Knott's Winter Coaster Solace 3/1/03

Associated parks:
None

Sunday, March 2, 2003 7:13 PM
On Friday, we arrived at 4:00. The park was closing in 2 hours, so I had to get my annual pass. A banner was hung Above Grand Ave. right where Ghostrider is, and it said “Welcome Coaster Enthusiasts”, and I found it to be cool. The line to get Annual Passes wasn’t that long, but there were only 2 people working it, and I felt sorry for them because they had to work extremely hard. After an hour and 15 minutes of waiting, we finally got into the park. We decided we’d go over to Ghostrider, and we got 2 rides on it before the park closed to the public. Ghostrider was running rougher than I expected, but it was still an awesome 2 rides.

Saturday, we woke up at around 5:30, and went to go get some breakfast. We arrived at the park at 6:30, and got our tickets, and we were placed in group E. They gave you a laminated pass you hang around your neck, which has your group’s schedule, and you use it as a pass to get by security for the night’s ERTs. We also got a little paper that was like a brochure telling us about all the coaster (past and present) stats

The gates opened, and our first tour was Xcelerator. We went up into the station, and our guide (who was awesome, and very funny) showed us the train, told us about how mechanisms in the lap bar, and other stuff, and then they took us to the control room with the logic gates. As we were walking back there, there was a whole bunch of black junk on the ground, and it was from the pusher, which has a nylon pad it slides with. They then took us to the room with the launch mechanisms. Because of the large group we had to split up into 2 smaller groups. He then explained to us how the launch worked, and it was very interesting, yet I got a little confused because it was so complicated.

The tour ran a little long, and we had to rush over to the Ghostrider tour. There we picked up our shirts, which were very cool. They are black, and have a drawing of ghostrier on the front, as well as the WCS logo, and has in giant writing on the back “COOL COOL PLACE”, and a picture of Xcelerator, Perilous Plunge, Supreme Scream, and Ghostrider. Our tour guide for the Ghostrider tour was the worst out of the three. Not saying he was bad, but he talked soft, and with that many people it was hard to hear at times. He took us to the wood shop where they keep all the nuts, bolts, nails, spare lap bars, and some other stuff. He then walked us around the base of the helix, and took us past Joe Cool’s Gr8 Sk8, and then he took us to the shop where the storage track goes to, and we saw the silver train in pieces. After that he took us to the motor room under the lift. That was basically the tour, and up next was the last of our tours, the Montezooma’s Revenge Tour.

This tour was the shortest of all of the three. The tour started by him taking us to the launch mechanism. He showed us all the components, like the clutch, and flywheel. He did a very good job at making sure we could hear him, which was a hard feat since Jaguar was roaring nearby. He waited while we took pictures, and even let us climb on it, but he didn’t recommend it because it was dirty (no one did). He then took us under the track, and under the station to the control room. He then took us onto the station where we could ask any questions. Since it was the last tour, people had a lot of questions, and I learned a lot of interesting things. Some of them for instance was that one time Montezooma got stuck in the loop. They were attempting to short shoot it, and it shot a little too short. It also vallied between the loop and the first spike twice (unintentionally), but they have a cable they can hook it to, and haul it up the first spike, like Boomerang. Another thing is that the train they are running is the rollercoaster’s second train, and the third one is in pieces, and being rehabbed, he said what happened to the first one, but I didn’t hear. Also he explained about how they have the option of 2 modes for the ride, the “long mode” where the train goes far up the back spike, or the “short mode” where it is braked, and only goes up the back spike a little.

After this tour, the park was about to open, so I took advantage of the ERT’s. First I went on boomerang. I like the new color scheme better than the older one, and I think it is one of the better boomerangs out there. There is one thing though, it goes up the back spike so ssssssslllllllllooooooooooowwwwwww, much slower than the other ones I have been on, and now it slows to a creep at the top, and pauses before letting go, before it was that you went backwards, not slowing at the top, and you didn’t know when you were going to drop, then all of a sudden you drop.

