Balloons over Albuquerque Report, Pt 3

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The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta finally had a clear-sky launch this morning. Around 9:30 am, we were headed south from our luxury digs in the cozy little hamlet of Bernalillo (pop: 6,011; broken down cars on cinder blocks: 6,113) to just look around when we saw the dots in the sky. I floored it down I-25 (speed limit: 70) for about 8 miles until traffic slowed to a crawl. This looked like the tail end of the day's run but it was something to see.


We pulled off the interstate and found parking was prohibited everywhere except at the authorized festival grounds, which was the last place we wanted to subject ourselves to, so we had to do some commando-tourist duty to get these shots.

This is what the sky looks like when there are 700+ balloons in the air. It would take a bigger lens to give the full effect but just imagine this scene continuing for a good 20 degrees in each direction.

Parked on the side of the road adjacent to the "No Parking" sign, we did get some decent shots of the landings, which are pretty dramatic, before John Law showed up and put his thing down.



In an attempt to capture what would have been one of the great photographs of all time, I aimed in on a flock of geese flying through the balloons...


...but zoomed in too tighly and only managed to get the geese in the frame before they swooshed by. Whaddaya gonna do.

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irina said:

What a great sight!!! I saw one (of course, not on such a large scale!) on Cyprus!!! There were very many small baloons in the shape of hearts!!! So beautiful!!! You know, my husband and I stayed at that time at a Cyprus villa, quite far from the center and hotels, but I think it was a marriage and the married couple let off a million of baloons!!! They flew to our side and we could watch this wonderful and very romantic moment!!! :)

I'm glad to hear you liked it, Irina.

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