Nik Wallenda Becomes First Person To Cross Niagara Falls Via Tightrope
Author: Jessica Grabert
published: 2012-06-15 22:25:40
Tightrope walking is the sort of activity kids know way too many facts about—sort of in the same way Helen Keller and the Holocaust are broached repeatedly in schools. However, tightrope walking for some reason is often associated with kids in two ways: either via circus acts or nostalgic high wire performances, like Philippe Petit’s famous walk between the Twin Towers. Now, tightrope walking may resurface as an activity in the present, thanks to a daring walk by Nik Wallenda.
Wallenda, 33, is a seventh-generation member of “The Flying Wallendas,” a troupe known for its acrobatic feats. Many members of his family have attempted daredevil acts in the past; however, Wallenda may have trumped the lot of ‘em. According to CBS News, on Friday, Wallenda was the first person to attempt crossing the Niagara Falls on tightrope since 1896.
Those who attempted the incredible feat in the past may have not earned the results they hoped, but Wallenda came through in the clutch, indeed making it across the foggy, slippery cable that overlooked the edge of the falls. The walk was 1,800 feet long, which is more than half a mile, and nerve-wracking to boot. ABC initially televised the event, which cost $1.3 million dollars to achieve. Because of ABC's sponsorship, Wallenda actually agreed to wear a safety wire so he wouldn’t die onscreen, but before you get all cynical about the fact the man was not going to die for his efforts, consider the training and the tiny mincing steps one must take to achieve such a feat. Then, consider the possibility of embarrassing oneself on television and in front of an audience that featured 125,000 people on the Canadian side and 4,000 folks on the American side. After that, tell me walking over a mile on a slippery wire without stabilizer cables is not a feat worth reporting. Wallenda and his family should be extremely proud.