Next I got three awesome rides on Supreme Scream. The employees here, as well as practically everywhere else were very nice, and energetic. The drop no matter how many times I go on it, I still manage to get a little nervous at the top, and laugh the whole way down.

Xcelerator was about to open, but instead of waiting I went to go on Perilous Plunge since it was nice out (no one else went). The restraint’s design suck, and the employees were nice, and helped out if you didn’t understand. The restraints aren’t bad; I didn’t really notice them that much. The drop is insane, and I got soaked, except for my back, which was firmly against the seat (they make sure you can barely lean forward).

After Perilous Plunge, we decided to go to Xcelerator. One thing I noticed that was weird. The person in front of me (barely) got his seat belt fastened, but that wasn’t good enough. They needed a little bit of room I guess on the end of the belt, so the girl (she was very sweet and explained everything (too bad I didn’t get her name)) tried her hardest. When that didn’t work, she called Chris (I am almost sure that was his name), and at first Chris didn’t hear her, so another girl (also very nice) came and tried. Chris finally came and he succeeded, and the whole station cheered, and we were off. The launch is very good, as well as the top hat, but the over banks don’t do much for me. Still a very good ride.

We then went to the Timber Mountain Log Ride. I really like this one, it is one of my favorites, it is long, and the scenes are kind of cool. The second time the water fake out didn’t turn off fast enough, and got the people in front of us wet. I also love the sound it makes as it does down drops, a sort of a whirring sound.

Next we went to the Calico Mine Ride. Even though most people find it today low tech, and cheesy, I still like it. Our conductor was good, but the jokes were cheesy (like “oh no danger ahead! I know I will make it, but I don’t know about you folks, but don’t worry, I’ll be thinking about ya! “.

After the ride, I realized I had missed the 10:30 group photo at Xcelerator (it was 10:40). After rushing back to Xcelerator, we decided to go over to Montezooma. Great ride. From the way the guide was talking about it on the tour, Knott’s really likes this ride, and (I assume) probably won’t be getting rid of it soon. It is supposed to go from 0-55 in 4 seconds, but it was more like 2 seconds because the pusher (they called it a bob on the tour) let go around halfway down the launch track.

After a few more rides on Montezooma we rode Hat Dance. It was hard to get it to start spinning, but man did it spin like crazy. The sombrero was making weird noises (which I never heard it make). After a couple of pictures of the construction for Revolution (well preparation for construction), we went to Jaguar, I sat in the back, and it provided a wilder ride than I remember (however not that wild). Still a great ride for families. After jaguar, we went to Ghostrider, where we met some fellow coaster enthusiasts, and had a great talk.

After two rides on Ghostrider, it was time for lunch. The buffet they had was great. There was chicken, biscuits, potatoes, cherry rhubarb appetizer, boysenberry pie. apple pie. corn, gravy, and some other things. Because the main room was so full, I had to go to a smaller room. All the tables were full except there was this guy Daniel who was by himself. We decided to sit by him, and had a great conversation (we were there for 1.5 hours talking). Elvis Snoopy was there doing some impressions, and meeting people. They were showing a video in the main room, but I didn’t get to see it. The food was great, and I really enjoyed talking to Daniel, he was very cool.

It was around 2 o’clock so we decided to go to Mystery Lodge. I had never seen it before, so I didn’t know what to expect. I liked it, I thought it was deeper than most other parks shows which are just singing and dancing. Speaking of dancing, frequently during the day they had line dancing going on at Calico Square, and it was very interesting seeing a mob of people trying to dance in sync.

We decided next to go to ::horror music plays:: Kingdom of the Dinosaurs. The wait was 10 minutes, and the employees were very nice. In between trains, they would ask us how our day is, and he would answer questions. They were only loading two trains, which means we only had to stop once, and listen to that stupid spiel on dinosaurs, which was hard to hear. I used to like Kingdom of the Dinosaurs, it wasn’t the best (especially compared to Bear-y Tales) and it had no line, and was a nice relaxing ride. Now it is just stupid, and they should do something with it.

