Trip Date: 2/21/11 – 2/24/11
Success. When Rick, Jack, John and Ben arrived at Alden Laboratories the modifications to the scale model of the Lower Chattahoochee River Restoration project were working well. Nonetheless, MWDG got right to work further refining and “tweaking” the design. They focused on improving eddy service, providing water access for river surfers, optimizing wave and hole forms, and reducing the size of grade control structures. Two rounds of changes to the model, long days sawing, hammering, and pouring concrete and it was performing like a finely tuned whitewater machine.
Highlights? There were plenty. A 6’ tall world-class wave created by the WaveShaper™ at the Georgia Whitewater Sill. In Rick’s words, “the height, shoulders, and width of the wave are as good as I have ever seen in any model at any flow.” To top it off, the wave has 4’ of depth at the WaveShaper™ lip making it a freestyler’s and river surfer’s dream (check out the flickr photo set).
The Team starting calling this place Waveland for the number and quality of whitewater features concentrated in this one section of river: two distinct channels at daily low flows and three at daily high flows will create 6-8 features that are 3’+ tall. Rafters, boaters, freestylers, and surfers of all ability levels will find the wave trains, holes, and waves of this park challenging and fun. Best of all, MWDG’s design changes to the model were able to reduce construction cost by at least $1M by scaling back or eliminating grade control structures, without affecting the whitewater performance.