Florida, Day 2 -- IoA (1/11/2002)

Associated parks:
None

Tuesday, January 15, 2002 4:20 PM
4am Orlando time.  All good enthusiasts should be asleep (or living it up) when on the first night of their coaster vacation, right?

Not if they're prone over the porcelin goddess cursing whatever it was that was making them hurl (I've since decided that it was PROBABLY the chicken sandwich I'd eaten for lunch at MCO -- at least, that's where I'm laying the blame ;) ).  This "vacation" was definitely NOT going according to plan.  In fact, I was now in a potentially dangerous situation -- a Type I diabetic, travelling alone?  If my blood sugar decided to drop and I couldn't keep anything down, I was in for a world of hurt.

Fortunately, I had only the one episode, but it left me feeling EXHAUSTED and without an appetite for all of Friday.

Still, when I woke up on Friday (at 10am, having decided it was no longer worth trying to drag myself out for Islands of Adventure's 9am opening), I was no longer ill, just drained, and so I decided to continue on with my plans, if a bit slowly.

Day 2 -- Islands of Adventure

This park is absolutely GORGEOUS.  I was just repeatedly amazed at the attention to detail.  Each of the five "Islands" has a very distinct, and reasonably consistent, theme.  The five sections are arranged in a ring around a central lake.

Crowds were pretty light, as they had been at Seaworld the day before.  Given that this is the middle of January, after the holiday season and well before vacationing really starts, this didn't come as a surprise.

The first section I hit was Marvel Superhero Island, home of the Incredible Hulk Coaster.

Hulk (3 laps total) -- In my opinion, B&M's finest hour, and the best coaster of the trip.  (stop there if that's what you wanted to know ;) )  It's certainly not the perfect coaster, nor is it my favorite anywhere, but this is one fine piece of machinery.  The launch is great, the pacing is good (although I think placing the midcourse a bit sooner so there's more to do afterwards wouldn't have hurt), and the ride is SMOOTH.  The placement of this coaster certainly draws the onlookers, as well.  3 train operation

The queue "theming" for Hulk isn't quite up to par with the rest of the park, but isn't bad.  I DO wish they'd gotten better animation, though ;)  (Not that I really needed to stop and WATCH it).

Later in the day, after I'd made a full lap around the park, I returned for another ride on the Hulk, to discover it was down due to "mechanical difficulties".  On a hunch, I went over to the attendant at the gate and asked her if it had missed the launch, and she smiled and replied "Yup..."  It reopened about 30 minutes later, to half-filled trains -- they were letting people on only the first four rows for quite a few cycles.

After my first lap on Hulk, I decided to head over to The Amazing Adventures of Spiderman before the line built up.  I walked right on for one lap on this moving simulator.  I became SLIGHTLY queazy while riding this, but it may have been lingering effects of the previous issues.  The actual synchronization between what you see and what you feel was VERY well done -- I definitely recommend this ride.

Next I decided to stroll along and check out the park.  Toon Lagoon is next if you're progressing around the lake in a clockwise fashion.  Nicely decorated, but not in the mood for water rides I really didn't find anything here that caught my attention ride-wise.

Next up, Jurassic Park.  This part of the park is downright awesome.  The theming is VERY well done.  This section is home to the Pteradon Flyers, but unfortunately they were enforcing the policy of "adult only with child", so I was unable to ride.

By this time I was already getting tired, from being under the weather.  I sat down on a bench, and next thing I knew I'd slept for about 20 minutes.  People who've been to a park with me will know that's definitely not my usual style (I also hadn't eaten anything all day, just sipped on clear liquids -- again very odd for me).

Feeling a bit better, I moved on to my favorite section of the park, the Lost Continent.

This section is home to Islands of Adventure's other 3 roller coasters -- Flying Unicorn and the Dueling Dragons.

Flying Unicorn (1 lap) is a fairly typical "family" coaster, except far more themed than normal.  The train itself looks like a Unicorn, with the front car having the head (compete with horn) and the back car having a tail.  Very cute.  The ride itself is fun, good for its intended purpose.

Next up was the Dueling Dragons (2 laps each total).  The queue for these coasters is incredible -- VERY detailed.  Also very, very long -- fortunately you don't need to traverse the entire course to reride this coaster.

Fire and Ice were both running only one train each.  I took a front-row lap on each.  Ice has cooler visuals, but I'd have to give the edge to Fire in a direct comparison.  Both were typical smooth B&M inverteds, though -- fun and fast.  They're fairly compact, nicely intertwined, and I felt "probably" very rerideable if I were feeling better.

After my Dragon rides, I decided it was time to brave some solid food.  I bought a fruit cup, thinking this would be simple enough to not present my stomach any real challenges.  I was correct :)

Finally, I came to Seuss Landing.  If I were travelling with a kid, this section would be GREAT.  Even as it was, I found myself smiling walking through it.  The carousel ("Caro-Seuss-el"), especially, caught my eye.

