SFA 2005 Trip Reports (Starting 4/17)

Associated parks:

I've noticed that there seem to be WAY too many SFA TRs on this site, so instead of just posting newer TRs in TRs with older dates, I thought I'd just make a general SFA TR thread that we can all post in to clean up the boards a little. Anyways...

SFA 4/17- Getting Better...

So, Yesterday (4/16) I didn’t go to the park for the first time this year. Why, you ask? Was it because I was revolting against the park? Hardly. Was it because I was at another park? Not this time. Ya, I was taking the MCATs (Medical College Application Test) yesterday… yes, there are coaster enthusiasts in college who are planning on going areas other than “theme park manager” or “roller coaster designer.” To make a long story short, it was eight and a half hours of straining my brain. So to make up for it, I went to SFA today for a chance to relax.

Things seem to be getting better and better at the park. Superman opened earlier this year than it has all season. Opening day, Superman didn’t open at all, Day 2 and Day 3 (yesterday) it opened at about 4 pm. Today Superman opened at a reasonable 11:45 am, just an hour and 15 minutes after opening. After talking to park managers, I found that the problem is just that it is too cold when they’re doing morning testing. They need t wait until about 10:30 am until it’s warm enough and testing can begin. It did run with little to no breakdowns the rest of the day, so hopefully it will be running well next weekend. I was also told to expect the red train in about three weeks, two at the absolute earliest.

Batwing, Joker’s Jinx, and Mind Eraser all had their own problems throughout the day but were open most of the time I was there. The paint job on Mind Eraser is easily under a week from being done. The entire track is done, many of the beams in the station are done, and even the raising/lowering platform in the station has been repainted that bright orange. There is still some painting to do around the station, on the stairway toward the top of the lift, and under the entrance and exit bridges, but otherwise, it’s just about done. Joker’s Jinx has a bit more work, at least two weeks I’d say, but there has been quite some progress from last weekend.

The surprises of the day (as was yesterday I heard) were the trio of Typhoon Sea Coaster, Iron Eagle, and Two Face. Iron Eagle was up ALL day and taking LOTS of happy customers. Despite previous reports, it’s running the same long program as last year. But once again, I didn’t see any problems with the ride all day. TSC started testing around 12:45ish and opened for a short time around 1:15, after which it broke down for about an hour. I’m pretty sure they took a boat off during that time, but there were somewhere between 5 and 7 boats on the ride today (8 is the record, and I was told in the morning that they were running 7 today). After it reopened, TSC stayed open with little to no problems through when I left. Two Face was testing fine during the morning, but when we passed it later that day, the last car was sticking out of the station. It reopened somewhere around 3 or 4 and ran fine for the rest of the day. The seatbelts were replaced this year, but I was disappointed to see a broken restraint already. I mean, it’s better to have a broken seat that is closed off and keep the ride open, but it just looks so unsafe when there’s a broken seat.

All the other rides were up as normal. In fact all the rides in the park were open for at least part of the day or, in most cases, the majority of the day. Lines were reasonable short, but it is getting to the point where two trains on the major coasters will make the lines considerably shorter. Based on the number of people I saw around the park and the number of cars and busses in the parking lot, I’d guess that there were about three thousand people or so in the park and the weather was very nice (mid 60s to lower 70s with clear skys). It was enough to give me quite a sunburn. Overall, if opening day was a “D” and the day after was a “C+”, today would be about a “B-“ or possibly a “B.” The employees were very friendly and very fast and efficient today. Once again the lowered rating comes from so many rides going down so often during the day, but it is improving. Hopefully they can get all the kinks worked out within the next two weeks or so.

Well, that’s my TR, now onto some construction updates. I’ve been told the opening show will move to the newly formed “stage” in front of the Grand Theater, they’re just waiting to finish installing new outdoor speakers in the area for the music that goes along with the show. That means that you will be able to go all the way to the Grand Theater before the park actually opens in the summer. They’ll just block the paths to the left and right of the theater. Hopefully it will be enough that you can get to the lockers before they drop the rope. They’re building something in the backstage lot next to Two Face. There’s a concrete pad with some I beams forming what looks to be a very strong structure, but for some reason, it doesn’t appear to be a new building. If anyone knows what it really is, I’d love to know. The parking lot tram that they had stored back there for the last couple years is gone. Whether it was moved, is being repaired, or replaced for the coming real, or was just removed or sent to another park I’m not sure. It was blue and white and the cars resembled trolley cars. Hopefully they’re prepping it to be used when it gets busier, but I just wanted to report that it’s gone.

