Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate September 2001

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Ballooning is now a growing sport in the U.S. Many people go ballooning every day. It is a hard sport because steering balloons is difficult in high winds. Balloonists have to move up and down searching for a wind going in the right direction, and regulating height is done by cooling or heating the balloons air.

Ballooning is expensive. The average balloon costs about $5,000 dollars. Also some balloons are filled with helium, which makes it more expensive. The most popular balloons are "hot air" models. In most of these balloons, propane gas is the fuel.

People enjoy ballooning very much. The first manned balloon took off in 1783. Ballooning has grown a lot since then. They now have contests with ballooning. Championship balloon races occur all over the world. Championship balloon races test the navigation skills of the balloonists.

A balloon just recently crossed the Atlantic Ocean. The balloons name was "The Double Eagle". The Double Eagle took six days to cross the ocean. Balloons usually have a crew of one to three persons. I don't know how many people were on the Double Eagle, but however many, they must have been very brave.

Balloons are fun, but not very practical. They are slow and expensive. The best way to fly is by airplane. They are fast and cheaper. Like I said, balloons are fun and they are a good sport, but not a good way of travel.