Napa Valley Balloons, Inc.


Does it get cold in the balloon? What should I wear?

The coldest part of your morning will be on the ground! Come dressed in comfortable layered clothing. Walking shoes and a hat are also recommended and of course don’t forget you camera.

Is ballooning safe?

Absolutely! Statistically, flight is the safest form of transportation and ballooning is statistically, the safest form of flight. Believe it or not, getting in and out of the basket is the most dangerous part of the whole flight! Napa Valley Balloons, Inc. has skilled and experienced pilots and crew with impeccable safety records so you are in good hands.

I'm on vacation, why so early?

Balloons fly best in cool, calm, stable air which in Napa is usually just after sunrise. Our meeting times will vary throughout the year to reflect the change in sunrise times.

How many passengers do you fly in your balloons?

Our state-of-the-art balloons are certified to carry 6, 12, 16 and 20 passengers. As the best that money can buy, the baskets are compartmentalized to ensure maximum comfort and safety.

What are hot air balloons made of?

The envelope is typically constructed with fire-treated nylon or dacron that meet specific manufacturer requirements. This material is lightweight but very strong. The baskets are made of rattan, each one individually woven by hand onto a rigid frame.

How high do hot air balloons fly?

Most balloonists enjoy low-level flight. The typical balloon flight would be anywhere from tree level to approximately 2,000 ft. The world record for altitude in a hot air balloon is 64,997 feet.

How long can a balloon fly?

It depends. Factors like outside air temperature, weight being carried in the basket and weather determine the duration of the flight. Normally, the balloon carries enough fuel to remain aloft for a 1 hour flight plus a sizable reserve fuel supply.

Do passengers ever get airsick?

No. Because the balloon moves at the same speed and direction as the wind, passengers experience no sense of motion.

How is the balloon steered?

It is not “steered” in the conventional sense. The balloon moves with the direction of the wind. However, winds tend to stratify in differing directions and altitudes. A balloonist uses these varying currents to guide the balloon to an appropriate landing site.