So now I'd done a full lap of the park.  I was to meet up with rollergator and his wife at 3:30 at the Dragons queue, which left me some time to kill.  I wandered over to Hulk to find it down (see above), so I decided to bide my time by trying out

Dr. Doom's FearFall (1 shot) -- I got on this expecting a typical S&S Space Shot, and a short one at that.  I was in for a pleasant surprise.  The other Space Shots I've ridden (Dorney's Dominator and CP's Power Tower) don't give NEARLY the same kind of airtime pop at the top that this did.  Unexpected, but welcome.

By now Hulk was testing again, so I got in line for a front seat ride, and then another lap, before heading over to the Dragons queue to meet up with rollergator (Bill) and his wife Jill.  They're both very cool people, who I'll have to meet up with again.  We chatted about various things while walking through the queue (and walking, and walking, and... ;) ) for another lap on each of Ice and Fire.  By now I was really starting to drag, so I decided to call it a day.  I felt bad, as after planning to meet up with them I had to bail so quickly, but I was REALLY starting to feel down again (not ill, just very exhausted)

And so I took my leave of the park, having had a GREAT time in spite of feeling under the weather.  I returned to my hotel, snaking on a banana and a Gatorade, and called it a day.

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--Greg
"The questions ticket agents ask at airports are useless, but give an illusion of security to the GP. Much like seatbelts on roller coasters...
My page

*** This post was edited by GregLeg on 1/15/2002. ***

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Tuesday, January 15, 2002 4:27 PM
Im impressed you found spiderman with less than a 1 hr wait. :)
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Joey Ciborek FLCC Member
www.FloridaCoasterClub.com
"WE RIDE ALL YEAR!"
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Tuesday, January 15, 2002 5:17 PM
Looks like that's another park to cross off of Greg's list! I am glad things turned out ok, and that you had fun. I am sooo completely jealous with your track record on Hulk...I waited 2 hours twice when I went oh so long ago. Anyway, we all now know that Greg brought home the warm weather from FL, thus causing the water in the seals in VertiGo to expand, resulting in the collapse. Thanks a lot, Greg;).

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Kara
403 Laps

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Tuesday, January 15, 2002 5:24 PM
I might not enjoy myself as much next time I'm there. I was there for the IAAPA buy-out so I didn't wait for anything at all.

So Greg, I'm disappointed you didn't get to do Ripsaw Falls or the Jurassic Park River Ride. Those two rides are easily the best themed, I think (that is, unless you consider the Dragons' queue a ride).

I'm all about getting back there as soon as I can. The park is nothing short of awesome.

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com, Sillynonsense.com
"As far as I can tell it doesn't matter who you are. If you can believe, there's something worth fighting for..." - Garbage, "Parade"

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Tuesday, January 15, 2002 5:47 PM

Jeff said:

So Greg, I'm disappointed you didn't get to do Ripsaw Falls or the Jurassic Park River Ride.


I'm disappointed he didn't ride Cat in the Hat.  Shame, Shame.


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Tuesday, January 15, 2002 5:56 PM
Yeh cat in the hat is easily the best ride in the world. :)
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Joey Ciborek FLCC Member
www.FloridaCoasterClub.com
"WE RIDE ALL YEAR!"
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Tuesday, January 15, 2002 7:06 PM
If that ride is like LSD, I'm more sure than ever I don't want to try it.

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com, Sillynonsense.com
"As far as I can tell it doesn't matter who you are. If you can believe, there's something worth fighting for..." - Garbage, "Parade"

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Wednesday, January 16, 2002 6:40 AM
Hmmmm, did you get to see Posideon's Fury, Greg?..It cant be still under rehab.
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Dayuum, Your HOT!
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Wednesday, January 16, 2002 6:49 AM
Posideon was open, but fell into the list of "stuff I'll get next time when I'm more energetic".
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--Greg
"The questions ticket agents ask at airports are useless, but give an illusion of security to the GP. Much like seatbelts on roller coasters...
My page
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Sunday, January 20, 2002 12:13 PM
Trust me Jeff, Aint no ride anything like LSD
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Sunday, January 20, 2002 9:34 PM
...good meeting you too Greg.  Sorry we didn't get to spend a little more time together (or that I didn't visit the TR sooner, LOL).  Pretty sure Kennywood will get a visit this year - gotta try out PR, or we'll see you again at some future event.

...also noting, doesn't the seatbelt on JackRabbit actually serve some purpose (as opposed to 99% of the other seatbelts on coasters)...

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PoTP acolyte - remove fear to reply
Son of Drop Zone - PKI CoasterCamp I Champions!!!

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Monday, January 21, 2002 4:45 AM
Yes, that seatbelt is an exception to the rule, as it basically serves as the only restraint :)

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--Greg
"The questions ticket agents ask at airports are useless, but give an illusion of security to the GP. Much like seatbelts on roller coasters...
My page

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