Helicopters and Hot Air Balloons


This is the next instalment of my Special Moments, Magic Memories series for the 2022 A to Z Blog Challenge.

HELICOPTERS

Even though we’ve flown in some small planes and dodgy situations, there’s something about helicopters that given me less confidence than fixed wing aircraft. But sometimes the attraction of what you can see from on high outweighs the minor anxieties.

PURNULULU

My first chopper flight was with our middle daughter when she and I were camping the Bungle Bungles, more correctly known as Purnululu National Park. Mr Cassmob was working, I was between jobs, daughter was on holidays from her job as a teacher. She did a grand job of taking her little Suzuki Sierra in on the rather unpredictable road – other vehicles weren’t so lucky. Isn’t it fun to have adventures with your adult “children”. The Bungle Bungles are an amazing geological formation and you can see canyons and waterholes while walking but to get an overview, you need to go sky high. You can get a view of what we saw on this post.

The Bungle Bungles (Purnululu)

BANFF and the ROCKIES

My helicopter flight number 2 was in Canada to see a glimpse of the Rockies from the air. This was Mr Cassmob’s first chopper flight and it was an experience that he really enjoyed. The only part we both found a bit disconcerting was flying close to the rock face – too many scary situations with PNG flying to be entirely relaxed about that bit. We were really lucky too, that it was a lovely clear day, unlike the days either side. Definitely a WOW experience! Some budget busters are worth every dollar.

HOT AIR BALLOON FLIGHTS

We’ve largely stopped buying gifts for birthdays, anniversaries and Christmas, but back in the day it seemed a good idea for Mr Cassmob to get a special treat one birthday (and it wasn’t even one of x0 ones!) This was over Brisbane in early 1987 when the Expo site was still being developed so he had an eagle’s eye view of places familiar to him by road. The adventure was followed up by a champagne breakfast – it’s a tough life.

View over the Expo site from the balloon.

We have always joked with our daughters that work can take them wherever they need to live, but can they please choose places we’d like to visit 😉 You can imagine it didn’t take long to think longingly on safaris when eldest daughter was posted to Nairobi, Kenya! Another WOW experience but more about that anon. Taking an early morning balloon flight is one of the “must-do” experiences while on safari even though it means being up and about at zero dark o’clock. It was such a tranquil experience, once the helpers boosted the inept clumsy older woman into the basket. We didn’t see masses of animals below us but that didn’t detract, and the stunning breakfast experience catered for and served “in the wild” is a special memory. You can read more about it here.

Balloon Kenya

Have you taken a helicopter or balloon flight? Did you enjoy it or find it a bit scary?

How cool is this quote?

My grandmother flew only once in her life, and that was the day she and her new husband ascended into the skies of Victorian London in the wicker basket of a hot-air balloon. They were soon to emigrate to Canada, and the aerial ride was meant to be a last view of their beloved England.

Alan Bradley, Canadian writer. https://www.brainyquote.com/


13 thoughts on “Helicopters and Hot Air Balloons

  1. I have been in a helicopter once, over Geelong. I enjoyed it and did not find it scary. I have also been in a hot air balloon twice, the first time it was tethered and we rose up above the children’s school to view our suburb in autumn glory – a great experience; the second time was a ride over Canberra including flying directly over Parliament House – great perspective.

    I think a helicopter ride over the grand canyon is definitely on my bucket list.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Seeing familiar places from the air can make such a difference to how you perceive the whole. I’ve seen the balloons when I’ve visited Canberra but haven’t ever done a trip. When you do a helicopter ride over the Canyon it will be great to see photos!

      Like

  2. Wow

    Looks like once in a life time kind of experience. Unfortunately i never have been in either a heli or hoy air balloon but would love to try when i get a chance…somehow helplicopter scarea me!

    Heartwarming to hear that ur grandmother took a flight to look at her beloved London!
    Dropping by from a to z http://afshan-shaik.blogspot.com/

    Like

  3. I wrote a comment and lost it so I’ll try a short version. Helicopter flight Hawaii – truly up there with the best. Balloon flight -Alice Springs – not as scary as I thought. Very peaceful. Other highlight was seaplane into Horizontal Waterfalls.

    Liked by 1 person

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