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Sailing high at Big Skies

27 April 2018

Float high above Jimbour Plains in a hot air balloon as a part of the inaugural Big Skies Festival.

Some get their thrills from fast cars, some from guessing correctly on TV game shows, but for Western Downs photographer Janine Waters, there is no greater enjoyment than floating peacefully along at bird level. 

Janine was one of the first to purchase a hot air balloon ride ticket as part of the inaugural Big Skies Festival, kicking off this weekend from Saturday 28 April to Sunday 6 May.

The balloon rides taking to the skies at 6am on Sunday 6 May are just one component of the seven days’ worth of events, music and food experiences set to grace the Western Downs.

For Janine, sailing up above the people, houses and trees is a truly incomparable feeling.

“It’s just a very peaceful ride; it’s something you’ve never experienced before,” she said.

“It’s quiet, peaceful, you’re just floating — it’s a lovely experience.”

Those snapping up a ticket will be in for a bird’s eye view of the patchwork farming land the Western Downs is famous for as well as a few extras thrown in.

Not only will passengers have a front row seat to one of Australia’s best sunrises but they’ll get to see these magnificent aircraft come to life as their pilots inflate their balloons.

From small, medium to large, there will be balloons of all sizes gracing the skies above Jimbour Plains including the biggest passenger balloon in Australia.

The world’s largest pink balloon can carry up to 24 passengers and will be a sight to see for those watching from the ground. Western Downs Regional Council Spokesperson for Economic Development Councillor Donna Ashurst said the opportunity to see Jimbour House and the Bunya Mountains from the air was something that didn’t pop up often.

“It is really such a beautiful corner of the world and the chance to fly above the Jimbour Plains is pretty special,” she said.

“As a Councillor and as a Western Downs resident I’m really excited to show off the region we have out here to everybody who is travelling to enjoy their first Big Skies Festival.”

If you’re feeling a little peckish once you’ve disembarked from your hot air balloon, Big Skies will be serving up a Champagne Breakfast at the Jimbour Station Camp Kitchen for $25 per person.

Sail above the Jimbour Plains at Big Skies; get your hands on a hot air balloon ride at the Big Skies website.

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Lisa Machin | Media Relations Senior Officer | 0419 048 594