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It was a VERY early Sunday morning…the Tom Mix Memorial provided an interesting Arizona backdrop for what started as candid idea sharing.

Crisp air, the sun rising and a rare cloudy Arizona day set the scene.

An eclectic group of friends gathered - the kind that feed on the unconventional, fueled by a passion for adventure and a hunger for 0430hrs breakfast at the Florence, AZ McDonalds!  Backlit by the numerous state and federal detention centers we convoyed south to our launch site.

Sure – we too watched the videos of weather balloon launches…but we had a thought (actually a few, but we’re on a verbiage roll!).  If the typical flight takes over 2hrs – why not in the spirit of our typical expedited/exigent mindsets set a new flight time, say…under an hour!  With our Executive Chairman and Founders' adage “we’re not here for a long time, we’re here for a good time!” Let’s do something different! 

To many – the idea of sending something into (near) space seems like a farfetched dream, an incomprehensible task.  To us – it was just a Sunday adventure and an opportunity to do something unique.  We wanted to also encourage others to challenge themselves, use their resources, and build their own teams and most of all – HAVE FUN!  Bobbleheads are fun, Go Daddy is fun…

This is the story of Operation Skyhook, a tale of like minded individuals and work friends that wanted to do something epic to wrap up another great year.  We could have hired a professional group of engineers and experienced balloonists.  We could have slept in that morning.  We could have worked at a company that says NO to wild ideas.  Well – that’s just not us!

With a $10 cooler, a GoPro HD camera and teammates' brand new iPhone 4S – we looked to the impending sunrise and started to countdown…