The pilot was conducting a local sightseeing flight near Warner, N.H., in visual meteorological conditions when the American Champion 7GCBC inadvertently entered instrument meteorological conditions.
While maneuvering, he lost visual reference with the ground. The airplane entered a steep descending turn, and hit trees.
Both wings separated from the airframe and the fuselage was crushed.
Weather conditions reported at an airport that was located about 17 nautical miles from the accident site included overcast clouds at 1,100′ above ground level.
The elevation of the accident site was about 1,700′ mean sea level.
Probable cause: An encounter with instrument meteorological conditions, which resulted in the pilot’s spatial disorientation and a loss of airplane control.
NTSB Identification: ERA16CA197
This May 2016 accident report is provided by the National Transportation Safety Board. Published as an educational tool, it is intended to help pilots learn from the misfortunes of others.