Granite State Balloon Association
i want to go up again.
Many GSBA member pilots offer ballon rides to the public and are listed below. Prices and terms vary but each holds a federal pilot's license and flies a balloon meeting the tough requirements of the Federal Aviation Administration. Bon Voyage!
A Once In A Lifetime Experience
A balloon flight in New England is an experience few people ever know. It can be an "aerial nature walk" where, floating silently above the trees, you may see wildlife in its natural habitat. It is not uncommon to see deer, moose, heron or geese to name a few.
It can also be the most peaceful and relaxing experience you’ll ever know, following the contour of the land or dipping down for a close up view of a small lake, pond or stream. Careful!! You may get your feet wet.
When Do Balloons Fly
Ballooning is a sport of elegance that begins with the first warmth of the morning sun.
Sunrise flights are a tradition, it is the time when the winds are their calmest and the fields and mountains their finest. Afternoon flights can be equally enjoyable. Ascension approximately two hours before sunset will return you to mother earth in time for a splendid sunset. Pre-dawn flights are available from some pilots. Ask your local pilot for availability.
Your pilot will be in contact with his chase crew who will assist you on landing. They assist with the retrieval and packup and will return you to the launch field. Flights average about an hour. From lift off until your return to the launch site takes three to four hours.
Your Balloon, Pilot and Safety
Ballooning is one of the oldest and safest forms of aviation. Balloons flown today are the safest ever made. They are inspected annually by Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certified repair stations. All balloons carry the required instrumentation and communications equipment. All pilots from the Granite State Balloon Association are certified by the FAA and attend Safety Seminars annually. Many pilots are certified to give flight instruction and would also be happy to help with your promotional needs. This includes tether rides, birthday parties, company picnics, weddings or any outdoor event you plan. Most pilots offer Gift Certificates for that special occasion. Check with your local pilot.
An Age Old Tradition
The tradition of drinking champagne during ballooning began in France, where ballooning, based on the principal that hot air rises, first was launched in 1783. As the story goes, the balloon eventually ran out of heat and descended at a rapid rate. This uncontrolled descent often resulted in the balloonists crashing into farmer’s fields. The frightened farmers would attack the balloons and passengers with pitchforks. To appease the farmers, balloonists began to take along bottles of Champagne and bread as an offering. Today, balloons are safer and more controllable and the tradition of rewarding the landowner with an offering to show appreciation of the much needed field still remains.
What Should You Wear?
To get the most enjoyment from your flight, wear comfortable, casual clothes. Long pants and long sleeves with low heeled sturdy shoes are appropriate. Sandals are not recommended, while waterproof footwear may add to your comfort. It is often warmer in the balloon than on the ground, so dress accordingly. Don’t forget the camera and plenty of film.
If you're not lucky enough to live in or visit New Hampshire, you can find balloon rides in other parts of the world in this directory of balloon rides.
This page maintained by the Granite State Balloon Association. All material © 1999-2019 by the Granite State Balloon Association.