Balloon makes rough landing in hills |

Balloon makes rough landing in hills

Naomi Havlen

A hot air balloon from the Snowmass Balloon Festival had a rough landing in the hills surrounding Basalt on Friday morning, but no one was injured.Larry Thomas, manager of the Green Drake Motel in Basalt, said five or six hot air balloons were in the air near the motel when one of his contract employees watched a balloon land in the brush just west of the Basalt Ridge subdivision.Basalt police officer George Dow responded to the scene but said there were no injuries or danger of fire from the balloon’s gas burner.”Basically, the pilot thought he could land his balloon here in Basalt when the wind picked up and started pushing him up toward Ruedi,” Dow said. “He saw the power lines going across Basalt mountain and decided just to put it down, but he had a hard landing.”Dow said the landing was just off Ridge Road, and at least three people were in the balloon at the time. The pilot’s chase crew arrived soon after the landing, packed up the balloon and everyone left.Naomi Havlen’s e-mail address is

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