Guinness World Record-winning acrobat Nik Wallenda intends to walk next month across a 1,000-foot cable the diameter of a nickel 200 feet above the Allegheny River during the EQT Pittsburgh Three Rivers Regatta.
"I'm a man of firsts," he told the Post-Gazette in an interview today. "Whatever I can get."
Indeed, Mr. Wallenda, who will headline the three-day regatta on July 4 weekend, has won two awards in the Guinness Book of World Records, most recently by bicycling over 1,200 feet of cable 135 feet in the air on national television. He plans to walk across the Grand Canyon in September, another stunt that has never been achieved.
But on the night of July 3, Mr. Wallenda will try to walk across the cable, which will be stretched alongside the Roberto Clemente Bridge, while carrying a 50-pound balancing pole.
The force of a free fall into water from 200 feet can be more than enough to snap the spinal cord and cause death.
"No fears," he said. "I respect what I do. I respect that if I fall, I may get very hurt -- if not end up dead."
He added: "I wouldn't have agreed to if I felt uncomfortable."