Each balloon flight is a unique experience. Flights in the Austin area are usually at dawn, when the winds are the calmest. Usually balloons are launched when the winds are less than 8 mph. Because balloon pilots have very little control over steering the balloon, they fly wherever the winds blow them.
What are balloons made of?
The envelope is rip-stop nylon and the gondola is usually made of wicker.
How big are balloons?
Balloons range from 30,000 to 800,000 cubic feet. The most popular are about 75,000 cubic feet and are six to seven stories tall.
How do you go up and down?
The balloon ascends by adding heat from the burner, and descends by opening the deflation panel at the top of the envelope or by allowing the air in the envelope to cool slightly.
Do you use any instruments?
Balloon instruments include an altimeter, variometer (rate of climb) and a pyrometer (temperature gauge).
What kind of fuel do you use?
Propane. Most balloons carry at least 30 gallons.
How high do you fly?
From treetop level up to several thousand feet.
Can you fly any time of day?
Flights are usually at dawn or just before sunset, when the winds are the calmest.
How long is a flight?
Between 45minutes to over 1.5 hours, depending on weight, weather conditions, landing spots, and fuel consumption.
Is it cold when you are flying?
It is not much colder than it is on the ground; only about three degrees cooler per thousand feet of altitude.
How long does it take to inflate a balloon?
About 15 to 20 minutes.
Is the sport regulated at all?
The pilots and balloons operate under FAA regulations.
Is the balloon ride quiet?
Except for the periodic operation of the burner, it’s so quiet that you can talk to people on the ground.
How much does it cost?
The average price for a balloon flight in the Austin area is $250 per person, including transportation back to the launch site and champagne toast.
How can we get a ride?
Contact us about flight availability.