Daredevil Makes Amazing Wire Walk Across Niagara Falls

(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Aerialist Nik Wallenda Attempts To Cross Niagara Falls On A Tightrope
Aerialist Nik Wallenda tighropes over the Niagara Falls June 15, 2012 in Niagara Falls, New York. Wallenda walked across the 1,800 foot 2 inch-wide wire Friday night as the first person to cross directly over the falls from the U.S. into Canada. Wallenda, 33 and a father of three, is a seventh generation member of the famed Flying Wallendas who trace their roots to 1780 Austria-Hungary, when ancestors traveled as a band of acrobats, aerialists, jugglers, animal trainers and trapeze artists. ABC televised the event and insisted the daredevil wear a tethered harness to prevent live coverage of a potentially deadly fall 190 feet into the churning torrent below. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Aerialist Nik Wallenda Attempts To Cross Niagara Falls On A Tightrope
Niagara Falls glows under lights used to illuminate Aerialist Nik Wallenda when he walked a tightrope over the falls on June 15, 2012 in Niagara Falls, Canada. Wallenda, 33 and a father of three, is a seventh generation member of the famed Flying Wallendas who trace their roots to 1780 Austria-Hungary, when ancestors traveled as a band of acrobats, aerialists, jugglers, animal trainers and trapeze artists. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
Tightrope walker, Nik Wallenda
Famed tightrope walker Nik Wallenda completed the first walk across Niagara Falls in over a century, braving winds and heavy spray in his historic feat. Tens of thousands of spectators were packed on the US and Canadian sides of the falls to watch Wallenda, 33, complete the stunt. Wallenda's walk on a cable suspended 196 feet up over a never-before-traversed rim of the biggest waterfall in North America took under 30 minutes, considerably less than expected. (Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Aerialist Nik Wallenda Attempts To Cross Niagara Falls On A Tightrope
Wallenda said the wind was "coming from every which way" and he had to contend with a powerful mist as he became the first person to walk on a tightrope across the Niagara Falls on June 15, 2012. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Aerialist Nik Wallenda Attempts To Cross Niagara Falls On A Tightrope
The seventh-generation member of the famed Flying Wallendas had long dreamed of pulling off the stunt, never before attempted. Other daredevils have wire-walked over the Niagara River but farther downstream and not since 1896. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Aerialist Nik Wallenda Attempts To Cross Niagara Falls On A Tightrope
"This is what dreams are made of, people," said Wallenda, who wore a microphone for the broadcast, shortly after he stepped off from a platform on the American shore. Along the way, he calmly prayed aloud. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Aerialist Nik Wallenda Attempts To Cross Niagara Falls On A Tightrope
After passing the halfway mark, Wallenda expressed fatigue. "I'm strained, I'm drained," he said. "This is so physical, not only mental but physical." (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Aerialist Nik Wallenda Attempts To Cross Niagara Falls On A Tightrope
"I feel like I'm on cloud nine right now," an exuberant Wallenda told reporters after his feat, which he performed before an estimated 112,000 people crowding the shores of both countries and millions more who watched a live television broadcast. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Aerialist Nik Wallenda Attempts To Cross Niagara Falls On A Tightrope
"I hope what I do and what I just did inspires people around the world to reach for the skies," he said. He described a breathtaking view during the nighttime walk illuminated by spotlights that "compared to nothing." (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
Tightrope walker, Nik Wallenda crosses N
"There was no way to focus on the movement of the cable," said Wallenda, 33. "If I looked down at the cable there was water moving everywhere. And if I looked up there was heavy mist blowing in front of my face. So it was a very unique, a weird sensation." (Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
Tightrope walker, Nik Wallenda crosses N
He said he accomplished the feat through "a lot of praying, that's for sure. But, you know, it's all about the concentration, the focus, and the training." (Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
Tightrope walker, Nik Wallenda crosses N
After passing the halfway mark, Wallenda expressed fatigue. "I'm strained, I'm drained," he said. "This is so physical, not only mental but physical." (Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
Tightrope walker, Nik Wallenda crosses N
Toward the end, as he neared the Canadian shore, Wallenda dropped to one knee and pumped his fist while the spectators cheered. (Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
Tightrope walker, Nik Wallenda crosses N
He broke into a playful run about 15 feet from the finish line, where his wife and three children waited. (Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
Tightrope walker, Nik Wallenda crosses N
"I am so blessed," he said later. "How blessed I am to have the life that I have." (Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
Tightrope walker, Nik Wallenda crosses N
For Wallenda, who has grown up on the high wire and holds six Guinness records for various stunts, the Niagara Falls walk was unlike anything he'd ever done. Because it was over water, the 2-inch wire didn't have the usual stabilizer cables to keep it from swinging. Pendulum anchors were designed to keep it from twisting under the elkskin-soled shoes designed by his mother. (Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
Tightrope walker, Nik Wallenda crosses N
The Wallendas trace their roots to 1780 Austria-Hungary, when ancestors traveled as a band of acrobats, aerialists, jugglers, animal trainers and trapeze artists. (Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
Tightrope walker, Nik Wallenda crosses N
His family has been touched by tragedy, notably in 1978 when patriarch Karl Wallenda, Nik's great-grandfather, fell to his death during a stunt in Puerto Rico. (Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Aerialist Nik Wallenda Attempts To Cross Niagara Falls On A Tightrope
Wallenda said that at one point in the middle of the walk, he thought about his great-grandfather and the walks he had taken: "That's what this is all about, paying tribute to my ancestors, and my hero, Karl Wallenda." (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Aerialist Nik Wallenda Attempts To Cross Niagara Falls On A Tightrope
About a dozen other tightrope artists have crossed the Niagara Gorge downstream, dating to Jean Francois Gravelet, aka The Great Blondin, in 1859. But no one had walked directly over the falls, and authorities hadn't allowed any tightrope acts in the area since 1896. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
Tightrope walker, Nik Wallenda crosses N
About a dozen other tightrope artists have crossed the Niagara Gorge downstream, dating to Jean Francois Gravelet, aka The Great Blondin, in 1859. But no one had walked directly over the falls, and authorities hadn't allowed any tightrope acts in the area since 1896. (Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
(Photo credit: GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/GettyImages)
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