The images are the story, and the story is that bears aren't the best custodian for your fabric-covered airplane. Every now and then at AVweb, we receive an email from a reader and we can't verify the story but feel like sharing it anyway. This is one of those times. The message sent to us along with the pictures of the post-bear-encounter Piper, states that the pilot of the hapless aircraft left it parked in a remote field in Alaska, but failed to observe a golden rule of Alaskan flying. The rule: Always remember to clean out the inside of your aircraft after a fishing trip. The message suggests the pilot did have a second rule, however: Find some duct tape and fix it.
Whether or not the aircraft actually flew, the duct tape/cellophane covering job is, in our opinion, museum-worthy. For those concerned with the veracity of the claim that the aircraft then flew home for proper repairs, we'll add the observation that the right horizontal stabilizer seems to have suffered some degree of leading edge damage.
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