Love Thread: Knott's Berry Farm and GhostRider (haters stay away)

Thursday, March 24, 2005 4:49 PM
Knott's as been catching a lot of flack from "coaster enthusiasts" recently and I think it is njustifyable. "GhostRider is to rough, They only run one train on Xcelerator, wa wa wa wa." Seriously these people need to shut up because they are being so overdramtic about it. For this reason I propose a love thread for knott's. I want to say people may think GhostRider is rough, I call it demanding so It earns a spot tied for my #1 coaster on the planet because of it's amazing airtime, its amazing pacing, and its amazing structure. I live 400 miles away from Knott's an only can go for the Winter Coaster Solace once a year, so I don't look at the negatives of the park like the frequent visitors do, I look at the positives. When you do that, knott's really is a great park, AMAZING coasters, good food, the people are friendly (at least friendlier than most Six Flags) and you know what it is just a damn cool park, It also has the best theming in the Cedar Fair chain, seriously the theming of Michigan's Adventure is "giant walk ways, a small lake and some rides."
Thursday, March 24, 2005 5:12 PM
Mamoosh's avatar Having marathoned on GR during Solace and also ridden it the weekend prior I think its running better than it has since opening, especially the always-troublesome first drop.

Xcelerator was running one train due to some unexpected maintenance issues. What do people want the park to do, run the ride unsafely?

Is Knotts a perfect park? No. But its a great place for families and thrillseekers to have a nice day.

Thursday, March 24, 2005 5:22 PM
janfrederick's avatar Moosh is the first to reply...go figure. ;)
"I go out at 3 o' clock for a quart of milk and come home to my son treating his body like an amusement park!" - Estelle Costanza
Thursday, March 24, 2005 6:00 PM
Soggy's avatar I too am perplexed by the recent smack-talk about Ghostrider's roughness. It's my personal #2 coaster and it would take something really dramatic to knock it off that spot for me. Even a really "smooth" woodie is bumpy, so what the heck? GR still runs with no trim brakes, no midcourse brakes and gets great attention by the maintainance staff. What's not to like?

Pass da' sizzrup, bro!

Thursday, March 24, 2005 6:02 PM
Robocoaster's avatar Knott's is great. SB is sublime, GR rocks, Xcelerator was a rush, and Monty is an absolute blast! I was very impressed with the flats, and the food was reasonable priced and good to boot.
Plus, where else will can you hear a ride op use the term "gloryhole" with a straight face, and in a family setting as well! :)

They Live. We Sleep.

Thursday, March 24, 2005 6:54 PM
nasai's avatar It needs new wheels.

The Flying Turns makes all the right people wet - Gonch

Thursday, March 24, 2005 7:02 PM
Moosh, the first year I'd ridden Ghostrider was in late 2002, but I think it was simply FLYING during the night ERT's, In my opinion that is the way a wooden coaster should be, lots of drops, lots of airtime, and lots of turns. I agree, the first drop was the smoothest I'd ever experienced on it this year. Also no one will ever hear me complain about a one train operation on Xcelerator because I beleive that the second train doesn't increase the capacity hardly at all. The second just stops in the station when the first train is roaring into the brake run..... As long as it is running, I'm happy.
Thursday, March 24, 2005 7:04 PM
Where else can you see the three biggest thrill rides involve phallic objects? ;)

Xcelerator, Supreme Scream, and the Bullet- the sign, the keychain, the merchandising... schloves it! =D


Thursday, March 24, 2005 7:36 PM
Monte's back spike, GR night rides, Boysenberry pie...

Knott's Rocks!! :)

"Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the President to explain to us what the exit strategy is." --Texas Governor George W. Bush, April 9, 1999, on the US intervention in Kosovo
Thursday, March 24, 2005 7:42 PM
Toss me on the list. Granted, I've only been to the park once (and Xcelerator was down for restraint modifications) but I found it to be a very nice place- the true star of the Cedar Fair chain, if you ask me.

