Cycling on tightrope about 80m above ground 

Nik Wallenda, a seventh-generation high-wire daredevil, pedals a bicycle across 
the Bridge Suite of the Paradise Island Atlantis resort in Nassau, Bahamas, 

A seventh-generation high-wire daredevil pedaled a bicycle across a precarious 
line strung between two hotel towers Saturday in an attempt to break his own 
world record.

Nik Wallenda, of the famous Flying Wallendas circus family, cycled safely more 
than 100 feet (31 meters) along the wire at the Bahamas' Paradise Island 
Atlantis resort some 260 feet (79 meters) above the turquoise ocean - without a 
safety net.

Wallenda holds the current Guinness World Records for longest distance and 
greatest height traveled by bicycle on a high wire, set in 2008 in Newark, New 
Jersey, when he traveled 235 feet (72 meters) at a height of 135 feet (41 

Hundreds of tourists and resort workers gawked from pools and sidewalks, 
snapping pictures and shooting video.

"It shows you the agility, balance and intestinal fortitude that these people 
have," said Randy Stein, 54, of Princeton, New Jersey. "It's phenomenal, 
incredible, a gift of balance."

Guinness will have to verify the new height record, the one he was trying to 
break Saturday.

Wallenda later performed a second high-wire stunt on foot, walking about 2,000 
feet (610 meters) at a height of 250 feet (76 meters) over the resort's 
open-air marine habitat, which teems with sharks, barracudas and piranhas.

It was the longest distance he has traveled by foot on a wire, according to 
spokesman Winston Simone.
Before the second stunt, Wallenda's father, who usually rigs the wire and walks 
along with him on the ground, passed out with heat stroke and was carried off 
in an ambulance. The father is said to be in good condition, and Wallenda's 
mother and wife strung the line instead.

Wallenda never stumbled during either performance, despite winds measured at 28 
knots (32 mph; 51 kph) and scattered thunderstorms.

"Against all odds I walked on that wire today," he said. "There was lightning 
in the area, high winds, and it was the first walk without my father. It was 
one of the hardest decisions I ever made in my life. and the hardest walk I 
have ever done.

"But my family history and my family tradition is that the show must go on," he 

A native and resident of Sarasota, Florida, Wallenda is the great-grandson of 
circus legend Karl Wallenda, who fell to his death during a wire walk in San 
Juan, Puerto Rico, in 1978.

Wallenda, 31, said he hopes to keep performing on the high wires until he is no 
longer physically able. - AP

Published Aug 29 2010

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