history of hot air balloons

Tethered Hot Air Balloon Rides

The famous mathematician Archimedes first discovered the principles of buoyancy over 2000 years ago in Ancient Greece. Then, about 1250 a.d., both the English scholar named Roger Bacon and the German Philosopher Albertus Magnus designed flying machines based on the principles of buoyancy. None of these actually got off the ground.

The Farmyard Flight: September 1783

The Montgolfier brothers (Joseph-Michel and Jacques-Étiènne) had noticed how hot air caused things to rise and, after many experiments with paper vessels, they built a balloon of silk, heated it with burning straw and manure, and launched the first flight on September 19, 1783 with a chicken, a duck and a sheep aboard. The flight lasted all of eight minutes, but they had proved the principle to be sound and started working on a manned balloon flight.


First Manned Balloon Flight: October 1783

With Over the Rainbow Seattle Hot Air Balloon Rides, we will come to your event and fly your attendees for a minimum of two hours. We will keep the balloon safely moored to the ground using FAA approved means, and make sure all safety procedures are followed. We want to safely fly everyone in your gathering, ensuring a memorable event for all.

Cost of Tethered Balloon Rides

After a few months work, the Montgolfier brothers refined their hot air balloon, making it more fitting more men than beasts of the field. They made the first truly manned hot air balloon flight while tethered to the ground on October 15, 1783. The first manned free flight in a hot air balloon happened November 21, 1783 with the Marquis Francois D’Arlandes and Pilatre de Rozier aboard. Pilatre de Rozier’s name lives on today, as we call the people who fly balloons: “pilots.”

Evolution of Balloons: Gas Balloons

With the death of Pilatre de Rozier in a flight over the English Channel on 15 June 1785, hot air balloon flying fell into disfavor making way for gas balloons. His accident was the result of his combination of a hydrogen balloon which caught fire from the open flames in his gondola, burning the entire balloon. Since then, hot air balloons have been used in several wars and have been developed into the hot air balloons seen today.