Kiwiyarns Knits

A blog about New Zealand yarns, knitting and life

Hot air


It’s the Wairarapa Balloon Festival this week.  The boy and I got up early to go and see the balloons.

It was just past dawn when the first one drifted into view.

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Definitely the most novel of all the balloons!

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Or was it?

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I thought the lighthouse definitely got points for novelty too.

IMG_1947 (800x800)The balloonists had set a course to drift over one of two ‘X’s set close to the town square.  The balloon that dropped their marker closest to the ‘X’ got the best score.  It was awesome to be so close to them!

It was interesting to learn that once air borne, it is not possible to change the course of the balloon – they can only go up or down. The skill of the pilot is in calculating how wind direction, speed and shear will affect their balloon’s flight path and launching at the right place.  By changing their altitude they can also gain access to differing air streams that can help them to change direction, but it is not an exact science by any means, from what I could see.  Not all the balloonists were able to drop their markers – some missed the drop points by quite a distance.

What a fascinating morning!

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Author: kiwiyarns

Welcome to my blog where I talk about knitting in New Zealand and the beautiful yarns you can find here.

19 thoughts on “Hot air

  1. You are right, awesome! I have never seen anything like that or even been close to a hot air balloon. Very colorful and clever. Thanks.

  2. It must have been very exciting for your son to see the balloons. What fun. Sounds like you know quite a bit about it, maybe you could be a co-pilot in one? Living in wine country (Sonoma County California), we have also have a hot air balloon classic once a year. But there are balloons to take tourists into the sky above all the vineyards and landscapes during the summer. They are fun to watch, but I think I’d rather keep my feet on the ground. Thanks for sharing your exciting morning.

    • I think he was more disappointed because it had been announced in the paper that the balloons would drop parachutes with goodies for the kids. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out that way, so someone was very unhappy… I don’t know much at all – just parroting what the announcer told us when we were watching them. 🙂

      Date: Sun, 28 Feb 2016 02:01:01 +0000 To:

      • Oh dear, that’s terrible that they didn’t follow through for the little kiddies. Perhaps enough people will complain and it will happen next year. It sounds like the announcer was very informative and you were able to pass it along well. Thanks.

  3. Just love the owl balloon.
    I keep meaning to ask, what pattern is the lovely (shawl?) in your banner?
    Just started a teddy with that lovely 12 ply from your stash, thanks again :-

  4. Excellent! Enjoyed this very much – thank-you!!

  5. Amazing indeed! I love that Owl balloon. Brilliant!

  6. Those balloons are beautiful. I’ve never seen one shaped as an owl or a lighthouse only the normal egg shaped ones. How lucky for you to see that sight 🙂

  7. I love the owl! I love the owl! I don’t thhink I’d like to go in one though … I’m not too fond of heights … But then, having a hysterical fit in a balloon hundreds and hundreds of metres up in the air, unnerving everybody in that tiny basket would be something EVERYBODY in that ballon would remember for a lifetime. 😉

  8. I’m impressed with designers even being able to make novelty balloons. Do certain shapes float better than others? All sorts of things to ponder now.

  9. I would have loved to see those balloons – we did think about going last year but the timing wasn’t right for us. And apparently a massive increase in people went there this year!

    • It’s an annual event, so don’t worry, there is always next year! The good news is that they are changing the date it is held to Easter next year, which is better weather for ballooning apparently.

      Date: Tue, 1 Mar 2016 04:39:49 +0000 To:

  10. What a cool festival! Definitely nothing like that around here!