Knott's Berry Farm 5/2-5/5 - LONG

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Friday, May 9, 2003 7:19 AM
Thanks to the great help (and coupon) from Mamoosh, we arrived at the Knott's Radisson on 4/30, but didn't hit the park until 5/2. For part one (Disneyland, 5/1), see here. This was my first time staying on property at any park, and well worth it. What a joy to wake up and see the back half of GhostRider out of your hotel window!

Friday, 5/1

While the missus was getting the kids ready I quick walked over to process my season pass (as I have a CP and a VF trip planned later this year). The gal at the desk was really nice, and when she heard my address, she instantly said, "You're going to use this at CP later, aren't you?". Word of the 420 monster is sure getting around.

Into the park at opening, we headed straight for Xcelerator. I gave my wife the honor of getting on the first train of the day, while I stood next to the launch with the kids. "Look kids, here goes Mommy!". WHOOSH! The train goes flying by. When she gets off, the grin is stretching from ear to ear. Now it's my turn. Thanks to Cedar Fair's "Parent Swap" policy, I just walk up the exit ramp and tell the operator, and I get on the next train.

Thinking I'll get the most air, I take the back seat on the newly red train (the only one running that day). I climb into the familiar Intamin seat, and push my hips a couple of inches forward, preparing for the staple I'd read so much about. Surprisingly, I get just a light push and then a thumbs up. Here we go.....

3....2....1......SLB! (SeeyaLaterBye!)

Xcelerator
Highs: The best launch I've felt yet, the heavenly top hat air, the cool hot rod themeing (I am from Detroit, after all), and the neat left hand-chopper from the new support brace.
Lows: After all of the beatifully themed queues I stood in at Disney, the concrete and silver rails were oh-so-spartan.
The Verdict: If I could have one ride in my backyard, this would be it!

After our morning dose of adrenalin, we head towards Camp Snoopy for the kids. But on the walk over, Daddy gets to hit....

Montezooma's Revenge
Highs: For being 25 year-old tech, the flywheel launch does NOT give up much to Xcelerator's.
Lows: Since the launch was cranked up, I didn't get any mid-loop air like I thought I might.
The Verdict: Still a great punch from a classic steel design.

On to Camp Snoopy, where I was VERY impressed by the size, number, and quality of the things for little kids to do. If Disney was all about characters, Knott's is all about kids rides. My daughter had an absolute blast! She's at 37" tall, so it was like Camp Snoopy was tailor made for her. She rode a ton of stuff.

After some lunch and more rides, the kids started rubbing their eyes about 1:30. Rather than power them through like the previous day at Disney, we simply got our hand stamps and walked back to the hotel. BTW, the path back goes right under GhostRider, and every time my daughter squealed with glee that we were walking under the roller coaster. She kept saying she wanted to ride it. That's my girl! Well, both the kids and the missus wanted to nap, so I got 2 hours to play on my own. Yeehah!

All morning, GhostRider had been closed as they were filming on the ride. As I'm walking back into the park, I hear the familiar clickety-clack of the lift chain. So, I head over and get a front seat ride on....

GhostRider
Highs: A great, twisted course that keeps you guessing.
Lows: Slow line, a little rougher than I like
The Verdict: Rides like this are slowly converting me into a wood fan.

After that I headed to the boardwalk area and catch a ride on...

Boomerang
Highs: Funky paint job
Lows: Funky paint job
The Verdict: Your typical Vekoma boomerang with atypical decoration

Then it was three more hot laps on Xcelerator. Because of the light crowds and single train operation, I literally got on every other launch. As I varied my seating position, I found that I like seat 1-2 the best. The front is where you get the best pop air air going over the top, yet in 1-2, you get a better view, as the people in front deflect a lot of air so that your eyes aren't filling up with tears. After my laps, I walk over to hit....

Jaguar!
Highs: Long layout, neat Aztec pyramid station, going through Monte's loop.
Lows: A little rougher than I expected for a steel "family" style coaster.
The Verdict: Proof that you don't need tall hills or high speeds to make a neat ride.

