Balloon pilots come from all walks of life. Anyone with the desire to learn to fly a balloon can become a pilot. Start by learning about balloons while working on a crew and/or taking lessons from a pilot instructor. The FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) will issue a balloon pilot’s license after you have gained the required experience, passed a written test, and passed a flight test with a FAA examiner. The outright cost to get you to your private certificate is $2400. Quite often we can either partially or totally fold the cost of training into the purchase price of a balloon, or adjust the cost by how much time you can spend with the retrieve crew. It is my preference to have a student spend about a year in training and a considerable amount of time on the retrieve team to learn exactly what the team on the ground goes through. It is also a time to learn why the instructor pilot makes certain "go" and "no go" decisions.
Gain experience about ballooning from being apart of our hot air balloon team. Some people get involved in the sport of ballooning by volunteering their time to come out and "Crew" on a balloon flight. This is especially good for those that enjoy photography, have a fear of heights or simply want to check out how a balloon works. We can train you and help you advance in your interest as a volunteer. Crew on enough flights and you will find yourself earning a balloon flight and log hours. This can eventually give you enough interest to become a pilot someday.