Today the weather was a bit ‘touch n go’ although the visibility was good and the air stable we had a brisk wind from the south west. Our forecasters eventually decided that the wind would be decreasing about an hour or so to sunset and would be suitable for our balloon ride over Norfolk. We had ten very keen passengers so the decision was ‘let’s go and give it a look’. We met everyone on the ken stimpon playing field behind werrington sports centre at 6.30 p.m. We quickly prepared the balloon, however our first attempt at inflating was stopped as the wind was still a little to quick; making the hot air balloon a bit too playful. We waited for fifteen minutes the wind had eased so we inflate again. Success – the passengers climb in and we start to pressurise the canopy with hot air. It takes nearly twenty seconds to bring the canopy up to operating temperature at round about 92 degrees Celsius. At 7.40 p.m. we are aloft. Climbing out to 1,000 feet we now travelling 20 m.p.h. heading north east.
The air was unusually crisp and stable and we could see out to around forty miles, in fact you could see the Norfolk coast from Peterborough. We headed out over Newborough and towards Crowland and its majestic medieval abbey. The flight took us on to Postland and Sutton St James. The surface wind had now started to ease markedly so it was time to look for that ideal field to land. Drifting past Fenland airfield the A17 was in view and the coast. As we passed the village of Holbeach St Catherine a small fallow field was spotted. We landed at 8.45 p.m. amongst ragwort and thistles! The sunset was spectacular as they mostly are out in the Fens. What a wonderful end to the day.
Dear Breckland Balloons
I can’t thank you enough for the balloon trip from Peterborough yesterday evening. I had absolutely no idea just how involved the whole thing was going to be. I must admit the launch got my heart racing, yours too I imagine !!!! The flight was breathtaking the landing was nicely done too. You have a professional and friendly team well done