Monday, August 22, 2011

Great Falls Balloon Festival 2011


Monet Balloon Reflection

15 image 180 degree panorama of the field


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Aloft Over the Androscoggin River
On Saturday, August 20th, 2011, my husband and I got up at the horrifically early hour of 4:00 am to drive up to Lewiston and photograph the dawn launch of hot air balloons at The Great Falls Balloon Festival.  It's actually a lot closer to Portland than I realized, so we got there far earlier than we had planned, but that ended up being a good thing, because we were able to pick up a cup of coffee and a pastry before we headed to the launch field in Bonney Park. 

I have a whole gallery of other images that show the setup and inflation of the balloons, which are some of my favorites of over 300 images taken that morning.  You can see the rest here at my website. 

It was so beautiful seeing them all gently lift off at dawn.  I've never had the good luck to actually see them take off, because the last couple of years, I didn't want to get up that early, and I went to the 6:00 pm launch, which is often affected by the stronger winds that you can get in late summer in the afternoon and evening.  At dawn, the air is generally quite still and peaceful, however, which makes for perfect launching conditions. 

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