For the next couple of hours, we went on some more rides, and some more flats (Hammerhead, Wave swinger, etc.) and in every single one the employees were very energetic, very nice, and very cool.

I was surprised at how many employees didn’t know what the Winter Coaster Solace was, I expected a lot more of them to know. Also it was funny how many people thought we were employees with our Knott’s WCS shirts, and our WCS badges around our necks, I found it to be funny. The park was closing, so we decided to hang out by the front of the park (since we were there), and watched people leave. We then promptly went strait to Montezooma for are ERT, which was scheduled to start at 10:30, but started way early. There was no one there, (like 4 other people), and while the employees were nice, they weren’t exceptional. It might have been because no one was there, or because it was early in the ERT, but I never went back to check them out again.

After 3 rides, we decided to go to Ghostrider. This was the place to be. The employees were great. They cheered, slapped hands as we left, and were just great. All of the other Enthusiasts were very cool also, we slapped hands as we left, and everyone was cheering as we left, and came back. Ghostrider was really hauling tonight. The first half was faster, but the second half was really kicked up, the drop off the MCB was faster, and had the huge airtime I loved, and we flew through the second half. I almost ended up bruised from all the laterals. After our 3rd ride as we came down the stairs, someone in my group told me that someone was calling me. We were already too far for me to go back and look who it was, so I hoped they would still be there when I came off again, but they weren’t. Hopefully I will find out someday who it was.

After 5 rides on Ghostrider, the roughness was getting to my head, so I decided to go to Boardwalk, and go to Supreme Scream, while the rest of went to Xcelerator. The Boardwalk was the comedy section. The Supreme Scream Employees were really cool; they were VERY energetic and tried very hard to get us pumped up. The guy who was at the gate was trying to tell us how great Supreme Scream is, and how it is better than Xcelerator, and saying how lucky we are to be here instead of Xcelerator, then he would yell to the Xcelerator employees how Supreme Scream is better. He also crated SNL Supreme Scream, which was weird, yet kind of funny. The guy in the control tower was making the stupidest jokes, yet I found them funny. Some of them were “On behalf of Knott’s Berry Farm, we’d like to wish you a Merry Christmas”, and “Thank you for riding Supreme Scream, and don’t forget to ride the Matterhorn”.

Next I got a few rides on Xcelerator. The employees here were also great. The woman in the control booth sang “if you’re happy and you know it, clap you hands ::hands clapping:: If you think I should go on TV and sing, clap you hands ::only a few hands clapping::, she would also say “ Have a great ride on the what” and everyone would scream “XCELERATOR”. No one was in the station, so we got multiple rerides.

There was only 15 mins left, and I got two more rides on Ghostrider. Hardly anyone was there so no hand slapping. I really wanted to get the Vertigo video, but the store was closed after I got done with Ghostrider. The employees were great and they thanked us for coming, and we all went home.

Overall, I had an great day, lines were short (longest line was 20 mins), employees were excellent, met some great people, the tours were great, and I just had one of the best times of our lives. Can’t wait for WCS 5.

Tomorrow I should have pictures posted. I would have it done today, but I just got back at 6, and I had to get pics developed , and I had to write this immediately (because I thought more pople would have Trip Reports posted (go figure)), and I just didn't have the time.

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Welcome one and all, y'all come have a ball!
Things a bear-y fine, ridin' on the old Knott's bear-y line!

*** This post was edited by MilleniumForce6279 3/3/2003 12:22:42 AM ***

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Sunday, March 2, 2003 7:30 PM
Wow. That is one of the best TRs I have read in a while- very well written.

It certainly sounds like you had a good time, and the tours seem like they were pretty interesting.

Thanks for writing!

