Hot air balloonist on the beauty of flying
- Credit: TERRY HARRIS
A seasoned hot air balloonist from the Fens has shared why he loves his unique hobby so much.
Having grown up with a balloonist dad in the 1970s, Gary Davies spent much of his childhood being flown in baskets as the family travelled to fetes up and down the country.
Naturally, he continued the family hobby and got his own ballooning licence in 2001.
Now, Gary says he flies for between 80 and 100 hours per year, travels to ballooning events across the UK and has flown in Switzerland and Germany.
"That's the beauty of it - you go with the wind," he said.
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"You get a good forecast from the Met Office and that way you know roughly what direction you're going in and if there are any sensitive areas."
But why does Gary love ballooning so much? "Every flight is different.
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"And after a stressful day at work as a builder, being up in the sky looking down at 3,000 feet, it's just so unique and stress-relieving.
"And you have people onboard so there's the social side, too; it's about getting people up in the air that want that incredible experience.
"My friends and I often take it for granted but going up in a hot air balloon is quite high up on many people's buckets list - it has that wow factor!"