First Time To Kennywood

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Yesterday was my first time ever going to Kennywood. It was about a 2-2.5 hour drive and it was raining. I thought when we'd cross over into PA and get further towards the park the rain would stop. Well it did for a while, but then it just drizzled for about 4 hours.

My father and friend Josh came along for the trip, and none of us had ever been to this park. When we first arrived, we parked over in the free parking area. I believe it's pretty awesome you could pay only $5 and have a "preffered" parking spot, or park for free and have almost as good of a spot.

Anyhow after parking it was down to get Josh his ticket, my cousin had gave my father and myself our tickets. Price tag $31.00. Not bad for the size of the park, but for the rides there, I'd say it could have been about $27ish.

First ride we headed toward. The Jack Rabbit. Now from being at Cedar Point and Geauga Lake as well as working both places, this park blew my mind. They didn't have any que gates, the ques didn't really wrap around 20,000 times. The lines were not longer than 45 min. for the coasters, and most of all there were not any really rude guests.

Jack Rabbit- 10 Minute Wait

The Jack Rabbit surprized me very much. From looking at it, it looks like a plain-jane kiddie wooden coaster, but it was very surprizing. Really smooth, lots of air-time. My only complaint is that the coaster could have been longer. This isn't going to be on my top list anytime soon, but I would still recommend people to ride it. I give it a 8/10.

Next we were off to the Racer, which was almost right next to the Jack Rabbit.

Racer- 15 Minute Wait

A very nicely laid out wooden coaster. This ride yet again surprized me. I like how the trains go and end up coming back into the other station rather than being right back where you started it was a nice element. This ride was very smooth as well and the air-time was insane. As far as racing coasters go, I've only been on 3 (Gemini, Racer-KI, and this one) I'd say this one is one of the better. I give this ride a 10/10.

Off to the Phantom's Revenge. We couldn't find the entrance and the park map was a little confusing. So we ended up going to ride the THUNDERBOLT instead.

Thunderbolt- 45 Minute Wait

Talk about surprizing coasters...right out of the station you go into a pretty decently sized drop. Throughout the whole ride you have some crazy drops and turns because you're following a hill. A great old wooden coaster, with AMAZING airtime. It reminded me of the Big Dipper, but this one is soo much smoother, and it appeared that they had the old hand brake working on this ride. Thunderbolt is taking a Top Spot on my list. I give it a 10/10.

Now we were off to Phantom's Revenge. We took another look at the map and finally figured it out.

Phantom's Revenge- 25 Minute Wait

The most interesting Arrow coaster I have ever been on. It has a drop like most looping coasters do, and from what I understand this coaster did loop at one time. We decided to ride in the very front, and at this point it was still the drizzly/misty rain, and some kid who rode with Josh said that it would feel like we were being pelted with hail. I must say he was right, but that didn't take away anything from the ride. AIR-TIME is the only word that can describe this ride. I thought Magnum was the king of air-time, but after riding this, sadly the Maggie has been unseated. I give this ride a 10+/10

Next stop, the Exterminator. Located right underneath the Pittsburg Plunge.

The Exterminator- 45 Minute Wait....

This coaster was nothing like I expected. I've been on one other Wild Mouse coaster before, but this coaster was a SPINNING Wild Mouse, and not to mention you were nearly in the pitch black for the whole ride. Josh loved this ride. There was a lot of great theming, and the ride was very fun. I give this one a 10/10 as well.

Since we were right by the whip, we decided to hit it up.

Whip- Walk-On

I had always wanted to ride one of these, and I had my opportunity. This was a very fun ride, and like everything else in the park it went beyond what I expected. For a flat ride I give this a 9/10.

Cosmic Chaos- 10 Minute Wait

Themed like a Space Ship, and aliens this ride is similar to Avatar at Kings Island, but it's also very different. Instead of riders sitting on the inside in a skateboard type vehicle and going over a bunny hill, they sit on the outside of a UFO type vehicle and go back and forth while spinning. Usually these rides make me dizzy, but this ride was the right amount of fun. I give it a 9.5/10

Since it was getting late and we had a long drive back home we wanted to compare the back of Phantom to the front.

Phantom's Revenge ride #2-15-20 Minute Wait

By this time it had stopped raining completely, so we were in for a full-effect ride. Went up into the station and headed toward the back. Most lines had 4-5 car waits before us, but surprzingly the back only had a 3-4. We waited about 15 minutes max. Climbed in for one of the most intense air-time filled rides I have ever been on. The back seat of this ride never lets up, and just when you think you had enough air, you get thrust out of your seat once more. This ride is by far one of my favorites. Back Seat gets a 10+/10 as well.


Clean Park, Not really long waits, Friendly employees, reasonably priced food.


Confusing Maps, raining all day, not enough coasters


The route we needed to take home got closed down, ended up having to drive 3 hours home instead of 2, was stuck in Pittsburgh for nearly a half-hour.

Overall Trip gets a 8/10.

