4,000 Feet Above the Earth, 2 Moving Hot Air Balloons and 1 Highline Sans Leash
Looking back at this incredible year of smiles and adventure, I take a moment of pause to reminisce about the wonderful fruition of many outdoor projects and the unfortunate demise of others. I’m reminded of how much life can turn on a dime and lead us in new wonderful directions when we least expect them to. As one door closes inevitably others will open, and this spontaneity of opportunities always makes me excited for the unexpected paths ahead. Out here in the crisp cool conditions of Moab’s fine desert, the Moab Monkeys have been raging hard and taking advantage of the incredible weather as the winter season slowly approaches. This is about the time I start making plans for travel to the southern hemisphere and this year it’s looking like Southeast Asia is calling. In this brief moment, however, I sip my coffee outside and reflect on the incredible hot air balloon highline stunt my friends and I recently accomplished outside Las Vegas. I’m including here the 3 part video series that covers the full story and build up to success, which Cody Tuttle and myself filmed and edited together.
This incredible idea was inspired by the video produced by Seb Montaz and the “Skyliners,“ who made the first, but unsuccessful attempts, to walk the highest slackline between two moving hot air balloons in Spain. Following up on this attempt the Moab Monkeys were more than psyched and qualified to give the challenge a new go. The project was an incredible feat to tackle and through their initial exploratory efforts we were able to repeat it with some minor rigging modifications to make the highline a little more stable. The entire story of how this all came to be is truly impressive. In a 24 hour period more than 24 different professionals were quickly assembled in Las Vegas to attempt this stunt once and for all. In essence, we organized our own team of world-class wingsuit pilots, BASE jumpers, highliners, Las Vegas balloon pilots, aerial silks performers, riggers and cameramen to give this experience a solid attempt and it was ultimately executed with perfection. The end result was an awesome success of epic gravity sport shenanigans with an aerial Cirque du Soleil performance high above the desert floor. Cody Tuttle and myself edited and released a short trailer of what happened on February 18th, 2014 but here before you is the full 3 part series that tells the story in its complete form.