May 5, 2011

US National Whitewater Center - Charlotte, NC

My dear hubby and I have been working extra hard, and we both needed a nice little vacation. I know you are thinking "didn't they just go on a vacation to NYC?" and yes, but that seemed like ages ago, and another vacation was calling our names. 

So last weekend I surprised him with a spur-of-the-moment-mini-vacation to Charlotte.  He has been begging me to go to Charlotte for quite a while now, and I honestly can't believe we haven't been there to explore the city before now. It is only about a 2.5 - 3 hour drive, so it's not really that bad.

The first day we decided to take it easy and just explore the downtown area ...which was awesome!  So many great buildings, modern art, and lots to see.  For some reason, when ever we explore the downtown areas of a new city, it always - always- makes me want to move.  Don't know what it is. 

We walked around, took lots of photos, and played tourist.  That evening, we ate dinner at this fantastic Mexican food restaurant, which was so delicious I was moaning and groaning because I ate too much.  Best fried ice cream we've ever had.
Showing off our chic side.

This modern art display looked as if it was rolling away.
So I sent my superman out to rescue the day. Mission accomplished.

The next day we had big adventure plans.  We were headed to the US National Whitewater Center - where Olympic athletes train.  SO AWESOME!!!  They have lots to do, like white water rafting, zip lines, canopy challenge courses, rock climbing, mountain biking, and hiking.  Basically a large theme park for adventure sports! 

We started off with the best - White Water Rafting.  Each trip last about 30 minutes to an hour, so you get to do the runs several times.  Our first guide was very cautious and took it pretty easy on us, but we ended up hitting lots of rapids and had an amazing time.  We were soaked!

(*All of the whitewater photos are from the USNWC.  Obviously, I wasn't able to snap any photos of us, since I was busy taming the rapids!)
Resting before the big rapids
"ALL IN"!  Everyone puts their oars straight up and gets into the boat as fast as possible.  We nailed it!
Hitting some of the big rapids head on.

After our first adventure with the rapids, we took a break for lunch, but then came right back for more.  Our second guide was more adventurous and took us right into the heat of the rapids. I'm not sure this was such a good idea.  On our second run, she steered us into a big rapid BACKWARDS!!!!  We hit the rapids and the boat popped me out like a ping pong ball!

"SWIMMER"!!!  That's your new name when you hit the water. 

Luckily, I was able to grab the rope on the side of the boat and the two people behind me pulled me in.  Scariest event of my life ever - probably because my biggest fear is being dumped from a boat!  It all happened so fast, and all I could think of was not to panic, but that is also all I could think to do. Plus we were still in the rapids, so it was all chaos.
Even though I had to face my number one fear on this mini-vacation, it was the best experience ever!

After two tours of the white water, we decided to try other adventure activities.  We started with a zip line but we don't have any photos because we did this activity together at the same time.  We also did the canopy challenge course. You know, those courses that are in the tree tops and you have to walk on wires, wobbly bridges etc.  I really don't think I knew what I was getting into with this one.  Didn't enjoy it at all!  At one point, I even fell.  Scared me almost to death.  After finishing the course, the guide suggested we try the second one which was more challenging and higher up.  The one we did was 16 feet off the ground but trust me it felt like 60 feet. 
He ran the course like a champ!
This was right before I fell, so I might look like I'm enjoying it but directly after this I was terrified.
He made it look easy - but really it wasn't.
Next up... rock climbing.  By this point, my body was tired and sore from so much physical activity in one day.  It took me four tries to get to the top of the climb, but I finally made it.  Which meant, that Dustin had to try it! He only promised to go if I made it to the top.
Almost there.
Yay! He's rock climbing!

At the end of the day, we were exhausted but so very grateful for this wonderful experience.  BEST TIME EVER!!!
End of the day.  So tired, but so happy.
Ran the course twice, and only fell out once.


  1. Wow! You all are sooOoo adventurous! I can't believe all the activities you participated in . . .way to be brave!


  2. That looks like so much fun!!! I wanna do that! So glad you survived Cami. Love you guys!