719 Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta 2022

Max Flight reports from the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta held October 1-9, 2022. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Balloon Fiesta.

Balloon Fiesta mass ascension.
Balloon Fiesta mass ascension.

Interviews with:

Katie, the Crew Chief for Team Coddiwomple, talks about crew chief responsibilities, getting started in ballooning, and buying a balloon. Coddiwomple Ballooning offers a unique specially-fitted wheelchair-accessible balloon.

Jim Lynch from Destin, Florida pilots the “Whirlaway” balloon and describes how balloons are FAA-certified aircraft and a pilot’s license is required to fly them. We talk about the propane burners, why the fuel is preheated, and when a pilot knows to abort the launch attempt due to the wind.

Linda C gives her impressions of the drone show provided by Verge Aero. See also, Simon Cowell presses Golden Buzzer for Verge Aero on America’s Got Talent: Extreme

Glen Moyer is the editor of Ballooning: Journal of the Balloon Federation of America (BFA) and also one of the two show announcers at the Balloon Fiesta. The BFA is an aviation safety and education organization for lighter-than-air aviation. Members include pilots, crew, and enthusiasts.

The Balloon Fiesta features a large grass launch field, surrounded by many RV camping areas. There are sponsor and exhibitor booths, and a huge number of food vendors.

The hallmark event is the mass ascensions where hundreds of balloons launch at sunrise. During balloon launches, spectators get right on the launch field in and amongst the balloons.  When a balloon is ready and the pilot gets the thumbs up from an official, the crown cheers enthusiastically while people in the basket wave frantically to the spectators. 

Balloons over the South RV Lot
Balloons over the South RV Lot
Flying pig balloon
Who said pigs don’t fly?
Balloon from below
Radio Controlled balloon
Radio Controlled balloon


Outdoor REgear – a large Albuquerque consignment shop where you can purchase used bicycles.

Host this Episode

Max Flight