NTSB Identification: BFO90LA021.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 40858.
Accident occurred Sunday, November 12, 1989 in PAINT BANK, VA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/22/1992
Aircraft: SCHWEIZER SGS-1-35C, registration: N2880H
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

ENROUTE THE PLT ELECTED TO RETURN TO HIS DEPARTURE ARPT DUE TO DETERIORATING LIFT CONDITIONS. CONDITIONS CONTINUED TO DETERIORATE AND THE PLT DIVERTED TO A CLOSER ARPT. HE REPORTED THAT TWO MOUNTAIN RIDGES HAD TO BE CROSSED TO REACH THE ARPT. HE WAS ABLE TO CROSS ONE RIDGE; HOWEVER, INSUFFICIENT LIFT REMAINED TO CLEAR THE SECOND RIDGE. THE PLT REPORTED THAT THERE WAS NO SUITABLE LANDING AREA AVAILABLE AND THE GLIDER WAS LANDED IN TREES.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

THE PILOT'S IMPROPER INFLIGHT PLANNING WHICH LED TO AN OFF-AIRPORT LANDING AFTER ENCOUNTERING DETERIORATING LIFT CONDITIONS. CONTRIBUTING FACTORS WERE THE MOUNTAINOUS TERRAIN AND LACK OF A SUITABLE LANDING AREA.

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