New England Sojourn Pt. 2 - Lake Compounce

Associated parks:
None

Wednesday, July 12, 2006 11:16 AM
Who: Me and Lady T
What: First visit to Lake Compounce
When: Monday July 3
Where: LC (no-duh)
Why: New experience
How: Automobile

Again, there will be random song titles peppered throught the TR

After a quite satisfying day at SFNE, we planned to visit Lake Compounce the next day. While strolling thru our hotel's lobby, we found a brochure for LC that also contained a map with listing of the major attractions. I awake Monday to find that Lady T did not pack a bathing suit, but would like to stop at Kohl's to pick up a "disposable" (i.e. not a great, but good enough to get by) swimsuit and take advantage of LC's waterpark. This slightly took me aback as,(begin stunning revelation) I've never been to a waterpark (/end stunning relevation). I got close once in Texas (Schlitterbahn) but passed at the last moment to to fatigue. No big deal though, as I *had* brought my swimming trunks (the shorts are just terribly comfortable and I wear them as regular shorts all the time).

So we stop by the same Denny's for breakfast and I go to the nearby AAA office to score the discount LC tickets while T goes into Kohl's (conviently, all three were in the same plaza). I catch up with her as she has found a nice "tankini" (which rung up at only 12bucks! due to mislabeling), purchase some beach towels and head off to the park.Again, I'm not familiar at all with the area so I had, beforehand, went to LC's website and got the "personalized directions". Well, the directions dont actually take you to the park *proper*. More like the directions lead you to a *SIGN* for the park, which you can then follow a series of signs to the parking toll booths. The best analogy I can give is being given directions to Cedar Point, but those directions end at the entrance to the causeway.

We pull up to the toll booth to pay our 5 dollar fee to park in a raggedy gravel lot(!), but for some reason, there are a whole bunch of people waiting to get in honking and generally being impatient. I still dont know why, as the kids taking the cash were working at a decent pace. Unfortunatly, they were out of change when I tried to pay with a twenty. So, instead of waiting I gave the girl 2 Washingtons and 3bucks worth of change. We get our maps, are ushered to a parking spot (all parks should have parking ushers!), and take the (not so short) hike to the main gate; pausing only for a mandatory pit stop and to lather up with sunscreen (yes, black people use sunscreen too :)).

I'll say this now, even though I didnt notice it till the end, the Main Gate area of the park is really nice. It reminds me of a castle facade with a clock tower and dancing dolls. Also, the Wilcat coasters 1st hill is lined up right with the tower and the DownTime S&S Turbo Drop) is *almost* lined up with them as well. And of course, you have the hill/mountain as a backdrop. Not a bad first impression of the park....too bad for me I completely missed it coming in as the morning coffee was begging to get out!

So we grab on of the big all day lockers, stow our gear,and I ask T, "What first?" She said (not me mind you) Boulder Dash. Great....okay, how do we get there? The layout of LC is a bit strange. The best way I can describe it is an elongated oval with an extension on either side. Kinda reminds me of a Texas Longhorns logo. On our way around, we pass the Wildcat coaster, but T urges me to press on.

With a little jaunt up the hill, we find ourselves in line for:

BOULDER DASH: (CCI Woodie 9.25/10)
It was about an hour after opening (maybe less) and the line seemed short to me. I noticed they were only running one train, but that was okay. The line itself is kinda weird as it has a split between front and back halves of the train...but the split is about 25 feet from where the sign *explainng* the reason for the split is. This caused a little confusion amoung guests. Not us though as we headed straight for the front seat. The ride was fast, likely perceived as faster than it really is due to the close terrain, but not very aggressive. Much like S:ROS from the day before, I thought it was good, top tier good, but not "T3H r0xorz!!!!11one". T, OTOH, liked it very much. She mentioned that she didnt know whether she liked BD more than Lightning Racer or not.


As the day progressed, they added the second train. We took a mid-day ride towards the back and then another front-seat ride and you could feel the difference between the two. The front was a smooth affair without a hint of roughness while the back rumbled across a couple of potholes. I remember having the concious thought that the coaster was very well cared for, though apparently, there are some who disagree :).

