Thursday, July 10, 2014

The World's Tallest Waterslide - Verruckt - Now Open!

© Schlitterbahn Kansas City
From early rider reviews, it appears as though the wait for Schlitterbahn Kansas City's Verruckt was well worth it!  The water park opened the ride today, which is officially the tallest water slide in the world, to a crowd of eager riders, or should we day daredevils. 

Seated in rafts of three, complete with car-like seat belts, riders plunge down a 168 foot, 7 inch drop and reach speeds that can approach 60 miles per hour.  The speed depends on the weight of the riders, which must be weighted beforehand.  Each raft must have total rider weight of between 400 and 550 lbs, and each person must be at least 54 inches tall.

After the initial plunge the rafts head up a 22 degree slope to the top of a 55 foot hill, with giant water blasters pushing them up the hill.  A final drop takes rafts to the catch pool.  Verruckt (which means insane in German) lasts only 18 seconds, but those are some rather memorable 18 seconds.

This news report has some great footage of the slide in action, showing just how fast those rafts are moving on that drop.  Even the park is saying that Verruckt is not a family ride, and is intended for thrill seekers only.  The goal of building the slide was to really get Schlitterbahn Kansas City on the map - consider that mission accomplished.  The sheer number of nationwide news stories about the ride today exemplifies that.

While the ride had to be redesigned heavily, costing an extra $1 million, nothing like this had ever been done before so delays were inevitable.  We're just happy that all the issues were resolved and now visitors can really test their courage on Verruckt!