Ghostrider is a Top 10 wood coaster. I didn't find it rough at all- just insanely powerful and very long. Jaguar is a cool family steel coaster and how could anyone not love Montezooma's Revenge? The dominant wild west theming was extremely well done- detailed but not at all overbearing- and it was tough to find a view that was less than beautiful. The ride ops were friendly, the prices were decent and there was no sign of uncontrolled line jumping.

A near-perfect blend of traditional park and theme park if you ask me, and one of the better reasons for me to get back to Southern California (mOOSH being at the top of that list).

Thursday, March 24, 2005 9:50 PM
ShiveringTim's avatar I've been to the last three Solaces and spent most of my time there on Ghostrider. This year was without a doubt the best Ghostrider has run. It's not rough, it's intense. Now only if the crew that performed it's refurb can come here to Ohio to work on GR's cousin in Aurora :)
Scott - Proud Member of The Out-Of-Town Coaster Weirdos
Thursday, March 24, 2005 9:58 PM
nasai's avatar

nasai said:
It needs new wheels.

Hey, they said haters stay away. ;)

Rob - I loves the Ghostie!

Thursday, March 24, 2005 10:35 PM
Ghostrider is running great this year. And I find it funny that since Solace, most of the haters have kept quiet. It's easy to hate on Knott's when you know not many others enthisiasts have been to the park to rebuff what your saying.

I think the park is in great condition, and the workers were curtious and even having some fun. Good times.

Thursday, March 24, 2005 11:36 PM
Well I got to go to KBF for my first time ever back in Janurary BEFORE they shut down GR for it's annual maintenance and I LOVED GR!!! It was an awesome ride!

Honestly, I am oblivious to why anyone would 'hate' this ride, and I have been on a LOT of coasters....

Fever I really enjoy the Simpsons. It's just a shame that I am starting to LOOK like Homer.
Friday, March 25, 2005 1:36 AM
Ghostrider is currently my 5th all time favorite coaster . . . and it takes a lot for a wooden coaster to please me. The second part of the ride is one of the most intense, out of control feeling I have had on a coaster. Knotts . . . no place like it. For me it is the star of the SoCal parks.
Friday, March 25, 2005 2:18 AM
Mamoosh's avatar The dominant wild west theming was extremely well done

Um, Rob. Ghost Town isn't theming. All those buildings are real and moved from actual former boom towns.

Friday, March 25, 2005 4:53 AM
Ok, I won't be a Knott's "hater", but as an "enthusiast", some things do need to be said.

I understand that Solace Xcelerator ERT was only one train. For that I would even ask "why?", since it went to two train operation later on during that same day (after the park opened to the public), and even stayed that way until closing. That's not "hating", that's legitimately questioning a decision that really doesn't seem to make sense, given that the enthusiasts were expected to arrive at the Solace event, before the park, opened, for the scheduled Xcelerator ERT.

Talking about Ghostrider--I like the laterals, I like when it feels like the train is crashing onto the track after floating airtime, and I like the overall feeling that the train is trying to fly off the track as the ride continues to get faster and faster after that scenic turn. But even then, an excessively rattling train (:cough:Copper:cough:) can accentuate the already rough ride into a ride that is just a bit uncomfortable--especially when it causes a sharper than usual collision with the lapbar during a pop of airtime, ouch that does hurt!

Finally, for the park's "good food"--if you mean the Mrs. Knott's Chicken Dinner Restaurant, Ghost Town Grill, or the outdoor mini version of Ghost Town Grill known as Fireman's BBQ, then I would agree... but only for those three. Otherwise, given the overall quality of the rest of the food in the park, I'll just get "Chips and Cheese" from the Fiesta Dogs stand, as the rest of the food seems--to me--to be generic at best.

As for friendlyness, that also varies from ride to ride. I've encountered some very annoying behavior with Silver Bullet, and a few times I've ridden Riptide, the operators there seemed to have a very noticeable, almost bossy, attitude.

So, I can understand not wanting to constantly criticize Knott's and nothing more, but criticism supported by anecdotes or facts certainly isn't "hating".

