Going with the Flow – Lazy Rivers Part 3 Blizzard Beach

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Lazy Rivers Part 3 Blizzard Beach

As a bit of a wimp where water slides and flumes are concerned, whenever we visit one of the water parks I naturally gravitate towards the lazy rivers. Whilst the children rush off to experience the thrills of Summit Plummet, I prefer to relax in a tube as I drift along a lazy river.

After ‘Roa’s Rapids’ at Aquatica, and ‘Castaway Creek’ at Typhoon Lagoon, my third favourite lazy river is ‘Cross Country Creek’ at Disney’s amazing Blizzard Beach. With its snow theming this park is great fun, and the lazy river flows all around the perimeter of the park in a meandering circle. This lazy river is about 50% longer than Typhoon Lagoon’s Castaway Creek, but there are parts of it which are straight, so some would say that it is not so interesting. There are also fewer fountains to drench you, although there is a huge cave which drips icy cold water onto you, and a snow making machine which dumps freezing cold water into the river.

Although the landscaping and tropical planting is not as lush, Cross Country Creek is just as popular with guests and can become quite crowded. Like Castaway Creek, it has free blue tubes which you can catch as they pass you at the various entrances. There are single rider tubes and ones which seat two people. Parts of the route are quite narrow and may become clogged with people and tubes. Guests leaving the river just abandon their tubes and this can cause jams.

On our first trip to Blizzard Beach my daughter and I were gently floating down the lazy river when we could hear a commotion behind us. As we turned to look behind us we saw a thin black snake swimming across the river – I can tell you that we got out of the river faster than you can say ‘snake! ’. But it didn’t take us long to get back in, and since that time we have never had a repeat performance.

Of course there are lifeguards positioned at regular intervals along the route, and the water is heated to 80 degrees, which can feel a little chilly in very hot temperatures. The lazy river is 3, 000 ft (910m) long and it can take between 20 and 30 minutes to complete the whole meandering course, depending on how many people there are. There are seven entrances and exits located along the course of the river, and each is named so that you can identify where you joined it. Tubes are located at each of these exits and once you have finished with them you just leave them as you exit the creek.

Don’t forget to use plenty of sunscreen, as, although there are shady areas, the sun can be very intense.

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Page added on: 7 October 2010
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