Cedar Point bills itself as the Roller Coaster Capital of the World. With 17 thrill machines (more than any other park), it's hard to argue with the self-proclaimed designation. After hinting that coaster number 18 may have been on the way for the 2010 season, Cedar Point announced that it would instead be building a shoot-the-chutes water ride. But this is no ordinary splashdown ride. The $10.5-million Shoot the Rapids will feature two lift hills and two huge splashdowns. And one of the hills will feature a coaster-worthy drop.
Shoot the Rapids at Cedar Point Stats
- Type of ride: Shoot-the-chutes (also known as splashdown) boat ride
- Height: 85 feet
- First drop angle: 45 degrees
- First drop: 85 feet
- Second drop: 49 feet
- Track length: 2100 feet
- Ride time: 3:00
See Cedar Point's Shoot the Rapids
Rapids Transit on Cedar Point's Shoot the RapidsMost splashdown rides climb a lift hill, drop down, make a big splash, and return to the station. On hot, sticky days, they offer are a great way for passengers and onlookers to cool down (albeit with soggy underwear and socks). But they aren't particularly noteworthy. Cedar Point's Shoot the Rapids will offer a different take on the shoot-the-chutes formula, however.
Instead of the 20-passenger boats typically used on splashdown rides, Shoot the Rapids will feature more-nimble (but less splash-inducing) 10-passenger boats. It will also introduce some modest themeing that will have something to do with feuding hillbillies and moonshine. And instead of simply lifting and dropping passengers, Shoot the Rapids will send them meandering through choppy waters booby-trapped with some gotcha water elements.
Still, the highlight of the ride will be the drop, or in this case, drops. Standard shoot-the-chutes rides generally plummet about 50 feet. That's the height of Shoot the Rapids second drop. The new attraction will climb 85 feet and deliver an initial drop that may make thrill-averse passengers think twice about boarding the "family ride." (Then again, what would thrill-averse people be doing at Cedar Point?) That's roughly the height of the Jurassic Park River Adventure rides at Universal Studios Hollywood and Islands of Adventure, which pack a fairly decent punch.
The 10-passenger boats will be similar to the ones used on Pilgrims Plunge, the splashdown ride that opened in 2009 at Holiday World in Indiana. That ride, however, uses a unique elevator lift (Shoot the Rapids will use a more conventional conveyor lift) and holds the world record for splashdown rides, with a drop of 131 feet. But Shoot the Rapids will make quite a splash at Cedar Point with its 85-foot drop.