West Virginia (cont'd)


I drifted over some woods, and crossed I-79.





I was coming up slowly on the Monongahela River and the city proper. The wind was too slow and the landing place options were too limited for me to try crossing the river into Morgantown, so I began thinking about where I might put down.






Luckily, there was a large commercial development west of the river, with a large empty lot next to the Wal-Mart. I could see Bob already headed there, and I decided that was the smart place to be. I released some balloons to start a steep descent.






I watched my track, adjusting my ballast a bit, and put down neatly in the empty lot south of Wal-Mart, where Bob was already sitting. Roland and Casey, our local chase crew, rolled up a minute later.



My crew and Bob's had a chance to go up on tether with the cluster before putting everything away.




I had grown quite attached to the Clusterballoonmobile and was reluctuant to part with it. However, the next day Andy wrestled the keys away from me, and Roland and I bade a fond farewell to West Virginia. Almost heaven.





Celebration LII

Crew Chief: Roland Escher
Chase BalloonPilot: Bob Redinger

Crew: Casey Williams, Morgantown Boy Scouts (Mark Nuce, Scoutmaster), Bob and Cristy Redinger, Christie and Danny Bonner, Christopher Marrs (WBOY-TV), Amanda Leaseburg (WBOY-TV)

Special Thanks to: University Motors Mountaineer Balloon Festival (Andy Claydon; Van Anderson, balloonmeister); WBOY Channel 12; auto wrap courtesy of the Sign Factory (A.J. Sheets)

Photography: Bob Redinger, Andy Claydon, Gary Spence, Nicole Kozelka, Christie Bonner, J.F. Rote, Roland Escher, John Ninomiya














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