Featured forum thread: 'Hot Air Balloon Over the Alps'

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by quatchi, Apr 18, 2013.

  1. quatchi

    quatchi Mu-43 Veteran

    May 17, 2012
    Munich, Germany
    Once in a while during winter, the weather is just about right. That's when we (a party of four plus the pilot) took off in our hot air balloon to cross the alps from north to south. We started in Germany (near Rosenheim) and touched down in Italy with a very nice view of Venice. It took us about four hours, reaching approx. an altitude of 5000m (~15.000ft) with top speed around 150km/h (~94mph). Oh, and did I mention the -20°C (~0°f)?

    How it works is a jet stream crossing the alps in which the balloon rides. The air comes from the northern parts of Europe, flows over the alps and streams down into the flat areas of northern Italy (Wiki: Foehn wind - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia). The difficulty is that when this weather/wind pattern forms, heavy snow/rain clouds appear on the northern side of the alps where the air hits the mountains and is forced upwards. It usually is a very small time frame between too many clouds for the take off and not enough jet stream to cross the alps. In a regular season (only in winter) no more than four to six possibilities open up.

    And since this is a photography forum, here are two images from that ride. Both taken with the good old G1:

    <a href="http://500px.com/photo/8363698"> 4. "Crossing the Alps by quatchi) on 500px.com" border="0" style="margin: 0 0 5px 0;"></a><br/><font style="font-size: 80%;"><a href="http://500px.com/photo/8363698">Crossing the Alps</a> by <a href="http://500px.com/olli_muc">quatchi</a></font>

    <a href="http://500px.com/photo/31414731"> 4. "Air by quatchi) on 500px.com" border="0" style="margin: 0 0 5px 0;"></a><br/><font style="font-size: 80%;"><a href="http://500px.com/photo/31414731">Air</a> by <a href="http://500px.com/olli_muc">quatchi</a></font>

    Encouraged by all your kind comments, I uploaded some more pictures from the balloon ride. Here is the link to the complete set/story: 500px / quatchi / Crossing the Alps
    • Like Like x 1
  2. yekimrd

    yekimrd Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 14, 2012
    Cincinnati, OH
    Awesome!!! Awe-inspiring work, really. So you actually own a hot air balloon? :tongue:
  3. quatchi

    quatchi Mu-43 Veteran

    May 17, 2012
    Munich, Germany
    Unfortunately not. :)  It was my second ride, but I wouldn't hesitate to go again..
  4. Jermonic

    Jermonic Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 14, 2012
    Holy ****, that's some inspiring shots. Thanks :) 
  5. jloden

    jloden Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2012
    Hunterdon County, NJ
  6. teddoman

    teddoman Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 22, 2013
    Beautiful wintry shots above the clouds!
  7. mrjr

    mrjr Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 25, 2012
    There are no words for how epic shots are...
  8. Crdome

    Crdome Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 11, 2011
    West Central Indiana
    Thanks for sharing. The images are stunning.
  9. poisson rouge

    poisson rouge Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 13, 2013
    If we all beg, will you post more pictures from that balloon ride ??
    Those two offer staggering views... :eek:  :2thumbs::2thumbs:
  10. Djarum

    Djarum Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Dec 15, 2009
    Huntsville, AL, USA
    Holy shnikies. Awesome pics. Can't say I've seen anything like it.
  11. Firedogg

    Firedogg Have cash, will spend

    Just fantastic!!!
  12. slothead

    slothead Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 14, 2012
    Frederick, MD
    Excellent shots quatchi! This is my only competition and it pales in comparison (no balloons in this picture).


    I continue to wonder why this image of the Alps (northern Italy) don't have any snow!!!
  13. RevBob

    RevBob Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Jun 4, 2011
    NorthWestern PA
    Wow, wow, wow! :2thumbs: :clap2: Awesome!
  14. jfdana

    jfdana Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 23, 2013
    South Portland, ME
    WOW! Speechless.
  15. 350duser

    350duser Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 26, 2012
    Brisbane, QLD
    M a g i c !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  16. MikeR_GF1

    MikeR_GF1 Guest

    Great shots! Awesome, beautiful, and - frankly - somewhat terrifying.

    I'll second an earlier post - may we have more, please?
  17. ivoire

    ivoire Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 6, 2011
    Naperville, IL
    Great pics and adventure! I too would like to see more
  18. David

    David Mu-43 Veteran

    Jun 22, 2011
    the first balloon shot is amazing.
  19. teddoman

    teddoman Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 22, 2013
    Maybe a combination of being further south (warmer), peaks are not as high(?), and the season (summer).

    Also, interesting side note is the effect of global warming. When we passed through Grindelwald Switzerland during our honeymoon, there were two famous Alps glaciers that had literally been erased from all the tourist materials because the glaciers have melted in the last ten years. We did not even know we had come to the site of two famous glaciers until seeing old lithograph prints in one of the old hotels.

    Grindelwald, Switzerland / Spenlevy Family / Europe 2006 / Global warming takes away the Grindelwald Glacier
  20. FlyLo

    FlyLo Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 16, 2013
    Brisbane, Australia
    Thanks for sharing mate. I can't wait until I go back to the Alps for another visit. So crisp!

    Sent from my GT-I9300T using Tapatalk 2
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