For some reason Josh Beaudoin, a professional slackliner, decided it would be a good idea to balance and walk on a one-inch line across a Colorado pool infested with hungry alligators waiting for him to misjudge his step and fall into the pond.
The 33-year-old Alaskan arranged for a friend to film him while he fulfilled the daredevil urge to tempt the fates.
The video, posted online Tuesday by YouTube user Caters Clips, appears to have been shot at the Colorado Gators Reptile Park in Mosca. It shows Beaudoin, wearing bright yellow high-tops walking across a line stretched over a pool swarming with an entranced audience of reptiles gazing up as they jostled each other, in expectation of dinner dropping from above.
The slackliner walks carefully with measured steps, apprehensive at first, but gaining confidence later. He has so much confidence that he pauses at a point to balance delicately on one leg as the line sways precariously above rows of gaping, salivating carnivorous maws primed and ready for munching action.
A camera attached to the stuntman’s body shows the alligators gathered below him waiting for the misstep that bodes well for them.
“Walking and surfing over them definitely got their attention.”
But the alligators weren’t meant to have their dreams of a tasty morsel fulfilled that day as the daredevil slackliner makes it over the pond. You can almost hear the gasp of disbelief and see expressions of frustrated exasperation on alligator faces at the moment that what appeared a sure bet for dinner walks away without as little as a teeth-mark memento of the occasion.
“At one point I looked down and counted at least nine alligators underneath me and saw others were coming. It was at that point that I completely realized that there was absolutely no room for error.”
Commenting on his crazy stunt, Beaudoin, said, “When you are in my line of work the ‘what ifs’ are entertaining to think about and at times very important. But it is important to acknowledge fear but you must not let it control you.”
Acknowledging that he probably wouldn’t try the crazy stunt again, Beaudoin said in a Facebook post, “Wow! All I can say is I made it out alive! Walking over these alligators has been a challenge that I wanted to do for a while.”
“But please do not try this stunt,” he added. “I have had thousands of hours on the slackline and hundreds more in performances. This is strictly for your entertainment.”
He ended his comments by giving assurance that “no slackers or alligators were harmed during the making of the clip.” But the alligators had clearly wished for someone to be harmed.
If alligators had known that a foolhardy human would attempt such stunt, they would probably have obtained the services of the comrade shown in the video below who appears to have mastered the technique of jumping out of water by balancing on its tail to reach out for a tasty morsel above.
“The gators will embrace you with a (short) smile before ingesting you.”
“I’ve seen videos of alligators jumping high to get animals out of trees alongside the water’s banks. This guy is just lucky that none of these gators did that.”
“This fool clearly hasn’t seen the video going around about how high these creatures can jump out of water.”
“I’m about 6-9 months away from contemplating trying this. So sick. Next up piranhas in South America?”
However, it is possible that the pond was too shallow to support alligators rearing up and jumping to snatch their prospective dinner from the line.
Regardless, many readers have remarked that thrill seekers like Beaudoin lend credence to the impression of a thin dividing line between bravery and craziness.
[Photos by Caters Clips/YouTube]