Double Eagle V

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Double Eagle V was the first balloon to make a successful crossing of the Pacific Ocean. It launched from Nagashima, Japan on November 10, 1981, and landed in Mendocino National Forest in California 84 hours and 31 minutes later, travelling a record 5,768 miles (9,283 km).[1] The four-man crew consisted of Albuquerque balloonists Ben Abruzzo, Larry Newman, and Ron Clark, and thrill-seeking restaurateur Rocky Aoki, who helped fund the flight. Abruzzo and Newman had previously been two of the pilots of Double Eagle II, which in 1978 became the first balloon to cross the Atlantic. Double Eagle V failed to attract the same degree of media attention as the earlier flight, in part because it was overshadowed by the concurrent Space Shuttle mission STS-2.[2]

In January 2015, the crew of the Two Eagles Balloon completed a flight across the Pacific Ocean. If verified by the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale, it will officially have broken the distance record of the Double Eagle II.[3]


  1. ^ Nelson, Ray (1985). Flight of the Pacific Eagle. Albuquerque: Transpac. 
  2. ^ Kirshenbaum, Jerry, ed. (November 23, 1981). "Scorecard: Swift, Far, and Romantic". Sports Illustrated. 55 (22): 33. 
  3. ^ "Balloonists set records crossing Pacific". Retrieved 30 January 2015. 

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