Kings Island & Stricker's Grove - Sat-Sun, August 9-10, 2014

Friday, August 15, 2014 2:39 PM

My trip's finale was Kings Island, and BeastBuzz! Between that, and not having been to KI in 4 years, it was a fantastic day and great way to cap things off.

  • Like many, Banshee is my new favorite invert. What a great ride. Forceful yet not overly so, the pacing is excellent, and the train just hauls through the entire course. After the other inversions, the last roll is a sweet change-up and something I eagerly anticipated with each lap. With no pre-drop, that first drop really pulls you towards the back. The moderate theming is also well done, from the fogged entrance sign, the tombstones, the station design & lighting, etc.
  • I completely missed the entrance last visit, so this was my first time on The Bat. Probably the fastest of its type that I've ridden, a good amount of swinging too.
  • Adventure Express is good fun and a bit quicker than I remember! The two in front of me hadn't ridden before, which is always priceless when you exit the last hill....
  • Diamondback is still one of my favorite B&M hypers. My legs got misted a couple times on the splashdown, no complaints!
  • As few working effects as there are on Backlot Stunt Coaster, it's still more than the Kings Dominion version.
  • You can see a lot of action from the Eiffel Tower, including (essentially) Banshee's entire layout.
  • Last but definitely not least: The Beast! The nearly full moon just made those night rides all the sweeter. The ending helix gets the love but my favorite section is the middle, starting with the long tunnel after the brake shed....several blissful seconds of total darkness.

Or at least, KI would've been the finale if not for Stricker's Grove. As some know it's only open to the public a few days a year. I guess word gets out though, besides some CB'ers I ran into one couple from Great Britain and one from Germany. The two woodies are definitely attended to and well cared for. Teddy Bear is a slightly tamer Woodstock Express (KI/KD). Tornado is moderately more intense, save for one element in the middle that is positively wicked and totally unexpected given the rest of the layout! Both use buzz bars. They also have a few flats, including some spinny ride I'd never seen before called Tip Top. Circular platform with individually spun cars (a la teacups) but every so often the whole platform tilts upwards....I was grinning but very dizzy after this one! Don't have a good pic of my own but did google this one. The bathroom was far more modern than one would expect.

Hotel mini-review: Negative. Red Roof Inn & Suites in Mason, a few miles south of KI (exit 19). When I got back to my room after BeastBuzz, my room wasn't fully made. OK, I guess housekeeping never finished, I can deal with that. But since they never finished, the door to my room was unlatched and open. For hours (I assume). Anyone could've walked in and stolen my stuff -- my computer was in there too -- and the room had no safe. Very thankful that I wasn't missing anything, but an absolutely inexcusable offense -- the manager agreed, took down my contact info, and looked up whoever did my room that day. Some reassurance other guests won't encounter what I did would've be nice, but I never heard back.

Last edited by VTFanatic330, Friday, August 15, 2014 3:19 PM
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