Tahoe Balloon Rides a Memorable Experience
  • Jean Eick, 4:56pm, 1/28/2011

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    There are so many adventures at Lake Tahoe that are incredible, but I think I have found one adventure that is beyond incredible. On a Saturday morning at 4 a.m., as I pulled myself out of bed, I probably would not have said this, but this is one adventure I will never forget.

    For our 25th anniversary this year, my husband and I received a hot air balloon ride over Lake Tahoe from our sons. The original ride had been scheduled for Saturday, May 22, but Mother Nature decided it was a nice time to shower Lake Tahoe with cold and snow, so the adventure had to be postponed until Saturday, May 29.

    As we drove from Incline to Tahoe Keys at 5 a.m. Saturday morning, the lake sparkled from the almost-full moon overhead. No matter what time of the morning it was, it was beautiful. Plus, driving at that time of the morning is easy, as no one else is out.

    At the Tahoe Keys Marina, we were met and directed out to the launch and recovery vessel, the Tahoe Flyer. The Tahoe Flyer looks a little like an aircraft carrier that carries passengers for the hot air balloon ride out onto Lake Tahoe. The balloon not only is launched from the Tahoe Flyer, it also is inflated, lands back on the deck and is deflated. All of this happens right before the eyes of amazed passengers.

    Riding in a hot air balloon at 4,200 feet above Lake Tahoe is spectacular. Looking down into Emerald Bay, Mount Tallac, Fallen Leaf Lake, the North Shore or any part of the lake itself is breathtaking. An unexpected view was the Carson Valley from above Lake Tahoe.

    From the trip out on the lake aboard the Tahoe Flyer, to the incredible launch and balloon ride, to finishing with a mimosa on the deck of the Tahoe Flyer, this adventure is so awesome and is an experience you will never forget.

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