Paramount’s King’s Dominion Saturday June 4th.

Associated parks:
None

Tuesday, June 14, 2005 6:55 PM
It was a warm Saturday in June, so I knew the crowds would be in full effect, and I was right. I’ve wanted to ride Volcano for a while know, so I was really looking forward to this park.

I flashed my ACE card and got a half off admission for the park. Sweet! The listed start time of the park was 1030, but they were letting people in at 930. The international street looks remarkable like King’s Island, even down to the replica of the Eiffel Tower. The tower was the only thing open at the time, so I took a ride up to take a look. After that I waited about 45 minutes for the gates to the back of the park to open.

On a side note, it was Deaf Awareness day at the park. There were a lot of people signing to each other. It was really interesting to see. Instead of shouting kids in the stations, they would get up on the railing and sign. Like I said, it was very cool to see the comradely these people had with each other.

At 1030 I power walked to Hypersonic XLC. What does the XLC stand for? Xtremely Low Capacity? Xtremely Loud Conclusion? (Loudest Breaks EVER). No, it stands for Extreme Launch Coaster. On another side now, is this trend of using X for extreme dead? Thank you Vince McMahon and the XFL for that! I was able to walk right in the second to last row. The restraints were a bit tight. They say the launch is more powerful than Dragsters, but after just riding Dragster in the same week, I still think its better than Hypersonic. The launch on Hypersonic was nice, and I liked the top hat and drop back down, but the turns and little hills afterwards were more painful than enjoyable, and like I said, that break run made me deaf!

After that I ran over to Volcano:The Blast Coaster! I was greeted by a 45 minute wait! The themeing is decent, and I liked the fire shooting out of the top of the mountain. Upon reading the fun fact, this same mountain used to host Smurf Mountain. That must have been a great ride. Anyway, Volcano was, well….a blast! The second launch up the top of the volcano was awesome! The three zero G rolls were taken at a slightly slower pace than what I am used to. It was a great sensation. The last drop back into the mountain was also great. The only bad thing I can say is that the break run inside the mountain could use a little something. A great ride that due to large crowds I could only ride twice.

After that I got in line for the new ride at PKD, Tomb Raider:Firefall. They did a good job of placing this ride in the open, with the plaza facing the ride. Everytime I passed it there was a crowd watching the ride, as the fire and water effects are very cool. After a 45 minute wait, I boarded the back side of the ride and was on my way. I think there was 5 spins in a row, but it was all a blur. Very enjoyable ride.

I then waited 30 minutes to ride the Avalanche. The only other bobslide type ride I’ve been on are the single sled ones like Disaster Transport. I think I like this style better.

I made it over to Anaconda next. The line was all the way to the entrance, but since it goes straight I was in the station in a bit over 30 minutes. I remember waiting in line and seeing those two underbanked turns after the mid course breaks and saying “Hmm…those look painful.” I got in the last row and was on my way. The first drop into the water is great, and the first half was decent. My fears came true as those two turns ramed me into the restraints, with a strange clicking sound coming from my neck. Thanks Arrow!! The coaster looks great over the water. Maybe I should have sat closer to the front, but after that ride, I didn’t feel like getting back on.

Flight of Fear was next, and the line was using all the outside switchbacks, but none of the inside ones. That makes no sense, why not let us see the preshow video which I found enjoyable when I saw it at PKI. Just like PKI, this ride loads slower than death. I had a good ride on it. By now at least the waterpark had taken some of the crowds away.

I then decided to try out the wooden coasters. Rebel Yell forwards was first. The first drop was pretty good, and there were pops of air threw the whole ride. Seeing the line was short I got a ride on the backward side. I prefer the forward side more, and rode it a few times later in the day with no wait.

The Hurler was next. I believe this area was themed after Waynes World? So the Happy Days dinner was Stan Mikitia’s Donut shop? Did they really think that movie was worth it?! And what is the Hurler’s station supposed to be themed after? Some movie set, but what movie?! I like how there is an alarm that goes off when the train is supposed to be dispatched. So the crew can know when they are stacking the trains. I got on after a quick breakdown and was on my way. All I can say is…ouch. Almost as much back and forth shaking as Son of Beast! I really didn’t enjoy the ride, but seeing there was no line I ran around to reride the front to see if it was better. It wasn’t. Was this coaster ever smooth? I mean, I don’t mind a rough ride…but oww!!

Grizzly was the next wooden coaster on the list. There was no line, but I was greeted with the “station jamboree” as I call it. Think SFGam’s Viper. After 25 minutes I got on near the back. Beter than Hurler, but that ain’t saying much. Maybe I caught it on a bad day, but it didn’t really do much for me.

I almost skipped Ricochet, but saw that the line was short. A fun Wild Mouse coaster, with a good first drop. It was a lot of fun.

I decided to wait out the line for the Flying Eagles. The wait was about 40 minutes. I tried snapping my tub, and I think I almost had the correct rhythm near the end, but the cycle was over. Are these Flyers snap-able? I didn’t want to wait out again to find out.

After having something to eat, I decided to bit the bullet and try out Shockwave. Stand-up and Togo in the same sentence? I was prepared for the worse! Some kid asked me in line if I have ever been on this before. I said no, but was prepared for some pain. The loading for this coaster takes forever, and it wasn’t uncommon for a train to sit five minutes on the break run. These restraints looked like torture devices at first, but surprising, were not that bad. I was prepared for the worse, but actually, the ride wasn’t all that bad. The helix was quite fun actually.

I skipped the Ghoster Coaster because I didn’t want to wait 45 minutes for the credit, but I bet its probably the second best wooden coaster in the park.

I decided a reride of Volcano was in order. The line was still a monser at 7 pm and I had to wait almost an hour and 15 minutes. It was another great ride. I left the park, deciding to get a head start on my next trip.

Overall, this is a good park that I would love to visit on an off day. The park looked nice, and for the most part, the ride crews did a great job. The only complaint is the park map is kinda odd. It doesn’t even list half of their rides. You just have to find then, or point on the map and ask…”where is this roller coaster with no name?”

Next stop : Six Flags America *** Edited 6/14/2005 10:57:18 PM UTC by ChiDan1972***

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Tuesday, June 14, 2005 7:08 PM
Am I the only one that didn't get a bad ride on Hurler. It wasn't my favorite coaster since it lacked absolutely no air (I'm spoiled by Wild One) but it wasn't the roughest (ala Rattler at SFFT).

I know a few other people that have said the same thing about Anaconda. It's pretty rough in spots.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2005 8:22 PM
I rode Hurler in 2002, and I thought it was pretty good. Grizzly was rough as hell, and boring. But that's my own opinion based on a few rides in 2002.
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Wednesday, June 15, 2005 3:22 AM
Coasters have brakes, not breaks. I don't get why this concept is so hard to understand. Anyway, last year I believe I placed Scooby-Doo above the other three wood coasters. This year the front side of Rebel Yell has a major improvement, so SD went down to number two.
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Wednesday, June 15, 2005 3:52 AM
I rode Hurler when I was there on Memorial Day weekend...and I have to say that was a major ouch ride! It was worse than Rolling Thunder at Six Flags, I totally wanted to get off, and didn't think of re-riding it at all. At least I occasionally go for RT...but won't do Hurler next time I visit the park. On the other hand, I absolutely loved Grizzly!
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