Ballooning is very weather dependent, it takes hours of planning, watching weather, talking to the. National weather service, wind speeds, directions, cloud deck, storms and forecast and looking at weather hundreds of miles away, etc. it's all about safety and to ensure a safe flight. Mother Nature does not always cooperate and in this event we will cancel your flight and reschedule.
Please let us decide on the weather, even though to you it may appear to be a nice day to fly, doesn't always mean it is. You can't watch the weather on the local news and determine if your flight will be a GO or NO GO.
Ideal conditions are winds 3-8 mph, overcast skies and cool temperatures. Here at St. Louis ballooning adventures we have parameters in which we follow and will not deviate from these parameters, ever.
We will never ever compromise safety of our passengers, crew, people on the ground and property.
What can cancel your flight?
Surface winds in excess or forecasted to be in excess of 8 mph
Low ceilings, we must have a cloud deck no lower than 3000 feet to legally fly.
Low Level Jets - This is a small layer of fast moving air typically between 500-1500 hundred feet. This layer of air can reach speeds of 20-60 mph or more. We cannot conduct a safe flight if there is a low level jet.
Fog - If fog is present or forecasted we can not fly. We need a minimum of 3 miles visibility to legally fly.
Rain - If rain is present or forecasted during our flight time we will cancel our flight.
Storms - If there are thunderstorms within 100 miles of our flying area we will not fly.
Outflow - Outflow is surface winds that come out of nowhere it seems. They come from thunderstorms that are breaking down. The thunderstorms collapse and the air from the collapsing storm is pushed to the ground and spreads out over hundreds of miles. This outflow can come from a storm as far as 500 miles away. It comes in quick and leaves quick but can reach speeds in excess of 80 mph. If there is potential of an outflow during our flight time we will not fly.
Saturated Ground - If the ground is saturated due to days of rain we may cancel our flight. Although the wet ground does not affect the balloon or how it flies it can affect the launch and more likely the retrieval of the balloon. Since we don't use airports and have no guarantees as to where we will land and usually land in a field, a park or someone's yard we cannot retrieve the balloon with our vehicle on saturated ground, we will get stuck. Therefore, in the event of saturated ground our flight will be rescheduled.