Simply walking on a wire between two skyscrapers in the Windy City wasn't enough for daredevil Nik Wallenda, so he is upping the stakes.
Wallenda announced Friday on TODAY that not only is he planning to walk on a wire between two Chicago skyscrapers in November, but that he is also going to do it blindfolded.
"It's about challenging myself, and hopefully through challenging myself, inspiring other people to challenge themselves," Wallenda said. "I've never performed blindfolded. I've trained a lot, intensively actually, blind-folded."
Wallenda announced that his latest tightrope walk, which will air live on the Discovery Channel on Nov. 2, will feature two portions: first, Wallenda will walk the length of two city blocks up a 15-degree angle from the Marina City’s 534-foot-tall west tower to the 635-foot-tall Leo Burnett Building, more than 50 stories above the Chicago River. In the second part of the special, he will be blindfolded while walking from the west tower to the east tower of the Marina City building on State Street in downtown Chicago.
"It's my passion, it's what I love doing,'' Wallenda said. "Chicago, the Windy City, that was, believe it or not, very alluring to me. Most people would think a wire walker doesn't want to go to the Windy City, but I enjoy the challenges."
Wallenda said he initially considered putting duct tape over his eyes to ensure the audience knows that he truly will not be able to see before deciding to go with a regular blindfold. He also is working on a special coating for the cable to deal with potentially frigid conditions in November.
TODAY’s Natalie Morales and Willie Geist and The Weather Channel’s Jim Cantore will host the special, "Skyscraper Live with Nik Wallenda," on the Discovery Channel as Wallenda will attempt to walk between the tallest skyscrapers anyone in his famous family, the “Flying Wallendas,” has ever tried.
His Chicago stunt is his first since Wallenda became the first person to walk across the Grand Canyon on a wire in June of 2013, taking 22 minutes and 25 seconds to make it across the 1,400-foot tightrope.