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Hot Air Ballooning Trips

Updated on September 5, 2010
Angkor Wat, Cambodia
Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Hot Air Balloons

In this article I didn't intend to give a list of every detail of how a hot air balloon works, yet give a brief description and explore some of the various kinds of air balloon. However this is not exactly a 'picture' hub either, there will be paragraphs in between each photograph.

Call me dumb if you will but until today I didn't realise hot air balloons actually included a hole sealed in the top inside of the 'envelope'!, I believe it is released by the passenger's using the parachute 'valve chord' if the balloon is near to landing to make the balloon deflate. Don't mistake the word 'parachute' for a method of protecting you if the balloon goes down! Some people have plummeted to their deaths in recent years, one such man Robert Mock, of Colorado died when his balloon deflated and dropped 2,000 feet.

The hot air balloon also consists of the 'skirt' which is the lowest part under the envelope, the skirt is made from a flame resistant material and helps to protect the flame burner from wind and direct the heat straight up into the balloon. The buoyancy of the balloon and the fact that hot air rises allows the balloon to ascend and it then travels in the direction of the wind, however, by decreasing the flame size it can descend to a height where the wind is traveling in a different direction. Some balloons are different from the modernised ones we see in shows and sporting events today, some such as the one above use gases like hydrogen, helium and ammonia.

1st Photo Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/christianhaugen/3435445256/

Hot Air Ballooning

In the first photo above we can see the passenger's 'Wicker Basket', wicker basket's are still used in modern times because there is no other material which has the right weight, flexibility and strength. however, very strong steel cords pass underneath the basket and then attach to the load wires of the envelope. As we can see above there are foot holes to allow the passengers to climb in and out of the basket, as advised in the video below, you can grab onto any suede on the top of the basket to pull yourself in.

The picture underneath the basket shows how the burners operate and they are fueled by propane tanks below which are held in the basket by steel cords and plastic support poles, all this connects to the envelope so must be secure and the correct weight so not to put too weight upon lifting of the balloon.

1st Photo Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/eeliuth/3545207164/

2nd photo Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/eeliuth/3544406985/

Hot Air Ballon Ride

I basically added this video because I think it demonstrates nicely how the balloon is inflated from deflated to the initial first rising off the ground, I found it interesting that people are actually required to hold the balloon to the ground whilst others get on board before 'floating away' as the man says.

I came up with the idea for this article due to overhearing somebody mention it in a conversation in work, I have always found the physics of balooning fascinating and extremely artistic and that is what I like about blogging, it gives me the oportunity of exploring subjects that interest me whilst incorporating them into my writing at the same time.

Commercial Hot Air Balloons

Above I have included two examples of commercial hot air balloons, it is a form of 'viral' advertising, meaning people will see the balloon and the hype will repeated in newspapers, Internet blogs and amongst friends which will gain the company more recognition. In the pictures we can see balloons by the tissue brand 'Quilted Velvet' and also 'Basset's Liquorice Allsorts - Berty Basset character'.

Richard Branson is one business entrepaneur who took a great liking of Hot Air Ballooning as a sport, he and Per Lindstrandtried to complete the 'around the world flight' during the years of 1995-1998 but where hit by set backs on a regular basis and unable to complete the challenge. He was always interested in flight, starting his own airline and the Air Ballooning only added to the recognition of his brand name 'Virgin'.

1st Photo Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/mdpettitt/133579659/

2nd Photo Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/mdpettitt/133579787/in/set-72057594114840580/

Another two commercial examples I found are shown above, and let me just say 'You can't get much more commercial than a giant energizer bunny!, especially one that is quoted as being taller than the statue of liberty.

I don't know whether the 'Finding Nemo' fish was meant as commercial or just because kid's love it, but it definitely had some commercial spending for its creation so I assume it was a combination of the two ideals that inspired this balloon.

1st photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/walkadog/3893399951/

2nd photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/zanastardust/3850955762/in/set-72157621986472137/

Character Hot Air Balloons

I find the different shaped hot air balloons particularly interesting because they have taken the original enjoyment of ballooning and created a competition of 'who can have the coolest looking balloon' to keep excitement alive, people also compete for the largest balloon and you know there must be a thrill to see whether these things will actually take off!.

Above we have examples of famous cartoon character's such as 'Pepe Le Pew' and 'The Smurfs', although the Pirate one is my favorite, I get visions of Hot air Balloons being Hijacked!

1st photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/zanastardust/3855867920/in/set-72157621986472137/

2nd photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/zanastardust/3850162621/in/set-72157621986472137/

Hot Air Balloon Festivals

These two Bumble Bee's were to earn money for Breast cancer Awareness since they have the pink ribbon on their chests.
These two Bumble Bee's were to earn money for Breast cancer Awareness since they have the pink ribbon on their chests.
Imagine this descending over your house? better call Will Smith for your Independance Day!
Imagine this descending over your house? better call Will Smith for your Independance Day!
I couldn't believe the size of this when I stumbled upon this picture, such work gone into it.
I couldn't believe the size of this when I stumbled upon this picture, such work gone into it.

Well we've now reached the end of my Hot Air Ballooning article, I hope it has brought you as much enjoyment as it has been for me making it. We probably don't have as many festivals as you do in the U.S in the U.K due to weather conditions, that is why I have included the beautiful photo of these eleven balloons amongst the clear blue sky as a good conclusion and mental image to take away.

1st photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/zanastardust/3850162033/in/set-72157621986472137/

2nd photo courtesy http://www.flickr.com/photos/zanastardust/3855079003/in/set-72157621986472137/

3rd photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/walkadog/3893347059/

Photo courtesy of Wiki

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    • profile image

      Kathy derleth 

      6 years ago

      Bob Mock was my father in law who loved ballooning. He was safe and always inspected his balloons. They never were able to explain his death. We all miss him

    • freecampingaussie profile image

      freecampingaussie 

      7 years ago from Southern Spain

      Would LOVE to do this sometime soon! Voted this up !

    • H.C Porter profile image

      Holly 

      8 years ago from Lone Star State

      They are beautiful-but no way no day would I ever go there... I can barely hold my cool when I am on a 6 foot latter..

      nice hub!

    • profile image

      pinkylee 

      8 years ago

      hot air balloons are awesome .. i went in one but it was tied down so i didnt float away to to far but it was still cool to see and do ... thanks for a great hub

    • Ann Nonymous profile image

      Ann Nonymous 

      8 years ago from Virginia

      Wow! I have always wanted to ride in one, but even though some are very attractive, I think I would prefer the normal ones...although if you think about it, hot air balloons are anything but normal....just ask balloon boy and his family!

      This was a really fun and colorful hub, Richie! Well done!

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