NTSB Identification: SEA04LA113.
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Accident occurred Monday, June 21, 2004 in Glenoma, WA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/24/2005
Aircraft: Piper J-3, registration: N27135
Injuries: 1 Serious.

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


Just prior to the accident, the aircraft was observed flying very low and slow through the hilly terrain just east of the east end of Riffe Lake. The airplane then made a steeply banked turn, reversed course, disappeared behind a line of trees, and then impacted a number of trees along the slope of a steep incline. A post-accident inspection of the aircraft and its engine did not reveal any evidence that there had been any malfunction or anomaly in the flight control system or in the operation of the engine. It was further determined that the aircraft had taken on 8.25 gallons of aviation fuel approximately 70 minutes prior to the accident.

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

The pilot's failure to maintain clearance from the trees while maneuvering at a very low level in hilly terrain. Factors include hilly terrain, and thickly forested slopes in the area where the pilot was maneuvering.

Full narrative available

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