Hot Air Balloon Ride Weather Determination
This page is under construction!
We are assembling this hot air balloon ride weather determination page to help those clients interested in knowing how Air Display determines if we will be meeting for your scheduled balloon ride.
The decision to "meet" is not the same as the decision to "fly" so a couple of points need to be mentioned right up front.
The decision to meet is made if Air Display determines the weather forecast looks promising (i.e. there is a reasonable expectation we'll be flying). The decision to fly is made on the launch field after Air Display's pilot has satisfactorily compared the actual weather conditions to those forecasted and verified only improving change is expected during our flying period. There is always the possibility of a field cancellation.
"Launching the balloon is optional. Landing the balloon is manditory!"
The second point, Air Display bases its decision to meet, hoping the weather people (meteorologists) are correct (i.e. not hoping a poor forecast is wrong). Unless there is a reasonable expectation of flight, Air Display cancels the scheduled flight before we assemble on the field.
Air Display is a liason between yourself and the meteorologist. Air Display does not control the weather (although we wish we could!). We have flown balloons for a long, long time and although riding the winds under an eight story tall hot air balloon may seem thrilling, Air Display does not treat its ballooning as a "THRILL" ride.
"Afterall, we want you to want to do it again!"
So there you have it, Air Display strives for an accurate analysis of the forecasted weather for each and every flight. We make every attempt to minimize cancellations on the field Now for the nuts and bolts of how Air Display does it.
Weathering Reporting Centres
In the old days, having a human meterologist talk you through what they are seeing on their montioring instruments, was very helpful. After a while they get to know you as a balloon pilot and knew exactly the information you were/are after. These weather briefers dealt with many types of aircraft, all of which have different wants and needs for their particular briefing. Anyways, that luxury is pretty much gone nowadays and what you get from FIC (Flight Information Centre) is a read back of a computer screen without the second sight, experience provides. This is why Air Display uses many information sources (government and civilian) to get an overall expert consensus of the data being interpreted. When all the sources agree, you can be assured of the forecast but usually they don't.
To Be Continued