No Bull Trip Report of Six Flags Great America

Associated parks:
None

Sunday, August 7, 2005 3:05 PM
Six Flags Great America Trip Report:

A few weeks ago I went to Six Flags Great America. I went to Six Flags Great America on a Monday.

Six Flags Great America:

Arrived at Six Flags Great America and since one of people along for the trip was not going to the park, we were dropped off and she went shopping. The plan of attack was to head to Superman first, and go left to right, hitting all the major rides. Superman was having a minor mechanical problem at the moment, so we went to Batman. Batman was testing, but was experiencing minor technical difficulties at the moment, so headed to Vertical Velocity. Must not have been a good morning for super heroes considering both Superman and Batman were not open when the park. However both would open later that day, so I would go on both of them, so not a big deal.

Coasters:

Vertical Velocity:

Took only 1 ride on this fun launch shuttle coaster. When I first went to Six Flags Ohio and rode Superman Ultimate Flight, I really loved this type of ride. However the novelty has worn off and feel that while it is a good ride, not top 10 material. I prefer Wicked Twister because of going backwards on the twisted spike. Vertical Velocity is best closer to the front and going up most of the way the twisted spike is the best part.

Batman the Ride:

The ride just opened after we got off Vertical Velocity. This is a good inverted coaster, and does pack a punch. Although I liked it more the last time I went on it, it still is a good steel coaster. My favorite inverted coasters used to include Batman, but Fire and Ice Dragon, Great Bear, Monte, and Raptor, are just better rides in my opinion. Still way better than any SLC and a few B&M inverts. The best part for me is the second half of the ride with the tight turns and last two corkscrews. The pacing of the ride is very quick, but it lacked the intensity it had last time I went on it. Not sure if it was the seat I was in, it being older, or just not its best day.

Iron Wolf:

This ride is really interesting and intense. It has a very intense layout, but is not the smoothest ride in the world, and not a big fan of standing up. To me the riding position that they put you in for a standup coaster is just not comfortable. I love how compact it is, and some of those tight turns at the end. It probably has a better layout than Batman, but the lack of comfort detracts from the ride. Perhaps a similar layout with floorless or sit-down trains would be much better

American Eagle:

Took 1 ride on this fun racing wooden coaster. The America Eagle is not the most intense ride, and some complain about the trim brakes before the helix and other parts of the ride. I feel that if you can overlook that, you have a nice ride that is more enjoyable than quite a few rides. I rather be on this, or some painful steel looping coaster, and some not so fun wooden coasters. I like its first drop, and its huge spiral helix is fun and interesting.

Raging Bull:

Now this is a great coaster, and in my top 5 steel coasters. I love the trains; they are the most comfortable steel trains I have been on. They have inclined seating, a comfortable but secure restraint, and look sleek. I took 2 rides, both with the last seat. The last seat is definitely the best, having rode it front seat my previous trip. The first drop is very steep, and your out of your seat most of the way down in the last seat. The banked turn to follow is nice, but the last seat is just greater for those floater hills. Having not been on Nitro or Apollo’s Chariot, I can not compare it to those two. I now really want to go on both though, and Apollo’s looks the better of the 3, with more floater airtime hills, and a better setting. I actually think I like it better than that 300 foot coaster at Cedar Point, it just has better pacing and feels longer, even though track length it is not. Not that is a knock on either ride, both are top 5 steels. On a side note, the ride has great capacity since they run 3 trains with 36 passengers, and easy and simple restraints to check. Wish Kings Island would just get one of these, perfect intensity level for people are all ages, and a reliable and high capacity ride. Only issue would be, what movie could you theme it to?

Viper:

This wooden coaster was very temperamental the day I went. Going in, the ride was in my top 10 wooden coasters, so my expectations were rather high. My first ride was in the second seat and it was decent, but nothing like I remembered. All the airtime and laterals that I knew were hardly there, and the ride just felt slower. It was still a decent ride, but just lacked the punch that I remembered. Having just been no Cornball and Hoosier at IB, I thought that clearly those wooden coasters were performing much better. However I knew to give it another chance later in the day after the ride heats up. I chose the last seat, which has to be the best seat for this ride. It really depends on the coaster, and how the hills are shaped. Viper has hills shaped, such that the drop is much steeper than the rise into the hill, thus the back seat is where the most negative g’s are.

The ride was great the second time, with laterals, speed, lots of airtime, steep drops, and great pacing. That was the ride I remember that was in my top 10, so it is staying there for now. I love how it has laterals and airtime at the same time, and goes through the structure. Later in the day, the ride was just running a bit faster, you could tell based on the speed it had on some of its final curves and turns. Really a great mid-sized wooden coaster and the second best ride in the park behind Raging Bull. The best rides in my opinion are located in that Southwest section of the park.

