ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) -- Professional daredevil Nik Wallenda has begun an unharnessed tightrope walk high above the beach in Atlantic City.

Thousands of people have gathered to watch the attempt, including in boats, a helicopter and two banner planes. Atlantic City tourism officials are hoping 50,000 or more people show up to watch Thursday as Wallenda attempts to traverse a line connecting cranes in front of the Atlantic Club Casino Hotel and the Tropicana Casino & Resort.

His tight rope is 100 feet in the air and 1,300 feet long.

In June, Wallenda wowed the masses when he did a similar stunt 200 feet above Niagara Falls.

He told WCBS radio that the variable winds will be the biggest challenge for his Atlantic City effort, which he called "a very unique walk."