Given that the kids are now back in school and/or just about
to go back to school I thought that I'd start this week's column with a math
long does it take to fill those 12 huge funnel-shaped tanks that power Typhoon Lagoon's
2.75 million gallon wave pool?
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the answer is ... well, that depends on whether you want 5-foot waves (which are
ideal for body surfing) or 8-foot waves (which then allows Walt Disney
World to actually hold surfing competitions inside of this water park.
Witness Quiksilver's "King of the Groms" competition. Which actually kicked off
its 2010 U.S. tour with a qualifying event that was held in Typhoon Lagoon's two-and-a-half-acre
wave pool back in June).
see, Disney uses four huge pumps to fill those drop tanks that power Typhoon
Lagoon's wave machine. And - to be honest - the height of the waves in that
pool is entirely dependent on how much water is inside of each tank when its
one-ton door is pulled open in less than a second. So if you want 5-foot waves,
it takes about a minute-and-a-half for all 12 tanks to get filled up to that
height. 8-foot waves? That's more like two minutes.
Copyright Disney Enterprises, Inc.All rights reserved
know, I know. When most people talk about Typhoon Lagoon, they'll go on &
on about how beautifully themed this WDW water park is. The lush vegetation or
its soft sandy beaches.
me? I can't help but marvel at how the Imagineers took 56 acres of Central
Florida swampland and then turned into the world's most popular water park.
Typhoon Lagoon construction site in the Fall of 1987Copyright Disney Enterprises, Inc. All rights reserved
you, it took the Imagineers quite a while to accomplish this feat. Ground broke
on this massive construction project back in February of 1987. And it wasn't
'til June of 1989 that the first surfer (who happened to be Dick Nunis, the
then-Chairman of Walt Disney Attractions) was able to ride his board on those
man-made waves into the shore of Typhoon Lagoon.
if you're really paying attention, there's all sorts of technological marvels
to be found inside of this water park which then rival that massive wave
machine that Barr & Wray built for the Mouse. Take - for example - the
Crush n' Gusher, Disney's first-ever water coaster. To give you some idea of
how powerful those water jets are that zoom you through this thrill, each
nozzle puts out 1350 gallons per minute, which is enough water to fill a
standard home-sized swimming pool in just over 60 seconds.
most people - when they visit Typhoon Lagoon - don't want to talk about math or
technology. They much prefer to float along in Castaway Creek, which is this
2100-foot long lazy river that takes you all the way around the water park, floating
you through rain forests, caves and open grottos as well as under waterfalls.
Or - better yet - sack out inside of one of those Beachcomber Shacks that just
got added to Typhoon Lagoon's assortment of attractions last year.
me? I always like to fold a little education into my vacation. Which is why -
when I'm visiting at Disney's most popular water park - I deliberately set
aside some time to do some snorkeling in Typhoon Lagoon's Shark Reef.
what I find intriguing about this massive saltwater pool is that - while the
schools of tropical fish that you swim with - the beautiful coral reef that
you're floating above is not. Disney artists first sculpted Shark Reef's faux sponge & coral forest out of
fiberglass. They then painted all of these undersea structures with nontoxic
paint so as not to harm the sting rays and leopard sharks.
Of course, when a facility is as large and as
technologically sophisticated as Typhoon Lagoon is, it does require regular
maintenance. Which is why WDW's most popular water park closes for about two
months every year for annual refurbishment. This time around, Typhoon Lagoon
will be closed from October 31, 2010 through
January 8, 2011.
So if you're looking to get in a visit to Typhoon Lagoon
before this water park goes down for maintenance, the clock's ticking. But the
good news is ... I happen to know this place where you get discounted admission
for the world's most popular water park.
"each nozzle puts out 1350 gallons per minute, which is enough water to fill a standard home-sized swimming pool in just over 60 seconds." Huh? 1350 gallons per minute is 1350 gallons in 60 secons. A standard home sized swimming pool has 12,000 to 25,000 gallons. Please clarify...
Now what I find intriguing about this massive saltwater pool is that - while the schools of tropical fish that you swim with (ARE REAL) - the beautiful coral reef that you're floating above is not.
I fixed it for you.