What to Expect
The night before your flight, the pilot will post a flight update by 6pm on the Global Ballooning mobile app advising the updated weather information and exact meeting time. You will then be asked to check-in for your flight via a link on the mobile app.
Morning of the flight
1.5 hours before sunrise (time confirmed night before), the Global team will meet you at Balgownie Estate for your sunrise flight at the designated time. There will be one last weather-check in readiness for your flight and a short flight briefing.
We will drive to the launch site, which is determined by the wind direction on the morning. It takes around 30 minutes to inflate your balloon. You are welcome to assist with the balloon setup or watch and take photos as the sun begins to rise. Your balloon will awaken as our pilot fires up an inflation fan and lets cold air pump the balloon up. When the balloon is cold inflated looking a bit like a beached whale, the pilot stands behind the burner and fires it up with gas. Now you’re ready to board!
As the sun rises you will gently float up into the sky for approximately an hour. We often hear how surprised passengers are with the feeling of security and the fact that there’s effectively no sensation of movement.
During the flight your pilot will take you on a journey across Victoria’s most-loved wine region – only 50-minutes drive from the bustle of Melbourne CBD. The Yarra Valley is a natural amphitheatre, which makes it the perfect location for a ballooning tour: great views, native fauna and flora, excellent food and wine and stable weather. Let the breeze usher you along the corridors of grape vines and over the Yarra River as you lose yourself in the breathtaking views of mountains that surround the valley. Your pilot will ascend and descend at varying heights of up to 3000 feet and uses the wind direction/speed at different heights in order to steer the balloon. Have your camera ready to experience the wonder!
Landing & Pack Up
Your pilot will choose a landing site based on conditions, access and suitability. As the balloon approaches the ground, a vent is released at the top of the balloon letting the hot air escape – make sure you look UP to see the beauty of the air escaping. In calm winds, there may be a “stand up landing”, meaning that the balloon will calmly rest on the ground with little to no impact. In moderate winds, the balloon may drag with moderate to high winds & you’ll experience the fun of a lay-over landing. Global’s ground crew will greet you as your balloon lands. Deflating the balloon is the best part. Get involved by rolling over the top of the envelope and help push the air out or watch from a distance.
Once we’re packed up, it’s back to the meeting place where you can indulge in an optional sparkling buffet breakfast at Balgownie Estate.
Your pilot will post complimentary photo memories of your experience on the Global Ballooning mobile app for you to download.