Arrived around 9 to find a huge resort entrance line with one person taking tickets. Yikes! Someone help the poor girl out! I felt guilty (not really) bypassing all of that to go in the season pass lane.
Met Dan and company at Dragster and got on in about five minutes. This was only my fifth lap on the damn thing, and honestly this was the first day I had been there where it ran consistently. Good crew this year, they're moving pretty well.
I still give out a nice yell on the launch because it feels like it's what you should do. It's like strenuous activity. The trip down is still the best part. I don't know if it's because of all the down time to date, but Dragster is still something I think of as pretty cool, but not a "must ride" at the park. I've not lost any sleep over my relatively small number of laps.
From there we hit Millennium Force and did two laps. The jackass that bruised my wife last time was apparently not on the platform. They're screening a lot of people on the midway at the test seat for size. I've noticed that women seem to have less belt slack, presumably because they have wider hips and carry weight lower. I hope they get that nonsense resolved soon.
In any case, the ride ran fairly fast for being the first few trains out in the morning. It would probably run faster if the guide wheel springs were a bit more stiff. We had the red train both times, and you could see it shuffle around.
Up the trail for my annual ride on Mine Ride. Check.
Back to Mean Streak for my annual ride. Dan and I were going to drive, but presented with an empty platform we took the back seat, where one of the leads warned us "don't rollback my gold train!" We had a solo ride and it ran pretty fast in the first half. Not quite worthy of one of Dan's Playboy confessionals, but a unique experience.
Around to get fries near Gemini, which we skipped due to one-sided operation. Fries were good, lots of vinegar.
We owned a train for Woodstock Express. Annual ride: Check.
Up to Magnum, one lap in the ejector seat. For being as windy as it suddenly was, it was running exceptionally fast. The turn-around seems to be getting rougher, even when you're riding on good wheels.
We jumped on Corkscrew. Check.
On to the arcade for DDR, because I always know I can beat Dan. Still two Extreme machines, but someone without common sense put them right next to each other. It's really hard to hear one from the other. That's gotta change. Last year's arrangement in the front, while attracting attention whores, at least allowed you to hear your own machine.
Caught a spin on Cedar Downs. The ride is a real treasure, and I kick myself for not riding it more often.
Blue Streak and Raptor had huge lines, and the park was getting crowded, so we headed for Wicked Twister because we knew the line would be negligible. Indeed it was.
They've really backed off the first backward launch, leaving only the second pass in each direction at full strength. I hesitate to say that it lessens the value of the ride, because it's still good fun, I just wish they'd find a way to make it go all out. I noticed on various impulses and with different programs for Twister that different motors fire at different times to produce the desired height up the towers. In no case is it the entire line of motors. That makes me wonder if some clever control programmer could alternate which motors fire on different passes, or even different cycles, in order to spread out the duty cycle of the motors, assuming that it's the duty cycle they're most worried about. I'm not an engineer, but I play one on TV.
That was it for me, the park got too crowded. Check-out time, 1pm. The muffleheads are starting to show up in numbers, and it should be pretty nasty by next week.
I also would like to say that I rode Dragster once last year. I had the oppurtunity today to ride it several times and came very close once, lousy rain blew those plans off however. But, I felt one time was enough, and 17 seconds of ride was not worth 1 1/2 hours of wait. *** Edited 6/2/2004 5:23:14 AM UTC by Kyle Fobe***
Either way, somehow the ride seems more powerful this year. I'll give you that the second swing doesn't go as far as last year, but the third and fourth swings - well, I've taken two new people to the Point this year, one thinks swings 3 and 4 are better than Dragster's launch, the other thought they were about the same.
Thanks for the warning about the muffleheads, I think I'll be leaving the Point be for a month or so ...
--Brett, who just felt the need to spout off about Twister ;)
Again, I'm not an engineer.
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