OLD AGE AND TREACHERY WILL OVERCOME YOUTH AND SKILL.
And on the eighth day God said, "Okay, Murphy, you're in charge!" ~Author Unknown
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I think he had a better chance surfing in on water and auguring in on land. It was a good landing, it seems to me. He had the other engine on the back to use as a boat propeller, too. Only, it sank too fast to use it.
Salt water is not a good thing for airplanes.
Where he was, there isn't any grass within probably 5-6 miles of the airport. It's all volcanic rock.
Easy to have an opinion when your butt isn't in the seat.