As the famous song from Reinhard Mey goes, “Above the clouds freedom must be boundless…“ – that’s exactly how it feels in a hot air balloon.Floating silently on the wind to lofty heights and you have the time and opportunity to wonder at the view and savour the experience – for me one the best means of air transport. As organiser of the International Hot Air Balloon Week in Filzmoos I have the privilege to ride in a hot air balloon every now and again.
What’s the procedure for a balloon ride?
First of all a suitable launch site has to the found. There must be plenty of space to set up the balloon and there shouldn’t be any overhead power lines or obstructions in the vicinity. Plus it has to be calm weather otherwise setting up the balloon could be difficult or in the case of strong winds impossible.Then the hard work begins. The balloon basket is unloaded from the trailer, whereby a number of strong hands are needed. Afterwards the burner with four poles is set on top of the basket, the pipes are connected to the propane gas bottles and other equipment such as transponder, radio equipment, maps, GPS device, helmets and an emergency pack are loaded into the basket.The balloon pilot tests the burners. The burners function when high flames flare up into the sky. Some of the crew have in the meantime laid out the balloon envelope. The basket is turned on its side and the envelope is connected to the envelope with steel ropes and carabiners.
Join us on a balloon ride: Today is perfect balloon weather, beautiful sunshine, blue sky and a light breeze. The balloon is already set up and stands motionless on the snow-covered launch site.We climb into the basket. Peter, our experienced balloon pilot, directs more heat into the balloon using the burner and we start climbing slowly up into the sky to a toast of “soft winds and gentle landings“. Filzmoos seems miniature beneath us. At an altitude of around 3,000 m we slowly hover above the snowy alpine landscape of the Hofalm and Sulzenalm, passing the imposing Bischofsmütze mountain. We can see the peak cross on the Bischofsmütze quite clearly. We carry on over the impressive Gosaukamm range and discover the Vordere and Hintere Gosau Lakes. Above the Gosau Lake we head downwards and enter into a different air layer which pushes us along the valley towards Gosau.
Tips and Info:Anyone wanting to experience ballooning can book a hot air balloon ride in Filzmoos. Bookable throughout the winter season. The price is Euro 290 per person.
Contact details for booking a balloon ride: Peter Flaggl, Tel. 0043 3176 8801, E-Mail: email@example.com