Acrobat Gets Ready To Tightrope Across The Niagara Falls
Ever since he was 2-years old Nik Wallenda has been fantasying about walking across the mighty Niagara Falls on a tightrope. So strong was his desire that he even convinced his mother to make him special suede shoes. This summer, his dream of 'disappearing into the mist and coming out at the other end', may finally come true!
That's because after weeks of persistent campaigning, Canada's Niagara Falls Commission finally reversed an earlier ruling and granted the now 33-year old permission to perform the stunt - with the caveat that something like this be allowed once every twenty years.
Since the father of three, who comes from a family of circus performers known as The Flying Wallendas already has permission from the authorities on the New York side, he is now all ready to tightrope his way across the vast falls.
The Florida resident who does not plan on wearing a harness, believes it will take him about 40 minutes to complete the 1,800-ft. long walk. If he succeeds, he will be first person to do so, in over a hundred years. A Frenchman by the name of Jean Francous Gravelet was the first person to ever attempt this rather dangerous stunt. And, while he did it several times, it was always downstream from the actual waterfall.
Wallenda on the other hand, plans to set up a custom-made wire 60-70 feet above the 160-foot gorge, that is designed to dip down the middle - This means that he'll be walking downhill during the first half of the walk and then climbing uphill, before he emerges on the other side.
While this the whole stunt reeks of danger, Nik is no stranger to risky tightrope ventures. The acrobat currently holds six Guinness World Records, including one for the longest distance and greatest height traveled on a bicycle perched on tightrope, for walking across the tightrope blindfolded and even for cooking an omelet in the the center of the tightrope.
The latest stunt whose exact date is still being worked out will be televised live on the Discovery Channel, which means that all of us will be able to watch, what promises to be a breathtaking event.