Jan 21, 2002

Dungeon Moat Ride

Here are the photos of the Castle Dracula Dungeon Boat Ride that I mentioned yesterday.  All of them were taken from 1985-1989.  Once again, the ones that look nice and clear were taken by my grandfather.  The grainy, off-center ones were taken by me when I was a kid.

These three photos of two staff members who worked at the entrance of the Dungeon Boat Ride were taken in the summer of 1989.  Like all of the folks who worked at Castle Dracula, they stayed in character, and they weren't limited to the entrance of the boat ride.  There were live performers hidden among the attractions in the dungeon, some of whom would jump on your boat as you were riding through.

These two photos from 1987 show my dad and I sitting in one of the boats as we're about to enter the Dungeon.  Each boat had a grim reaper statue standing at the back.  The concrete moat that held the water that the boat floated on was painted red, which made it look like you were riding through the dungeon on a river of blood.

There are lion face fountain built into the wall of the castle.  You can see them from a distance in the photos of the outside of the castle that I shared yesterday.  I'm pretty sure that I took this picture when I was sitting in the boat waiting to go into the entrance of the Dungeon.  Usually, the water squired out of the mouth of the lion in an arc, but I guess it wasn't working properly on the day that I took this picture because it appears that the water was trickling down from the mouth along the side of the wall.

After you boarded your boat, you'd enter the Dungeon through the mouth of this giant white skull.  There were red lights at the tunnel's entrance, which gave the impression that you were about to enter a blood-soaked hell.

I wish that I had more and better quality photos of the inside of the dungeon.  Keep in mind, these were taken in a dark tunnel by a kid between the ages of 5-9 using a 110 film camera with a lousy flash.

One of the rooms that I remember best was a pirate ship that was crewed by skeletons.  All of the skeletons moved, including the one at the center of this picture who turned the wheel.  The photos really don't do it justice.  The flash photography not only kills the lighting and the ambiance, but it reveals some of the wires that were used to make the skeletons move.  All of these were hidden in darkness, with the lighting used to show off only what they wanted you to see.  It was spooky as hell!

Here are three more of the demons that you'd see in the Dungeon, which are just a small sampling of that you'd see.

About halfway through the ride, the boat left the dungeon and went through a cemetery in an outdoor courtyard.  I'm not sure where in Castle Dracula this was set up, but you couldn't see it from the outside.  To the best of my knowledge, the only way that you'd see even a hint of this cemetery is if you rode through the Dungeon on a boat.

There was a catacombs section with mortuary cabinets that looked like the bodies were attempting to escape.

Last, but not least, you'd ride beneath this massive demon.  I think this was at the end of the ride, but it's been over ten years since I've been here, so I can't say for sure if that's right.  When you consider how the castle met its untimely end, the flames painted on the wall are even more unsettling.