Rain, wind fail to dampen spirits at ‘amazing’ Balloon Fiesta
Amanda Immel of Texas stands in awe with a group of fellow Texas Tech students who attended Balloon Fiesta for the first time Saturday morning.Morgan McMullan is having a howling good time during the mass ascension Saturday morning. (Jim Thompson/Journal)
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — An abbreviated morning ascension delayed by wind and cut short by impending rain clouds did little to dampen the spirits of the thousands who attended Saturday morning’s Balloon Fiesta.
Morgan McMullan is having a howling good time during the mass ascension Saturday morning. (Jim Thompson/Journal)
More than 100 balloons managed to launch in the small window of favorable conditions. The crowd cheered as the first balloon left the ground at around 8:40 a.m., well after the scheduled 7 a.m. mass ascension. A 6:30 a.m. dawn patrol flight was canceled shortly after balloons began to inflate.
“The wind was pushing us around some,” said Rick Jones, a dawn patrol pilot from New Hampshire.
Bundled attendees held tight to warm beverages and breakfast burritos, undeterred by the delay.