Busch Gardens Tampa 5-15-11

LuvRaptor's avatar

Although no where as easy as drive to Sea World and Universal, I found it rather ironic that the drive to Busch was only 2.3 miles longer then my drive to Kings Island.

I arrived at the park right at opening so began my “where are the coasters” mission.
Mistake #1-flip flops. I know it’s a Florida thing but when I realized just how huge this park was and the amount of walking just to get to the 1 coaster, my feet were cursing me out in no time.

Montu-someone once told me that this is the B&M invert that will steal my heart. OMG truer words have never been spoken! From start to finish this ride was INCREDIBLE! No head banging, incredible Gs, tunnels, non stop AWESOMENESS!
I got off this ride and just had to jump back on 3x. Rode 2 row seat 4 and 1 and 4 again. I knew I would be heading back again before the day over! 3.6 G’s? Yup I believe that! :)
Loved this so much I was going to buy the shirt til I saw the shirt. Uck. It was just like the shirt they have/had for Raptor 2 years ago. Supposed to look like comic book like. Uck-didn’t buy Raptor’s and didn’t buy Montu’s either :(

Shrieka-I didn’t know what to expect from this ride but knew it had to be a treat just by watching it. I don’t know what was more fun really the sitting in a row of 8 or the hanging over the edge thing. The ride really was fun, no severe or scary substances just a lot of speed, some airtime and the splash landing.

For those of you who have seen Diamondbacks splash landing you havent seen anything until you see Shriekas. It is HUGE and even after the coaster is long gone the water literally like pauses in the air before it comes down and soaks anyone within 40 feet of the area. I had more fun just standing there watching people get wet (on purpose or not)
I only rode Shrieka 2x, back row and front.
Btw it appears that B&M decided to use Mantis’ left over paint for the trains.

Kumba-Wow just wow. Not the typical cookie cutter B&M I was expecting. Quite the contrary I LOVED this ride. Forget Hulk, Kumba was AWESOME! It was full of airtime and twists and turns galore. None of which ripped off your head or banged your head. I grayed all 3x I rode Kumba. Yet another fav B&M for me! :)

Gwazi-Was going to pass on this duel woodie but the huge sign bragging on the new trains made me think why not. The trains reminded me so much of Villians trains (and the one they moved to RWBs) I kind of dreaded the ride. Seriously it was not bad AT ALL, it actually was fun with lots of pops of airtime. More fun for me because it “dueled” sort of like Dragon Challenge, not like the Racers at KI or Gemini at CP. Not the best woodie (Voyage) I’ve ever been on, but certainly not killer like SOB or back row of Ghostrider. I actually got to reride this 2x and had my fill for now.

Cheetah Hunt-LOVE the color scheme (Raptor) green and yellow. The ride was pretty good. Sike, not open yet but I did get to watch test rides as well as employees riding. It didn’t seem very fast when the trains were empty so it will be interesting to see how it rides with full trains. The layout looks really fun and cool.

The park is still busy finishing off the themes around it (I for one LOVE themes) planting trees and putting up fencing. I have to wonder why after having 3 awesome B&Ms, Busch would go with Intamin. It will be interesting to see the dependability of this ride (cough TTD cough) and I only hope its up and running next week for media day and the grand opening.
I actually did buy a Cheetah Hunt shirt (and got 10% off with my season pass)

After getting the coasters out of the way and eating lunch I decided to take a look at what else this park had to offer. I have to say that it is definitely one of the most beautiful parks Ive ever seen. The landscaping is lovely, kind of like Sea World, which I guess would make sense. The park was goober clean, I paid close attention to the queues and no gum mess or anything.
I took the train ride to see the animals, none of which even came close to the train. Walked around the park and through the walking trails to see the other animals (they were closer) and then spent the next 2 hours just taking in the park and taking pictures. There was so much to take pictures of!