I then went back and caught three more laps on Xcelerator before nap time was up, and that was the end of my day.

Sunday, 5/3

As my wife's old college friends were coming to the hotel at 11:30 and the park opened at 10:00, I got a chance to spend more time in the park. I also got a chance to meet up with and say thank you to Mamoosh, who got us the great hotel rate. This was the first time I've got to meet one of my fellow 'Buzzers!

The first thing we hit was GhostRider, where Matthew steered me towards the back car. Man, what a difference! The back had way more air, and was much more enjoyable. As we walked by it, he also recommended the log flume, and I'm glad he did. I was very impressed by the length of the ride, and the large amount of themeing. I look forward to taking my kids on this one when they're older.

Next, it was over to Xcelerator, where we put in three more laps. It was nice, cause I got to ride the purple train as well. To cap our time, we headed back for one more lap on GhostRider, where we actually got the back seat this time.

On this ride was where I felt what I will never forget, as long as I live. After the turn-around and MCBR, the drop off literally ejected by butt completely off of the seat. It was the most unexpected, gut-wrenching, scary, heavenly moment of ejector air I've ever experienced. Thanks for pushing us to hold out for that last seat, Moosh! (BTW, there was no fall-out from getting back to my room 15 minutes late! ;))

Monday 5/5

Before hitting our evening flight, my son wasn't feeling too well and crashed out for a morning nap. My daughter was bouncing off the walls, so my wife said "Why don't you take her on a couple of rides for an hour?". What a great idea!:)

So back over to the park, where my daughter hit her favorites, which this time included a go on GR8 SK8. Definitely a fun litttle ride, but I had to hold her head in my hands to keep her from bumping her mouth on the lap bar! Since I had read the report, I kept envisioning being on the top of the Stratosphere tower. That'll be a scary-a$$ ride! For our last ride I actually got on....

Timberline Twister
Highs: A nice little layout surrounded by pine tree
Lows: The worst stapling I have every experienced.
The Verdict: I'm still singing soprano from the lap bar. Folks, the max height restriction is there for a reason.

All in all, I had a fabulous time at Knott's, and I would highly recommed it as a great park for families with small kids. Lots to do for all ages. Once again, I'd like to give a great amount of thanks to Mamoosh. Being on property, so reasonably priced, just made the experience the best!

Later,
EV
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Remember that if you're one in a million, that means that there are 5000 other people on Earth, just like you.

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Friday, May 9, 2003 7:38 AM

EchoVictor said:


After the turn-around and MCBR, the drop off literally ejected by butt completely off of the seat.

Ah yes, 'The drop.' Now, if you liked that one, get yourself to Big Chief's and experience 'THE DROP' on Cyclops. It's like Ghostie's, but twenty times more intense. You'll love it.

Thanks for posting the nice TRs, Eric.


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Friday, May 9, 2003 7:45 AM
Big Chief's is on my to-do list for that very reason! :)

I've actually been by there several times, but always in the off season :(

Later,
EV
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Remember that if you're one in a million, that means that there are 5000 other people on Earth, just like you.

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Friday, May 9, 2003 1:15 PM
Nice trip reports. I hope to ride Xcelerator (since I rode Hypersonic - the other "xtreme launch") before I ride TTD. Did you get a chance to ride Perilous Plunge? I haven't ridden that ride either.

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When was the last time you drove 251 km/h (156 mph)?

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Friday, May 9, 2003 1:31 PM
It was great meeting you, EV! Good to hear your "better half" wasn't angry - she sure sounded like it on the phone ;) Good thing you had those two previous calls to back up you'd attempted to tell her you were running a little late.

And yer welcome for the coupon! I was happy to help.

Moosh [who wonders how the myth of Moosh differed from the reality of meeting me in person....]

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"I don't like poop singers." Peabody, discussing American Idol.

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