By Alexandria Hoff

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Part of the allure of flying a hot air balloon is never quite knowing where the wind will take you. Wednesday evening the wind sure did take a crew of four somewhere, and it wasn’t anywhere that anyone expected.

A beautiful photo of a bed of clouds was taken just after hot air balloon pilot H.M. Steiger and his three trainees approached 17,000 feet.

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They had launched from Montgomery County around 3:00 p.m., but once they descended through clouds, they realized that they weren’t in Pottsville anymore.

“It’s a balloon so there’s no such thing as ‘Balloonports’ except where the pilot designates, ‘this looks like a good place to land’,” said Steiger.

Video obtained by Eyewitness News shows his balloon as it landed around 4:30 p.m., right in the center of the Kensington section of Philadelphia.

“A hot air balloon in Kensington. Never would have imagined that. Not in a million years,” said a witness named Ty.

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At the mercy of the wind and with approaching darkness, the balloon was forced to make a hard landing into a recreation field at C and Westmoreland Streets.

“There were at least 100 children in the playground. They were around the hot air balloon. We don’t know if they were there when the balloon landed or if they went to the location after seeing the balloon,” said Chief Inspector Scott Small.

The Philadelphia Police tactical air division monitored the balloons descent and the FAA gave the pilot clearance to land in the field after the crew had been caught in 60 mph winds. Still, police say that due to the potentially dangerous situation detectives will be investigating.

“For us, this is normal. This is an everyday occurrence except typically we would have chosen a farm field further east of the city or further west of the city,” said balloon pilot trainee, Joe Pluck.

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The scenario was so startling that some witnesses thought that the balloon had caught fire. Those aboard told Eyewitness News that they had to explain to several good Samaritans who rushed the vessel upon landing not to pull them from the basket because body weight is required to prevent the balloon from blowing away.

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Around 7:00 p.m. the balloon’s tracking crew showed up with a truck and the folded balloon plus basket were loaded in. Without any damage, it is ready for its next flight.