As for Hurricane Harbor, it’s coming along. The sign for the park is on site and looks great. It will be placed just right of where the old sign was. They have the location marked in white where I’m guessing they will place the concrete base. I’d say a good 50%-70% of the footers for Bahama Blast are complete (hard to tell how many more need to be done). The steel framework for Tornado is about ¼ the way completed. Lots of pieces for Tornado have been assembled and are already in HH just waiting for the supports to be put up. The same can be said for Bahama Blast. Within two weeks, you should really be able to see noticeable progress.

Well, that’s it. I won’t be back to the park next weekend, but I’ll probably stop in for a few hours the week after. Hope you enjoyed all the new info, but I’m sure you’ll enjoy these pics taken by CoasterGuts even more…

Enjoy: http://www.sfafans.org/

If you can't stand the heights, get out of the line.

Great TR!!!!!!

Good to hear that mostly all the rides were operating especially TSC, TF, and IE. I enjoyed the new pictures; especially seeing the Looney Tunes gang. Where is Taz, Tweety, Granny, Wile E. Coyote, etc. especially Mr. Six? Well they can't all be out... lol. Hopefully I can see the improvements for myself before May.


Glad to hear that its still making its progress. May 28; hopefully it meets its deadline. Note... Be prepared to stand in long lines for Bahama Blast and especially Tornado.

Ride the ULTIMATE Storm.... TORNADO!!!!!! Coming to a Six Flags park near YOU!!!!!!

I don't know ALL the Facts!!!!!!
Well, I know you can see Foghorn Leghorn in the "We Got the Beat" show, and I'm pretty sure Taz is in there too. I know Tweety was in the park about two years ago, but they had a slight problem with the person in the costume allegidly hitting/bumping a park guest pretty good. I'd guess you could see more when it gets a bit busier at the park. For now, they just have the main guys out there.

I'd be more than willing to bet that HH will be MORE than ready by May 28th. Now that ground work is done and verticle construction has started, you'll see the slides go up REAL fast. All the buildings are painted, they still have 6 weeks (less one day). They'll be ready...

If you can't stand the heights, get out of the line.

On and off I've seen Foghorn Leghorn. In fact I think there is a spot for him in the opening routine but they probably don't have someone tall enough to play his charcater. The same with Taz, you have to be pretty short to fill his shoes. I'm not sure what the deal is with tweety. I would hope a little bump from a park guest would not mean yanking one of the most beloved Tunes Characters. Marvin Martian I've seen only a couple of times and I think Granny got so beat up in the stunt show last season that she opted not come back this season (LOL!).

Regarding Hurricane Harbor, I'm certain it will be ready as well. Now that the structure for Tornado is up it will be finished pretty quickly and as soon as the footers for Bahama Blast are done (If the weather stays nice, I would say this week), all that will need to be finished is the slide

A day at the park is what you make it!

Cartoon Characters

LOL Aww.... Hopefully Tweety will come back this year. I was really being sarcastic about all the Looney Tunes characters. I really didn't know that they had a costume of every character. WOW!!!!

Well all my years and I never seen the show. I never pay attention to any of the shows but this year I will. Tell me the good shows pleeease!

Another thing; don't SF own the rights to Hanna-Barbara and Cartoon Network? The reason why I say that is because SFGam kids area is called Camp Cartoon Network. Why aren't the costumes at SF. Looney Tunes will always be the highlight of SF (they my favorite), but I will like to see Fred, Barney, Yogi, and Scooby Doo in other sections of the park. Lord knows SFA already have stuff animals of Scooby Doo. Plus I also see on random SF parks they have SpongeBob rides (ex. SFGadv). Maybe I should start a TOS on this to see what people think about it.


See you Next MONTH!!!!!! *** Edited 4/18/2005 3:17:31 PM UTC by SF Critic***

I don't know ALL the Facts!!!!!!
I'm not sure how the whole Hanna Barbera/Cartoon Network thing works. If I'm not mistaken, in the markets where there is a Paramount park, Paramount owns the rights to the Hanna Barbera charcters. I know there have been threads on the board about the Hanna Barbera characters you might want to search the board and see what they say. The same with Sponge Bob.

A day at the park is what you make it!

Six Flags America May 1st… Fantastic!

Let me start by saying that today was the 2005 Spring Cheer & Dance Competition at SFA, so the park was quite crowded. By the time I left the park the entire first lot was full and the majority of the second lot was full. I would estimate that there were about 8,000 people in the park today, but let me get back to the beginning.

So I get to the park an hour before the gates open to a crowded parking lot. Upon closer examination I see that there is a HUGE line at group sales and at the ticket booths, but no line at the front gate. As I approached, I saw that they were letting people into the park, at 9:40 am, nearly an hour before the park opened! Turned out that they were doing registration for the days events back at the Batman Stunt Show Arena, so they had a marked path all the way back to Gotham City with a block across the path just past Joker’s Jinx. There Coasterguts and I waited for 10:30 when the park was officially supposed to open. To our surprise, they had Alpine Bobs and Riddle Me This open to keep the kids who had already registered occupied. They even opened Joker’s Jinx around 10 am (30 mins before the park was even supposed to be open).