The Park gets a 9/10.

~~~~Coaster Lover~~~~~~~~~~

Acoustic Viscosity's avatar
FYI, all of the track from the start of the second drop to the brake run was replaced by Morgan after the ride was re-worked without the inversions.

AV Matt
Long live the Big Bad Wolf

Yea, you cant even really call Phantoms Revenge an Arrow coaster anymore, because the majority of it was done by Morgan. As acoustic said, the Morgan track starts at the top of the 2nd drop through the thunderbolt, although this drop remains nearly unchanged from when it still had loops. I believe the chasis for the trains are still the original though, minus the OTSR's, of course. Glad you had a good time despite the rain. Next time though, definatley check out Noah's Ark. Its a really neat walkthrough fun house type ride, one of only 2 remaining in the world. Really unique and enjoyable, I assure you.

The Millenium Force ride Ops: Squishing you where it counts since 2000. Track Record: 89 coasters
rollergator's avatar
Cool TR! Glad you had fun, KW is one of my very favorite parks (of, course, I am a nostalgia FREAK)....

I am kinda of the impression that you didn't ride JackRabbit's back seat....if I'm right, you really didn't "get" JackRabbit...that double-down is more "out-of-this-world" than Cosmic Chaos could have hoped to be...

Really DO wish they'd light the interior of Exterminator a little more than it is, very hard to see the theming inside.

Phantom's Revenge? Pure bliss. Comparing to the old SP only makes PR that much about taking lemons and making gold! Or is that taking lead and making lemonade? Either way! ;)

Still wish we'd have caught a lap on CC, Matt...ah well, there's always next visit... :)

edit: Now, Ellen, for YOUR next visit...

Do: Kangaroo, Turtle, Auto Race, Lil Phantom, and, as mentioned, Noah's Ark. You'll be glad you did... :)

*** Edited 8/7/2007 9:01:18 PM UTC by rollergator***

It seems like alot of people are experiencing this gem of a park lately. Man I got to get back there.
I also need me some Kennywood.
Acoustic Viscosity's avatar
We'll be back, Bill. ;)

AV Matt
Long live the Big Bad Wolf

coasterqueenTRN's avatar
Ellen, I was there that day as well (August 5th) riding for a charity event (Give Kids The World) and we were the "Single Riders" who were rotating the coasters all day. Actually you may have seen one or more of us hitching rides with people that needed riding partners. We were the ones standing on the exit ramps.

Actually, you may or may not have rode with me! It was a fun day indeed despite the rain!

I got the BLUNT of the rain on Jack Rabbit. It was crazy. It was kickass!

Anyway, I am glad you had a blast during your first visit. Kennywood is a gem! It's one of my favorite parks and I can't wait to get back for Fright Nights!


*** Edited 8/8/2007 10:36:20 PM UTC by coasterqueenTRN***

Yeah I saw quite a few of you, and when I was in line for Phantom the last time, there was about 4 of you in front of us.

~~~~Coaster Lover~~~~~~~~~~

Albeit a week late the trip sounded good. The weather was much better for the Tuesday i went. You did however miss out on such classics as what acoustic and gator meantioned. But it was good to see you had a good time. I'm also glad that those tickets went to use.

By the way the weekends i guess are not such good days to go in the area, because they work on the roads, because of less traffic going around the city.

Kennywood made me a believer three years ago, and i love everything that the park is and will probably continue to be. Also more coasters would in my opinion just detract alot from what the park is, but it would be nice down the road to do another wood coaster, since apparently they have some land these days.

*** Edited 8/10/2007 3:53:53 AM UTC by MagnunBarrel***

Resident Arrow Dynamics Whore

For the amount of rides that KW provides in a small footprint, the variety, the expense of some of them, and the unique qualities of some of them, I thought the comment about dropping the price to $27-ish seemed wrong. For instance, you won't find another Noah's Ark in America.

KW may be a small park, but they sure pack the rides in. From the oldest and/or traditional flats like the Kangaroo to the Paratrooper to the modern flats like the Screamin' Swing and Megadisko, KW has all your bases covered (except for a looping coaster). Add up all the costs of all the major rides there, and then reconsider your $27 pricetag. I think you'd figure out that it's actually a steal.

I have a couple of criticisms of your trip report. You said that Racer had a lot of airtime. Could you please point out to me where those were? I have yet to find Racer provides much of any airtime, and especially now that they added seatbelts, it's gotten worse.

You said that the map was a little bit confusing and that you couldn't find the entrance to P.R. I just pulled out the current map, and the sign at the entrance is located exactly where it is in the park. They even have the Kennywood logo that you pass by on the bridge! Everything on the map is located exactly where it is in the park.

Based on my own first K.W. experience, I found the layout of the park is what throws you off. I think the disorientation starts once you pass through the tunnel. But once you make your first loop or two, and realize that everything starts back at the Turnpike, you either head straight ahead, or turn left to find all the rides.

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