Long Lost Disney: River Country Continued
So today, I finally got up the nerve to venture farther into River Country.
I am not going to reveal exactly the point of entry we used to get it just to keep some mystery. I will let you know, however, that in other reports I have read it had said to follow the fence line down a long way until you came to an unlocked gate. That gate is now locked. So we did indeed come up with a different way, that required crawling through total Florida jungle, but it was worth it. This was pretty much the coolest thing I have ever seen.
The first thing we came upon was a few decaying light posts, followed by a graveyard of a pinic area. There were quite a few picnic tables and a small shelter. Why on Earth did they just leave these here to rot? It seems like these picnic tables could have been utilized somewhere else.
Moving forward on my right side, I encountered what looks like an old stage area, followed by more light posts (these were still standing). We finally found a clearing where we found a small stand and a few tables. Right by this area there were some concrete steps that now lead to a small grassy field that would have at one time been the beach/sitting area. There is debris all over this area. As I was following the path to get closer to the stand, I stepped in a huge pile of mud, and when I looked down I found a deflated inner tube underneath. Seriously awesome.
There were some fake rocks in this area with paintings on them. When I finally got up to the stand, there were some fins sitting there. Just left there! Once again, its all so weird. Next to this area, there was a small bridge leading over a manmade stream. Knowing that the wood was probably quite rotted, I didn’t walk on it, but I did look at the stream behind it and that water is not in healthy condition. This would have been so pretty at one time.
We then headed forward towards the Upstream Plunge pool and found the towel return. Seeing the pool from this side was a completely different experience than looking through the fence. It is beyond eerie. You can hear the music from the Magic Kingdom, but because of the distance it sounds strangely distorted. We just sat here for a few minutes wondering how many more chances we would have to see this. It is amazing to see what can happen in just over ten years. Looking into the pool, some of the ladders laid in the bottom. I never did get to go to River Country when it was open, which is a shame, because even in its current state, it looks amazing. We left Upstream Plunge and headed toward the Kiddie Cove area. It is here where we passed the gate that others have snuck in, which leads to an employee parking lot. I got nervous at this point and decided we shouldn’t take too much longer. It is so strange that the Kiddie Cove pool was filled in when nothing else was touched.
The sun was setting, and I was nervous, so we decided to start heading back. On the way out we came across the water treatment tanks they used. These now seem to be the homes to some very content spiders. I snapped a couple pictures of the attractions across the water and vowed to myself that we will return and make it over there next time.
The last pictures I saw of River Country where taken it 2010, and its condition has declined severely even since then. There is
probably now a great level of danger in making it over to the Whoop N Holler, but if I do not at least *try* I will not feel like I have done all I can.