Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Full of Hot Air

CTV Balloon in Winnipeg
Here's something a little different for today... no trains, just a different method of transportation.

In the morning of July 25 I saw a REMAX hot air balloon heading north in Winnipeg. I've seen those around before. They seem to use a field just south of Winnipeg as their base.

Later in the evening, I was outside with my kids when I spied a CTV balloon heading south.

This balloon is a Cameron Balloons A-300, built in 1998 with serial #4319, registered with "tail" number C-GDCQ.

As it crossed the Perimeter Highway, it appeared to get very close to a radio tower.
CTV balloon and tower

I don't think it was as close as it appeared to us. You know how a telephoto lens can distort relative distance!

It looked like there were about eight people in the basket... perhaps watching the tower with some concern?
CTV balloon basket

Shortly after that one went by, another balloon with "tail" number C-GFEA drifted by. That one was also made by Cameron Balloons but is smaller, an A-180 built in 1990 with serial #2162. I didn't get any decent shots of that balloon.

Both balloons are A-type, billed as the "ultimate passenger balloon". The number after the dash is the bag volume in thousands of cubic feet. The CTV balloon holds 300,000 cubic feet of gas and can carry up to 6000 pounds (presumably including the basket and bag).

I've never been in a hot air balloon before. I think it would be a great experience.

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