Superman:

Finally this superhero got out of bed, and was ready for action. It was around 1 or so, and the line was very short since it just opened. I like the overall restrain system compared to Vekoma’s flying coasters. Real easy to check and allows for respectable capacity. The ride however is just decent, and not a big fan of flying coasters. The pretzel loop was interesting, but rather unusual in the sense that there is nothing like it, and going on your back with that many g’s is not that comfortable. The rest of the ride was rather boring, as you just flew across and besides the flip at the end, were not doing to much. I like X-flight better, but the Boliger and Mabillard flying coasters have much better trains, restraints, and capacity. A better layout that had great theming could be really good. The superman versions are not going to be the Batman the Rides of flying coasters, and would be surprised if the Six Flags Magic Mountain flying coaster had the same layout.

Ragin Cajun:

This ride had not much of a line but the spinning wild mouse had such lousy capacity. So ended up waiting over 35 minutes, the longest wait of the day except for Déjà vu. Having been on some wild mousse, I like a few, but am not their biggest fans. I don’t see the thrill of those short radius turns, and lateral g’s. Don’t get me wrong, I like lateral g’s, but really only on wooden coasters around banked curves and helixes. It is different when you’re going around a curve around a lake at 40 mph or more on a wooden coaster. Going 15 mph around a short flat curve is not exciting just painful. Lost Coaster was different in that it was intense, but its short curves had more dynamics to it, and were not flat. So I knew going in that it was not my type of ride, but the spinning nature just made it worth a go, since it was my first spinning one. Well the ride was just awful and that is being nice. The transitions were bad enough without the spinning. Probably the worst wild mouse layout I have seen.

The ride is my worst steel coaster I have been on, knocking out Flashback and High Roller. I thought the spinning just made it more painful and it was so bad, I was laughing how bad it was. The ride just was no good and no fun. Almost makes me wonder if the people who designed it, actually went on it. I am sorry, but this ride has no redeeming quality. Some rides are tame, but good starter or family coasters, this ride is just plane junk.

Whizzer:

Now this is a fun ride. The perfect family coaster in my opinion. Anton Schwarzkopf was great at designing smooth transitions, fun turns, and comfortable and non restrictive restraints. The Whizzer uses the speed racing type trains, where you are laying down almost bob sled style. I think it uses electric motors to propel it up the curving incline to the top. From there follows curving drops, great transitions, and great pacing in a well landscaped environment.

I find it hard to believe they were thinking about getting rid of this ride and not Shockwave. The overwhelming support for this ride, and probably whoever was in charge coming to there senses led to Shockwave taking a hike and the Whizzer staying. Truly the only family coaster at the park, because the junior is more of a training coaster, and Ragin Cajun is so bad it would turn off younger family members from coasters. So Whizzer is a perfect fit for the park, and should never have to go.

Demon:

This is a fun arrow looper. I like how it adds some surprise with tunnels and theming. The layout is just like every other four looping coaster designed by Arrow. The ride is not extremely smooth but for an Arrow coaster.

Déjà vu:

The longest wait of the day and last ride of the day. The line was around an hour, but really not that many people there. It has to have one of the slowest moving lines. You have if I remember correctly 24 seat trains. They have seat belts around your waste, and the normal shoulder harness and seat belt combination, so two seat belts. So you first put your seat belt around your waste, and they check that. Then you place your shoulder harness down and they check again. So you have a twice as long as loading than any other ride. I believe this is in place because of the vertical lift and to make sure the seat belt around the waste is properly put on.

I sat in the far left front wing, so sort of the front seat, but on the outside. The arrangements of seats make no sense, it just adds to the confusion. The vertical lift was ok being lifted up, not as bad or uncomfortable as I thought it would be. I really liked the big vertical loop and thought it was the best and smoothest part of the ride. The other 2 versions were not so smooth and were just ok. Going backwards was just like any other invertigo, just with a bigger vertical loop. The vertical spike dropping backwards was a little unusual, hard to explain though. In all I think I slightly prefer it to Face Off. The forces are a little less, but the vertical loop is much better and the ride seemed smoother. The restraints were less confining compared to Face Off, in that you had room for your ears.

Overall Impression:

Overall the park was very clean, had a beautiful entrance plaza with the double decker carousel, and some good coaster rides. I think it is probably the best Six Flags Park I have been to, but then again its competition did not include Six Flags Over Georgia, Over Texas, or Great Adventure. It is better than Magic Mountain or Kentucky Kingdom, and Geauga Lake if you include it back when it was Six Flags. However I prefer some other seasonal parks more. Paramount Kings Island and Paramount Canada’s Wonderland I enjoyed better, Hershey Park , Cedar Point and Busch Gardens Williamsburg were also better.

