Into the Corn


Was on a local pleasure flight in my belong to cruise air heading from Twin County airport in hills village Virginia to South West Virginia. My friend Daniel Student pilot was in the right seat. I was the pilot in command. I plan to take off from runway one niner and make a large sweeping right turn to return to the airport. I anticipated flight of fifteen to thirty minutes. Maximum approximately five to seven miles from the airport. I was arguing back to the field at about one thousand five hundred or one thousand seven hundred feet. Ag L. in accrues configuration climbing gently. When I felt a sensation similar to driving over a rumble strip on a highway without much discernible noise change. The engine suddenly backed off to idle with a mild shuddering sensation. The propeller continued to windmill. My initial reaction was to raise the nose and verify that the throttle and mixture were forward. They were still in a gentle. Climb as I- decelerated to approximately best glide speed verified the mags on both and then left and then right individually switched field tanks applied carburetor. Heat verify the landing gear and flaps full up and re trimmed the nose judge the distance to the airport boundary and stated that we needed to have a fielder to picked out in case. The glide. Didn't look good after we stabilized. I quickly determined that we were not within a glide of the airport property and selected a field planted in corn. We had seen just behind the right wing. My reasoning was that was a long ridge of an otherwise very steep hill surrounded by other inhospitable hillsides. And all the pastures had relatively close fences and had visible obstacles rocks included and cattle. I also reason that the corn would help dissipate energy. I briefly experimented with the hand fuel. Pump starter mixture and throttle hoping for at least partial power with zero engine response. Daniel remained calm and very helpful. I initiated a brisk turn to the right which put us on a slightly high angling left base leg. I told Daniel my intentions and once I assured we were clear of the power transmission lines and towers. I confirmed we were configured for a full flap gear up landing and went left to right in the cockpit turning off any potential hazards to our landing including mags. Throttle and mixture fallout master. Switch off. I told Daniel to verify. The cabin door was ajar. At which point he asked about the wheels and I stated it would be an intentional gear up to avoid nosing over just above the corn. I realized my plan to touch down just as the field settled slightly into a bowl. The seaplane technique for water landings and swells was off and I actually went into the corn tassels seconds past that point dragging the tail the descent through the approximately six foot high corn was very noisy and short lived as it provided rapid deceleration as anticipated and we impacted knows high wings level very firmly and stopped almost immediately. Skewing about thirty to forty degrees left just as we stopped even with my experience. Flying from aircraft carriers that touchdown and deceleration is at least tied for the most violent arrest. Moment I have experienced my inertial real lap belts and shoulder harnesses. Were wonderful as soon as we stop moving. I checked on Daniel and told him firmly to get out of the airplane. He did so eagerly as he exited. I handed possibly through the first aid kit at him and followed immediately once clear. We tried to confirm that neither of US was hurt. We remain somewhat away from the aircraft and then got closer to inspect it. I did not see or smell fuel oil. Smoke or flame and so from the wing. I confirm that I had the airplane and IT systems turned off and looked for my cell phone. It was later found in the corn stubble. About twelve feet from the cockpit. Apparently having broken free of its Yo colder an exited through the lower right corner of the windshield we set out through the corn downhill. In the general direction of the nearest road. I estimate are not so straight path to the first cattle fence and subsequently cow path to have covered what is actually only about one quarter mile while walking we both called family members to inform them of our experience and that we were okay. I also arrange to have picked up roadside. We encountered the landowner at the bottom of the hill and informed him how we got there he had no idea. I called the Flight Standards District Office at Charleston West Virginia and left a message and then tried to Richmond. Virginia physio with a similar lack of success. My wife then took me to the Galax Virginia hospital because of increasing lower back discomfort while in the waiting room at the emergency room I was successful reporting the event to a flight service station operator at one. Eight hundred W X brief. Who told me that his computer entries were in fact passed into the government system and that I had therefore notified the FAA. We later discovered that the crankshaft had broken cleanly into it. Shut down all the accessories. Fuel pump mags oil pump. The instant the rear third had stopped rotating that put us in a glider with a big speed break in just one or three skipped heartbeats. I don't count the successful outcome of this. Or my previous four aviation bumps in the night to military to civilian as a result of any exceptional pilot skills on my part but gleefully acknowledged that I had many good and thorough civilian and military instructors over the years who hammered the need for constant practice and self instruction into my piloting. The result is that when something goes wrong. There's no need to think about it simply. React to all the training scenarios and execute the sequence of corrective action. You've already created. It's worked well for

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