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Xcelerator- Put the Pedal to the Metal!

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Monday, March 3, 2003 2:23 AM
Yes, Nice TR! I have been waiting for a Coaster Solace one all week and it sounds like a lot of fun. It makes me anticipate SRM even more.


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Sean Newman

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Monday, March 3, 2003 6:48 AM
Wow. Sounds pretty good. Honestly, I wasn't expecting much from Solace this year except to hang out with some friends. Unfortunately, I got paged by work and was stuck in the office for a while on Saturday.

Oh well. There's always next year.

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Monday, March 3, 2003 7:02 AM
Solace was my first visit to Knott's. I'll post a full report later, but let's just say I was blown away...

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--Greg, aka Oat Boy
My page
"Friendship -- more lasting than love, more legal than stalking."

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Monday, March 3, 2003 10:02 AM
Just got back into Cincinnati from Solace and I am still blown away by it.

Most memorable part was Xcelerator ERT. The woman working in the booth was from Camp Snoopy and was having a great time getting everyone in the station excited and pumped to ride. She started doing the Xceler-wave and if the wave was perfect the train got to be launched twice. She made an exception for one train and me and my friend made a face like "let us on" and because she thought we were unhappy she automatically let us go twice. Though the second time into the station the whole train chanted "one more time" and she let us go again.

Never riding Xcelerator before that day and riding it three times in a row.... in the front seat... HOLY CRAP.

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Chris Tyson
Photographer
www.pkiunlimited.com

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Monday, March 3, 2003 11:55 AM
I had an absolute blast the whole weekend, and Knott's has returned to full form. The ERT sessions were mindblowing, the food was great, and most everyone seemed to be having a great time(save for one young Acer woman, who seems to *live* for complaning about what she *didn't* get). Xcelerator and Ghostrider put on incredible shows Saturday night, and the ride ops(seemingly aware of the fallout from this past summer) were nothing short of stunning all weekend. Was this Knott's or Cedar Point? I haven't left a park that worn out and enthralled since SRM two years ago. Terrific!

Dweaver(who thnks some of the positive vibe even rubbed off on SFMM the next day).

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"Oh tell me why, do we build castles in the sky, oh tell me why, all the castles way up high".

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Monday, March 3, 2003 1:40 PM
It really was awesome. I am now working on getting pictures posted, (hopefully I should have them up soon if my computer cooperates) (some didn't turn out as well as I would have hoped) but some are better than none.

Good News ! i am currently updating my trip report on the site (it will be slightly more in-depth), and adding pictures. I am going to scan some of the solace stuff. and hopefully if I work hard, it will be up tonight.If not, look or it early tomorrow evening
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Welcome one and all, y'all come have a ball!
Things a bear-y fine, ridin' on the old Knott's bear-y line!
*** This post was edited by MilleniumForce6279 3/3/2003 11:18:40 PM ***

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Monday, March 3, 2003 6:32 PM
Xcellerator ERT was definetly the highlight of the solace for me. I had a bit of a headache that night and ghostrider was making me nauesous because of it so I hung out around xcellerator. It was like a party back there. The station was empty so rerides were many, and the person working the booth was just great, as were all of the employees. Can't wait for next year.
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I hope they kill that iron yuppie. Thinks he's so big. The great homer simspon
*** This post was edited by voldemort 3/3/2003 11:33:52 PM ***
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Wednesday, March 5, 2003 6:11 PM
http://www.geocities.com/ghostrider6279/WCS4.html

There it is. Sorry, I know it is Geocities, but it is free, and easy to work with. I only have a couple of pics up, but i have alot more ready, and they should be up in the next few days. They would have been up earlier, but I have been busier than I expected, and my computer was giving me crap yesterday.

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Welcome one and all, y'all come have a ball!
Things a bear-y fine, ridin' on the old Knott's bear-y line!
*** This post was edited by MilleniumForce6279 3/5/2003 11:12:05 PM ***

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