Those parks might not have better coasters, but have something about their atmosphere and setting that just win me over. They have a better balance of rides, and in general are more scenic. But then again those parks I listed are typically ranked really high and Six Flags Great America seemed to improve quite a big since I last visited. The park was really crowded for a Monday yet all the major rides were running and the lines were not bad at all. So they are doing something right, and hope they keep up the good work. *** Edited 8/7/2005 7:10:35 PM UTC by Beast Fan*** *** Edited 8/7/2005 7:11:10 PM UTC by Beast Fan***

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Monday, August 8, 2005 11:50 PM
I don't know about DV's restraints being "less confining" because I've ridden Two face(invertigo) several times & have never come off of it with nowhere near as much ear bashing as I do after a lap aboard Mind Eraser(SLC).
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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 12:20 AM
I have also noticed the moodiness of Viper. It seems every ride these days you don't know if it is going to be GREAT or boring. I don't know what changed, it used to be my favorite coaster in the park, but that title now goes to (hangs head in shame) Deja Vu. I just love Deja Vu, I love the vertical lift (more impressive in the back), the drop backwards through the loop (more impressive in the front) and the beauty of the ride (it got a new paintjob this year getting rid of those unsightly spots).

I'm glad you like Raging Bull, I just can't find the same compassion for it that everybody else gives it, but it's great that we have such a popular ride among enthusiasts. American Eagle's brakes before the helix are MUCH less sever than they used to be (although I think the backward blue is more harsh than the red, confirmation is appreciated.) I much prefer the forward ride because it just feels better on that famous first drop.

Your review of Ragin Cajun surprised me. I have only ridden it twice (liked the first ride better) but both times I have managed to get into such intense spins I can't breathe I laugh so hard. It knocks me around no doubt, but I think a jolt here and there keeps you on your toes.

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 12:56 AM

Beast Fan said:


Took only 1 ride on this fun launch shuttle coaster. When I first went to Six Flags Ohio and rode Superman Ultimate Flight, **


Where?? ;)

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 1:56 AM
I didn't want to start a new topic, so here's a mini TR I conjured up with a mild Tyskie/Sierra Nevade Pale Ale buzz going.

Today I visited Great America for the second time this season. Deja Vu and V2 were down the entire day, bummer... The first time I visited the park this season I noticed Viper wasn't running like it used to, and my ride today wasn't much better. I rode in the last row for the first time in years, and the double down was solid, but the ride feels as rickety as American Eagle this year... As for Bull and the (stateside) B&M hyper trio, I think Nitro and Apollo satisfy the airtime whore in all of us, but Bull's first drop is unmatched in my book. The rest of the ride is (and seemingly has been for a while now) is lackluster, but that first plunge is one of my favorite coaster moments. The midcourse brakes weren't hitting hard when I visited in June, but today they were trimming hard. The Bull, Whizzer, and Viper crew were really enthusiastic about their jobs.

When I first saw the parking lot today it was shocking compared to a typical Monday in year's past. With millions of cars in the parking lot, one particular ride caught my eye, someone ruined a beautiful S-Type by putting hideous rims on it. The S-Type is sacred to me. I wouldn't mess with any aspect of it. :) It was a crying shame...

Thankfully, a lot of those people were in Hurricane Harbor until 6 or 7. I was just getting in line for my second Bull ride of the day as HH was closing and decided to leave the park because it looked like a lot of HH's patrons decided to hit the closest rides upon exiting the water park.

I was happy to see an employee directing lines on Viper and Batman, two of the worst stations in previous seasons. It really made it a lot easier, and pleasent.

The highlight of my day was Iron Wolf. My head didn't hit the OTSR once, and it gave a nice, intense ride. Iron Wolf and Batman are the two rides that I always leave with a smile on my face. B&M perfection. Whizzer was another nice surprise, the wait time was short and the ride was very relaxing. The way the course hugs the ground really makes me wish Great America had some interesting terrain to work with with which they could incorporate rides with.

I got to the park at three, and left by seven. The only ride I didn't hit was Superman, due in part to a long line and general disinterest in the ride. This coaster is more of a one-trick-pony than Oblivion... I hope any future B&M flyers are more interesting. I'll be visiting the park again this week, hopefully Deja Vu and V2 are up and running this time.


** Edited 8/9/2005 6:10:16 AM UTC by BullGuy*** *** Edited 8/9/2005 6:15:33 AM UTC by BullGuy***

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 1:42 PM
Beast Fan Said: "I actually think I like it (Raging Bull) better than that 300 foot coaster at Cedar Point"

You mean MILLENNIUM FORCE?