By nightfall, BD was bookin'! Since LC closed at 10pm that night, we got some true night rides in. On out first "dark ride' we took a front seater and started laughing as soon as we engaged the lift chain as it was so dark due to nightfall and the canopy of trees that you couldnt even see the crest. Boulder Dash is a great airtime filled ride with *just* enough lateral movement to keep you guessing. I've never ridden a woodie with a better sensation of speed throughout the ride (2nd half of Raven is close) and it's a top tier ride for me. At the end of the day, I'll still take The Legend's aggression and while BD may by measureable standards be *better* than Lightning Racer, LR is still slightly more *funner* (and definitely prettier with the chaser lights). After that though, BD holds its own with all the other woodies I've ridden.
SONG: Rocky Mountain High - John Denver

Back to a more chronological order, we left BD after that first ride and backtracked to:

WILDCAT (Schmeck-designed/Summers & Dinn rebuilt Woodie 6.5/10)


I just now, while writing this TR, checked RCDB for the pedigree of this ride and the feel of the coaster makes perfect sense in light of this lineage. The coaster, in appearance is very similar to SFNE's Thunderbolt. One thing that struck me here was no airgates. Rather, they just have Wild Wild West style swinging doors between the riders and the train. They also only let in a trainload of people at a time into the boarding station. We we lucky enough to score the backseat on our first ride (later, we were lucky to score the front seat 2/2!). The ride in the backseat was rough, shuffly, and just an all-around not good experience. Sure, there was air on the first drop, but that was about the last reedeming moment of the ride. The rest was characteristic "Dinn Shuffle". I'll admit, it was too painful, but it reminded me of Raging Wolf Bobs, the moments when it didnt shuffle, it didnt do *anything*. So why the so high score? Because of the later front seat ride. Like night and day, this coaster brought out the traits of both its creators. Though we werent in the Schmeck Seat"(TM- Adam S.), we still got the nce pops and gentle float the you often find on his rides. No violent pops like on Dorney Parks Thunderbolt, but good enough to be fun. On par with HersheyPark's Comet.
SONG: Beauty and the Beast - Celine Dion & Peabo Bryson

I think I'll mention here that they seemed to have a bunch of "Street Performances" just inside the maingate throughout the day. I saw one "Grease"-type 50's show, a juggling unicyclist, and a 'dance off' where they were trying to teach kids the electric slide. This was particularly funny as most people I know learned the electric slide at an early age due to going to weddings/anniversaries with their parents. Maybe that's a 'cultral difference' ;). Anyway, we bypass the roving street acts to encounter:

ZOOMERANG (Vekoma Boomerang 7/10)
This is more the common rating I'll give to boomers. This one was relatively smooth, using the roomier Vekoma trains as opposed to the Arrow trains. There was virtually no head movement and the 2nd chain engaged smoothly. But I am definitely getting weak as, once again, I was seeing stars and losing vision in the backwards loop. Nowhere near losing conciousness, I think, but still strange. Maybe I'll just blame it on the heat (and delude myself).
SONG: Stars Are Blind- Paris Hilton (I had to sneak her in somewhere)

With this, we grabbed some free soda and settled down to watch one of the LC Shows:

CIRQUE EN VOL (Aerobatic exposition 7.5/10)
First off, LC ought to be ashamed of themselves for having a bleacher viewing area with absolutely *NO* shade anywhere. Even more strange is that even with their "free soda" policy, they set up a lemonade cart at the shows entrance and were charging 3bucks.....and actually sold some! WTF?!? As for the show, the performers were some very energetic Quebequois who all had a "hip-hop" swagger to them.

The show was mostly tumbling mixed with trampoline tricks. Points must be taken off because there were a few drops in the juggling exchances, but as I could even get close to what they were doing, I'll cut some slack. Also, a half point extra because this show *did* have a female performer. The show wasnt quite on the level of La Nouba @ Disney, but was entertaining nevertheless. I guess this is what is left for those good young tumblers who just get too tall to continue in gymnastics.
SONG: Jump Around - House of Pain

Well now it's the thick of the afternoon and the sun in beaming (I thought it was supposed to be rainy all week?) so it's time for some water rides. We change into swim wear and head to the rapids ride which is at the very tip of one of the "horns" as I described the layout. Sure, there is a trolley that goes out that way, but we just missed it, and there is already enough people waiting in line to fill up the *next* one, so we hoof it.

