PKD 9-4-04 Pt.1

Associated parks:
None

Sunday, September 12, 2004 3:19 AM
For Labor Day Weekend my wife and I made the trip from Charlotte, NC to Doswell, Va. for a few days at Paramount’s Kings Dominion. We figured this would be our last chance this year to get into the park for free with our Paramount’s Carowinds Season Passes.

The weather turned out to be pretty good despite a forecast of scattered showers. After checking in to our crappy hotel a few exits up I-95 from the park, we headed to the park about 3pm or so and made our way toward Volcano.

I was amazed how much better PKD looked over PC. More trees certainly makes a difference, PKD seemed more like BGW. PC by comparison looks much more sterile.

First stop was Scooby Doo. Very similar to the ride of the same name at Carowinds, but maybe a little smoother. Trying to navigate our way through the horde of kids and strollers has more than convinced my wife ad I NOT to have children.

Next stop was Avalanche. Our first bobsled coaster, and I can’t understand why they don’t make these anymore. What a great ride! Wait time was about 20 minutes.

Next stop- Volcano. Watching the coaster running from the queue for Avalanche just got us more excited about riding it. What I didn’t get excited about was the wait. I was thinking once we walked through the first entryway into the fake volcano we’d be at the station – WRONG. More cattle catchers, two of ‘em, and THEN into the volcano and down to the platform. Then, right on cue, the announcement I have become all too familiar with while waiting in line for TTD at CP – the ride is down. From where I was in line, I was looking at about a 15 minutes wait once the ride was up and running. No way I was leaving. Fortunately, the wait was only 15-20 minutes and soon we were strapped in. Wait time turned out to be about an hour and a half.

Volcano was my first ride on a launching coaster of this type, although I’ve ridden Wicked Twister at CP, which uses similar trains, but I’m not sure it’s the same launch system. My wife was impressed by the air time she got in the double barrel rolls – I was too securely strapped in and didn’t get much air. The layout of the track around the volcano was definitely a thrill, I just wish the ground had more trees around to more fit in with the volcano experience.

We skipped Flight of Fear (line was too long, plus we had done the one at PKI) and moved on to Anaconda. I was expecting a typical headache-inducing Arrow looper, but was surprised what a thrilling ride it was, especially the last few turns that really threw you, but didn’t slam you around. Wait time was about 15 minutes.

Next up was Rebel Yell. Let me preface this by stating (1) I’m not a big fan of woodies. Being a large person, I don’t fit comfortably in them plus I don’t like rough rides (gimme a smooth running B&M steel coaster any day), and (2) I don’t like riding backwards – I want to SEE where I’m going so I can be prepared for that stomach-churning drop. Some say that’s half the fun, but that’s just me.

My wife, on the other hand, loves woodies and going backward, but agreed to ride forward, for me. This ride is the counterpart to Thunder Road at PC, but I found it to be a little smoother and maybe a little shorter (I’ll have to check on the track lengths of the two). Same restraint system as on TR at PC and (we found out later) on Hurler and Grizzly.

We bypassed a few other coasters to get in line for HyperSonic. Having ridden TTD I was curious to see how this ride stacked up. Wait time was well over an hour and a half, made even more frustrating by line jumpers. PKD seems to have a huge line jumping problem. People continually went up the exit and onto the platform, and since there were no park employees on the platform to stop them, they jumped right on.

Anyway, the launch seemed smoother than TTD, but the braking at the end was pretty rough. It wasn’t worth the wait time, IMO. Plus the noise of the braking and launching system while waiting in the queue was very loud and gave me a headache.

With the park closing in about 45 minutes, we decided to call it a day. So far I was impressed with the landscape of the park and loved Volcano, but all the line jumpers made for a pretty angry walk to the car.

We'd be back again on Sunday, unless we can find someplace better to go....hmmm

Kestrel

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Sunday, September 12, 2004 11:16 AM
V:TBC does in fact use the same LIM launch as the impulses.
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Sunday, September 12, 2004 7:31 PM
Volcano doesn't use LIMs, but rather LSMs. By the way, I believe you can still call up Mack in Germany and order a Bobsled coaster (One was built not too many years ago). Those things are all over Europe. Why they never caught on in the states is a mystery to me. Perhaps the Intamins were just cheaper.
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Sunday, September 12, 2004 9:00 PM
I believe Volcano is a LIM.
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Sunday, September 12, 2004 9:05 PM
Intamin Fan, not accroding to RCDB:
http://www.rcdb.com/installationdetail474.htm

Glad you enjoyed the first part of your trip:).
One thing I found kind of contradicting, but not a biggie, was when you say you wish there were more trees around Volcano to give it that Volcano feel. Actually, and active volcano would probably have less trees(or atleast burning trees) around it...;)

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Sunday, September 12, 2004 9:24 PM
The one question I have yet to get an answer to is if there is a difference between LIMs and Impulse coasters, and if so, what is it? I have some guesses, but I have not found the answer yet.
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Sunday, September 12, 2004 9:35 PM
What do you mean is there a "Difference between LIMs and Impulse coasters?"

Not following you there, but if this helps, here it goes:

LIMs(which stands for Linear Induction Moters) are a means of propulsion on a coaster.

Impulse Coasters are a type of coaster. Its called an Impulse Coaster because that is the model of coaster it is(named, of course, by Intamin).

Volcano: The Blast Coaster isn't actually an Impulse Coaster, its called a Katapult Coaster, but in any case, both Impulse coasters and Katapult coasters use LIMs to launch them, as do premier Spagetti Bowl coasters, Intamin Half Pipe coasters, and many other coaster types.

Hope that helps:).

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Sunday, September 12, 2004 10:44 PM
What I meant is: are Impulse coasters LIMs, or is there a difference in the type of launch they use? I thought they both used LIMs like you said, but I have seen people say things that indicated there were some differences.
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Sunday, September 12, 2004 11:04 PM
No, Impulse coasters (thus far) have only used LIMs:). Suspended Catapult Coasters use LIMs as well(only one of those, Volcano), and Half Pipes use LIMs as well.

Hope that helps:).

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Monday, September 13, 2004 12:54 AM
I haven't ridden the bobsled coaster at PKD but I have ridden La Vibora at SFOT and Disaster Transport at CP, and I loved them both. I rode both these coasters this year for the first time and I love the unique ride they give.

I thought this would be a great ride for PKI or any Paramount park if they wanted to make their Snow Day movie into a themed ride.

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Monday, September 13, 2004 1:38 AM
I personally liked the ride aspect of DT better than Avalanch. Avanlanch was the first "big" coaster I did as a kid, and while it is fun, I liked DT better because it seemed faster and more intense to me.
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