A Hot Air Balloon Ride in January

I know, it may sound nuts, but if you want to do something really adventurous this winter how about a hot-air balloon ride in Ohio’s Hocking Hills?

The good folks who operate A Georgian Manner Bed and Breakfast near Logan, at the entrance to the Hocking Hills offer the hot air balloon ride year-round but owner, B. J. King, told me that most people opt for the balloon ride in the spring summer and autumn.  “They don’t realize that winter-time is a great time to fly hot-air balloons.” 

King went on to point out that hot-air balloons can only operate when the wind is blowing less than ten miles an hour and often on cold, clear winter days, there isn’t even a light breeze making for perfect balloon flying weather.  “The starkness of the countryside seen from a balloon flying 300 feet above the ground is an incredible way to be outside on a winter’s day.”

King said customers must understand that they only fly when the weather is safe.  He also pointed out that what makes ballooning an adventure is you never know just where you are going to land, since the balloon goes whichever way the wind is blowing.  “We usually launch from the Lancaster, Ohio Fairgrounds,” King said, “The flight usually lasts about an hour and we land about ten miles from where we started.”

Their balloon can carry four passengers, in addition to the pilot, depending on weight.  As for what to wear, King says “Just wear what you normally would on a cold winter’s day if you were going hiking.”  Also bring along a camera to catch some photos of this once-in-a-lifetime experience.  You will also get an opportunity for a birds-eye view of wild turkey, deer, coyotes and other residents of the Hocking Hills area.  By the way if you are about to be married and looking for an unusual wedding location King is a licensed clergyman and can perform weddings while the bride and groom float across the countryside in the balloon.

Reservations are a must.  You can visit A Georgian Manner at 29055 Evans Road, Logan or phone them at 800-606-1840 or visit them on their website at http://www.georgiamanner.com

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