NTSB Identification: CHI01LA200.
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Accident occurred Sunday, July 08, 2001 in Tomahawk, WI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/23/2001
Aircraft: Cessna 175, registration: N103DL
Injuries: 3 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.

The airplane sustained substantial damage on impact with trees during initial climb. The pilot and two passengers were uninjured.
The pilot aborted two takeoffs. The pilot indicated, "This time I changed my route to get a longer run (3). I step taxied to the southwest corner of the lake accelerating to the east and departed to the north to maximize the length of my takeoff run. This time I lifted off cleanly with good airspeed. Initially I climbed well, but after a bit my climb rate slowed. At a point several hundred yards from shore I realized I may not clear the trees. I did not feel I had enough room to safely turn the aircraft back, so I elected to maintain my direction and increase my angle of attack little by little to try to clear the trees and keep the aircraft flying. I cleared the first row of trees, but dragged my left float through a tree top at which point the aircraft stalled falling off to the left, striking a tree with my left float. The aircraft slide down this same tree coming to rest at its base." The pilot listed no "mechanical malfunction failure" on his statement. At 2055, density altitude was 3,705 feet above mean sea level. The pilot's safety recommendation was, "Less weight, cooler outside temp, better wind." The pilot stated that he did not perform a density altitude calculation prior the the accident flight.

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

The inadequate preflight preparation that did not include calculating the density altitude and the pilot not maintaining clearance from the second row of trees on initial climb. Factors include those trees and the high density altitude present at the time of the accident.

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