Well, from there the rest of the day was fairly normal, but let me just let you know the changes in an easy to read list.
-Superman: the red train is back on the transfer track, but isn’t quite ready for operation; I’d guess you’ll see it up and running by next weekend
-Batwing: running two trains today for a short time; it opened with one, had two by around noon, but was back to one around 2 pm after problems arose
-Wild One: They removed the last row of the queue like they did on Superman and even have separate lines for the front and back seats now; VERY nice to see!
-Joker’s Jinx: running two trains all day today with very little down time; they still have a good week or two of painting left, and that’s just to finish the track
-Mind Eraser: running two trains all day today with very little down time; the second train is indeed orange; they also painted the sign in front of the ride to match the rides new color scheme; as far as I can tell ALL of the painting on Mind Eraser is complete
-Typhoon Sea Coaster: running about five boats; it had it’s share of downtime, but it opened at about 12:30 pm so that was promising; they repainted the skull, it looks fantastic!
-Two Face: up and down all day, mostly up.
-Rides down all day: Iron Eagle and Krypton Comet, everything else was open all day
-Tower of Doom: running all three sides of the tower with very little down time

The employees were great today. Very friendly, very fast, very efficient. They’re doing a great job. The park was crowded, especially for the first day of May, but they were doing a great job handling the crowds. If this service keeps up, the park is in for a great year!

As for Hurricane Harbor construction, it’s coming along slowly. They have the base of the funnel in place for Tornado, or at least the steel framework, and they were working on it all day. It seems they put a second coat of paint on Paradise Plunge and Reef Runner and the slide looks brand new. They were in the process of sandblasting/power washing Crocodile Cal’s Carrebian Beachhouse in preparation for repainting. New signs have gone up on the fronts of the games and the base of the new entrance sign has arrived on site. If you saw the old pic of the new Hurricane Harbor sign, that’s the top of the new sign. The bottom looks very well themed as well. It’s made to look like parts of the sign façade were blown off revealing rocks underneath. Think about the station for TSC how there are parts where the bricks are revealed underneath, this is the same way except it’s rocks. There is also a weird stepel like object on site. It may be for a lighthouse, but that’s just my guess. No clue where it’s going to go, but it seems they’re really trying to make this whole waterpark look COMPLETELY brand new. It’s going to be awesome when it’s finished.

Well, not much else to say. They did a great job today and A LOT was done around the park. Keep up the good work SFA! Grade for today: “A”

If you can't stand the heights, get out of the line.

Yeah.. Park operations was pretty good today. A special nod to the crew on JJ and Wild One today. The ride ops caught people going under the rails several times and made them go back and start over again. I saw so many examples of good customer service today especially the crew on Superman. It's one of the best crews I've seen at this park in a couple of years. I'm anxious to see what they can do with two train operation.

I have to hand it to the mechanics as well, they are do their best to get the rides open and keep them open. I'm not sure what the problems were on Batwing it would move part way up the left at a pretty good pace but when they released the train in the brake run, the train on the lift would start inching up the lift ever so slowly and then stop at the crest of the lift hill. Then once the train in the brake run got completely in the station, the train at the crest of the lift hill would start moving again. Like it was in a mode for three train operation.

If there is one thing the park could still work on improving is food service. Twice today I saw examples where the park isn't ready to handle large crowds. Once while getting lunch at Pieces of Eight in Skull Island. They couldn't keep up with the demand for pizza, the other time was when I stopped in the Coyote Creek Saloon to watch a moment or two of the country music show. The line was almost out the door waiting for food.

Another addition I saw for the first time today was a cowboy with a lassle doing a rope trick in Coyote Creek just before the country music show started. It's nice to see the performers in front of the Saloon before the show starts inviting people in to see the show.

A day at the park is what you make it!

SFA May 1st, WONDERFUL! Pictures at Bottom

I was also at the park and man, all I can say is WHOA! This park has inproved and is almost on my favorite park list. There were some things that opened after coasterlover left, and MAN were there lots of cheerleaders!

I got to the park, around 11 and my brother and I headed straght to 2Face. And right when we got there, the line was open but they wouldn't let people on. Right when we got there it opened and accepted passengers, we had to only wait 2 trains. We started backwards as it was out first EVER trip on 2Face. What can I say, this is a great Vekoma. After we got off, we headed to Tower Of Doom. Walk-on. Then headed to Wild One. Walk-on. and the removal of the switchbacks closest to the air gates, was wonderfull. We got off Wild One and wanted to ride 2Face again, but after we were coming down the exit ramp I heard the Screams on 2Face intensify. Like inverted Vekomas, 2Face had vallied in between the loop and the second lift. The people were freaking out like they were going to die. I got some pretty cool pics of them hanging there.

