Darien Lake 6/18/03

Associated parks:

Wednesday, June 18, 2003 2:05 PM
Time: 10:00 - 4:15

Weather: 70's and overcast

Crowds: Non-existant

Rating Scale: The ol' Gris scale of +5 to -3.

Having not been to Darien Lake in about two years, I decided to take the hour drive from Rochester and put my season pass to use today. I arrived at the gate around 9:50, and was the 10th car in the lot. There usually are a good deal more by this time, so things were looking up. Got my pass processed and went on in.

Everything looked pretty much the same as before, except for the somewhat new slingshot and Shipwreck Falls. Headed over to Superman: Ride of Steel for the first ride of the day. After waiting for them to clean the station and listen to the ride ops chit chat with the mechanics for 15 minutes, it opened. First ride was in the back seat. I have always been impressed by this ride, but not today. The air on the first and thrid hills was good, but it lacked power everywhere else. I attributed it to the cold and it being early and left for another ride to give it time to warm up. I give the first ride a +3.

Next up was the Predator. This ride has not aged well and I was expecting it to feel like going 12 rounds with a prize fighter, as usual. WOW, was I surprised! Sat in the front seat and enjoyed a trimless ride. It was fast, smooth and had air on most of the hills. Can't believe I used those words to descibe the Pred. Hit the back car (front row of course) to seeif it was a fluke, but it wasn't. Another great ride, just as good as the front. Not as much air, but a more intense ride. +3.5

The Boomerang was up next. Standard stuff, exit has been moved. No better or worse than others like it. +2

On my way to the Viper, I heard some familar music. DDR! Darien Lake has a new DDR Extreme machine, although its condition would tell you otherwise as it needs a deep cleaning. $1.00 a game, ugh... Oh well, played a few rounds, went to the Viper.

The Viper, my first looping coaster so many years ago (10 to be exact). Same somewhat smooth (for an Arrow) ride, same painfull backrests, same excessively long queue and the same exit a mile away from the entrance. Decent ride, mid-course killed it though, bringing to a near stop. A solid +2.5.

The Mind Eraser, how time has mistreated you. It was once one of the better SLC's, but now is just as bad as Kong at SFMW, even in the front. Took one ride, had enough, never returned. Giving it a 0.

Superman, take two. Not much improvement, still lacked power/air, not as good as it used to be, running slow. Better in the front, but not much. Spent the rest of my day switching between it and the Predator as lines dictated.

Hit the Slingshot on the way out. I actually enjoyed the old, smaller one better. Still fun, but Thrillshot owns it.

Suprises: Predator running like a champ, walk-ons for most rides, re-rides on the Predator, solo rides on the Predator. DDR at the arcade.

Disappointments: Superman running slow, lazy ride ops on the Boomerang, Ops putting their weight into the restraints for "just a bit more" on Superman and Mind Eraser

Wednesday, June 18, 2003 2:31 PM
Ride of Steel's avatar Predator IS a great ride! The airtime this year has been unbelievable.

Superman is a fun ride in need of paint and I agree it is running on the slow side.

Wednesday, June 18, 2003 3:16 PM
Is it possible that they are using differant wheels on Superman? Like from urithan to polyurithane or whatnot.. I heard one is slower then the other..

But when i went last summer, with half trains and empty trains, it creeped.. But with full trains it flew.. Were the trains filled or no?

Six Flags Worlds of Adventure Online

Wednesday, June 18, 2003 3:30 PM
They made sure every train was pretty much full. Never saw one less than 3/4's full. The wheel thing could be possible, but I don't see why they would do that on SRoS. The thing is tempermental enough when it's running normal. Why run it slower and take an even greater risk of rollback?

Ride of Steel: I agree with the paint situation. The van below the lift needs a serious washing as well. Viper could use a fresh coat too. Not much longer and it will look like it did in the 80's.
*** This post was edited by SentientNacho 6/18/2003 7:32:54 PM ***

Wednesday, June 18, 2003 4:35 PM
ME's been giving the park problems for the last couple of years. I've been to the park frequently and it seems like something's always gone wrong on that SLC. I've seen it get stuck at the top, shut down for some reason, etc. The ride definitely needs to go and be replaced by a B&M, although that's very unlikely to happen. It's good to hear that Predator's been running well as that ride has gotten very painful over the last couple years especially with the addition of those seat belts.
Wednesday, June 18, 2003 5:21 PM
At least SFDL's S:ROS was working well,back on the 14th SFA's S:ROS was breaking down constantly throughout the day.

I also would love to see every last SLC be r emoved from the SF chain & replaced with B:TR's,most of them are going on 10 years old now & have gotten worse with age.

Wednesday, June 18, 2003 5:27 PM
SROS is very Tempermental. If it's a hot day, the thing cruises, on a cold day, it runs slower than hell. It all depends on the time of day too, early in the morning it runs slow too. Usually the best rides Ive EVER gotten on ANY coaster have been on SROS at night in the middle of summer.


Wednesday, June 18, 2003 5:35 PM
Ride of Steel's avatar Its always a great ride. MF and SROS have the same "atmosphere" at night. Out of control! long waits, jammed stations, just how I like it!
Wednesday, June 18, 2003 7:33 PM
Actually, I think I may know why the ride is running a bit slower. A couple of weeks ago when I was at DL, a ride operator told me that ride engineers from Intamin had just recently worked on the trains, changing the wheels and adding on additional weight to the cars. It's changed the dynamics of the ride considerably and slowed her down quite a bit.

On the other hand, the ride just might be showing it's age...NOT!!!

Writing a book about roller coasters sure has it's ups and downs...

Man, do I have a long way to go...6 parks down, 69 to go...

Coaster Count -- 26


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