What is Cable Wakeboarding? What is a Cable Park?
If you already know what cable wakeboarding and cable parks are, keep on scrollin’. If you don’t know, click the drop-downs below and we’ll get you up to speed.
Cable wakeboarding is a form of water-skiing that uses an overhead pulley system or “cable” to pull participants around a lake, instead of a boat. The rope and handle are attached to the overhead line instead of the back of a boat. The cable pulls the rider across the lake, allowing the rider to shred along the way. A cable park (also called a wakeboard park) is an industry term for any location that has 1 or more cable systems. There are two types of cable systems. Two-tower cable systems are great for learning and practicing, while full-size cable systems are great for intermediate riders and above. Wake Nation has both!
Two-tower cable systems typically pull one participant at a time, and are excellent for learning, teaching, and practicing skills. With 2 towers, one on each side of a lake, the cable system spans and travels back and forth across the open body of water. The cable and/or rider will either stop at each side, or once their skills improve, turn and switch directions without stopping. On this type of cable system, the operator/instructor has the ultimate control, and can make very fine adjustments to help the rider progress quickly. Because of this control, the operator can coach easily, pick up a fallen rider quickly, and allow them multiple attempts at a particular skill within a short amount of time. Nearly all of our wakeboard lessons are on the two-tower cable system, and those skills translate quickly to the boat or a full-size cable system. There is no better, safer, easier, or faster way to learn than a two-tower cable system.
At Wake Nation, we call our full-size cable system our “main cable”. A full-size cable system has 4 to 6 towers throughout the cable path and typically travel in a large circular pattern around a lake or body of water. At each tower, the cable path changes direction and allows the rider to continue on the course. The more towers a cable system has (6 is currently the most), the softer and easier the turns are for riders. Wake Nation boasts 6 towers, creating a predictable, perfectly-smooth ride.
Full-size systems run continuously, with multiple riders at a time, each separated by a few hundred feet. When a participant falls, they swim to the shore and walk back to the start dock to begin again. A cable operator manages ropes, handles, and carriers (gizmos that catch and pull the rope and handle, pulling riders off the start dock, and allowing them to ride around the lake).
A full-size cable system is ideal for the intermediate level rider and above. Most of the sliders and kickers (called wakeboard features) at a typical cable park are combined with the full-size cable system. Wake Nation has over 2 dozen features – more than most cable parks. Imagine a floating skatepark – with much softer falls. Features are exciting and thrilling for the rider as well as spectators.
Important Information for All Participants
All cable participants must attend a brief safety meeting prior to riding our main cable.
Practice sessions (slower riding speeds) on our main cable are offered daily until 2pm. (See our calendar page for exact days and times, and any exceptions.)
This is the best time to ride for beginners, or those that need to brush up on their skills, or those working on new or advanced skills. During this time, we operate the main cable a little slower, substantially reducing any fear or inhibitions a rider may have. Slower speeds also make starting and turning a breeze for those first few ride sessions on the main cable.
If you have successfully ridden a full-size cable system before (meaning you can make the start and the turns, and can control your wakeboard well enough to steer and avoid items such as wakeboard features, other fallen riders, and objects in the water) you can simply show up, shred, and enjoy. Have fun, be safe, and always ride within your abilities! Wake Nation has more features than any other cable park we know of – so get your shred on!
Regardless of your skill level or experience, our goal is to help you understand what to expect at Wake Nation, and get you shredding in a safe and controlled manner. In order to provide you with an exceptional first-time experience, we never allow first-time/never ever wakeboarders on the full-size cable system. First-time kneeboarding however, is allowed, and is a fun, safe and entertaining place to start your cable riding experience. This policy is primarily for your own safety, as well as the enjoyment of all participants. If you have never wakeboarded before, ensure your first experience is amazing. Check out our Cincinnati wakeboard lessons or plan on participating in another activity when you visit us.
The speed of the cable and your ability to control your wakeboard is important. This is a gray area so please read carefully.
We certainly don’t want you to be a liability to yourself or others around you, but if you ride behind the boat often, and/or can control your wakeboard well enough to make the starts and turns, and can also avoid items such as wakeboard features, other fallen riders, floating buoys, water barriers, and other objects in the water, you will likely be ok riding the main cable when it is moving at a slow speed. We would recommend showing up early in the day, during one of our practice sessions, ask for some free tips and tricks, and learn the starts and turns of the main cable at the much slower speed. We always recommend a Main Cable 101 lesson if you wish to ride the main cable. At the same price as a 2-hour ticket + rental, it’s a no-brainer. However, if the cable speed is slow, and you can already shred on a wakeboard, we’ll let you go for it without a lesson when the cable speed is slow. If you are unsure, check out the Main Cable 101 lesson. At 3 total hours in length, it’s plenty for your first time on a full-size cable system, and you’ll have a much better, and most often, absolutely perfect experience.
All of the above applies only when the main cable is moving at slow speeds. The first-time main cable experience is entirely different at full speed/normal speed. No matter how good you are on the boat, the falls you will surely have at normal, main cable speeds your first time out, are not soft, and are completely unnecessary. If you are persistent or insistent on trying….yes, you know who you are, we’ll let you try it, but pay close attention to our “3 try, 3 fall, no refund” rule. No matter how much you insist, we will always encourage you to avoid this type of experience altogether. It’s not fun and it’s never a good idea. If you arrive late in the day, on any given day when the cable is moving at normal/faster speeds, we will always encourage you to return the next day and try for the first time when it’s slow. This is always a much safer, and much more fun experience! We have a 100% success rate with our lessons so it’s always worth looking into.
