When do balloons fly?
We fly balloons year round, 7 days a week weather permitting. Hot air balloons fly at sunrise and about 2 and a half hours before sunset. These are the times of days when winds are calmest.
What should I wear?
Depending on the season, you would dress as if you are going for a walk.
Can I take a camera?
Absolutely! There are a lot of great views that you can take still pictures of. Alternatively, you can bring a video camera if you prefer. We would suggest that regardless of your choice, you bring a soft case for your camera for landing. Furthermore, we would recommend that you make sure to have a strap for your camera to put around your neck or shoulder. Don’t forget to bring ample amounts of film.
How long does it take?
The entire trip may take as long as 3 hours. On average, it can take up to 30 minutes to inflate and prepare the balloon. The flight itself is about 1 hour. Once the chase team has found the balloon, it may take 30 minutes to pack the balloon into the truck and then another 30 minutes to drive back to the landing site. Upon returning, you’ll celebrate with us in a champagne toast with assorted appetizers.
How far are we likely to fly?
Since we drift at the velocity of wind, it is difficult to predict. Hot air balloons tend to have very little control over where they fly. It is likely that the trip travels 10 miles or so. However, it all depends on the wind currents. Unlike directional control, vertical control can be very precise. Thus the balloon may fly at different heights for different parts of the trip.
How do we get back to the launch field?
While in the air, there is a ground chase crew following the balloon. They keep in touch with the balloon pilot through the use of a hand-held radio. The chase crew should be reasonably close to the landing site when the balloon lands. From there, they will drive everyone back to the original starting point.
Where will we land?
Since balloons fly with the wind currents, it is very difficult, if not impossible, to predict where they will land. Consequently, the pilot will find a suitable area and will land there. Prior to the flight, the pilot will have done a flight plan so as to have a reasonably good idea about what needs to happen so as not to land in an unsuitable area.
How safe is ballooning?
Ballooning has been around since 1783, when the first flight occurred in France. Since then, it has had an excellent safety record. It is safer than most common sports, such as bicycling and skiing. All pilots must take multiple written and practical exams with the FAA to be rated as a commercial pilot in order to fly balloons. Furthermore, the balloons go through the same rigorous inspection process that airplanes go through. Aerostat Promotions’ pilots have decades of experience, with a perfect safety record.
How many people fit in a balloon?
Our balloon will carry between two and four passenger plus a pilot.