Balloonists from all over the Rocky Mountain West are in Casper for the 11th Annual Casper Balloon Roundup. Things got started this morning and will continue through Sunday the 26th.

This morning, as has happened in years past, the balloonists invite local dignitaries and members of the press to ride along and get the word out on this special event. This year I flew with pilot Pat Newlin who captains the Cloudkisser out of Riverton, Wyoming. Pat is coming up on her 1000th flight and is a great and informative flight director.

We and a number of others showed up at 5:30 am to prepare the balloons for flight and get instruction on the ride. Liftoff happened about 6:45 and after about an hour the landing was as smooth as stepping off a step.

Here is the take off.

And a beautiful landing.

This is one of the premiere ballooning events. Here’s a tentative schedule of the roundup.

2015 Tentative Event Schedule

Friday July 24: Media VIP Launch at Central Wyoming Fairgrounds at 6AM

Saturday July 25: Mass Launch at Central Wyoming Fairgrounds at 6AM

Dowtown Balloon Fest (Candlestick) 6PM-10PM With Live Music, Beer Garden, Kids activities & Food

Sunday July 26: Pepsi’s Kids Day

Mass Lauch at Central Wyoming Fairgrounds at 6AM

Free tethered balloon rides for kids (Ages 5-12 No Adults) at 6:30AM to 7:30AM

For more information visit their Facebook page or web page today.