Volcano Live with Nik Wallenda took place Wednesday, March 4 from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET on ABC. Below is the opening of the special. We’ll post the full volcano walk video here as soon as it becomes available.
Below is the video of Wallenda’s wife Erendira performing an aerial stunt over the volcano ahead of Nik’s walk.
A volcanologist was on hand to talk about the dangerous “vog,” aka volcanic smog.
The Volcano Stunt Is Particularly Dangerous Because of the Atmosphere
Wallenda, a seventh-generation aerialist and wire-walker, has performed plenty of dangerous stunts: walking across Niagara Falls, the Grand Canyon, between two Chicago skyscrapers, and New York City’s Times Square, plus he once performed a heartstopping Wheel of Death stunt.
But what makes the volcano walk especially dangerous is the atmospheric conditions he has to contend with.
Good Morning America did a feature on the walk and reports that the Masaya Volcano’s lava lake is boiling at over 2000 degrees Fahrenheit, plus Wallenda has to worry about the plume of toxic gas the volcano emits, which he will be walking right into.
“We’re walking over a volcano with deadly poisonous gases — it adds a layer of concern,” Wallenda said. “I’ll be wearing goggles, [but] what if they fog up, what if they’re not fixed right and my eyes start burning and I can’t see? There are so many unknowns that I cannot prepare for.”
He added that the element he actually fears most is the wind because it’s so unpredictable and you never know when or how strong a gust is going to blow during an outdoor stunt.
“After spending years scouting and researching volcanoes, I fully realize why no one has ever attempted this feat: Mother Nature is extremely unpredictable. It is by far the most dangerous walk I have EVER attempted, and that alone makes it very intimidating,” said Nik Wallenda in a pre-show press release. “I am pushing myself beyond my comfort zone by the feat itself, but I know that I am up to the challenge. I must admit, it is scary.”
This Is ABC’s Third Wallenda Live Stunt
In 2019, ABC aired Nik and his sister Lijana Wallenda’s high-wire walk over Times Square, which you can watch here, and back in 2012, ABC aired Wallenda’s live crossing of Niagara Falls, which you can watch here.
He has also had some of his feats aired via a reality show on the Science Channel and two specials on the Discovery Channel.
The Volcano Live! special was hosted by Bachelor stalwart Chris Harrison and ESPN anchor Sage Steele.
“Nik Wallenda and his family are legendary. I’m extremely honored and also a little nervous to watch this death-defying walk over a live volcano,” said Harrison in a press release. “I’m proud to bring this live event to the world along with my friend and co-host Sage Steele.”
“I have been a fan of Nik Wallenda for years and am beyond thrilled to be part of his next feat,” said Steele. “I am counting down the days to ‘Volcano Live!’ and am so excited to be reunited with my good friend Chris Harrison for what I know will be an unforgettable night for the world to see!”
In addition to Harrison and Steele, volcanologists and other professionals were on hand to provide expertise about the site, and other members of Wallenda’s famous high-flying family were featured in interviews about the rigging and execution of the stunt.