A few weeks ago I was able to check 4 things off of my bucket list in 8 hours!
Rock wall climbing…check!
Stand-up paddle boarding…check!
Getting thrown from the raft while white water rafting…check (okay, so that one wasn’t on the bucket list)
Where did I go, you might ask: to the U.S. National Whitewater Center!
The U.S. National Whitewater Center in Charlotte, NC is unlike anywhere I’ve ever been. Sure there are places around that you can go zip-lining or white water rafting…but all in one place?! It was awesome!
For a small fee, you can spend the day doing every adventurous thing you want. We started with The Mega Zip, a 1,123 foot zip line that launches from at 46 foot tall tower. It takes you over the whitewater rapids and you can go with up to 3 others at the same time.
-that’s right folks, be jealous of my awesome getup (I love how my helmet is crooked, makes this picture even more perfect.)
-on the canyon zip…wheeeee
After doing the mega zip a few times, and the mega jump (jump straight down off of the 46 foot tall tower) we headed over to the obstacle courses. We tried the Canyon Zip, Climb 2 Zip, Double Cross and Canyon Spur. The employees hook your harness up to the rope (let be safe folks) and you figure out the rest. Once you finish your challenges, you get to zip back to the beginning. It’s a little nerve racking at first, but once you get the hang of it, its actually really fun.
-yes, rocking the helmet again
Next on the schedule was our white water rafting experience. We watched the safety videos, got our gear and headed out to the rafts. We were paired up with a group of male engineers playing hookey from work that made our ride very fun. Our trusty guide lead us over the first part of the rapids: great ride; part II, more adventurous rapids: ditto, successful. Then we did it all again for a second time. Here come the rapids, so far so good, then our guide decides to unsuccessfully “surf” the waves and not only flips the entire raft but throws everyone out of the raft, including himself. I guess the safety video really was worth watching.
He later told us “Congratulations, I’ve never flipped a raft this big with this many people before….it’s really hard to do actually.”
Thanks trusty guide.
Since we were already soaked, our next adventure for the day was over to the river to try Stand-up Paddleboarding. I’ve always wanted to try this and had already prepared myself that I’d be falling in the water knowing my coordination skills. Surprisingly I didn’t fall over at all, not once! (It could have been my fear of fish that kept me up, but I’m going to go with my awesome coordination skills!) I really enjoyed how peaceful the water was and was surprised how hard it is to paddle against the current. Darn you fast kayakers!
My next goal is to try a stand-up paddleboard yoga class…in a pool or non fish waters, of course.
-didn’t bring the camera to the river, so enjoy this gem instead
We headed back to the white water area again and did the runs for a second time. Our group wasn’t as fun as the first bunch, but we still enjoyed it and didn’t even flip the raft!
We managed to do the rock climbing wall a few times before leaving, one more check off the bucket list.
-that’s right, made it to the top…yeah
All in all, we had a VERY successful day at the Whitewater Center. I’m sure we would’ve stayed longer if we could have, but no, had to get to work…boo.
That darn show’s always getting in the way of fun time.
Check out the U.S. National Whitewater Center’s website here: