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Helium heights

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What would we do without crazy daredevils? This may look like an act of utter lunacy, but flying cross-country in an armchair hoisted by helium balloons is just the kind of innovation that keeps the world turning. After all, without those magnificent men and their flying machines, how else would we have airplanes? This particular act of daring was just completed by the appropriately named Kent Couch of Bend, Oregon.

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At the crack of dawn on July 5th, Mr Couch prepared to launch his cluster balloon contraption outside his Stop and Go Mini Mart in Bend. 'I'm not stopping till I get out of state,' he said. And, true to his word, he landed safely in Cambridge, Idaho, at 4.12pm.

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He covered about 235 miles in nine and a half hours. With him, Couch carried a BB gun and blow pipe to control his altitude, as well as a cell phone and parachute for emergencies. Every time he got too high, he'd shoot a balloon down. Way to go, Kent. RM

Images: Couch Balloons

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