Hot air balloon spotted on Wednesday. (Capital News Staff)

Hot air balloon spotted on Wednesday. (Capital News Staff)

Kelowna residents recount stories of hot air balloon landing shenanigans

A hot air balloon was spotted landing in the Kelowna Lower Mission on Wednesday

On Wednesday morning, a hot air balloon skimmed above the homes on KLO Road near Benvoulin Road.

Minutes later, it would land in a large field near the backyard of a residence.

Hot air balloons descending on strange areas of the city from Orchard Park Mall parking lot to a Dilworth cul-du-sac are no longer a shock to many Kelowna residents.

The Capital News asked readers where they’ve seen a hot air balloon land in Kelowna? And, the answers didn’t disappoint.

Jennifer Bartz commented, “Skimmed the roof of our house when we lived on Bryden Rd by Ben Lee Park. Scared our 6-month-old Shepard puppy so much that he ran into the wooden fence trying to get away. Ever since then he would bark and panic even when it was miles away.”

Allison Millar remarked, “Woke up to this massive ‘woosh’ sound, looked out my bedroom window and low and behold if it wasn’t landing at the foot of my driveway (which was in a cul de sac).”

Capital News reader Dawn Pannell Douglas was given a balloon suprise one year when it unexpectedly landed in her parents’ front yard on her birthday.

A woman named Vicki claimed she saw a balloon land in Okanagan Lake a few years ago.

Nicole Desbiens said she has seen hot air balloons land in the backyards of neighbours on KLO all the time.

Dallas Zackodnki wrote, “Don’t know if it was this one but one landed in my elementary school field during lunch hour.”

In 2018, the Capital News spoke with Okanagan Ballooning owner John Klempner who said crews checked the upper air patterns before flights but the winds change.

“If the winds stop, a road with underground power lines is a good enough place to bring a balloon down safety,” Klempner said.

He said neighbourhood landings happen three to four times a year.

“That’s just the whole sport of ballooning. We can’t control direction at all,” he said.

Klempner claimed the weather is always changing, which makes landing unpredictable.

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