Mystery River

8

 

Sometimes I come across a ride which I think deserves to be better than it is. Here's an example, it's a good rapids ride no question, plus there's some great innovation  here which makes me wish I could honestly rank it higher than I do.

The innovation is how they've set out to create a hybrid of rapids ride and dark ride. I've seen this done with log flumes lots of times, but the faster pace of a rapids ride means it's more suited to a themed environment than a full dark ride.

This starts with the queue area, which as it was a walk on, was like a walk through dark ride in itself, going through various themed rooms. This leads to a beautifully themed ride station, which is part of a large indoor section, themed as a cave full of fantasy creatures. This theme continues in the outside areas, that is well themed as a forest with fantasy creatures.

For most of the ride this works out great, there is though on innovative idea that's counter productive. It has sections where the boat goes in a narrow chute, that slows you down to watch an animatronic. Sadly the models aren't strong enough to counter the slow down in pace, so it feels like an unnecessary break in pace.

Overall though this doesn't stop it being a good ride. If you could get the pacing right on a rapids ride this well themed you'd have one of the best water rides anywhere. Even with the pacing problems this one is still well worth doing.