Searching for Balloon flights in Grand Rapids? Welcome to the end of your search! Finding a firm to provide Balloon flights is easy. Additionally, you can check our Balloon Ride Directory, or look in your local yellow pages.
Enjoying Balloon flights is something the entire family can participate in, but it is also a popular way to go on a date! When you speak with the pilot you are considering flying with, always to ask how many others will be in the basket.
When it is time for your flight, your pilot will offer to let you help with the assembly and inflation of the balloon. Go ahead and do it - it adds to the experience!
How do you steer a balloon?
Balloons simply float with the wind. The pilot can control the balloon's altitude to find a wind going in the desired direction, but you cannot fly upwind or crosswind.
Preflight planning insures the pilot knows which way the balloon will be traveling, and the pilot makes sure there are plenty of suitable landing sites downwind. You'll be amazed how the pilot is able to steer the balloon during your balloon ride!
Famous Balloon Quote:
The best way of travel, however, if you aren't in any hurry at all, if you don't care where you are going, if you don't like to use your legs, if you don't want to be annoyed at all by any choice of directions, is in a balloon. In a balloon, you can decide only when to start, and usually when to stop. The rest is left entirely to nature.
— William Pene du Bois, 'The Twenty-one Balloons.'
A two- or three- person crew helps the pilot rig the equipment, holds open the envelope while it fills with cold air, and applies weight to the outside of the basket as needed before launch. Then they follow the balloon on the ground, and after the landing help the pilot pack everything up and bring it home again. Much of the crew workload consists of carrying heavy equipment from the truck to and from launch and landing spots.
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What are balloon envelopes made of?
Rip-stop nylon is the most common material. Polyester and other fabrics are sometimes used. The lower portions around the opening are usually made from a fire resistant material like Nomex, similar to what race car drivers and firemen wear to protect themselves.