well it took a few trieshttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venera
1975 October 22: After 126 days in transit, the Venera-9 orbiter encountered Venus. Immediately after its closest rendezvous with the planet, the main propulsion unit onboard the orbiter fired injecting the spacecraft into a 1,510 by 112,200-kilometer orbit around Venus, with the inclination 34.10 degrees and the rotation period of 48 hours 18 minutes. It was the first artificial satellite of Venus. (2) The selected orbit around Venus was designed to provide at least 115 minutes of communications between the lander and the orbiter, during the latter's descent and landing. (80)
In the meantime, the Venera-9 lander plunged into the atmosphere of Venus at the altitude of 125 kilometers with the angle of 20.5 degrees relative to the local horizon and with the speed of 10.7 kilometers per second. After initial aerodynamic braking, covers of the parachute compartments were jettisoned at the altitude of 65 kilometers, the speed of 250 meters per second and acceleration of 2G. It was followed by the deployment of a small "pullout" parachute and jettisoning of the top hemisphere of the protective reentry shell of the lander. The descent velocity then decreased to around 150 meters per second.
Next opened braking parachutes, radio transmitters were activated and started relaying the data. After working for 15 seconds, braking parachutes further reduced the descent speed of the lander to 50 meters per second. At the altitude of 62 kilometers above the surface, three main parachutes with the total area of 180 square meters had deployed. Four seconds later, the lower half of the protective sphere separated from the lander and fell off under its own weight, while the lander continued slow descent through the layers of clouds under main parachutes for some 20 minutes, providing wealth of atmospheric data.
Science instruments measured wind speed, temperatures, pressure, lighting conditions and searched for the presence of water vapors. The relative mass of the water vapors in the atmosphere at the altitude of 40 kilometers was determined to be around 10 --3.
Main parachutes were jettisoned at the altitude of 50 kilometers above the surface and the lander was then in a free fall, slowing down only with the help of a disk-shaped aerodynamic break. The descent velocity increased immediately after the release of parachutes, however started decreasing again, as the atmosphere around the lander was becoming more and more dense. As the lander was approaching the surface, its instruments confirmed earlier data that the wind speed at the altitudes of up to 10 kilometers is very low -- a stark contrast to the higher altitudes (20-40 kilometers), where winds gust up to 30-36 meters per second.