Sunday, October 05, 2008

Raise and Fly

First the balloon which is about 3 stories high when inflated is unrolled from the large bag it is kept in. Then several people hold the bottom open while cold air from a large fan is forced in. At the proper time a propane burner which is attached to the top of the basket that holds the balloonist under the balloon is used to heat the air in the balloon. As the balloon heats it raises until it standing straight up. The balloon crew holds it on the ground with ropes until it is told it can go by the balloon referees. In this photo you can see the baskets, called gondolas with people in them. Each balloon is piloted by a licensed balloon pilot. Most balloons are from the United States, but there are pilots and their balloons as crews that come from lots of other counties.

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