New Mexico 2005 Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta

                                        September 27 to October 02, 2005:   Over 900 balloons, including 91 special shapes, were part of the 2005 Fiesta.   
                                        The first balloons launched during the fiesta are the Dawn Patrol at 5:45 a.m.   Pilots take off during the dark and fly 
                                        until light enough to see the landing sites.  The following 7:15 a.m. mass ascension pilots monitor the Dawn Patrol 
                                        balloons to determine wind speed and directions at various altitudes.   The mass ascension – a launch of all the 
                                        participating balloons – are a feature of the Balloon Fiesta.  During mass ascensions, balloons launch in two waves.  
                                        Launch directors, also known as “zebras” because of their black-and-white-striped outfits, serve as “traffic cops,” 
                                        coordinating the balloon launches.
                                        The special balloons included all shapes and sizes such as Beagle Dog and Surprize B (the Brazilian Squirrel’s girlfriend), 
                                        The Brazilian Clown, Mr. Scarecrow, and Little Angel and Little Devil. Some of the returning favorites were Lilly, 
                                        the Little Bee Girl and Joey, the Little Bee Boy, Hopper T. Frog, Uncle Sam, Rubber Duckie, La Ristra, and Airabelle, the 
                                        flying cow.  In the evening was the AfterGlow show - hundreds of grounded balloons with burners on to create the 
                                        interior glow - with a firework show overhead.
                                        Other travel adventures included the State Capital tour and overall visit to Santa Fe, travel to the base of Taos mountains, 
                                        hikes in Jemez Springs and Sandia Mountain, and massive relaxation at Tamaya Resort.


                                   Santa Fe National Forest:  Trail [137] to the McCauley Hot Springs from the Battleship trailhead.  Map

                                    Sandia Mountain:  Sandia Crest Trail with views of Albuquerque and Aspen trees in fall colors.  Map

                                   Tamaya Resort:  Resort located on the Rio Grande river north of Albuquerque (Near Bernalillo).  Map

                                   New Mexico Scenes:  Downtown Albuquerque, Abuelita restaurant in Bernalillo, Rio Grande Bridge
                                    and Gorge, and Taos mountain area.  Map

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