A stunt plane and the body of its pilot were discovered Friday on the Mission Viejo Ranch, two days after the single-engine aircraft crashed, investigators said.
Investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration were at the site late Friday, trying to determine the plane's departure point, its destination and what caused it to crash. The pilot could not be immediately identified.
Witnesses reported having seen the Zivko fixed-wing stunt plane flying in the area earlier, Orange County sheriff's spokesman Jon Fleischman said.
A ranch hand called the Sheriff's Department on Friday after a hiker came upon the wreckage about two miles northeast of Ortega Highway and Antonio Parkway, west of the Cleveland National Forest.
Jerry Johnstone, regional operations officer for the FAA in Lawndale, said agency officials believe that the plane crashed Wednesday.