Searching for Baloon flights in Irvine? This is to the end of your search! Finding a ride provider to provide Baloon flights is easy. Also, you can stop by our Balloon Ride Directory, or look in the yellow pages.
Enjoying Baloon flights is something everyone can $do, but it is also a popular way to celebrate a birthday! When you speak with the company you are thinking about riding with, don't forget to ask how many others will be in the basket.
When it is time for your adventure, your company will offer to let you help with the assembly and inflation of the balloon. Go ahead and do it - it adds to the fun!
Do you need a license to fly a balloon?
A Balloon Pilot Certificate is issued by the Federal Aviation Administration in the USA. You must pass an FAA written exam, obtain a prescribed number of hours of instruction, make a solo flight, a flight to a specific altitude and pass a flight test.
A pilot offering balloon rides (flying passengers for hire) must receive additional training and have more experience than a private pilot. You don't have to be able to fly an airplane since it is a completely different type of aircraft, although many balloon pilots also fly other types of aircraft like airplanes and helicopters.
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.'
When the pilot has located a nice field for landing, the crew is informed (usually by radio) of the landing site. The goal of the crew is two fold; they want to have the vehicle at the landing field before the pilot lands, and still have enough time to be waiting in the selected field to assist in any way with the landing operation. Sound pretty simple? Well... it is, most of the time! It is often explained that crewing is 90% just plain common sense, and 10% training.
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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.