Saturday, July 23, 2011
What we did this morning
The alarm went off at 3:45. We had to be at the rendezvous point at 5am and it was a 45 minute drive from Montreal. Even though I was super tender and sweet waking Serge, he was a monster. It made me laugh. (which probably didn't help with his surliness)
It was touted as the largest hot air balloon in North America. I have no idea if that's true (probably not) but with the pilot, we were 13 in that basket. All participants are asked to help with the setup and breakdown. It took about 30 minutes before we were ready to take off.
Our balloon really was huge. Look how small the girl looks in the background inside the balloon. The guy told us it held 315,000 cubic feet of hot air. (insert joke here)
He took us real high at the beginning and then we stayed pretty low the rest of the time. He even grazed the cornfields a couple of times. The wind was carrying us at 47 kilometers per hour.
The nice passenger took this for us. I love the morning light. We saw deer frolicking (actually they were probably more like freaking out) below as we passed over vast fields and clumps of forest. There's very little wind though because you are part of the wind moving at the same speed as it is.
After about 45 minutes it was time to find a nice field to land in. We all took our crouched landing positions and the basket touched down and got drag-bounced another 20 yards or so before stopping. The nice farmer whose field we landed in let us look around his dairy farm while we sipped the complimentary champagne. I felt sorry for the cows in prison there.
This shot is not really possible while you're riding. So I took a picture of the side of the truck that transported all the equipment. That IS the balloon we rode and the basket so we must have looked similar as we crossed the freeway.
There's a bunch more pictures on Facebook here.
And I took a little video while we were up there.