Friday, March 25, 2005 7:28 AM
I also have Ghostrider in my top 10. I've been
to Knotts twice and found it a great family park. Both times I've purchased season passes
for the kids price (special around $63). This allowed me to leisurely visit the park with my family. Considering Great Adventure is my home park, we found Knotts a better balance of thrill and family. We also used our passes
at Cedar Point and Dorney Park, making it a great deal.
Friday, March 25, 2005 10:45 AM
Kick The Sky's avatar Knott's, hands down, is my favorite park. I've only been out there twice, but I've already grown to love the park almost as if it was a home park to me.

So, what is it that makes me love Knott's so much? Is it the rides? Knott's has some wonderful rides, but there ain't a lot of 'em. Truth be told, if it was just about the rides, I have a park full of awesome coasters and other assorted rides just 60 miles to the south of me in the form of Six Flags Great America.

Great America is actually part of my answer, though. Great America, in it's younger days, had a certain charm to it. You can still see bits and pieces of it today, but most of it has been eaten away by the vultures that are Six Flags. Knott's hasn't lost that charm. The employees all seem to be very friendly and willing to strike up a conversation with you. They are genuinely interested when they find out that you just flew 2000 miles to come to their park. Many of the employees are not unmotivated teenagers like you see at most parks, but retirees with a work ethic that is long gone.

The charm of Knott's extends into the "details" that make up the park. This is the stuff you miss if you hit the park for a few hours, marathon the coasters, and go on to the next park. My last visit to Knott's was for three straight days and I never got bored. There are things like the Calico Mine Ride, whose animatronics inspired Disney. There's the Timber Mtn Log Flume, where if you raise your hands during the ride it tells you to "sit down" several times. There's the train ride where you get robbed half way through the ride. There's the only operating stagecoach ride in the world. There's little details like the beating heart grave and the baby rattlers(thanks Moosh for pointing that one out).

Then there's the theming. Most of the park has the ghost town/western/mexican theme and it pulls it off well without being over the top. Where else can you take in a burlesque show, pan for gold, take a ride on a stage coach, or watch a blacksmith make horseshoes? The theming on Calico and Timber Mtn is fun and whimsical and still a bit awe inspiring, despite being years old.

Then there's the food. You can't visit Knott's without getting some famous Mrs. Knott's fried chicken. Let's not forget the boysenberry punch and those yummy biscuits with Knott's jelly. Sure, some of the other food int he park is a bit lacking, but there are standouts if you know where to look. Most parks don't even have a standout.

Then there are the shows. I've only been to two of the mainstream shows, so I cannot comment as much on this. I did the Snoopy show, which was pretty decent, and the Mystery Lodge, which is a show you cannot miss, no matter what. The special effects in that show just blew me away. I did do Haunt on my last visit, however, and that was the best halloween event I have been to in or out of an amusement park. Lots of fun. The Hanging was excellent. The various houses were really good. The sliders scared the crap out of me a couple of times.

Finally, back to the rides. They have, what is in my humble opinion, the best rocket coaster I've ridden(I only rode TTD and Xcel thus far). Monte is a great ride to power ride and brings back wonderful memories of Tidal Wave for me. Ghostie is fun, intense, and has some wicked moments of airtime. It's not my top woodie, but it's up there. I missed Silver Bullet by about a month on my last visit, so now opinion there. It looked like a pretty awesome layout, though. I do know that Riptide was a winner of an installation, though. It was one of the highlights of my last trip. I will concede that a ride whore will quickly get bored if they come in to power ride stuff. It comes down to one salient fact, which I will end my rant on...

Knott's is a place to relax and enjoy, and not a place to commando.

Certain victory.

Friday, March 25, 2005 10:58 AM
I think that both Knotts and Ghostrider are great. When we were there in the very early 2004 offseason(like the first few day of January), everything was open and running well. The staff was very friendly (including giving us tips on how to best enjoy Xcelerator) and the park was very clean and neat looking. This was in direct contrast to Magic Mountain, which only had half the coasters running, didn't run them to capacity at all, and charged $3.00 for what amounted to a dixie cup full of hot cocoa. When we go back, I know which park is going to get more of my attention.

Ghostrider is a top ten or close to it coaster for me. It's a very aggressive and a wild ride. Just the kind I like. I told my wife after we first rode it, that now I know what it feels like to ride a bucking bronco. That's how wild it is.


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