Man Flew Almost 200 Miles in a Lawn Chair

I saw this on boing boing and just had to write about it. Some guy from Oregon rigged up a lawn chair with 105 large helium balloons and traveled 193 miles to Idaho. A caravan of three cars, housing family members including his wife and his dog followed him on his journey. He was about three miles up in the air and his average speed was 25 miles per hour.

What a scary and beautiful journey that must have been.  I have trouble flying in an airplane let alone exposed to the air like that and one tiny mistake away from death.  And yet, he must have felt so free up there, literally passing through the clouds.   The man was fined and paid a $1,500 penalty for violating air traffic rules, but I imagine it was worth it.  I don’t think I could ever muster up the courage this man had to attempt this.

At the end of the article there is a quote from the man’s wife about the journey and why she gave her blessing to the flight despite her obvious trepidation, “I know he’d be thinking about it more and more, it would always be on his mind,” she said. “This way, at least he’s fulfilled his dream.”

Unfortunately when he landed and climbed out of his chair, the wind swept away his vessel along with the video recorder he used on his journey.  That is some video I would like to see.  I hope someone finds it and returns it to him.

3 thoughts on “Man Flew Almost 200 Miles in a Lawn Chair

  1. I saw this on the news but they missed out the air traffic violation bit! Wouldn’t it be amazing to see the chair and balloons flying through the sky?

  2. paperback writer – the balloons were deflated for his decent, so they probably didn’t have much air. Still, I bet it could fly pretty far.

    Helen- I’m surprised this was played on the news in Australia. That would be crazy to see a chair flying through the sky. No one would believe me if I told them!

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