Tag Archives: Water rides

Amusing Monday: Verruckt water slide lives up to ‘crazy’ name

It’s been nearly a year since the opening of Verruckt, the world’s tallest water slide, located at Schlitterbahn Waterpark in Kansas City, Kansas.

Numerous videos reveal a thrilling ride, as three people are strapped into a raft and fly down a 60-degree incline from 168 feet up — higher than Niagara Falls — reaching speeds up to 65 miles per hour. The German word “verruckt,” which means crazy or insane, seems to fit, but I’d love to hear from anyone who has gone down this slide.

A year ago, just prior to opening, more than a few people were alarmed by the continuing delays, caused in part by safety concerns. During practice runs, before any person went down the slide, rafts loaded with sandbags kept flying off the slide in dramatic crashes.

A little less water on the slide slowed the speed and kept the rafts more stable. Still, to this day, riders report that they can feel the raft rising off the slide and going into free fall. The first video shows the initial trip taken by any human. On board were park designer Jeff Henry and ride engineer John Schooley.

Schooley admitted to Astead Herndon, reporting for CNN News, that the ride was more than a little nerve-racking.

“It was terrifying,” Schooley said. “It was great fun, but it was actually terrifying.”

Before the ride was finally opened to the public, most of the slide was enclosed with netting as an added precaution. Read “LiveScience” to see how they can make adjustments to the speed and stability.

The feeling of height and speed is shown well in a promotional video for Garmin action cameras (shown in the second video player on this page),

Another good depiction of the wild ride was shown by reporter Matt Gutman of ABC News. He was one of the first regular folks to go down the slide.

Verruckt is listed by Geobeats in the 10th position among the “World’s 10 Most Amazing Water Slides,” shown in the last video on this page. They all look more than a little crazy.

Amusing Monday: Odd poses on Splash Mountain

Every so often, a group of people will get a photo idea and jump on a ride called Splash Mountain. Remember Splash Mountain, the popular log-flume attraction at Disneyland and other Disney parks?

How about a game of Monopoly just before you drop over a cliff and into the water with a big splash? Is there a better time to read a newspaper? Or shave? Or offer a marriage proposal to your loved one?

These staged events have been captured on the ride’s camera near the end of the trip. If you are in the photo, apparently the ride’s staff is willing to sell you the picture. Some people, as we can see here, have gone to some lengths to get a funny picture.

It appears the identity of these people is lost, and I’m not sure how these photos were collected. But these same pictures can be found on many websites with a few variations. One site is Imgur. A few additional photos are added in Heavy, with slight changes in Twisted Sifter.

Even for those who don’t wish to take a crazy photo, Splash Mountain remains popular at Disneyland, Tokyo Disneyland and Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. The ride has an interesting history, because many of the characters are from the 1946 Disney movie “Song of the South.” The Audio-Animatronics figures originally were pulled from a ride called American Sings, which came closer to the movie but was not attracting much of a crowd. That ride was shut down and dismembered to help hold down the cost of Splash Mountain, which was over budget during construction in 1988.

That’s how Br’er Rabbit, Br’er Fox and Br’er Bear became part of the Splash Mountain experience. By the way, “Song of the South,” which is based on Uncle Remus stories, has never been fully released on home video, apparently because of racial sensitivities, according to Wikipedia.