I liked Raging Bull, but its not better than MF. The pacing is not better. MF screams thru its course with speed that never lets up. Even the last overbank is amazingly fast. Cmon lets not be retarded. Bull is not better than MF. Bull is not better than the Phantom's Revenge, or Magnum, or Superman ROS in New England. Bull is good, but not better than all those coasters and certainly not better than Millennium Force.

-Jeff

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 1:53 PM
I think Raging Bull is Far better than Milly...
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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 2:01 PM
Raging Bull is gimped! After that trim brake on the third hill the ride coasted around it's course. Still a fun ride though.

Their woodies feel gimped as well after riding Indiana Beach's.

All in all I loved SFGA because of the atmosphere, theming and good ride operations. Their food service sucked though.

Thanks for the TR, I have to finish my review of the park someday...

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 2:03 PM
Everyone doesn't have to agree with you, Jeff Reim.
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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 2:09 PM
Right G. 'Best', 'Better', anything with 'est' behind it is totally up to the person, personal taste, and personal experience.

Oh, and, uh, Swamp Fox is the Best wooden coaster ever built, over Thunderhead, the Holiday World woodies, and bunches of other coasters.

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 2:13 PM
Oh, and whilst I'm thinking about it, don't say things like 'Don't be retarded'. That is just rude and uncalled for.
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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 2:20 PM
No, its not uncalled for. Seriously, you people are the only people I've ever heard say Bull is better than MF.

1) Bull is slow. 73 MPH is decent, but the trim kills it.

2) Theres not much air, and not even much positive Gs

3) Bull is OK but seriosuly, Intamin and Arrow's hypers blow B&Ms hypers away. B&M is good at looping. Intamin is good at power and speed. Bull is finesse compared to MF.

-Jeff

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 2:31 PM
While I don't think Raging Bull is better than Millenium Force...I will say that Nitro blows them both away! Still, I gotta ride one of the S:ROS Intamins, then I can make a true decision.
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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 2:31 PM
Those are all your opinions. I Like Bull Better than Millie. FAR BETTER. Millie is faster. So what? Bull has a better layout. Millie is Higher. So What? Can you really tell that much a difference on rides? You can have your opinion, and that is fine. We have ours.

What is uncalled for is calling someone 'retarded'. You think that is a funny little insult? Say that around someone who has a family member or friend with those kinds of mental disabilities. Oh, wait. You did. And I took offense and told you about it.

You, sir, are an idiot!

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 2:43 PM
Thats a shame buddy.

The Force kicks Bull's ass. Better layout? Are you kidding? Are you serious? MF had the most exciting layout I've ever been on. Phantom's Revenge is a close 2nd. Those 2 rides are the BOSSES over Raging Bull. Please.

-Jeff

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 3:11 PM
[sarcasm mode partially on]Phantom's Revenge is your #2 coaster??? And you think Tek and Beast Fan are mentally deficient? [/sarcasm mode off]

I think that's a case of the Pot calling the Kettle black.

How many parks have you been to? Two? Just CP and KW?

Now note, I like MF as well as RB, but I try not to rank them beyond "Love, Really Like, Like, Hate and Despise." That being said, I love both of them for different reasons, but PR is in the "Like" category. There is nothing extraordinary about PR's layout. *** Edited 8/9/2005 8:08:31 PM UTC by redman822***

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 3:11 PM
OMG, you got us. Yes, we're all joking with you. I'm so glad you were such a willing participant on our hidden camera TV show.

If you turn around right now you'll see a little red light on the wall behind you. That's our hidden camera! It captured every single second of your disgust while reading that there are actually some people out there that have opinions different than your own!

The show will air in two weeks. I do hope you'll tune in.

Now we just need you to sign this waiver so we can use your image...

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 3:56 PM
Everyone has a different opinion alright. In before close.
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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 4:13 PM

Kick The Sky said:
While I don't think Raging Bull is better than Millenium Force...I will say that Nitro blows them both away! Still, I gotta ride one of the S:ROS Intamins, then I can make a true decision.

Then you'll say "WHY on Earth does anyone buy chain-lift hypers from anyone OTHER than Intamin"...;)

B&M hypers ARE too tamed-down....maybe reducing the brakes would help, but they still have trains that sit too high off the rails. Other than ERT rides on Apollo, I've never been that impressed by B&M hypers...honestly, I do prefer Millie over them (but I do understand that that is MY opinion)...;)

Arrow Hypers? Morgan Hypers? B&Ms? Millie? Meh, get thee to a RoS, George! :) Only PR comes even close....for me at least... ;)

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Tuesday, August 9, 2005 4:36 PM
Beast Fan -

Sounds like your Rajin Cajun lap didn't spin that much. While I have only been on it a couple times, the latter being the most magically intense spinning one could imagine.

And Jeff, Since you are so good at giving other people their opinions, I'll give you yours... MF is not the most exciting layout you've been on, Corkscrew at CP was.

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