POLICE have recovered the bodies of two men found washed ashore Birubi Beach, near Newcastle.
About 2pm on Thursday, the two men, aged 71 and 77 departed Brooklyn on a yacht en route for Port Stephens.
They were expected to arrive by midday Friday and were in constant contact with family to advise their position, but at around 10am, contact was lost and police were called.
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Emergency services sprung into action, initiating a large-scale air and sea search involving local police, water police, POLAIR, Marine Rescue NSW, the Westpac Lifesaver helicopter and a number of Surf Life Saving assets.
At around 3.30pm, police located a body washed ashore Birubi Beach. A second body was located nearby about 20 minutes later.
The bodies were recovered and as of this morning, were still to waiting to be formally identified.
Inquiries continue and a report will be prepared for the information of the Coroner.