on March 16, 2022 0 Comments
15 min read
Kings Dominion’s new-for-2022, jungle-themed area, Jungle X-Pedition, encompasses over 30 acres of developed park land, features six major attractions, and houses multiple shops and eateries. As of the time of the last major update to this page (March 2022), this land has only been partially realized. The pink area of the map below displays the current range of Jungle X-Pedition’s actual thematic overhaul. The larger orange area shows the full scope of Jungle X-Pedition as defined by Kings Dominion.
Though the thus-far-overhauled areas of Jungle X-Pedition can be appreciated on a surface level as a well-decorated, atmospherically and stylistically consistent, themed land, Kings Dominion rewards visitors who take the time to look deeper. With that in mind, the goal of this page is to provide a summary of the land’s backstory, an overview of its characters, and a guide to its landmarks and destinations. Armed with this information, we believe you will find even more to love in Kings Dominion’s 2022 additions.
Jungle X-Pedition Characters
Since the story of Jungle X-Pedition’s currently-known lore spans a handful of characters across multiple generations who are members of two different organizations operating in Jungle X, establishing a clear understanding of all of the players involved seems to be a good first step.
Professor Gerald Winston Whey
Time Period:Early to Mid-20th Century
Organization:Manhattan Explorers Society
Claim to Fame:Located X
Gerald Winston Whey was a World War I veteran who turned to a life of adventure following Germany’s surrender on November 11th, 1918. A well-known member of the Manhattan Explorers Society, Whey excelled in both archeology and anthropology. Though Gerald Winston Whey was an accomplished academic, his chief interest was exploration—a passion he pursued primary by air in his Arvo 621 Tutor, “The Tin Goose.”
Time Period:Mid-20th Century
Organization:Manhattan Explorers Society
Ruiz was a fellow Manhattan Explorers Society member and close associate of Professor Gerald Winston Whey.
Time Period:Early 21st Century
Claim to Fame:Rediscovered X
Alexandria Whey, Professor Gerald Winston Whey’s great-granddaughter, shares Gerald’s adventurous spirit and exploratory drive. In an effort to continue her great-grandfather’s unfinished work, Alexandria founded the Whey Foundation and assembled a team of other like-minded adventurers to uncover the long-hidden secrets of the jungle.
Dr. Maria Estrada
Time Period:Early 21th Century
Claim to Fame:Rediscovered Arachnid Temple
Dr. Maria Estrada is an explorer with the Whey Foundation who led a successful expedition to rediscover a lost Jungle X temple in 2010.
Professor Rovin Jay
Time Period:Early 21th Century
Claim to Fame: Rediscovered Reptile Temple
Professor Rovin Jay, alongside his team of Whey Foundation explorers, is recognized for his work on the Jungle X site around 2015.
Time Period:Early 21th Century
Andrea Brennan is a lead representative and spokeswoman for the Whey Foundation.
Jungle X-Pedition Timeline
The known Jungle X-Pedition timeline stretches for nearly 100 years. Though the exact dates of many seminal moments in Jungle X’s history aren’t known, we’ve done our best to share what we’ve been able to work out thus far. Even if all of the precise dates aren’t known, the sequence of events relayed below should be both accurate and quite useful.
Early to Mid-1920s to 1935
Over the span of more than a decade prior to 1935, Professor Gerald Winston Whey had been flying over largely unexplored lands in search of an area only known to him as “X.”
April 12th, 1935
On April 12th, 1935, Professor Whey’s plane, The Tin Goose, suffered equipment malfunctions during one of his exploratory flights—ultimately leading to a crash landing in the middle of the jungle. When Whey noticed ancient structures in the jungle adjacent to his crash site, what began as a nightmare quickly turned into pure serendipity. After years of searching, Professor Gerald Winston Whey had finally found the first temple temple of Jungle X, Tumbili.
While camping in the jungle following his crash, Professor Whey continued to explore his surroundings. Eventually, in addition to the primate temple, Tumbili, he uncovered two other similar structures—the reptile temple, Reptilian and the arachnid temple, Arachnidia. Whey documented these major discoveries as well as a number of other more minor linemarks in a map that can now be found framed near the entrance to Jungle X-Pedition.
Eventually, Whey’s associates at the Manhattan Explorers Society managed to locate and rescue the stranded professor. Unfortunately, during the process, the actual location of Jungle X was lost. Despite Professor Whey’s attempts to relocate the site, he never succeeded in returning.
In the years that followed, though Gerald’s more conventional discoveries were lauded by his peers, some of his more mystical claims about Jungle X were met with widespread doubt. In fact, some even derided it as a hoax. Overtime, even the professor himself began to doubt his own recollections.
