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Smoking Man

High Speed Aluminum
Nov 25, 2001
Flying over CLT decending threw 12000 ft a silver reflection cought my eye, I watched as a heart shaped Valentine balloon passed just under the Dornier. I quess that it was not appreciated. Now for the Question what is the highest that any of you all have seen store bought helium balloons?


Smoking Man
I've seen the mylar balloons at a few thousand feet, but I bet they're strong enough to climb pretty high before bursting.

Several years ago, a full-size parade float got away from its handlers on the East Coast and drifted up into the flight levels for hours. It caused some chaos as ATC vectored traffic around it. I don't remember what character the float was, but that must have caused some double takes for any pilots who saw it!
I used to aim for them in the SuperCub when towwing banners over a festival or game, with the wing.

Sometimes with the prop, I like to live on the edge.

I always wondered if people were watching the airplane manuevering wildly for a couple seconds thinking that I has having a heart attack. You cant really do much with a rag on the back though.

Funny someone would be discussing this subject today.

I had a Mylar balloon pop in the BE-99 today. I had just leveled off at 10,500. Heard a loud bam from someware behind me, looked for the cabin door light, and pod door light. They where both out, so kept going. After we landed a passenger told me what had happened.

LR25, did you ever pick up any kite string while dragin the rag? One day in Myrtle, I came back and landed with several hundred feet trailing behind me. Got it on the left wing of a J-5 and it had cut the leading edge all the way back to the spar.
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I got pretty close to a para glider once around 2000 feet. Keyed into the tower which was about 7 miles and asked if there was any jumpers in the area....the tower said " uuhh, no, I hope not". As we got closer we could see it was a paraglider (parachute with a go cart attached) and the look on the pilots face was pretty funny as we passed him. He started to descend quickly after we passed.
OtterFO, thats pretty funny about the kite string, talk about catching the big one.

I just hope the kite flyers let go in time not to get the big yank.

I can see it now, the people on ground looking at themselves saying, did that just really happen.

Here's one from the twilight zone; I was flying into Roswell New Mexico, home of the UFO; when I saw a huge silver object about 10,000 feet above me. It turns out that on that day, in White Sands NM, NASA was testing an unmanned blimp! I t looked just like a UFO!

My glider instructor twenty years ago was a also 747 capt. He used to blow up a balloon and then throw it out. you were supposed to make a 270 degree and be able to hit the balloon, assuming your coordination was OK

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