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“Taking Off” Balloon Team is owned and managed by an FAA licensed commercial hot air balloon pilot. We are in business to provide you with the best hot air ballooning experience available in our area. We are located in Foley, Al. just North of Gulf Shores. We are located approximately one hour east of Mobile, Al. and one hour west of Pensacola, Fl. Our area is well known for our white sugar beaches and the Riviera Outlet Mall. Our typical flights include views of the Gulf of Mexico, Mobile Bay, and other local bays and rivers.
Our business owns two Aerostar hot air balloon aircraft. Our newest addition is an RX-8 90,000 cubic ft. balloon named the “Blue Angel”. It is 70 ft tall and 65 ft in diameter and is solid blue with white pennant flags.
The other balloon is a 56,000 cubic ft white, pink, and teal balloon named “Unattached Too”. Each of the balloon systems is outfitted with the latest equipment such as an altimeter, rate of climb meter, envelope temperature sensor, GPS and radios. Both balloons are in excellent shape and are annual-ed at least once a year by an FAA certified repair center.
Tommy Rachel has been crewing and flying hot air balloons for 26 years. He has his FAA commercial ballooning license, which allows him to “fly for hire”. He enjoys the sport of hot air ballooning and really enjoys getting to share the experience with other people. He has lived in the Baldwin County area his whole life, which allows him to make the flights more interesting by knowing the people, the history and the countryside of this beautiful area. Tommy and the crew of the “Blue Angel” will do their best to make sure that your flight is a fun and more importantly a safe flight.
A team is only as good as the people in it. We are very proud of our crew and all that they do for us. We’ve listed our crew and some with pictures! If you get to fly with us, please let the crew know how much their time and help is appreciated.
If you are local and would like to help crew, please contact us. You will make some great friends, lasting memories and enjoy some great balloon flights.
Ben Rediker III
Mary Beth & Travis Willis