Kings Dominion, Doswell, Virginia, USA
My first post here and first TR, so hello all. I am rathernew to coasters and still have little experience, but I have been followingthis site for a few months and have learned a bunch as a result. I spent ninehours on 6/5 during my first visit to kings dominion, so here’s my report:
I was at KD 10:30-7:30. The waits were short for most of the day despite itbeing a 95F Saturday and considerable crowds. I had only one slice of pizzawhen famished, as is my MO for expensive park food, so no comment there. I bought a $3.75 bottle of water, thenfilled it at water fountains for most of the day to cut costs. A LOT of linecutting was allowed, and in general, attendants need to check for full capacityon trains. Cedar Point was crazy about this the last time I went, but here,some trains had 5+ empty seats despite a line. That said, attendants were ontheir game when one woman fainted, emergency arriving quickly. Waiting for thefront line was pretty easy throughout the park except for Intimidator 305, onwhich I never rode front.
Ride Rank, Rating, and Count:
1.) Intimidator 305 (9/10) – 4x
2.) Volcano (9/10) – 3x
3.) Dominator (8/10) – 3x
4.) Flight of Fear (7/10) – 1x
5.) Anaconda (6/10) – 1x
6.) Grizzly (5/10) – 1x
7.) Avalanche (5/10) – 1x
8.) Shockwave (4/10) – 1x
9.) Rebel Yell (4/10) – 1x
10.) Hurler (2/10) – 1x
Intimidator - Lines were at worst 15-20 minutes for everything but the front, afew times we waited only 2-3 trains. First hill-turn combo is intense despitethe trims (from afar, train looks slowed on descent). I had partial gray-outson half of my rides, heard many others complain of the same. Second hill givesnice air even though you slow approaching the crest unlike the high speed ofMF. Some nice turns follow and will headbang if you don't anticipate. Somereally nice air on the last two hills, but the last one goes into a turn that Icould not avoid a neck bang on due to the air. A bit rough through the finalturns. Still prefer Millenium, but this has more air if iirc.
Volcano - Our first ride of the day, and that was a good choice because itwas the longest wait later on. The 30 minute wait turned into an hour when itbroke down for a bit, but it worked smooth for the rest of the day. Launches areeasily my favorite coaster element, no other aspect being as adrenalinepumping. The alternating zero-g rolls make for a consistent blast and preservethe feel of this as a “flying” coaster, never touching down. Nice theme-ingmade the wait-line unique in that you could never really tell how long the linewas, cutting down on the impatience factor. Looking back on it, it’s actuallyamazing how consistent the intensity of Intamin rides normally are, this onehaving very few special elements but more engaging for its duration thanDominator.
Dominator - We waited to ride until about 1:30 and that definitely paid off as werode twice in about fifteen minutes, both times were front seat. Over twohours, the wait for most seats couldn’t have been more than 2-3 trains. Verysmooth first half through the cobra roll. The mcbr didn’t slow it down as muchas probably intended, actually got very light air off that drop. As a result ofthe speed, a bit of head banging in the second half. Overall, kind of felt likean inverted BM, not much airtime but a nice collection of elements. In thatregard it could be called bland, which is why I prefer the two Intaminspecialties.
Flight of Fear – Surprisingly intense, particularly how farthe train tilts on some turns. I think the theme-ing worked really until theride itself. I came off it a bit dizzy and hesitant to give it a second shot.
Anaconda – There was a car stuck on the lift hill for aboutten minutes early on, fixed the rest of the day. Not as bad as expected, butthe first two inversions are way too tight, you can feel the train jerking forwardand back as it maneuvers through them. The mcbr helps get through the doublecorkscrew, but its rather uninteresting at that point.
Grizzly – These cars are wayyy too tight. The ride entranceitself is difficult to find. Headchoppers were the best aspect of this. Moreconsistently sped and hilled than the other two wooden coasters. Thought therewould be more airtime while riding, but that didn’t happen.
Avalanche – Surprising speed through those final few turns. Theride attendant was annoying as hell though, trying too hard to get a responsefrom everyone in line. I heard a game attendant later on say “I know we’reclose to the intimidator, but there’s nothing intimidating about this game.”That’s funny. Being a nerd on Avalanche is not.
Rebel Yell – Should be renamed Rebel Yawn. The design shouldhave been wide out the track out, then close on the return. That would have atleast added the race aspect whether or not that was the intent. As it is, therewere a lot of small hills but no air, ultimately nothing to really take fromthis one except that KD uses the same painfully tight cars for all their woodencoasters.
Shockwave – Interesting ride. The inverted loop was nicelydone, but the speed was really inconsistent. There was a lot of braking beforehills, then a feeling of getting shot over them. The trains didn’t travel verysmoothly either, probably enhanced by the rigidity of the restraintsthemselves, which are a bit tricky to get out of.
Hurler – Least favorite ride in the park. This was reallybland after the first hill and had inconsistent speed like Shockwave. There wasalso some lateral pain similar to Mean Streak’s rocky ride, though Hurler isnot as bad.
Thanks a bunch for reading. Sorry that there aren’t more tips,but hopefully I'll get better at picking those up while I ride.
Wow, you were at KD just a week after I was, yet experienced significantly less wait time! I guess Memorial Day weekend must have brought people to the park. We were also at the park about 9 hours, and if we had ridden I-305 and Volcano that many times I highly doubt we'd have gotten on all the coasters. I pretty much agree with your analysis of each ride, although for me the airtime on I-305 was killed by being stapled in with the restraints. Volcano was awesome, with gentle rolls and smooth transitions.
Nice TR. It's reader-friendly. :)
BTW, if you notice some of the words are missing spaces between them... I've seen that happen when copying and pasting text. I'm not sure why. It doesn't show up until after you click submit. Just in case you were wondering, since it's your first post.
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