Last: Below is an excerpt from our waiver listing cable safety rule #1. In addition to the actual wavier that every participant must read and sign (or parents on their behalf) this rule is posted clearly at our waiver stands, at checkout, on signage in the proshop, and at the start dock. It is also covered at least twice in our verbal safety checks and verbal orientation.
Cable Safety Rule #1
Without exception, no first-time or never-ever wakeboarders are ever allowed on the main cable system. Experienced wakeboarders must possess enough skill to safely control and steer their wakeboard through starts and turns and avoid items such as wakeboard features, other fallen riders, floating buoys, water barriers, and other objects in the water before attempting to ride the main cable. Regardless of your actual or claimed wakeboarding experience, we never allow anyone to try the main cable for their first time at normal/faster cable speeds. Based on your experience and skill level, exceptions are permitted (with or without a lesson) at slower cable speeds only. This and all rules are for your own personal safety. If you insist on trying, or try to “wing it”, or slip past our staff, safety checks, orientations, rules, and signage, by claiming you’ve done it before, or are more experienced than you are, or if for any reason we feel you are a liability to yourself or others, we have a standing “3 try, 3 fall, no refund” rule that can be enforced at any time. Be smart. Be safe. Keep it fun.
Tickets and Pricing
Pricing Note: All prices reflect our every day retail prices. To get the ultimate insider discounts, follow us on social media and sign up for our newsletter (links at the bottom of any page on this website). Be ready to act fast! Specials, deals, and fun contests and games come and go in a flash, and that’s the only place you’ll ever see them! Don’t be surprised if your next visit or activity is substantially discounted, or even free! No kidding.
Are you a passholder at another cable park? Plan ahead for your visit! Show us proof when you arrive and we’ll give you 25% off any cable ticket or rental! Acceptable proof are things like a pass with your name on it, a sales receipt with your name on it, and a photo ID to match.
2 Hour Cable Ticket
$35 Weekdays / $40 Weekends
4 Hour Cable Ticket
$40 Weekdays / $45 Weekends
All Day Cable Ticket
$45 Weekdays / $50 Weekends
Youth 2 Hour Cable Ticket
(Ages 15 and Under, 3 Visit Max)
$25 Weekdays / $30 Weekends
1 Hour Kneeboarding
$15 Weekdays / $20 Weekends
(Includes Kneeboard, Helmet, Vest)
2 Hour Kneeboarding
$20 Weekdays / $25 Weekends
(Includes Kneeboard, Helmet, Vest)
Cable 5 Pack –
$199 ON SALE $179
Five, All Day Tickets
Less than $40/ticket
Valid For Any Public Ride Session
Cable 10 Pack –
$349 ON SALE $329
Ten, All Day Tickets
Less than $35/ticket
Valid For Any Public Ride Session
*All ticket packs must be used by the same person and expire at the end of the season.
*With the purchase of any cable ticket, you may add an aqua park session for only $10, or a slide session for only $15 the same day.
(Board, Helmet, Vest)
2 Hour Package – $20
4 Hour Package – $25
All Day Package – $30
2 Hour Youth Package – $15
(Ages 15 and Under, 3 Visit Max)
Wakeboard Only – $20
Wakeskate – $10
Kneeboard – $10
Helmet – $7
Vest/Life Jacket – $7
Long Sleeve Wetsuit Top – $10
Full 3/2 Wetsuit – $20
Season passholders receive unlimited cable, aqua park, and superslide access throughout the entire season. Season pass holders also receive exclusive, bonus cable riding and other significant benefits each year. See below. Pay close attention to the discounts, they are as good as it gets. To purchase this pass online, visit our shop page. Wake Nation sells a limited amount of season passes. Season passes are non-refundable and non-transferable.
- Unlimited and direct access to the cable, aqua park, and superslide. No restrictions or blackouts of any kind. No check-in required.
- Exclusive access to season pass holder-only ride sessions. See calendar for dates, hours of operation, and bonus times. No guests or non passholders are allowed.
- 25% off any retail, pro shop, or special order item.
- 25% discount off all cable lessons and camps.
- 25% discount off all boat activities.
- 25% off all food & beverages.
- 25% off all equipment rentals.
- 25% off “Buddy” discount. Bring up to 2 guests per visit. Valid for all cable lessons and ticketed activities (cable, aqua park, and superslide). Be the hero and hook your family and friends up!
- Free locker rental as needed.
- Inside Scoop Newsletter: Passholder only updates. Be the first to learn about the latest park info – before the general public.
- Passholder discounts are not to be combined with any other promotion, sale, or discount.
All the benefits and discounts of the Season Pass, but for shredders under the age of 15. At a substantial discount to the season pass, this is an amazing deal! To purchase this pass online, visit our shop page.
Life is full of the unpredictable, and no one wants to miss a good shred session. Plan your 2022 wakeboard season with peace of mind. If one of the listed life events (see below) prevents you from shredding during the season, you may be eligible to receive a pro-rated, Season Pass credit for the days you missed. Any loss of days is based on our peak, Summer season from approximately Memorial Day to October 1.
Covered Life Events – Other Events Subject to Insurance Approval
- Job Loss or Transfer
- Personal Injury
- Personal or Immediate Family Illness (Spouse, Significant Other, Child)
- Jury Duty (More than 30 days)
- Military Transfer