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Hot Air Balloon Pilot Mike Duplak waits for the balloon to cool down so that crem members can deflate the balloon for packup and going home.

About Droplyne

Droplyne was formed in 2017 when Red Bull contracted us for a short film

to commemorate the 1909 gas balloon race that was used to promote the Indianapolis Motor Speedway's first event. 

A hobby that took flight in 2012 inflated into a multi-location balloon ride company. Taking passengers on daily balloon rides keeps the machine running, while organizing all kinds of wonderful occasions, projects and personal bucket list flights fuels our passion for flight.

From Halloween to Easter (Oct - Apr) our flights over Eloy/Casa Grande area, Arizona, takes you up to 10 000ft above ground. At 10 000ft you can see as far as 70miles away in all directions. 

For the Spring to Fall months, Apr - Nov, we call Moab, Utah, home. Views of Canyonlands, Arches, red rock formations and the snowy tops of the La Sal mountain range is the standard everyday view from our office in the sky.  

The only thing we love more than flying, is going somewhere else to fly. Our flying adventures has taken us to the the skies of 4 continents, 24 states, 8 countries and counting. 

Safety First

Our first priority is to keep everyone, including our crew, safe.

Whether this is your first hot air balloon ride or you are a seasoned flyer, you will feel comfortable on your adventure with us. 

We are members of the Balloon Federation of America, keeping up to date with safety seminars and updated practices. Our Pilots are FAA Commercial Pilots with in-date medicals and healthy lifestyles. Our equipment is always up to code and well taken care of.  We have safety protocols in place. 

When we doubt safety, in cases of marginal weather, we do not fly, and the pilot in command always has the last and final say. If we cancel due to weather, we refund you in full. Being a commercial operator, carrying passengers that do not know anything about ballooning, our safety protocols are high. 

We have a perfect safety record. 

Meet the Team

Ballooning requires a team, and from the chase crew to the pilots everyone plays a vital role that serves the company in making each flight a success.

Droplyne Hot Air Balloon Company Founder and Pilot, Cornelius van der Walt, focusing on an approaching landing area just behond the Treeline in Grants Pas Oregon.

Founder and Pilot

Cornelius van der Walt 

Parachuting and Airplanes introduced me to the sky at 17 and working underwater paid for my flight time. In turn, working as a Skydiving Instructor funded my ballooning adventures a few years later. Right at the time that I realized this hobby is getting out of control, Red Bull tipped me over the edge of turning ballooning into a business by being Droplyne's first official customer. 

My first lesson in a balloon was also my very first time in a balloon, in Park City, Utah. I convinced my ballooning instructor and his wife to do a tandem skydive with me, although, she had one condition. She insisted that we do our Tandem in Moab.  So, after qualifying as a commercial balloon pilot in 2012, I brought my ballooning instructor and his wife to Moab, took each of them on a tandem skydive and fell in love with the place. I kept returning to Moab, first for base jumping, then speedflying, and finally brought my balloons to play. When Droplyne needed a summer location for ballooning, there was no question where that home will be. 

Hot Air Balloon Pilot, Mike Duplak, smiles happy after taking his lady on a private hot air balloon flight with Droplyne Hot Air Balloon Company in Moab Utah.


Mike Duplak

 I was born in south florida and always loved being outside. In 2011, at age 20, I decided to through Hike the Appalachian trail. Over the four months and 2000 miles of being on trail I grew to love being in the mountains. After the hike I started competing in ultra marathons and in 2013 I set my sights on the Leadville 100,  packed up my car to drove out to the race knowing there was little chance of returning to Florida.


I made my way over to Moab to climb the beautiful red sandstone walls and this is when I saw base jumpers for the first time, leaping of the cliffs with parachutes on their backs. This was to me the only logical next step. I had learned to skydive a few years earlier and it was never anything I took seriously. Now I had a reason so I headed down to Skydive Arizona to build the skillset needed to take the leap.


In order to pay for skydives, I found employment with Droplyne as ground crew. I realized pretty quickly that I had found a new passion in hot air balloons. Cornelius took me under his wing and taught me how to fly. Now as a commercial balloon pilot I am extremely grateful to be able to share something that I love so much with others on a regular basis. To put the cherry on the cake, I get to base jump most evenings with my girlfriend, Nataliya, when she gets off work. 

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