Lake Winnie Boat Chute

Monday, August 11, 2003 12:29 PM
I know that this topic isn't really roller coaster-related, but its close...

I visited Lake Winnie, the small traditional park in Georgia (near Chatanooga, TN) over the weekend and was surprised to find a REAL "shoot-the-chutes"-type ride still in operation. The ride, which is simply called "Boat Chute, sits on the shore of the lake (kinda like the "boats" in RCT start on the shore of a body of water) and consists of these enormous steel and wood "boats" that have three rows of seats (the boats are enormous, probably about 20 feet long with the "nose" taking up about half of that length.) The boats leave the loading area and bang around inside a lllooonnnggg metal tunnel (made from the kind of stuff that you would use to build a metal shed) that eventually makes a 180 degree turn before climbing an ancient lift structure that stands about 20 feet above the water in the lake below before rolling down the other side into the lake. The sign outside of the ride claims the ride to be from 1926 or 1927 (whenever the park opened) and is the only "real" example of this ride in operation today.

Does anyone know anything about this ride? Like who built it (if it wasn't built in-house, which seems to be a strong possibility) or who is responsible for the mechanical pieces of the ride, such as the lift structure or the boats? It is quite a fascinating thing, definitely worth a ride if you ever make it to the charming little park.

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-Rob
A.C.E. member since 1990
Posting @ Coasterbuzz since 2000
E.C.C. member since 2002

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Monday, August 11, 2003 12:36 PM
I'm pretty sure that I have a video (Great Old Amusement Parks) that states the ride was designed and built in-house.
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Monday, August 11, 2003 1:28 PM
The ride was indeed built in house by the original family who owned the park. It is the oldest ride in the park and is indeed the last of it's kind in the country and probably the world.

I believe that if you go to Lake Winnie's website they tell you more about the boat chute in the history section of the park.

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Flying over metal is a beautiful thing!

TNcoasterman

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Monday, August 11, 2003 7:04 PM
Yes , it was built by the original owners of the park , and it was there first ride in the park. I love to hit open the doors in the sides of the walls , and sometimes I can get them stuck. If you didn't know , that house right of the Lift is that of one of the parks owners/managers(not sure of her position), and she has some beautiful landscaping. I don't know when those boats were put in , but I seem to remember riding in different ones when I was a little kid. If you look to the side of the lift , in front of the lady's house , there is a chain from the lift at some point(anybody know when).

I hope I helped some , and I Love that ride, but hate the line.

Oh, and did you happen to notice the land clearing next to the front parking lot?

Spoken by a future Lake Winnie Ride-Op.

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Bodysurfing. More Fun than any coaster!

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Tuesday, August 12, 2003 5:27 AM
When I rode, there was absolutely NO line... the park was fairly quiet, probably because of the rain earlier in the evening.

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-Rob
A.C.E. member since 1990
Posting @ Coasterbuzz since 2000
E.C.C. member since 2002

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Tuesday, August 12, 2003 5:24 PM
I remember seeing it on Great Old Amusement parks. That thing looked freaky when it came down the drop and would hit either one of the walls on each side once it landed on the lake. If I remember correctly the lady's grandfather built it.

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"Here's my ten cence, my two cence is free"-Eminem

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Tuesday, August 12, 2003 6:11 PM
I guess this is where I say this: http://www.aceonline.org/flyers/LakeWinnie2003.pdf

If you want to go to this event, I'll remind you that the deadline is approaching rapidly (8/25). I'll also *warn* you that I'll likely be invading, er, um...attending this event....;)

P.S. First timer to Lake Winnie! :)

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Tuesday, August 12, 2003 6:44 PM
Gator , three tips.

1.Ride Wild Lightning in the Right side as much as you can,and Brace yourself.

2. Cannonball has more air in the front.

3.Ride Fly-O-Planes by yourself and try to hit the steering wheel right when you see cannonball's station.Barrelroll after Barrelroll!

Besides that enjoy the park and look at the land clearing next to the main/front parking lot. :)


I'm so friggin' sick of people who think the Crystal Beach Cyclone would have been a great coaster. Woohoo! I just rode this great ride and now my arm is broken and my tailbone is bruised!

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Wednesday, August 13, 2003 6:51 AM
I don't think that a new coaster will be going to that land clearing, if that is what you were hinting at. While I was at the park, I was talking to one of the park's managers and asked if the park had ever considered adding a new wooden coaster, and he told me that its not likely to happen because the owner is very happy with the size of the park right now (supposedly, the park is doing quite well.) He said that the park owns about 200 undeveloped acres of land, and that things could change in the future, but more wood (or more coasters, it seems) is not in the cards.

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-Rob
A.C.E. member since 1990
Posting @ Coasterbuzz since 2000
E.C.C. member since 2002

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Wednesday, August 13, 2003 5:08 PM
The ride was built in 1927 by the park's original owners and was made from the simpliest of materials (You might have noticed the old cahinlift with boards and the boats themselves looked very original). This ride is still the most popular, is maintained the same as it was decades ago, and I believe the park owner lives in the house by the chain lift.

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RollerCoasters aren't my whole life... they just make my life whole

Roller coasters and more at EBeth's Realm!

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Wednesday, August 13, 2003 7:19 PM
Dang. I was hoping for *two* new woodies in the area.

Go Thunderhead! Go Thunderhead!

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I have changed my signature on this post to say that I want a Larson Ring-O-Fire.

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Wednesday, August 13, 2003 7:28 PM
They had a show on PBS, yes PBS about old amusement parks, this and many of the other older parks had cameo's. It looked like a fun ride. I can't remember the name of the show though.

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http://said.uc.edu/students/oakleysd/cp/CP.jpg
Now tell me Cedar Point is running out of space.

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Wednesday, August 13, 2003 9:56 PM
That would be Great Old Amusment Parks.

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"Here's my ten cence, my two cence is free"-Eminem

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Thursday, August 14, 2003 2:28 PM
So who knows what the land clearing at Lake Winnie is all about? How big an area is it?

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Nashville needs a theme park!

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Thursday, August 14, 2003 2:48 PM
I don't know what it is , but it covers the length of the parking lot , and the old entrance has been blocked off with a chain link fence.

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I'm so friggin' sick of people who think the Crystal beach Cyclone would have been a great coaster. Woohoo ! I just rode this great ride , and Now My arm is broken and my tailbone is Bruised!

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