There is nothing on this path other than the lake on you left and BD to your right. One good thing about this path is there is an abundance of shade...but no freaking benches to sit an relax on. What an oversight! That would never do on RCT =]. Near the end of the path we spy the skylift and before *I* (the acrophobic) get a chance to balk, T squashes the idea of riding it as it is quite steep and looks more "ski-lift" than "sky-bucket". Thus, not sturdy-looking enough for her. Good, I dont think I'd have done that well on it.

I should also mention that both T and I are rather modest/conservative (she moreso than I) and she was worried that her tankini would be a bit risque for the dry park even though it looks pretty much like a tank top and mini-skirt (or more descriptively mini-skort). However, the amount of 13 and under girls with bikinis on in the water and dry parks quickly dispelled those notions. Questions, why are little girl clothes so provacative. We (half)joked that if these are the only tpye of clothes they sell in the stores that when we have kids, we're gonna have to learn how to sew. As an guy knows, a father's main job is to "keep his daughter off the pole". (TM - Chris Rock)
SONG: Promiscuous - Nelly Furtado

In any case, our hike ends at:

THUNDER RAPIDS (Hopkins (?) Raft Ride 5/10)
I'm a big fan of rapids rides. We used to ride them all the time when I was small, but about the time my sister started getting perms and worrying about her hair turning into a fro, we started avoiding water rides. However, T, I think, would rather be a dolphin than a human as she loves water and anything dealing with it so I've gotten back into riding water rides. This particular ride on certain days would be okay as the ride splashes you, but you dont get soaked. However, this day I *wanted* to get soaked so the 'splashing' was a big disappointment. I found it interesting that there was not *one* waterfall on the whole course. Maybe they should call up Dorney Park and ask to borrow one of their 11 (!) waterfalls. =]
SONG: Float On - The Floaters

With that, we enter the Splash Harbor area and immediately get in line for their newest waterpark attraction:

ANCHOR BAY (Manufacturer Unknown Tube-based Lazy River/Waterslide combo attraction 8/10)


Okay confession time: I cant swim well. It wasnt a priority for my parents so I just kinda missed that opportunity. Now, I've been in pools and stuff, hell, I've been in the ocean twice. I can flutter around, but I'm far from a strong swimmer. T was a little apprehesive about me going into the water park but even though I'm not a good swimmer, I'm a great *STANDER* and since the water was no more than 3ft deep, I assured her I'd be fine. Now, she particularly wanted to ride this attraction because is has a waterslide that dumps into the lazy river (with a life guard assiting with the merging of course). The only thing was we couldnt figure out how to get to the waterslide. So we played the role of lemmings and just follwed the line to where they were doing tube exchanges between those leaving and entering the attraction. We debated whether we should get 2 singles or one double tube, but when we got to the front the ride op said we'd have to wait for 2 singles so that choice was easy. We grab a double and float on in.

Not far down the line, there is a waterfall so we each frantically paddle to try and make sure the other is the one that gets it so of course we both catch the full blast. In the midst of our giggling and wiping water out our eyes we see where the river splits to go onto the waterslide. Damnit, missed it! Oh well, we just continue down the river engaging in waterfall "paddle-offs" (I won more than I lost). When we get to the end, I thought we had to get off and get back in line but the attendant was allowing people to float around as many times as they wanted. This time, we made the fork to the waterslide and got in that line.

We had a bit of a wait for the slide as several smaller riders were capsizing at the end of the slide, but aside from that, the line moved swiftly, with a tube descending about every 15s or so. The slide itself was mostly enclosed, moderately fast. Not as fast a snow tubing down hill, but you dont get many curves on snow either. I was in the front so i got most of the spash at the bottom. I paid T back by manuvering her under the two remaining waterfalls in the lazy river portion. We took one more trip around the whole lazy river, again I got the better of T and got her wetter than she got me. I almost felt bad about it (almost). At that point we felt like we should now exit the attraction, even though I think we both could have stayed there longer.
SONG (Lazy River): Oops, I Did it Again - Britney Spears
SONG (Waterslide): Splash Waterfalls - Ludacris

