Weather Blog

Take a (virtual) ride in a weather balloon to 100,000 feet!

Take a (virtual) ride in a weather balloon to 100,000 feet!

Ever wanted to see what the view is from about 100,000 feet up but just can't seem to land a flight on a government spy plane or rocket?

Well, we've got the next best thing -- a virtual ride on a weather balloon.

On Monday, Nathaniel Middleton and Matt Carpenter took a weather balloon, equipped it with a camera and a GPS transmitter, and launched it from the Potholes Reservoir. The photos the camera took were quite stunning.

Here is a compilation of the photos and launch process, which they posted on YouTube:

They say the balloons are designed to reach about 100,000 feet in altitude before popping, and Carpenter said the balloon traveled about 90 miles across Eastern Washington, coming down in a rugged area near Rock Lake.

Middleton says it took quite a lot of planning for the launch and cost roughly about $1,200.

The two are among a growing hobby of launching weather balloons and the like to capture high-altitdue photography. Just search YouTube and you can find others doing similar experiments.

Here is more information and some other photos from their launch:

And here is the path: