Belated TR: SFGAm redemption 8/1

Associated parks:
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Friday, August 6, 2004 3:26 PM
About two years ago I had a less than favorable experience at Six Flags' Chicago based park. Ride closures, slow ops, and a hot, crowded day all combined to make for a crappy 9 hours at SFGAm.

Fast-forward to 2004...SFGAm has added Superman, Mardi Gras, and Deja Vu works!!! Needless to say, I was optimistic to give SFGAm a second chance. My friend, his cousin, and I decided to close the park rather than get there really early to open the park.

We started off our hot but not muggy day with Batman: The Ride. 35 minute wait. We waited about two extra trains for the front seat. I totally forgot how much B:TR hauls around its twisted track. I think I enjoy B:TR's "tight" intensity just as much as Raptor or Alepngeist's beautiful sweeping loops and drops.

Ragin Cajun had about a 90 minute wait at 1:30PM so we opted for Iron Wolf, which only had a 20 minute wait. I still stand (no pun itended) by this ride as my favorite stand-up coaster. It doesn't hurt my legs, has airtime (what?!?!), and really packs in some serious intensity. Better than Mantis and Riddler's IMO.

Next we waited one cycle for the Revolution. This HUSS frisbee is a lot different than Knott's version. SFGAm's version is all about the spinning while Knott's seems to be all about the airtime. While the Revolution is more disorienting, La Revolucion is a lot more fun.

We then proceeded to the American Eagle. There was no wait for the backwards train and about a 15 minute wait for the forwards train. Call me a traditionalist, but I enjoy forwards more than backwards. Forwards has no trims and I think the American Eagle is just a little big for the backwards train. Backwards works for the Racer at PKI, but just doesn't do it for me at SFGAm.

Grabbed some grub at Wascal's then headed over to Deja Vu (yes it was working all day). We only waited about an hour for this GIB, and it did not break down even once while in line. The loading process for this monstrosity, is, well, a monstrosity in itself. First the orange safety belt, then the harnesses and seatbelts. I rode in the second row, outside seat. Deja Vu is a fantastic ride, however, it still is just a boomerang. The real stars of this ride are the two vertical lifts which are SUPER cool. I hope we see more rides in the future with vertical lifts, drops, and maybe even launches!

Continued into Southwest Territory and hit up the Viper first. I hit up the infamous 1-3 ejector seat but I only met a few nice pops of air. Maybe I'm spoiled by the Timbers, but Viper has never really done it for me. Only waited about 5 cycles.

Moved on over to the Raging Bull. I have to admit I wasn't that impressed with this ride two years ago but this year it has really grown on me. The back seat is where it's at for the insane first drop and the rest of the ride is a comfortable run along B&M's gorgeous design. RB has a couple nice pops of air, but I still don't get the trims on that third hill. We would be back for more later in the night.

We then headed over to Demon and actually waited 30 minutes for this Arrow classic. I love the random sound effects and the cool lighted tunnel, but Demon's drop into the corkscrews is quite possibly the most horribly engineered piece of roller coaster track anywhere. I get the feeling that is what Drachen Fire's drop must have been like.

Ok, now for the good stuff. I was very excited for Superman all day. My only experience with a flying coaster was Vekoma's X-Flight in Cleveland so I was naturally pumped for B&M's version. Waited a little over an hour with one 5 minute breakdown. Kudos to Six Flags for lots of cool theming and superhero/villain signs. Anyways, Superman simply blows X-Flight out of the water. Being pulled up in the station is a very cool sensation as is going up the lift hill in the flying position. The ride is so forceful and much more graceful than X-Flight. The pretzel loop is pretty insane, and the ride is just fantastic. It's too bad that it's hard to really expand on the flyer due to its size constraints, but B&M are simply the masters of roller coaster design.

It was getting a bit late so we scurried over to the Ragin Cajun where the wait had died down to about 30 minutes. Ragin Cajun has a very interesting station design: absolutely gorgeous on the outside, yet very minimalist on the inside. The Ragin Cajun is hands down the best mouse I have ever been on and the most FUN I have had on a roller coaster in a long time. Pure laughter! A+++!!

Next up was V2. We waited about 4 cycles in the station for this 2nd Gen impulse ride. This is the smoothest impulse I have been on. I rank it in front of S:UE but right behind WT.

Had enough time to squeeze in one last ride Bull in the back seat again.

All in all, it was a fantastic day at SFGAm. The park wasn't very clean, but the crowds were pretty tolerable and we got on every ride except the Whizzer (missed it by seconds).

As my title implied, SFGAm has received some well due redemption from this coaster freak.

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Friday, August 6, 2004 3:35 PM
Nice TR. Glad you had a good time. I never really liked Viper before, but that was before I tried the backrow, the backrow is the best IMO, I would suggest to do that next time.
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Friday, August 6, 2004 5:04 PM
I loved Viper on the back seat. Simply a wonderful wooden coaster.

For me, V2 was better than WT.

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Friday, August 6, 2004 6:39 PM
Try Viper from the very front, very back, or middle of the train. The so-called ejector seat has never really done it for me, either.

Also, it improves immesurably at twighlight.

Good trip report. I'm glad to hear you had a better go this time around.

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Friday, August 6, 2004 6:44 PM
Odd that so many find the ejector seat on Viper so unworthy when it is the only row in the entire train that does anything for me anymore. All the other seats give such lackluster rides compared to the all out insano ride one gets in 1.3.
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Friday, August 6, 2004 7:44 PM
Glad you had a better time! SFGAm is the jewel of Six Flags and I'm glad you've seen it the way it usually is.
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Tuesday, August 10, 2004 6:47 PM
After getting amazing rides in Georgia Cyclone's last row, I tried Viper's last row for the first time in years hoping for a similar ride. While the first drop is fun, the rest of the ride in the back is far from what the G. Cyclone did for me. I'll be sticking to 1.3 on Viper from now on.
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