Sunday, March 23, 2008

Knott's Berry Farm Calico Log Ride Models

Today we head over for a visit with Bud Hurlbut and Walter Knott on the occasion of the groundbreaking for the new Calico Log Ride in 1969. The first shot shows the attraction model of the mountain and log flume ride. The ride was the first log flume ride in the world and still draws many visitors. It is a nicely themed ride set in a sawmill.

This is the accompanying press releases.

The second image is of Bud Hurlbut, Walter Knott, Don Koll looking at the attraction model at the ground breaking for the ride on July 29, 1968. The ride opened in the summer of 1969 with great fanfare. The first family to ride the attraction was the John Wayne family and Tony Baxter from WDI was there that day also. (There is a publicity shot showing Tony in line while the Wayne family is riding the drop.)

Here is the accompanying press release.

11 comments:

Major Pepperidge said...

What a beautiful model, what are the odds that it still exists? Perhaps Bud Hurlbut has it (maybe Chris Merritt knows). The detail is amazing! I had no idea that this was the very first log ride in the world.

Viewliner Ltd. said...

Absolutely fantastic photos.

Mojave33 said...

I'm pretty sure I rode that was I was very young, but don't remember it exactly.

It's uncanny how closely Splash Mountain resembles the model.

Chris Merritt said...

Yes - Bud still has it in his shop! Sadly - an employee pitched the Calico Mine Ride one years ago...

Chris Jepsen said...

Love the way you presented the combination of press materials!

That's terrible news about the Calico Mine model, Chris. Maybe you can make a replica for us?

We have a ton of such images and materials re the Log Ride building and opening at the Orange County Archives. Y'all come visit if you'd like to learn more.

Randy said...

I have very fond memories of when I rode this back in 1976. I didn't realize this was the first log flume ride. Back then Knott's Berry Farm also had one of the only (or maybe the only) corkscrew roller coasters in the world. I would never ride a roller coaster before that but since I didn't know if I would ever get a chnace to ride this type of coaster again I bit the bullet and went on. I then rode it 6 times in a row and have been a roller coaster lover ever since.

Anonymous said...

I understand that Mr. Hurlbut, who in later years created Castle Park in Riverside, CA, celebrated his 90th birthday earlier this year (2008).

Anonymous said...

I worked for Bud, for a number of years at Castle park. I have heard many of the stories first hand. He is an amazing and creative man. I was able to visit him a couple of years ago at his shop on Western ave, accross from Knotts. Even at his age I was suprised to see he still go to the office almost everyday. I did hear that his wife Lou had recently passed.

Noah said...

The first log flume ride was actually constructed at Six Flags Over Texas in 1963, and it is still in operation.

DisWedWay said...

Bud came over to see Big Thunder Disneyland in 1980 at Tony Baxter's invitation before the attraction opened. He was very interested in a little tour I gave him of all the mining props and 100 tons of real mine tailings we had around the front Q line and within the attraction at each of the 3 lifts. He returned to his Mine Ride and added more mining and logging props and then invited us over. He inspired us and I quess we inspired him back. Much of Euro Disneylands Big Thunder has Walt's and Bud's influences.

Anonymous said...

Not the first log flume.