Kali River Rapids
[Disney Vacation Planner]
|At A Glance
||Wear something that will dry
out because this is most definitely a wet ride!
Kali River Rapids is one of the most popular attractions
within the Animal Kingdom, and hence also has long queues, though
the ride is relatively quick to load so a long queue doesn't necessarily
mean a particularly long wait, and it does give time to take in
the great theming, which is excellent even by Disney's usually
Busch Gardens uses a simular ride system for its Congo
River Rapids attraction. The potential to get soaking wet on Congo
is very high, and the same applies to Kali. Note that at Splash
Mountain the signs warn you that you "May get wet", at Kali River
Rapids the signs tell you "You WILL get wet, you MAY
get soaked", and this is a very apt description.
The ride itself is relatively short, although the
actual ride duration depends on the number of rafts in operation,
and the speed of loading/unloading. Either way it's considerably
shorter than the 7 minutes that Disney originally claimed the
ride would last. It is also a ride in which most guests will get
very wet indeed, so prepare for a soaking, and remember to protect
any sensitive electronics such as Cameras or Videos.
One nice feature of the ride is the handicap loading
area, which is separate from the load turntable, so the ride can
keep on running at normal speed while it may take a while to load/unload
the other raft. Once raft containing the handicapped guest is
ready to depart, they just lower the gate and the raft merges
in with the other rafts.
The story behind the ride is that you are a part of
an eco-tourist expedition, but a logging company has been illegally
clearing part of the jungle, and has created dangerous rapids
as a result.
During the course of the ride guests are loaded into
a 12 seater raft, in which everyone sits in a circle facing inwards,
and each other. After loading the raft is hoisted up the 33-foot
lift hill, disappearing into a bamboo tunnel filled with jasmine
and ginger scented mists.
The raft then passes through a rain forest (and you
just know what rain means to a water ride), followed by a bamboo
thicket rife with the smells of burning wood. Immediately after
this section the raft plunges along a 230-foot section of white
water, at the end of which it passes under a rock bridge with
40 ceiling drippers built in. On top of the bridge, park guests
have the chance to activate 'Elephant Guns' that shoot jets of
water at the Kali riders. (Well, I did say it's a wet ride!).
Located in the middle of the rafts course are a
number of water geyers seemingly designed to make sure nobody
leaves the raft dry. However, just as your about to hit the geyser,
it dies down, but then jets again as the raft passes over it (Guests
on the side closest as the raft leaves the geyser will get pretty
soaked, but then everyone else in the raft will be getting wet
befor e long anyway so it's only a case of who gets wet first.
After the climb, the raft quickly makes its way through
the lush tropical jungle and to the burnt out remains of a logging
companies work site. Just as the raft is about to be engulfed
in flames, it drops down a moderately size flume (probably the
most exciting part of the ride). As the raft spashes down, the
people on the front end of the raft will get a major soaking.
The Kali River Rapids rafts have a small covered storage
compartment in the middle of the raft to protect last-minute items
that guests have taken onto the ride rather than storing in dry
lockers before entering. Generally the compartment is reasonably
waterproof, though will only take small items.
There are of course also lockers are at the front
of the park next to the main gate, which may be a better bet for
both safety and security.