A Video History of The Flying Wallenda Family's Most Daring Stunts

May 7, 2012
Outside
Outside Magazine

High-wire artist Nik Wallenda announced late last week that he would walk over Niagara Falls with no safety harness on June 15. Wallenda will cross a two-inch wide 1,800-foot-long cable strung roughly 200 feet above the bottom of the gorge. The seventh generaton performer spent the last two years working to get the permits and exceptions needed to perform the once-in-a-generation Niagara Falls stunt.

Wallenda grew up in a renowned aerial acrobatics family known as "The Flying Wallendas." Here's a quick video history of some of the family's feats.

Nik's grandfather Karl Wallenda created a seven-person pyramid high wire act that the family performed. On January 30, 1962, three men fell. Two died and one was paralyzed from the accident.

In March 1978, Karl fell to his death performing a high wire act in Puerto Rico. WARNING: The video below shows his fall.

On June 4, 2011, Nik joined his mother to walk a wire in the same location where his grandfather fell.

Nik holds the Guiness World Record for the longest bicycle ride across a high wire, set on October 15, 2008, in Newark, New Jersey.

For more on the family, check out the trailer to the new documentary on "The Flying Wallendas" called The Show Must Go On.

--Joe Spring
@joespring

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