You know those big giant antennas that look like they reach just below the wing of an airplane at cruising height? Well, someone has to climb them every so often to inspect them or change the flashing bulb. You’d think it would be easier to have a helicopter or something drop them off, but there’s probably a really compelling reason someone has to physically climb the antenna. If nothing else, it’s a good workout.
For Nick Wagner, climbing these huge antennas is just another Tuesday at the office. Wagner works for a company called National Tower Controls, LLC, and apparently, they do maintenance on these towers annually. I’m not sure if there’s some sort of process to decide who gets to be the one to climb the beast or if everyone that works there is expected to climb. But Wagner took everyone on his climb to change out the light bulb and inspect KDLT-TV’s antenna in 2015, and while the view is beautiful, I imagine it could also give you heart palpitations.
“Must not be afraid of heights” is likely in the job description multiple times, bolded, italicized and highlighted. It’s not like if you get a little wobbly you can just step down. You’d need an airborne rescue team or a parachute, which makes you wonder if that’s part of their climbing equipment. In the video, the climb itself took nearly 15 minutes and it’s not clear where in the climb Wagner started filming, but the view is so spectacular that you can practically see the curvature of the Earth.
What makes this whole process even more interesting is that if someone were to ask what he did all day, his answer could be, “I changed a light bulb.” Wagner can have those light bulbs and I’ll stick to the ones that require no more height than a kitchen chair.
Watch the incredible video below: