Maine (cont'd)



I floated west over more woods and farms. After about an hour in the air, I passed the airport in the town of Norridgewock.



A bit further on, I flew over some marshy areas and a series of bends in the Kennebec River.







I had been in contact with my chase crew on the radio during the flight, but hadn't actually seen them for some time. Now, coming out into some open fields, I saw this group of four cars pulled over directly below me.

I called my crew and asked where they were. They conferred and David announced they were west of me -- they couldn't see me right now, but they were sure I was pretty close. I thanked him and said that I was looking a group of cars pulled over right below me that had I thought was them, but I guessed not. After a few seconds, I heard laughter on the radio, and David told me that yes, that was them -- they just hadn't thought to look straight up for me.


I had been flying for almost an hour and a half, and was starting to think about landing. The road my chase crew was on wound for a short distance through some woods, then emerged at a large hay field. I told them to drive out ahead and wait for me to land at the hay field.




As I cleared the trees I cut away a large balloon, and dropped down neatly into a field of dandelions, where my crew were waiting for me.









It was a wonderful ending to a great flight. Some of the crew took the opportunity to do a little tether cluster ballooning. Then, we put the equipment away and headed back to Skowhegan.




Back at the festival site, the crew and pilot enjoyed champagne and homemade wine served in the traditional Tim Horton's cups, to celebrate helium cluster ballooning in Maine.




Celebration XLIV

Crew Chief: David Tanzer

Assistant Crew Chief: "Crazy" George Hertlein

Inflation Crew Volunteers (partial list): Jim Rogers, Jen Soper, Russ Westcott, Susan Hoyt-Russell, Sebastian Russell, Jen Flannery, Deb Poulin (& Nephews), April & Cheyenne Hertlein, Phil Perkins

Special Thanks to the Skowhegan Area Chamber of Commerce (Cory King, Executive Director)

Helium Supplied by Advantage Gases and Tools of Maine (and New Hampshire)

Photography: Christine Ratcliffe, Jim Rogers, George Hertlein, Cheyenne Hertlein, Dan Dyer, John Ninomiya

Inflation Crew Volunteers



Skowhegan Arts and Air Festival Children's Art Contest Winner: Emma Foss, Age 9


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