Up, Up and Away

July 06, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

Would you like to fly in my beautiful balloon....

For more than 40 years, hot air balloons have been a fixture in the early morning skies above Driggs, Idaho over the Fourth of July holiday. This year's Teton Valley Balloon Rally featured a few dozen balloons and pilots who came from as far away as New Hampshire to participate.

The four-day event began last Friday. I went over on the first morning and was treated to an intensely colorful sunrise while driving through Tetonia and into Driggs on the way to the launch site. It was too good to pass up. I took a little detour and scrambled to find somewhere from which I could make a photo.

There was no time for the tripod, nor did I have the luxury of making multiple exposures, since the color was beginning to fade. I was happy to have had the opportunity to capture it. Unexpected bonus.

With that impromptu mission accomplished, I continued on to the fairgrounds. 

The bad news: it wasn't just passing rain that made that sunrise show possible. There was something a little more aggressive blowin' in the breeze. A few flashes of lightning followed by cracks of thunder and I knew there wouldn't be any flying. Had any of this been in the forecast? Of course not! 

Everyone hoped the following morning would bring better luck.

Round 2, next day: I left the house at 4am for the 75-mile drive to Driggs. Again. This time it was a beautiful morning to fly.

Arriving as the gates opened, I was greeted by three balloons that were already upright and nearly ready to lift off just as the sun was getting ready to rise over the Tetons. 

The world's a nicer place in my beautiful balloon
It wears a nicer face in my beautiful balloon...

The conditions were excellent and you couldn't have asked for a better looking sky. 

Never been to a balloon rally? Whether you're flying, photographing it, or simply a spectator they're a lot of fun - as long as you're not allergic to early mornings. 


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