Characters In Flight Balloon Ride

During my photowalk the other morning at Disney’s Marketplace and Pleasure Island, I decided to take advantage of the opportunity to indulge in a photoflight via the Characters in Flight Helium Balloon ride. The balloon, anchored lakeside in Pleasure Island, rises to a height of 400 feet and the $16 ride typically lasts 8-10 minutes, but since I was the only one on this flight and no one else was waiting below, the pilot said we’d stay up a little longer to “advertise.”

This balloon is the largest helium-filled balloon in the world, with a volume of 210,000 cubic feet of the lighter-than-air-gas contained in the balloon that, the pilot told me, is made of a material of secret composition. Unlike those cute novelty balloons you buy in grocery stores or florist shops that deflate and sink to the ground after a few days, this balloon only has to be filled with helium once a year. Day, night and seasonal temperature changes necessitate the addition of oxygen to the balloon, but the helium itself lasts a year. The balloon, which is 105 feet high, 72 feet in diameter and has a circumference of 240 feet, and the attached gondola which is 19 feet in diameter and holds up to 29 guests, are tethered by a steel cable that is attached to a motorized pulley system that reels in the balloon at the end of the ride to a landing pier in the lake.

I enjoyed myself immensely and took SO many photos. But I put only the best of them on my Flickr page for you to see.

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About The Word Of Jeff

I'm a freelance writer and blogger who has written for, among others, Tribune Media Services, Suite101 and Athena Guides. As an intrepid traveler I have chronicled some of my travels at The Verbal Vagabond, my travel blog. And, being an avid amateur photographer, I also have a photography blog spotlighting photos I have taken of areas around my hometown at Postcards From Maggie Valley. Speaking of Maggie Valley, that is where my wife, our Golden Retriever/Border Collie mix, Bella, our Orange Tabby, Tigger and I live in a log cabin on a mountain in Western North Carolina, just at the edge of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. I enjoy hiking, camping, art, travel, photography (as mentioned above), and an occasional glass of good wine while reading or writing in front of the fireplace.
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