NTSB Identification: LAX02LA215.
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Accident occurred Friday, July 05, 2002 in Incline Village, NV
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/28/2004
Aircraft: Rolladen-Schneider LS8-18, registration: N818JF
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

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 glider collided with mountainous terrain while attempting to gain lift over a ridge. After flying about 3 hours, the pilot was attempting to fly back to the airport where the flight originated. A glider pilot, who had been flying in company with the accident glider earlier in the day, stated that despite strong headwinds, he thought that the accident pilot would have no problems making it to other local airports. He noted that it would be difficult, if not impossible, to continue onto the airport of intended destination. The location of accident site indicated that the pilot was attempting to gain lift by maneuvering in close proximity to a ridgeline. The ground scars and glider damage revealed that the glider impacted a boulder in a slightly nose low pitch attitude, while in a 25-degree bank to the left.

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

the pilot's inadequate in-flight planning and failure to maintain an adequate clearance from terrain.

Full narrative available

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