This past weekend, February 16-18th, I was at Kanab, Utah for the Balloons and Tunes festival. Inclement weather only allowed for one day of flying which was fairly disappointing. I didn't get the photos that I wanted from this event as I need multiple days to learn what's best. Oh, well, it happens.
I don't have much to say about this event for photography. I was well fed by the balloonists, and had great conversations with them. Just don't have much to deliver on the picture front. If you're here for pictures, skip down to the end. Otherwise, I'll just hash out some other memorable moments.
I crewed for Sheldon, and his Kaleidoscope. Sheldon's crew chief had to leave early to tend to his wife who was sick. So, I became crew chief! A crew chief with very little ballooning experience, ha! Basically I had a title with no authority for a day. I can proudly say that I still did my job though. There were other volunteers that came up during the cold inflation which made things easier.
I did get to fly for a little bit. The nearby cliffs were unfortunately sucking the balloon in so my flight had to get cut short. We had no intention of dragging a balloon out for 45 minutes, and landed early.
The festival had also hosted a lantern festival. Many counties in Colorado have updated their fire codes which ban the usage of these lanterns. So, it was nice being able to see them fly for the first time in years.
During the balloon glow, as helicopter was flying up above. The gusts it generated were badly affecting the balloons. I was fortunately nearby the put weight onto a balloon which was getting blown around. It balloon struck a tree, and a lamp post multiple times. Fortunately, nothing was damaged. The pilot was very much agitated though; balloon repairs aren't cheap.
The helicopter was apparently hired for a photographer. I did get to see one image from it online. I think it's fairly safe to say that the pilot, and photographer have very little experience with balloons. Many of the balloonists were cursing them out (though those words probably never reached their ears). I'm honestly surprised that the image posted on Facebook didn't get any flak. I'm not one for starting something though, so it's best to leave it be.
Here are the pictures I got. None of them are winners but, they're what I've got.