the quiet gully. There were no signs of trauma, and no clear reason that this perfectly healthy 25-year-old man should be lying here, dead in New Zealand’s Rahinay Range, just after Christmas.

There was food in his stomach, he was well hydrated and there were no signs of trauma to his body. He had been dead for no more than 6 days and his death was ruled to be on or about December 30th, meaning he had been alive during most of the search operation, but this didn’t look like a man who had been struggling to survive in the wilderness for weeks.

The pathologist who performed Jason’s autopsy was Cynric Temple-Camp. With no clear answers, he was forced to label Jason’s cause of death: natural. Jason’s family was devastated. They demanded answers. But in the eyes of the government, the case was closed.

For Temple-Camp however, Jason’s case never left his mind. This death could not have been natural.

Over the coming years Temple-Camp learned small pieces of information, like that local hunters call the area Jason was found, “nettle gully”. He interviewed locals, and gathered intel and evidence.

The name, “nettle gully” sparked something deep in the memory of his retired surgical colleague and friend John Coutts one day, who immediately jumped up and disappeared in his attic before returning with a stack of ancient surgical notes.

After a moment of sifting, he thrust a yellowing paper in front of his friend. At the top was the date 1961.

The notes detailed a local case: two young men were hunting in the Ruahines on boxing day, the same area Jason had gone missing. As the sun fell, they ran through a bank of tree nettles in their rush to get home.

These nettles were a species called Urtica ferox, meaning Fierce Itch. It’s a native found on the fringes of New Zealand’s bush, and has leaves that are covered in rigid six millimeter long stinging hairs.

At the time of the incident, the men were wearing shorts- just like Jason had been.
Soon, one of the men became paralyzed. His friend left him to get help, returning with a rescue team who brought him to a hospital, but he died 5 hours later.

Nettle gully, where Jason’s body was recovered, was covered in them, plants with poison known to kill horses.

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