They had some other waterslides nearby that emptied into the lake. However, the lake water looked like Lake Michigan water, which is to say brownish-green and none too appealing. So we passed on those.
SONG: Dirrty - Christina Aguilera

But there was this gi-normous green waterslide that looked fun enough to try. The entrance was hell to find, being about a block away from the actual slide itself, but we found our way to:

MAMMOTH FALLS (Manf. Unknown Raft-Based Slide 7/10)
For an attraction that could hold up to 6 people per raft (I think) the line was long and moved fairly slow. Maybe it was because of waiting on the raft-return-conveyor belt. Anyway, it was just T and me on the raft and off we went, right under a water curtain. A few twists-turns-and another water curtain later and we were done. The ride reminded me of SFA's Peguin's Bizzard River with no seats and a little less spinning. Fun, but nothing special I guess. *shrugs*
SONG: You Spin Me Round (Like a Record) - Dead or Alive (and many others)

I should note the scores I gave have no real point of reference. I did have fun, but I have nothing really to compare them too. So I used "figure-skating-judging" leaving room at the top for future better experiences. =]. Well that end our waterpark experience, but there was one other water ride waiting for us. Wouldn't you know it, it was all the way at the tip of the 'horn' opposite to the rapids ride (who designed this park, lol). We grabbed our towels to wrap up for the journey over to:

SAW MILLS PLUNGE (Arrow (?) Log Flume 5/10)
This wasnt a very good log flume. The drop was okay, but boy was the ride short! Usually, it seems that most flumes have a small lift, a little banging around, another lift and the head to the drop. This was only slightly longer than a Shoot the Chutes. But hey, at least I got a little wet. One thing that was suprising was that in a case of a parent riding with a small child in the same section of the boat, the larger parent had to sit in front of the smaller child. Is this standard operating procedure? If so, it's counter-intuitive.
SONG: One Minute Man - Missy Elliot

We changed fully back into dry clothes and grabbed food. Now I'll admit that I dont pay too much attention to food prices as i just file it under "pay to play". But all the enthusiast musings of "value" caused me to actaully note what the "value" of LC food was. We each got a sandwich and a side (4 items) and it was 12 bucks. Of course, drinks were free. Again, I really dont pay too much attention to prices, but for those who do, use that info any way you see fit.
SONG: Eat it - Weird Al Yankovic (aka RGW's uncle :))

After lunch/dinner we were going to go for re-rides but saw that one of their shows was starting so we parked it for:

? (dont know the name of the show, Country Music Revue 6.5/10)
I'm not a big country music fan though, for some reason, I like watching country shows in theme parks(go figure). I suggest seeing this show and T says "You know I like country music" (WTF? This is news to me). The show was well done, the dancing was good though there was a little too much emphasis by the performers on grabbing their belt buckles. So why the lower score? Two reasons: 1) Lack of authenticity: while the singers were decent singers (better than some of the early rounds on American Idol) their hearts werent into country music. Only of the girls even attempted a country twang. A real redneck would have been embarrased watching the show. 2) Too many country love songs. What ever happened to country songs about whiskey drinkin' and butt-kickin'? That's *real* country, not this lovey dovey stuff. At least give me a song about a dog or something! Bah! =]
SONG: Get Drunk and Be Somebody - Toby Keith

We took some more rides on BD, looked around in shop and generally leisurely strolled till finally we rode:

GHOST HUNT (Sally Corp. Interactive Dark ride 6/10)
If there was a story to this ride, and I assume there was as they had a video playing in line, I didnt get it. In fact, I dont even know what the most of the things we were shooting at looked like cause I was focusing so much on the targets. And after all that, I STILL LOST TO T (aarrgggh!) Oh well, I'll have a chance at redemption when we ride MIB:AA later in the year.
SONG: Drive Boy, Shooting - G//Z/R

That pretty much wraps up the day's fun. Like I said, we did some re-rides of BD and one of WWildcat.

