Page last updated at 02:35 GMT, Sunday, 6 July 2008 03:35 UK

US man makes balloon chair trip


Ballon-chair flight

An American man has succeeded at the third attempt in making a 235-mile (378km) trip in an armchair held aloft by party balloons.

Kent Couch soared across the Oregon desert to the neighbouring state of Idaho in a journey that took him about nine hours.

Mr Couch took an air gun and blow pipe to control his elevation.

He had to bail out by parachute on his first attempt and his second fell short of the state border.

Boyhood dream

Mr Couch, 48, said before getting into his chair on Saturday: "Things just look different from up there. You've moving so slowly. The best thing is the peace, the serenity."


He said he was fulfilling a boyhood dream: "Most guys look up in the sky and wish they could ride on a cloud."

Mr Couch took off buoyed by about 150 balloons.

"I'd go to 30,000 feet if I didn't shoot a balloon down periodically," he said.

In addition to the blow pipe and air gun he took a pole to pull in balloons, a parachute, some GPS equipment and some eggs and chocolate.

He landed in a field near Cambridge, Idaho, to be welcomed by amazed locals.

Mr Couch estimated the cost of his flying machine at about $6,000 (3,000).

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