I got to the park at around 4:00, and saw a somewhat empty lot. Judging by the number of cars and buses I would roughly estimate about 2500 people were at the park.
As always, Talon was first which was a walk on for the middle rows. Today it felt more forceful than usual, with my legs really feeling the forces in both helices. I went for a 2nd ride and again sat in the middle. This time, the train had 8 people total on it which even for Dorney is a low number of riders for a train.
On the way to Hydra, I checked Wild Mouse's line and it was barely out of the station. I usually skip this ride because it's not worth the 20 - 30 minute wait it usually has. Today I was on the ride in about 5 minutes. The brakes were not on as hard and the ride was much more enjoyable than in previous visits because of this (the brakes used to hurt when you slammed into the restraint because of them). By the time I got off the ride, there was no one waiting out of the station so I decided to ride again.
Hydra was empty as usual with almost half the rows vacant. Got a middle row ride. Same as usual, good ride but not something I would ride more than a few times each trip.
It was hot out and I felt like I needed to cool off so Thundercreek Mountain was next. Even with only about 8 or 9 logs being used the wait was a little over 5 minutes. As usual, I got drenched and went right back for a 2nd ride because there was only a 1 log wait. This time I got even more drenched. Feeling more refreshed, I figured, what better way to dry my clothes than going 75 mph so Steel Force was next.
I had seen earlier than the trains for Steel Force weren't even close to being full so I had figured I could get a front row ride easily. While there were maybe 8 - 10 people waiting for rows other than the front in the station, the front row had about a 6 or 8 train wait. No way I was going to wait that long, so I took the 2nd row which had no one waiting for it. I had never sat this close to the front before and it was a weird feeling to be hanging over the first drop waiting for the rest of the train to go over the drop as well. There was more air time in the front as well with each bunny hill lifitng me out of the seat into the lap bar. I went on again towards the back and did not get as much air time. The popular question of the day was about how they get the 3rd train off of the transfer track as on both rides, 2 different groups of people were discussing it. The next train got stuck on the lift hill. Not sure what happened but everyone in the area stopped to look like it was the most interesting thing in the world (the back of the train was barely on the lift hill so they weren't that high up).
I wasn't sure about riding Laser as I had a little bit of a headache but decided to ride anyway. Sat in the 2nd row with only 7 people total on the train. Just as forceful as ever and one ride was enough.
The 2 rides I decided to ride were rides I had not ridded in close to 10 years. I already have the credit but decided to ride the Dragon coaster just for the heck of it. Only 2 other people in line and I took the backseat. Fun family/kiddie coaster and nice when you want a break from riding the bigger rides.
I then went to the Zephyr because I wanted to relax some more. Only 5 people total on the train and it was a nice ride for what it was. The cars are kind of cramped though.
Thunderhawk was next but for some reason the front row was closed off. Took a back row ride and I don't remember being thrown around so much there but in the middle part of the ride, that's what happened.
I went to the Whip and not surprsing at all, only 2 cars had riders in it. The cycle was shorter than normal but I had enough after 1 ride and went back to Thunder Creek Mountain which again had about a 5 minute wait.
Seeing the 25 cent cotton candy booths all over the park I decided to finally try it today. The bag was kind of small but for a quarter, I'm not complaining. Cedar Fair was really smart to offer this as it was very popular with the stand near the park exit having 8 people in line when I left the park.
I went back to Hydra for another walk on ride and then back to Wild Mouse which had about a 10 minute wait. I wanted to play some DDR so I went to the arcade. The machine wasn't in the greatest shape (at least on the right side) as I failed on my 2nd stage (Senorita Speedy Mix), which I have no trouble clearing on other machines. I think it was either the right or up arrow that wasn't registering well.
I decided to finish out the day with 2 more rides on Talon, both 1 - 2 train waits.
After that, I had enough coaster riding for 1 day and made my way out of the park.
My last 2 trips were on June weekedays when school was still in session so I knew they wouldn't be crowded but today was even less crowded then those 2 days. I had thought it would be more crowded for a day in July even though it was a weekday.
I also have to say the operations were all around excellent. Talon, Hydra and Steel Force were all running 2 trains when they probably could have gotten away with 1 on each ride and there was very little to no stacking.
Other than some cotton candy pieces on the ground, the park was very clean and I saw quite a few people with brooms sweeping up.
With the lack of lines and great operations, it is really lowering my tolerance levels of waiting times for other parks to the point where anytrhing over a 10 minute wait for a coaster seems like a long wait.
Overall, it was another excellent trip to Dorney
- Ryan - http://www.tideblue.com/painter/
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