Hot Air Ballooning, Santa Rosa

Up at 4am for an amazing day with family and friends, 1500 feet in the air above Santa Rosa with Wine Country Balloons. Something I’ve  wanted to do since I was a kid, and worth the wait.  Kind of eerie how still and quiet it is up there – since you’re always with the wind, you’ll never feel the wind while in a balloon, which is what makes it so serene. Absolutely amazing experience, and a picture perfect day for it.

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The 1500′ elevation is pretty unique – you just rocket past this height when ascending or descending in an airplane, but  getting to hang out at this medium height is magical – low enough to see everything on the ground clearly, high enough for it to be outside of your normal experience, and just a little bit scary. It’s magical for the same reason Kite Aerial Photography works so well (though the balloon is higher than most kites ever venture, you’re still well below the cloud line on most days).

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Miles thought these two burners looked like faces. He was right.

Flickr set here, or see slideshow below. I actually didn’t include a lot of shots looking down here – while mesmerizing to experience, they’re not awesome as photos – just lots of trees and grass etc. The best ones are the series of the inflation and deflation, which you can almost play as an animation.

Something I’d love to do again, but unfortunately cost-prohibitive — more of a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Finally got to check off that Bucketlist item, too.

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