On November 25, 1995, about 1650 eastern standard time, a Champion 7ECA, N11081, collided with trees during takeoff from a private airstrip near Lacona, New York. The airplane was substantially damaged, and the student pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan had been filed. The local training flight was being conducted under 14 CFR Part 91.

The ski-equipped airplane was departing from a runway, which was covered with wet snow, and was 1,140 feet long. During the takeoff, the airplane was unable to clear trees at the departure end of the runway. The runway was reported to have obstructions in all directions.

According to the pilot's statement on the NTSB Form 6120.1/2, after he pre-flighted the airplane, he taxied to the end of the runway and performed a run-up.

The pilot stated:

...everything was okay so I took off. I didn't get enough airspeed to clear a 15' obstacle at the end of my runway and hit a stump at the end...I became airborne but couldn't regain control of [the] airplane it fell out to the right and landed in a hedge row.

The pilot's total flight time was 150 hours, with 20 hours in this make and model airplane.

The reported local weather was; 4000 broken, visibility 10 miles, temperature 35 degrees F, winds calm.

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