Unlike other forms of aviation such as gliders and helicopters balloons cannot be steered in the traditional sense. A hot air balloon pilot can ascend or descend and this is how they steer a balloon.
Hot air balloons travel with the wind so the direction of the balloon is determined by the weather. At different altitudes the wind direction and speed may vary and pilots can go up or down to find these different directions and speeds. This is our very limited way to steer left or right. Near ground level, the air in the Northern hemisphere tends to move to the left and to the right in the Southern hemisphere. In the UK we call this right with height!
Going up and down is a simple process. To rise you heat the captivated air inside the balloon envelope to above ambient and to descend you let this air cool and thus you come down. There is a vent in the top of the balloon which can be opened briefly to let the hot air escape allowing for a quicker descent rate and more control. The parachute rip system used in almost all hot air balloons flying in the world today was designed and built by my father in his kitchen. To find out more click here.
The great thing about hot air ballooning is that the destination is irrelevant, our guests are unconcerned about where the flight takes them as each flight is as spectacular and unique as the last.
For a peaceful and magical hot air balloon experience fly with Fly Away Ballooning. We offer hot air balloon flights in the South West of England. Book now