Most of the rest of the ime was spent on a bench waiting for it to get really dark. But overall, I had a great time @ LC (8/10). It's not too far away so I could see myself coming up this way again someday. The only thing I do differently is that I'd add Quassy to the itenerary. I didnt realize that it's actually not too far out of the way; we could have hit it on the way in. But hey something to look forward to.
SONG: Ridin' - Chamillionaire

lata, jeremy
P.S. Please excuse any formatting issues. I wrote this in notepad first.

(edit) the formatting was so bad I *had* to try and correct it. *** Edited 7/12/2006 5:54:54 PM UTC by 2Hostyl***

+0
Wednesday, July 12, 2006 8:59 PM
How could you NOT ride the Screaming Swing? Did I miss it in your report? Am I blind?

About BD, sounds like you had a great time. I'd have loved to have had a night ride last week, but it wasn't to be. That said, the rear of the train was brutal in the potholes. The front was glorious.

Did you credit whore, and get the kiddie? Curious.

Nice TR, Herr Jeremy. ;)

+0
Thursday, July 13, 2006 7:42 AM
No, I rode neither the Swing @ LC nor the Swatter @ SFNE. I dunno, I just wasnt too interested in the rides. And no, the boomerangs were whoring enough for me. The funny thing is, just before the trip T asked me if I still kept a track record. I realize that I havent updated it since 2003, so credits havent been really important to me. I *did* think about riding the kiddie, but assumed adults weren't allowed.

As for BD, I was shocked when I read your TR that said it needed work. I rememeber mid-ride thinking it was very smooth for a woodie. I doubt that much changed with the ride itself in two days so we must just have different attunations. *shrugs* :

+0
Thursday, July 13, 2006 1:43 PM
--------"Much like S:ROS from the day before, I thought it was good, top tier good, but not "T3H r0xorz!!!!11one". T, OTOH"

Is there a coaster that is as good as what you quoted? If so, what is it and why do you think its better then BD.


Personally I found BD silky smooth in the front, and a wild Beast in the back. Either way it rocked my socks off, both front and back.

+0
Thursday, July 13, 2006 3:31 PM
If I were forced to make a list right now, today, of wooden coasters it would look something like this:

1. The Legend (Holiday World)
2. Lightning Racer (HersheyPark)
3. Boulder Dash (LC)
4. Son of Beast (PKI)
5. Raven/MegaZeph/Texas Cyclone/Viper(SFGAm)/Wild One (all about the same to me *today*)

But yes, as far as woodies that I have ridden go, I believe The Legend is "T3H gr8-ezt c0@$t3r on tha pL@n3+!" :)


EDIT (Forgot to add the why): The Legend is a totally agressive coaster. It is very violent and not for all riders. But I like it because every thing it does, it does to make you notice it. There really is only one ture airtime moment (the so-called double up), but that one moment is frighteningly hard and powerful. It's like a constant onslaught from start to finish. BD is a good ride with nice pacing, but there are no moments when the coaster grabs me and says "You're mine now!"

Lightning Racer, OTOH, is the definition of sliky smooth and the racing aspect just adds an air of "giggling-schoolgirl" fun to it. Like I said BD *may* be "better" than LR, but I still had more fun on LR. (YMMV) *** Edited 7/14/2006 7:01:26 PM UTC by 2Hostyl***

+0
Friday, July 14, 2006 5:12 AM

2Hostyl said:I doubt that much changed with the ride itself in two days so we must just have different attunations. *shrugs* :

I'm probably just a wuss. ;)

That said, a ton of others at another site had said that they too noticed at least 3, if not 4, potholes big enough to jar you. I counted 4 on my trip to LC. It was super disappointing, but I still dug BD. Only in the front, though.

Superman was the bomb diggety for me, though.

+0
Friday, July 14, 2006 11:12 AM

The Main Gate area of the park is really nice. It reminds me of a castle facade with a clock tower and dancing dolls.

And every time I think back to my visit to LC and those "dancing dolls", all I can imagine is them breaking into song... "Willy Wonka, Willy Wonka, the amazing chocolatier weeeeee / Willy Wonka, Willy Wonka, everybody give a cheer..."

(Fortunately LC's dolls don't have a tendancy to burst in to flames like Mr.Wonka's did in the movie.) *** Edited 7/14/2006 3:12:56 PM UTC by SLFAKE***

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