Duckboats.net
Skip to Content


Home : Main Forums : Duck Boat/Hunting Forum :

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta

Quote Reply
Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta
For decades the most photographed event in the United States has been the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. During the event, which begins on the 1st Saturday in October, when walking around the grounds, you can stand right next to an inflating balloon, talk with the crew, sometimes even being asked by the pilot to help if they need an extra hand. The zebras also known as the referees, clears the area needed to let the inflated balloon take off. On the opener this year the "mass ascension" starts out the event. This year, an unusual fog rolled over the grounds and cancelled the ascension.

So on Sunday, which ended up being perfect, the Mass Ascension was a wonderful success. One of the reasons Albuquerque is so unique for those who love to fly balloons is because of the box winds. When they inflate their balloons and take off there is a north wind pushing the balloons south. As the balloon approaches the city of Albuquerque, the pilot heats up the balloon and it rises just enough to catch a perfect south wind that pushes the balloon northward. They fly over the field that they took off from and head north for a while letting their passengers enjoy the sites. Finally the pilot makes the decision to head back and find a landing zone. On Sunday, with everything being so perfect a day, some of the balloons landed on the field that they took off from. That is truly an amazing feat!
Al

Here are some pictures from past years when Bev and I have been there in person. It is a unique experience never to be forgotten.




Last edited by:

Al Hansen: Oct 8, 2019, 11:57 AM
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
Al,

If I am ever in that area for the balloon fiesta, I'll have to stop and visit. I wonder if I would get air sick in a balloon? I like that fourth shot a lot.
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
That is remarkable! Great pictures Al!
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
very nice

there is a annual balloon festival a little less than an hour from here, we got up a o'dark thirty and drove out to get pictures twice, both times, the launch was canceled.

i figure if i am going to get up that early from now on, i'll be duck hunting Wink




"Just because the man does not offer you a drink Hastings, does not mean he is automatically guilty of other crimes" Agatha Christie's Poirot
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
Hi Dani, I do not know about getting air sick. I just know that I would never get in a basket and go for a ride. I have stood on the edge of a 500 foot drop while Dall sheep hunting and never gave it a thought. I happen to like that same shot!
Al
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
Thanks so much, Paul. Glad you liked the shots. Bev and I were there one year when they had over a thousand balloons entered. They quickly found out that was way too many. The other problem being that as the years go by, those empty lots that used to be there for them to put their balloons down on now are developed. I think the number is kept at around 500 or so. It is a well run operation.
Al
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
Well, Rick, the good news here is that when the balloons a flying are duck season has yet to open. So it works out great. When Bev and I go up to ABQ to see the balloons we must leave here by 3:15AM so that once we are in Albuquerque we can catch a bus to the Balloon Fiesta site. All I can tell you is that we have been washed out too but kept on being persistent enough to see some fantastic numbers of balloons in the air. Hope you have a great duck season.
Al
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
Wow, that's beautiful.

I like the notion of "Mass Ascencion," although it can be difficult to pull it off logistically without mother nature's cooperation.


Detect languageAfrikaansAlbanianAmharicArabicArmenianAzerbaijaniBasqueBelarusianBengaliBosnianBulgarianCatalanCebuanoChichewaChinese (Simplified)Chinese (Traditional)CorsicanCroatianCzechDanishDutchEnglishEsperantoEstonianFilipinoFinnishFrenchFrisianGalicianGeorgianGermanGreekGujaratiHaitian CreoleHausaHawaiianHebrewHindiHmongHungarianIcelandicIgboIndonesianIrishItalianJapaneseJavaneseKannadaKazakhKhmerKoreanKurdishKyrgyzLaoLatinLatvianLithuanianLuxembourgishMacedonianMalagasyMalayMalayalamMalteseMaoriMarathiMongolianMyanmar (Burmese)NepaliNorwegianPashtoPersianPolishPortuguesePunjabiRomanianRussianSamoanScots GaelicSerbianSesothoShonaSindhiSinhalaSlovakSlovenianSomaliSpanishSundaneseSwahiliSwedishTajikTamilTeluguThaiTurkishUkrainianUrduUzbekVietnameseWelshXhosaYiddishYorubaZulu