About 65 years after Gerald Whey’s first and only expedition in Jungle X, the professor’s great-granddaughter, Alexandria Whey, started the Whey Foundation. The foundation’s goal was to rediscover the mysterious land referenced in her great-grandfather’s work. If the foundation could accomplish that goal, it could show the world, first-hand, that even Gerald’s most eccentric-sounding claims about Jungle X were, in fact, reality.
At some point between the Whey Foundation’s founding around the year 2000 and the rediscovery of a second temple in 2010, Alexandria Whey’s quest to avenge the reputation of her great-grandfather paid off. Alexandria, through the Whey Foundation, managed to relocate the long-lost location of site X and, more specifically, the primate temple Gerald has written about, Tumbili.
Following the rediscovery of X, Whey Foundations expeditions continued to search the Jungle for the other structures and landmarks Professor Whey reported in his work. The first of these major rediscoveries is credited to Dr. Maria Estrada and her team after they reidentified the location of the arachnid temple, Arachnidia.
Five years after the rediscovery of Jungle X’s second temple, another Whey Foundation member, Professor Rovin Jay, led an expedition that finally located the third of Gerald’s initial temple trio, Reptilian.
Having now successfully uncovered the locations of all three of Professor Gerald Winston Whey’s original temples, the Whey Foundation scheduled an announcement for August 12th, 2021. From a temporary stage constructed near the site of Gerald’s original plane crash and subsequent encampment, a Whey Foundation representative, Andrea Brennan, unveiled the foundation’s intention to open the X site to the public—a program named Jungle X-Pedition.
On March 12th, 2022, the Whey Foundation’s Jungle X-Pedition welcomed its first explorers. Due to unfortunate weather conditions, most adventurers were not able to make the trek out to the primate temple until the following day, March 13th, 2022. While both the X-Plorer’s Supplies store and the Outpost Café bar and restaurant weren’t quite ready for Jungle X-Pedition’s first visitors in early March, visitors have been able to buy provisions from Jungle Market Eatery and Excavator’s Taters, before venturing into the jungle to explore the three currently-known Jungle X temples, Tumbili, Arachnidia, and Reptilian.
Jungle X Points of Interest
Since the arrival of the Whey Foundation’s Jungle X-Pedition, a lot of development has occurred around the larger Jungle X site. In addition to the ancient temples, plinths, and other structures—both manmade and natural—that Professor Gerald Winston Whey documented during his initial accidental expedition, a number of newer, Whey Foundation-made structures have also sprung up.
In an attempt to keep this section from growing too terribly unruly, I am going to focus on obvious items in the land and loosely categorize them into one of four categories: ancient landmarks, Jungle X temples, modern additions, and naturally-occurring points of interest. That way, I can share the lore more generally instead of breaking down each individual structure in too much detail.
Before we get to the temples themselves, Jungle X has a few major, mysterious, ancient, manmade landmarks you need to know about first. Though we don’t know what exactly all of them mean just yet, it’s very likely that they hold secrets of yet-to-be-discovered aspects of Jungle X.
First off, not far from the Whey Foundation’s new airstrip, there’s an enormous structure over an entry point deeper into the jungle. In Gerald Whey’s original map of Jungle X from 1935, he identifies this feature as the “Stone Archway of the Ancients.” Beyond the fact that it features a sigil from the primate temple, not much is known about this structure.
The second stand-out landmark I want to address is known in the professor’s writings as “Flat Rock.” This 40 foot wide, perfectly-circular landmark lays flush with the ground near the new Jungle Market Eatery. According to Gerald’s original documentation, the outer ring of Flat Rock features inscriptions of six different parts of the lunar cycle alongside depictions of six different types of jungle creatures. Three of these animals—the primate, the spider, and the crocodile—correspond to the three known Jungle X temples—Tumbili, Arachnidia, and Reptilian respectively. However, three of these carvings do not relate to any currently-known temples.
Professor Whey’s hand-drawn map seems to suggest that he believed the other three animal forms represented at Flat Rock likely corresponded to additional, yet-to-be-discovered Jungle X temples. His map also noted a few guesses regarding what other animals were depicted:
Within the outer ring of moon phases and animal forms, Flat Rock contains an even more bizarre element: a labyrinth-like design leading to the circle’s center. Could discovering all six of the theoretical animal temples lead to something akin to the labyrinth depicted at Flat Rock? What do the moon phases have to do with the animals? What’s at the center of the labyrinth? Flat Rock raises a ton more questions than it answers.
The animal iconography at Flat Rock can also be found in our third important structure—or in this case, set of structures. According to both Gerald Whey’s original map and modern Whey Foundation maps of the site, plinths featuring one of those zoological symbols have been found outside of each corresponding animal’s temple. That said, despite the fact that these plinths are featured on both the professor’s and the foundation’s maps, they seem to be missing from their respective sites right now. Hence, I’ve included the Whey Foundation’s map below with the plinths highlighted rather than photos of the actual landmarks themselves.
