Great Adventure, 10/10/11

After having my last trip to the park (Fall Family Fun Night) cut short because of rain and because I went to the park last year on Columbus Day and the park wasn't that crowded, I decided to go to the park today.

I wanted to get there at opening but because of construction on 195 and traffic not moving, I lost around 20 minutes and walked into the park at 10:45. I was surprised to see no closed rides on the rides board except the Big Wheel, Rapids, Kingda Ka and Splash Water Oasis. Season Pass parking is now up to $55 plus tax, $58.xx total. That is the 3rd increase in a year. It went up from $42.xx plus tax ($45 total) to $47.xx ($50 total) for 2011, then they raised it again to $50 plus tax ($53.xx total), now this new increase.

I went to Frontier Adventures first and saw the log flume was cycling empty logs and a guard at the entrance said it was closed so I went to Bizarro where I got 4 rides with no wait and not having to leave my seat. The audio was working but it was a different soundtrack with no Bizarro #1 at the end of the ride. The Auger of Doom looks nice with the new lights but there was no more mist and no mist in the shields at the bottom of the first drop. 3 trains were running.

Runaway Mine Train was running with both trains and thankfully the Polly O ads in the station, queue and 1 of the trains are gone. I hope this time, the ads are gone for good and won't be back next year.

The log flume had opened now and had a wait of a little less than 10 minutes. It was nice to be riding a log flume in October since the past few years it has closed for the year by mid September. It was a popular ride today as the line quickly got longer since how many times in October does it get to over 80 degrees?

I took the Skyway over to the Dream Street Station. Only 1 side was running but they were working on the other side that eventually opened up.

Skull Mountain was next, and since I last rode the coaster 10 days ago they added some new effects. If you don't want to know what was added, skip to the next paragraph. There are now spider webs at the bottom of the first drop and at the pumpkin and skeleton at the final helix. The skull figure that normally was standing up at the final turn of the ride after the brake run before you turn into the station is next to the brake run and was lowered so the skull isn't much higher than the train. The eyes have some kind of flashing LED lights in red, blue and 1 or 2 other colors. It was kind of cool looking. Between these new additions and the painting of the bottom of the first drop with blacklight paint as well as lighting up the first tiki mask, I really like what they have done with the ride. Hopefully they can get the other pumpkin and other tiki mask lit up as well.

I walked over to Nitro which also had 3 trains running and the line was at the bottom of the stairs. I got 3 rides in less than a half hour. I stopped at Batman which had a station wait and went to Blackbeard's next since I haven't ridden the coaster in a while. It was a little less than a 10 minute wait.

The Boardwalk had a lot of people and the Parachutes had 3 sides open with 6 chutes total running. The other 2 parachutes were missing their baskets. It had around a 15 minute wait which isn't too bad for that ride but I skipped it today. Green Lantern had a line almost up to the 60 minute sign with 3 trains running. Unlike the other coasters in the park that have overinflated wait time signs or were accurate if 1 train is running, the Green Lantern signs seem accurate even with multiple trains running. I waited around 25 minutes total waiting just over 20 minutes to get to the single rider line and then a couple of minutes in the single rider line. People in front of me in line who didn't use the single rider line were only about 1/3 of the way through the switchbacks before the station by the time I exited the ride so the total regular wait time looked to be around 50 minutes, maybe a little longer.

Superman looked to be around 30 minutes and I didn't feel like waiting so I walked to Plaza Del Carnaval, stopped at Tango and then went to Rolling Thunder. Both sides were open with 2 trains running on each side. Unfortunately, they weren't racing and were dispatching whenever a train was ready to go regardless of the other train. Dispatches were a little faster than normal. This was my first time riding the left side this season and I prefer it to the right side since it seems a little smoother.

The park was getting more crowded at this point with Skull Mountain into the cave portion of the queue which had to be around 25 minutes. Nitro was into the switchbacks and Batman's line was going into the garden. I decided to finish the trip at the Dark Knight. It was a few minute wait to get into the pre-show room but they let way too many people into the room. Even after it was full, they kept letting more people in causing the last people entering to cut part of the line because they had no where else to stand which was annoying. It ended up being around a 20 minute total wait.

The park was more crowded than it was last year but I was still able to get 18 rides in less than 5 hours which I'm sure is a lot better then anyone did Saturday or Sunday without a Flashpass.

I also noticed for the Terror Trails in addition to it being $7 for 1 trail or $15 for 3 trails, there is now a $50 option that allows you unlimited access to the trails (but not the Hayride) in addition to being able to skip the lines for the trails. I could see this being very popular on a Saturday.

I'm glad the park is open on days like today when most parks are closed since it is always nice to get an extra trip in, especially with it less than 3 weeks away from the offseason. I was also surprised to see all rides open that could be open and everything running at full capacity. I wasn't expecting to the see the log flume open, both sides of the Skyway open or 6 parachutes running plus all the coasters running maximum trains.

Last edited by YoshiFan,

I was there Saturday. Was pretty empty early, but the crowds coming in for the later day/night festivities began arriving earlier than in the past..around 1pm instead of 3-4. My companions and I were all planning on leaving early due to other plans anyway, so we were only there from open-2:20 or so. Got five back seat rides on Toro without leaving the station to start, two on Bizarro, one on the Runaway Train in honor of Ron (it's not a) Toomer. It was the longer wait for our third ride on Nitro and seeing into the rather long Batman line that made us realize it was getting "muy" crowded. I picked up my parking for next season..already had the pass.

Probably have two more outings this year..Dorney on the 22nd and close down GAdv on the 30th, last day of the season.

The amusement park rises bold and are huddled on the beach in a mist

CoasterDemon's avatar

Mike Gallagher said:
on the Runaway Train in honor of Ron (it's not a) Toomer.

It's not a Toomer, it's a Pinhead. Or better, Coathangerhead. (Now I'm thinking of the Hellraiser movies! Happy Halloween.)

I don't wanna be a Toomer no more, I just met a corkscrew I could go for.

YoshiFan, it was kinda funny when you said there were 'no closed rides except' and then listed 4 rides. I dunno if you meant that as a funny, but it made me laugh, so thank you! Good report, glad you had a good time.

I haven't been back to Great Adventure since 2006. I think I can still wait a few years. It would be nice to see the park at night, I always left early out of (what's the word for 'too many problems/horrible service/clueless employees/closed rides/2.5 hour waits...'?). I know it's different now, from reports. I virtually miss Chiller.

Last edited by CoasterDemon,

Nice one, Billy.

I don't thinkYoshiFan was trying to be humorous, since it's a given that Big Wheel (site of Dead Man's Party) and Rapids (walk-through upcharge haunt) are NEVER open this time of year. I don't even know what Splash Water Oasis IS, and Kingda Ka, well, 'nuff said.

If you ever do make it out this way again, Billy, look me up.

Last edited by Mike Gallagher,

The amusement park rises bold and are huddled on the beach in a mist

Splash Water Oasis is the kids water play area in the Golden Kingdom. I guess I should have worded it differently, since like you said the other rides are closed for the season. I meant that every ride that could have been open was open and nothing else was closed that the park could have closed because of limited staff like the Skyway or Log Flume.

CoasterDemon's avatar

^Ahhh... I see.

^^Mike, your reply was left at 1:38PM. Make a wish! Misfits song, Raven-Phile's Misfits cover band name; THX1138; the stormtrooper in Star Wars. All good stuff ;) Perfect for Halloween.

I will get back to SFGAdventure again, hopefully sooner than later. Skull Mountain was always a kick butt ride! I recently saw a new picture of Rolling Thunder and it was racing! I've never seen that in person.


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