THE Westpac Lifesaver helicopter rescued a stranded kayaker in St Georges Basin on Thursday afternoon.
Emergency authorities received a call for assistance shortly after 12.15pm.
It is believed three kayakers had set out to paddle from Sanctuary Point to Sussex Inlet on Thursday morning.
As wind conditions and the chop picked up, one paddler decided to return to shore but lost sight of his two companions, became concerned for their welfare and raised the alarm.
Surf lifesaving crews, marine rescue, police, ambulance and the rescue helicopter were dispatched, mounting an extensive search of the area, focusing on the eastern side of the Basin.
A man, believed to be in his 70s, was located in the water in the centre of the Basin waterway.
He was winched aboard the rescue helicopter, suffering severe hypothermia.
He was stabilised by the helicopter crew and flown to a nearby park at Sanctuary Point where the aircraft was met by an ambulance, and the man was transferred to Shoalhaven Hospital in a stable condition.
The third paddler manager to make it to shore safely.