Tuesday, August 7, 2001 12:23 PM
Having arrived in Wildwood late on Wednesday night, we headed out to the boardwalk and Morey's Piers on Thursday. First off was Mariner Landing (the middle pier). The hotel that we were staying at had vouchers for the "Vacation Passes" and we got a 3 day pass for 90$ each. Sounds steep, but we looked at ticket prices at $0.75 each, and we figured that it was more economical to buy the pass.
Since we were at Mariner's Landing, we figured we would hit what we wanted to there before moving on to Wild Wheels (the lower pier which does not open until 2pm on weekdays). Being a sucker for dark rides, first thing we spotted was the "Dark River" so we hit that. A funky little dark ride you go through in boats. Not long or scary, it was a dark ride none the less so we had to do it. Right next door was Rollie's Coaster so we took a spin on that for the count. After that it was on to Sea Serpent. I am not really that fond of Vekoma Boomerangs (they scare me for some reason) but it was here, there was no line, so we just had to do it. We walked around a bit and looked at all of the flat rides but it was nearing 2pm so we headed down to Wild Wheels.
Of the three piers, Wild Wheels is the least interesting, with the exception of Great White. However, what we hit first was the "Jersey Junkyard" dark ride. As with "Dark River", this was a short ride through, but again, it's a dark ride, so we need to ride it!
The first coaster here that we hit was the little Doo Whopper wild mouse. My wife's second wild mouse, she kept asking "is it safe?" as we did the hairpin turns and looked like we were going to go flying off the sides.
Then it was on to Great White. Fresh from being beat up by Hercules at Dorney Park the previous week, my wife decided to sit this coaster out. So up the ramp I went. Waiting for the last seat, I did have a one train wait. I thought it was a fun coaster, just what I expected. When I got off, my wife was talking to a man in a Morey's shirt. He was with the maintenance crew of Great White. He pointed out where they recently added adjustable braces between the track rails to allow them to keep the track the same gauge (he said they were having some problems with that). He went on to explain how they walk the coaster everyday and do periodic inspections as the day goes on. Hearing that we were from Pennsylvania, he said that his crew had a trip scheduled to Hersheypark to see how they maintain their wooden coasters. Another man who was on the same train I was reported into this man at the bottom of the ramp… "She sounds good and is moving fast. A little rougher than normal on the first turn, but nothing to worry about." Nice to k now that they take care of their coasters like any top rated amusement park. After this it was two more rides on Great White for me (front seat and third seat).
My wife then got me to do something I never liked to do… I rode the sky ride. Morey's has a monster of a sky ride. Not that tall compared to some (only around 100ft) but it seems so much more higher considering that your feed dangle free! This is not your typical amusement park sky ride, but rather a sky lift style! Anyway, after a few minutes, I released my grip on the restraint bar and actually looked around. It gave a great view of Great White… practically going right over the lift hill.
Up next was a fun little maze that we went through twice. The first time we would up going through the "Chicken Exit" so we went back in determined to find the real exit. The last thing we hit at Wild Wheels was "The Mummy's Curse in 3-D". From the out side it looked like one of those old Cinema 180 domed type theaters, but what it actually was was a dark walk through! Practically everything in side was simply painted on the walls (like an Egyptian tomb), but you wore 3-D glasses and it gave a very weird appearance. It was a unique dark walk through that I thought was very fun (my wife on the other hand thought differently as those air horns that we encountered scared her every time).
We then headed back up to Mariner's Landing and took on some of the flat rides. We teamed up and wreaked havoc with the little kids riding the bumper cars. The most unique flat that was there was something called Maelstrom. Not sure how to describe it… it looks like a claw with 24 seats arranged in groups of 4. They look like B&M coaster seats. Anyway, this thing starts to spin, lifts you in the air, and turns you upside down while spinning! I looked drunk when I came off staggering and trying to get my balance back. Aside form Sea Serpent, the other stand out ride at Mariners Landing is the huge Ferris Wheel. I estimate the thing to be nearly 150' tall. Not liking heights, I was a bit nervous, but was surprised how smooth and sturdy it felt.
The final two things we hit I forget the names of. One is a pedal type of monorail where you sit in duck shaped cars and travel around the water park. The vehicles are armed with water cannons and you shoot at targets along the way and also visitors at the water park (but beware, they shoot back). The other is a suspended monorail type of thing where you ride in boat shaped cars and just take a leisurely ride over the water park.
On the board walk, at the entrance of the pier, we stopped for some Curley's French Fries. Anyone familiar with Hershey or Ocean City MD will appreciate it when I say that they were some of the best fries I ever ate, even better than Bricker's (Hersheypark Arena) or Thrashers (Ocean City MD boardwalk).
It was now nearing 6pm and we had our dog with us on vacation (we found a "pet friendly" hotel in North Wildwood so he was enjoying a nice air conditioned hotel room) so we had to get back to take him out and let him do what dogs need to do (you all know what I mean).
We did not hit Morey's Pier (the upper pier) as it is pretty far up the board walk (the old Dinosaur Beach pier actually sits between it and the lower two piers. This was going to be on our agenda for the following day.
"I wasn't always this cynical, but then I started kindergarden..."