AfrikaansAlbanianAmharicArabicArmenianAzerbaijaniBasqueBelarusianBengaliBosnianBulgarianCatalanCebuanoChichewaChinese (Simplified)Chinese (Traditional)CorsicanCroatianCzechDanishDutchEnglishEsperantoEstonianFilipinoFinnishFrenchFrisianGalicianGeorgianGermanGreekGujaratiHaitian CreoleHausaHawaiianHebrewHindiHmongHungarianIcelandicIgboIndonesianIrishItalianJapaneseJavaneseKannadaKazakhKhmerKoreanKurdishKyrgyzLaoLatinLatvianLithuanianLuxembourgishMacedonianMalagasyMalayMalayalamMalteseMaoriMarathiMongolianMyanmar (Burmese)NepaliNorwegianPashtoPersianPolishPortuguesePunjabiRomanianRussianSamoanScots GaelicSerbianSesothoShonaSindhiSinhalaSlovakSlovenianSomaliSpanishSundaneseSwahiliSwedishTajikTamilTeluguThaiTurkishUkrainianUrduUzbekVietnameseWelshXhosaYiddishYorubaZulu
Text-to-speech function is limited to 200 characters

Options : History : Feedback : DonateClose





Don't just do something, Stand there!
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
Well Todd, so do most of the folks that walk the area loaded down with balloons. Some of them tethered and inflated ready to go, others in beginning stages of being ready and finally some balloons stretched out on the ground waiting their turn to get ready. This is a massive event with tens of thousands of people getting an up close and personal view of something great just about to happen.

Saying all the above, prior to this all happening is when, still in the dark with that grayness factor becoming stronger in the east, a handful of balloons take off and begin testing the winds to see if they are in place and ready for that ascension.

Glad you enjoyed those photos.
Al

Are you ready to go duck hunting?
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
Beautiful photos Al. I bet they were even prettier in person.
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
Have a good boyhood fried who lives in Albuquerque (Joe Barreda). He and his wife met up with us in Estes Park, Co last fall, and they were telling us about this yearly event. Looks like a great experience!


MLBob

"Art is like an ill-trained Labrador retriever that drags you out into traffic." (Annie Dillard)

....Here's to Joe Wooster, who made me realize that the useful could and should be beautiful; and who firmly believed that decoy carvers were the last free men in America.

https://www.facebook.com/KOOIdecoy?ref=hl

Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
That is so neat. I first heard of the festival when my wife and I met a couple in Cae May NJ. They are from Albuquerque and there son was stationed in the cape May coast gaurd station. He had some great stories as a ballon pilot, Todd Calico and his wife Carol.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I never know which is worse: the sorrow when you hit the bird, or the shame when you miss.
http://www.hillmandecoys.com
Mullica Hill NJ

Last edited by:

jode hillman: Oct 12, 2019, 7:48 PM
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
Thanks so much, Eric. You are correct in surmising that it is far more beautiful in person. The sights and sounds are electrifying like fans beginning to make the envelope swell, then when it gets to a certain stage the pilot who is operating the gas, will begin heating up that air being blown into the envelope. Add to that, Eric, an easy 100,000 people or more and the sounds are now becoming such that it will be hard to ever forget if you ever decide to make that trip. Today, Saturday the 12th was another picture perfect day and the famous Albuquerque box was working once again.

Wrap your mind around a 78 acre launch site for the balloons. They made mention of visualizing 54 football fields in size. It is truly one of a kind in which you may walk any place you want to in that park. While doing that you might see a special shape balloon like maybe Darth Vader or a bumble bee. There is so much to see and try to take in. Remember your day will begin at least by 4:00AM. Heck, Eric, since we are duck hunters, that is a no brainer! Most folks find taking a bus to the balloon fiesta park much easier than driving a car out there. I don't know about you but I would definitely have to take a nap in the afternoon when I got home from that event.
Al
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
Hey Bob, I am betting that some day you and your wife end up going to ABQ to see that. I know you would love it.
Al
Quote Reply
Re: Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta In reply to
What they told you is spot on, Jode. It is something that once seen, you will never forget it.
Al