NTSB Identification: WPR13LA299
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Friday, June 28, 2013 in Trout Lake, WA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/27/2014
Aircraft: CESSNA 172 - N, registration: N75542
Injuries: 4 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 pilot reported that the engine was developing full power during the attempted soft-field takeoff from the 1,800-foot grass airstrip in calm wind. About halfway down the runway, the airspeed indicator only read about 40 knots. When the airplane was about two-thirds of the way down the runway, the pilot realized that he was committed to take off because insufficient runway was remaining to stop the airplane. After reaching about 45 knots, the airplane’s nosewheel lifted off the runway, but it only lifted about 4 feet off the ground. About the same time, the airplane's right wing impacted two 10-foot-tall trees and a barbed wire fence. The airplane subsequently cleared a drainage ditch, the main landing gear impacted a sprinkler pipe, and the airplane skidded on all three main landing gear before coming to rest in an upright position. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the right wing and empennage.
A postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no anomalies that would have precluded normal operation. The airplane was within its weight and balance limits. The pilot reported that he had experience taking off and landing on short and soft fields and that, on the day before the accident, he had practiced short-field takeoffs and landings at another airport; however, he did not indicate if he had practiced soft-field takeoffs and landings at that time. The pilot should have aborted the takeoff when the airplane reached the runway’s midpoint at an airspeed of only about 40 knots.

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

The pilot's failure to maintain clearance from trees during takeoff from a soft field and to abort the landing when the airplane reached the runway’s midpoint at a low airspeed.

Full narrative available

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