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National Ballooning Championships

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by finy (subscribe)
A retired business owner, my passions are cooking, photography and eating. I use all three of these when I write for which is on HubGarden
Event: -
All Eyes on the Skies - Ballooning Championships
The National Ballooning Championships will be held in the heart of the Avon Valley, Northam, and will create a spectacular aerial display.

Avon Valley Ballooning Competition

This event was also on in 2015 and due to its success, the Northam Aero Club won the right to host it again in 2017.

Watch balloons in Northam

There will be balloons and pilots from all around Australia, and indeed from around the world, and these will be there over five days.

Image: Their Facebook page

The pilots will have to test their skill at varying wind speeds and altitudes, and there will be about 30 balloons in the air during the course of this event.

Preparing for take off!

The sight of all these balloons in the sky will be quite spectacular, and will be a real treat for those spectators watching the event.

Spectacular sight!

The balloons will be starting at dawn on the days of the competition, and then again in the afternoon, weather permitting.

After it is dark, the "Balloon Glow" is another opportunity to see the competition balloons in all their glory, when they gather, all fired up, for a stunning display on the ground.

Watch the Balloon Glow event after dark

Competition flights require the pilots to exercise skill in manoeuvring their balloons over a set course with goals, targets, scoring areas, time and distance limits.

Obtaining good results in competition tasks are achieved by using the variation of winds at different altitudes, to fly in the direction of a goal, and accurately approach the target.

The balloons do not land on the target itself, but pilots and crew on the balloons have to drop markers onto, or as near as they can possibly fly.

The markers are made of small sandbags with streamers attached, and the organisers have requested that the public do not touch the markers or move them as this may adversely affect the score of the pilots as well as their competition results.

The last event, and one not to be missed, finishes with the 'key grab' competition where pilots race from point to point, trying to collect foam 'keys' from the end of 10 metre poles, and from several different locations. These keys will represent a key to a prize!

Also on the programme of events for this time, there will be several events organised by the Shire of Northam in conjunction with the Championships.

You will also be able to book a sunrise balloon flight over the Avon Valley, and for more information on this, please go to this site or phone: 08 9621 2000.

2nd to 9th September, 2017

The Balloon Glow will be held on the night of 2nd September

Balloon Glow will be held at the Henry Street Oval in Northam

Practice days are 2nd and 3rd September

Competition days are 4th to 9th September

The competition course and the best viewing spots will differ each day depending on the wind conditions. Spectators should check the event's Facebook page (Northam Nationals) to see where flights will be each day, or start at the Northam Aero Club at Withers Street Northam, to be directed from there to where balloons will take off from that day.

These morning flights will be from approximately 6.30 am to 9 am

FREE as a spectator

You can obtain more information about this whole event by visiting their website, or emailing:

If you are planning on visiting Northam for a day or overnight, the organisers advise you to check the event's Facebook page the night before, and on the day of competition.
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Why? To Watch a Fascinating Ballooning competition
When: Saturday 2nd September, 2017 to 9th September, 2017
Phone: 08 9621 2000
Where: Northam Aero Club, Northam
Cost: Free as a spectator
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