Boy, it’s hot in here

June 19, 2017

Darcy Nilsson and his cousin William Nugent stand in the balloon basket with RAAF reserve pilot Gary Maxwell.

Members of the Royal Australian Air Force were in Deniliquin as part of a regional engagement tour on Saturday.

They were showcasing a hot air balloon at Edward River Oval, which attracted plenty of locals who wanted a closer look.

There were plans for locals to be taken into the air by the tethered basket, however reserve pilot Gary Maxwell deemed it too unsafe due to strong winds after taking a skyward trip himself.

RAAF Squadron Leader Sam Wright said it was ‘‘disappointing’’ that the weather didn’t co-operate with their plans.

‘‘While we couldn’t get people up in the air, we still had plenty of interest which is just fantastic,’’ Mr Wright said.

Locals were invited to stand in the basket with the burners turned on and they also had the chance to meet Air Force personnel.

Six year-old Deniliquin boy Darcy Nilsson made the most of the experience.

‘‘It was exciting to be able to stand in the hot air balloon basket,’’ he said.

‘‘The flames were so hot I thought my hair was on fire.’’

Mr Wright said the aim of the balloon tour was to promote the positives of joining the Air Force.

‘‘We want regional Australians to know we care about them and that the Air Force has a range of jobs available.

‘‘I spoke to a few people who were interested in joining the Air Force so hopefully I was able to give them some helpful advice.’’

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