The employees were all pretty friendly, not in a Disney kinda way, but still nice. It is obvious that capacity on the coasters is NOT a factor at BG. There wasnt one coaster I rode that wasn’t consistently stacked. And I mean ALL the trains stacked. Its because the ops are busy talking or doing something else. Shrieka has the easiest seats to check they should be able to hit intervals no problem but apparently they don’t care about intervals and long lines don’t phase them.
Park ops at CP would behaving a stroke watching them! ;)

I really loved this park so much in fact I was glad I opted my season pass be Sea World and Busch. I will definitely be returning to this park SOON for more Montu!

Lifetime Raptor flights: 3000 :)

'00 '02 '03 '09 Raptor Crew
2018 - present Mako Crew

CoasterDemon's avatar

Scorpion? :(

kpjb's avatar

You didn't ride the Grover coaster? Some credit whore you are! ;)

I'll have to give Gwazi another try with the new trains, but I found it particularly unrideable and worse each time I've gone on.

My brother-in-law works for Busch, and was able to go on Cheetah Hunt last week. He had nothing but good stuff to say about it.

Totally agree about Montu. Every time I go back I expect to be underwhelmed because of the new rides I've experienced in between, but each time I ride that I remember why I like it so much. It's pretty much the perfect invert.


Perfect until coming out of the 2nd loop. It bleeds off too much speed making for a very boring ending in my opinion.

ApolloAndy's avatar

I think the trenched ending with the corkscrew and the turn near the queue line is awesome. Even though the forces aren't that great, the theming and scenery give it some super bonus points.

Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

My "very boring ending" is a bit much. It is a very solid ride but the ending just seems like it lacks the last punch that I want out of it.

Its brother in Williamsburg seems to suffer from the same fate. Starts out great but then runs out of steam.

LostKause's avatar

I don't know why, but I don't get excited about Montu or Alpie. I never felt the same love for these two rides as a lot of other people. I'd take a Batman clone, Talon at Dorney, or Raptor any time over these two.

LuvRaptor's avatar

To me BTRs are intense but its like everything is thrown into a smaller area, so no break its crazy nonstop :)
I liked the BTR at SFMM alot.
Talon is way fun but not as intense as I like. As for my Raptor, B&M took all the great things about Raptor and improved on them with all the inverts since. I have a CP bud who said to me years ago Raptor is fun buts its too old and rough. Guess you dont realize those type things till you get out there and check out some other B&M inverts.
Montu blew me away themes and all :)

Lifetime Raptor flights: 3000 :)

'00 '02 '03 '09 Raptor Crew
2018 - present Mako Crew

Jason Hammond's avatar

Your best airtime on SheiKra is achieved by going over the first drop while sitting in the 3rd row.

But, it's hard to beat the dangle factor sitting in an outside seat in the front row. It's even more dramatic on the 10 wide seating of Griffon.

884 Coasters, 34 States, 7 Countries
http://www.rollercoasterfreak.com My YouTube

rollergator's avatar

^When we got the media-day rides on SheiKra where it went thru the second vertical drop with...I'll guess 10-12mph...that third row was awesome-blossom. I wish they'd run it like that regularly...then, it would deserve the acclaim it seems to get anyway. (IMO).

Montu, when you get those rare rides where the MCBR taps instead of grabs...is easily one of the 2 or 3 best inverts in the country.

Last edited by rollergator,
ApolloAndy's avatar

I prefer any B&M invert that doesn't have an MCBR to any that do (except B:TR which, for some reason I still don't get). Something about the MCBR throws off the pacing and makes the second half of the ride kind of meh, though well placed theming and trenchwork alleviate most of that. I can't think of any hyper with an MCBR that keeps kicking after it.

Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

kingdakacor's avatar

LOVE LOVE The batwings on Montu! Yeah I want to know too if you got to Scorpion. Did you do anything else aside from the coasters? Shows, flats....? I love their pirate ship (full 360) they have there.

Sky's the limit.

delan's avatar

I have had some brakeless rides on Montu and it kicked my ass in the Batwing. I went this weekend on Friday and Sat and on both days, both the trim and the MCBR caught pretty hard. Like 'Shades' said, when its heavily braked, it makes and outstanding coaster, just a good coaster.

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