There was only one person who joined me in the U.S. National Whitewater Center trip this year. We purchased the AllSport Pass for $59, which gave us unlimited access to 15 difference activities, whitewater rafting being one of them. This was a change from last year, which was only $35 and included fewer activities.
We started out with a rafting ride at 10 AM. It was a good thing we made reservations because every raft was full. Our guide was very accommodating in that he agreed to wear my new GoPro Hero2 video camera on his helmet to record the experience. I have some good video I’ll try to bring to the next OAC meeting or post on the website. We made two trips down the Wilderness Channel and three down the Competition Channel, one more than I took last year. Nobody fell out of the raft, but we did get wet, especially when we “surfed” in one of the rapids. The temperature of the water was nice and warm.
After that we did the Climb 2 Zip course, followed by the Adventure Course, both being a combination of climbing ropes, cables and various elevated climbing/balancing activities. Then we did the Canyon Zip course, which took us through some trees and over a small canyon. Because the lines were getting so long we decided to immediately go to the Mega Zip, a 1,500 foot zip line that went right over parts of the whitewater rafting courses. This was probably the longest wait of any of the activities we did. There were all sorts of groups on site that I didn’t experience in last year’s trip. After the Mega Zip ride we took a break and had lunch at 3:30. Time flies when you’re having fun!
Next we decided to do some mountain bike riding. We checked out the bikes and helmets. I would recommend bringing your own so you get a better fit and not have to deal with a wet helmet. They rinse them in some sort of sanitizing solution and ours were not fully dried out when we picked them out. We took the Lake Loop trail, which is a Novice Rider trail about 3.5 miles long. What the Whitewater Center considers a novice trail is equal to an Intermediated Rider trail in the Raleigh/Triangle area. The trail was very well maintained and marked so anyone could follow it.
When we got back it was almost 6 PM. We went to the most difficult rapids in the Competition Channel and watched other kayakers and rafters make their way through the rough water. We had a good time watching some of the paddlers spill out of the rafts and kayaks as they went by. There were rescue people along both sides of the channel with throw ropes who would pull them out of the water if they couldn’t get back to their rafts.
It was another great trip. I wish more people could have participated. Based on the number of people on site the only thing I would do differently is still get the AllSport Pass, but go on a weekday instead of a weekend to eliminate the waiting in lines so you can do more of the activities. It is a great place to spend the day and have a great time with your friends or family.