U.S. National Whitewater Center

Thursday, July 6, 2006 9:29 AM
This looks to be a new "extreme" water park. This one is outside Charlotte, NC.

Basically, it's a man-made white water course, very similar to a rapids ride, except that its Class III & IV. You can take 90 minute trips, kayack, canoe, training areas, etc. Same kind of conveyor belt system that lets you loop around and complete a course several times. This is pretty fantastic stuff if you're in to white water rafting.

"Nearly six years in the making, and after a delayed June opening, the center is scheduled to open this summer. On a tour in late June, amid construction of the artificial, concrete riverbed, complete with boulders, narrow channels and fluctuating elevations to simulate the rapids and eddies of a mountain river, Jeff Wise (Project Director) said, “What you’re seeing has never been done before.” (read more here)http://www.citizen-times.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060703/SPORTS/60702026/1124

In the Knoxville paper today, there was a similar article talking about the possibility of one coming here to Knoxville or in Chattanooga, since both are central areas to other white water locations.

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Thursday, July 6, 2006 10:03 AM
Well at least I have a reason now besides PKI's flying scooters to visit!

Sounds cool, I took a raft trip down the arkansaw river in colorado that featured many class 4 and on class five called THE HOLE, My dad and I cracked heads, He was in the back of the 30ft raft and I was in the front. Lukily we all made it :)

Chuck, who thinks it sounds pretty cool and worth checking out.

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Thursday, July 6, 2006 12:46 PM
I wish they provided more information. I don't understand how it can take 60 - 90 minutes to complete a 5-mile course. The average person can walk 4 miles per hour. Certainly a man-made river with white water rapids has to move faster than a walking pace.

I'm not sure if the course itself is 5 miles long or if you cover 5 miles by going through the course multiple times. A change in elevation of only 21 feet doesn't seem like enough to produce a white water course 5 miles long.

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Thursday, July 6, 2006 12:51 PM
Most major rapids aren't necessarly high speed.

It takes the average length park raft ride about 5-10 minutes to negotiate what? 2000-3000ft? and some of them travel a pretty good clip (SFNE)

Average speed of probably 4-5mph. I wonder if the course is five miles long?

Chuck, who's thinking about calling and asking if someone don't beat me too it.

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Thursday, July 6, 2006 12:55 PM
If I recall correctly, they've been having trouble finding a driveway to the center. They were using a dirt road nearby for construction traffic, but the neighbors are up in arms and the road isn't suitable for large numbers of visitors. Weird oversight.
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Thursday, July 6, 2006 12:59 PM
Now that I've looked at the aerials I have my answer. There appear to be a couple of different whitewater courses stemming from a large reservoir in the center. All of them appear to be quite short. I have a feeling that 5 mile trip includes time spent on the conveyor and a lot of time spent paddling through the reservoir to get to the different courses.
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Thursday, July 6, 2006 1:04 PM
http://www.usnwc.org/_pdfs/MensJournalDrawing.pdf

Here's a nice drawing.

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Thursday, July 6, 2006 2:12 PM

It includes a conveyor belt that carries boats 21 feet in elevation from the lower to the upper pond,

Jeffrey is right. I think the river would be REALLY slow if it took 90 minutes to descend 21 feet. ;)

I think the 90 minute ride must refer to some sort of package where folks can shoot rapids over and over for 90 minutes.

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Thursday, July 6, 2006 4:12 PM
Well that makes sence, Im sure the courses are marked intermediate to expert and no wonder they have no class V's as when it comes to them, even the experts get fooled.

A person taking the 90minute ride could probably do all the courses in that time and it would be easy for a GUIDE to tell how long a raft was on the circut by taking a raft number and jotting time down. It also might keep him from allowing guest that claim themselves to be beginners from going down a class IV route by some sort of gate system or something.

Chuck

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Thursday, July 6, 2006 9:19 PM
It look like the stuff they use for the summer Ollimic kyaking and rafter courses.
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