It’s no question that hot air balloons are a stunning sight to see, but what is it about the massive inflatable aircraft that get people so carried away?
In Choteau, balloonists came out to share their favorite pastime - the one that lifts their spirits and bodies off the ground: ballooning.
Twenty years ago Chris Jones experienced hot air balloons for the first time as a volunteer. From there, his balloon career took flight.
"There’s so many great things about ballooning. It’ll suck you in.”
Jones’ path to piloting began with his family.
“My grandfather was a pilot, a fixed wing pilot. And so I've always kinda had a little bit of flight history in my background,” Jones said.
But ballooning isn’t just for pilots. It takes a whole crew to make the balloons buoyant.
Fourteen-year-old Elijah Bryan began ballooning five years ago and now is a regular crew member.
“I sometimes do the fan. And then I usually just help with other stuff, like I put on the burner, take out the bag."
And his job has perks too, like an office with a view.
“You can see everything when you’re up there. You can see all of Choteau," Bryan said.
If you missed this year's hot air balloon tour, the Front Range Fly-In will return to Choteau next year. You can follow their
for updates on future events.