The Temples of Jungle X
Speaking of temples, of all the things you could possible learn about Jungle X before venturing out, a basic understanding of the area’s temples is the absolute most essential.
According to the writings of Professor Whey, X’s temples were originally constructed by humans who worshiped the animal spirits represented by each of the three known temples (primate, arachnid, and reptile). Gerald claimed something far more shocking as well though: According to the professor, these temples were actually spaces in which animal spirits could possess humans—causing visitors to behave like the animal to which the temple is dedicated. In fact, Professor Whey claims that he experienced this phenomenon first-hand in 1935 when he visited the primate temple, Tumbili, and found himself swinging from the jungle canopy just like a monkey.
Fellow archeologists and anthropologists—even some of those at the Manhattan Explorers Society—discarded Gerald’s mythic-sounding claims as nonsense. That said, the professor was vindicated after Alexandria Whey rediscovered Jungle X and showed the world the exact spiritual connections to animals her great-grandfather had written about many decades prior.
The shrine that was discovered first (pictured above), the primate temple, features what Gerald describes as an “incredible,” “expertly joined bamboo structure” that he stated was “built by ancient indigenous people(s).” Another notable structure that is part of the primate temple complex is the large stone building with a thatched roof. Of the three temples that have been found thus far, this is certainly the largest and most prominent. As for the name Tumbili, according to Professor Whey, the primate temple derives its name from the Swahili word for monkey.
We don’t know what order Gerald Whey discovered the second two temples in, but we do know that, when the Whey Foundation returned to Jungle X, the second temple they located was the arachnid temple. Unlike Tumbili, the arachnid temple is fairly light on structures. That said, there is one very prominent rock formation that, according to the writings of Professor Whey, “appears to be able to spin.”
Reptilian, the third temple that the Whey Foundation rediscovered, borders an area Professor Whey identified as “muddy wetlands” on his 1935 map of X. Another notable thing about this temple is that the Whey Foundation explorers actually setup a small research station directly next to the main temple structure making this an excellent resupply point if you ever find yourself in need of equipment.
Modern Jungle X-Pedition Additions
The next category of Jungle X-Pedition structures you need to understand are the items recently constructed by the Whey Foundation ahead of Jungle X’s public debut. If you see a building that looks modern, it’s almost certainly because it is! Most of these structures consist of modern amenities to make visiting Jungle X and accessing the temples much easier—namely the air strip, eateries, supply depot, sanitation facilities, etc. The green, blue, and orange points of interest in the Whey Foundation map provide a pretty comprehensive overview of the major landmarks in this category.
Additionally, I’ve included a selection of photos featuring some of these new Whey Foundation structures below.
Prominent, Naturally-Occurring Features
The last category of landmarks I’m going to discuss are some of the more obvious natural features of Jungle X. Gerald Whey’s hand-drawn map from the 1930s is far and away the best source we have for descriptions of these elements so I will be referencing it a lot here. Hopefully future publications from either the professor or the foundation will shed more light on some of these oddities though.
First off, directly next to Arachnidia, there’s a very large stone formation (pictured below) that Professor Whey nicknamed “Mount Kilimanjaro“—though, as the note on his map states, it has absolutely “no relation to the Tanzanian mountain” by the same name. Gerald Whey’s map also notes that the the pool below the waterfall on the backside of this rock formation was home to a fresh water collection station he constructed while stuck in Jungle X. Though the waterfall is currently dry, eventually, it once fed down into what Professor Whey described as a “massive lake.” It’s also worth noting that both the professor’s map and the foundation’s map both seem to warn of snakes in this body of water.
To the east of Tumbili there’s another large, interesting rock formation (below) I should mention—”Observatory Rock.” Unlike Flat Rock, we don’t have any reason to believe this one is particularly mystical. That said, given its size, it is a very notable landmark in the area.
Further to the east of both the primate temple and Observatory Rock, there are a number of areas that Gerald Whey seems to have only been able to see from afar. Thus far, we don’t know of any Whey Foundation expeditions into these regions either.
There’s a large “muddy wetlands” area that borders the reptile temple with ground that the professor warned to be infirm. To the south of those wetlands, Gerald observed expansive “grassy plains” that could feature a crater and/or a pond—but the professor’s map concedes that those features could also just be a mirage. Yet even further east from the wetlands and plains, he observed what he identified as a “far-off mountain range” bordered by the “most dense canopy [he had] ever seen.”
This guidebook to Jungle X-Pedition will (hopefully) never be complete. As more information is uncovered through further exploration of Jungle X, we will make an effort to maintain this guide for future visitors. If you stumble across any exciting discoveries that you think we could have missed, please let us know via Twitter or Facebook! Bon voyage!
The Jungle X-Pedition guidebook above was compiled with information taken from park presentations, interviews, marketing materials, now-removed web content, thematic elements within the land, and more. Below you can find a (hopefully) comprehensive list of all of the resources we turned to throughout this process.