Next, we headed back to Gotham and there were cheerleaders everywere. it was getting very annoying. we headed to batwing, it was using the switchbacks with 1 train, NOPE next ride. we headed to Superman, 1 train, 10 minute wait. I finally got my little brother on a Hyper Coaster, he freaked out going up the hill but then was a coaster junkie the rest of the day. Next, was the Joker. the line used all the switch backs and there was standing water all over the station. The cheerleaders wouldn't shut there mouths and kept complainging - so annoying. we got on in about 10 minutes and the launch felt a little slow, but over all still a good ride. Off the PBR, they turned on the little water spouts at the end of the slide which was a little uneeded but it was ok. walk-on.

We then headed over to ROAR! and the line was all the way down the ramp so we passed by, ROAR is not worth a wait. We noticed that Typhoon Sea Coaster was running, amazing I no! we got and wow! this is my new favorite flume ride! dosnt get you to wet and dosnt leave you completely dry. ROAR!'s line went down so we rode, nothing new, still a rough as heck last turn into the brakes and the rest of the ride is getting bumpier. Next was the all newly painted Mind Eraser, the sign has been painted as coasterlover had said and looked good, it was about a 10 minute wait with the 2 train operation, the ride has gotten a little smoother but not that much.

We headed back to ROAR! and rode it again and then went on High Seas, man I forgot how fun swinging ships were! we saw Iron Eagle testing and headed over there. after about a 30 minute wait and 4 test runs, we were on! IMO I think that Iron Eagle and Tomb Raider, are about the same experience, minus the effects on Iron Eagle. Then we went on the Flying Boats (Dont no the real name) it was pretty cool, like flying swings but boats. Then we headed out at around 4:30.

The employees were having tons of fun and were very fast at unloading and loading, even on Mind Eraser they wanted to see if they could "set a world record for loading a coaster train" one of the ops timed us, 1:05. I thought it was pretty fast considering the other train just hit the brakes and are usually waiting a good minute. The employees also got out jump ropes all over and entertained and let people join in, they were polite and like to say HELLO! to everyone and ask how our day has been going. It was amazing seeing SFA turn around its act. The best employee IMO goes to the 2Face Crew! funny, fast, and enjoyable. "ARE U READY???? to get flipped in yo face?" "YEAH" "Dispatch, hope u return with your face not twisted!" and JJ ride ops got pretty fun to, they would always think of a new way to scare you when you launch the train "BOO! or MUAHAHAHA, not, launch!" or my favorite, " 5, 4, 3. 3 1/2, 2, 2 1/2, LAUNCH!"

Overall the park gets an "A" like coasterlover said. And SFA I hope will keep it up!

Here are some pics of construction and one of Iron Eagle, running FULL! the close up of JJ shows how much more painting they have to do and the frame for Tornado is almost complete and the footers for Bahama Blash are almost done.


*** Edited 5/1/2005 10:25:20 PM UTC by Colin Fisher***

Wow! Two Face vallied and you got pics? Can you share? I know they were having problems with it when coasterlover and I were getting ready to ride. They were having problems with the air gates, from what we heard, someone was shaking them. We waited about 5 minutes and decided to leave, I began to get a little nervous with the recent spat of problems this coaster has had, I didn't want to ride it so soon after they had a problem with it.

A day at the park is what you make it!

There I just added the Vallied pic of 2Face

link again:


there ya go!

(the pic is kinda ugly because of the gate, there was mud infront of me so I couldn't move forward to get the gate out of the picture. sorry!)

*** Edited 5/1/2005 11:26:09 PM UTC by Colin Fisher***

Wow! Thanks for the pic. I might have been on that train.

A day at the park is what you make it!

Today was my 1st day @ the park. Only my sister and I went since my friends don't get paid till next and get their season passes. Arrived at the park @ 4:30 p.m. Cheerleaders, Loud and was getting our nerves. Got our season pass processed, the employees said have a great day sir/mamm.

Yeah today was a Great Day!!!!! Employees being polite and cleaning everywhere. One security guard approached me about my shirt and liked it. I told her it was a recording studio that my best friends Uncle manages, she wanted more info so I told her I will be back in 2 weeks. She said ok and said, have a Great Day Sir!!!!!

WO and JJ crew, Very silly. Wild One crew said, this is Superman on wood. They were saying Wild One is the best ride in the park. Jokers Jinx were making laughing sounds and were counting down to launch. Both rides were great. These employees were AWESOME!!!!

The only problem I had that JJ station was awful. Water everywhere, all you saw people doing was lifting their pants so they won't get wet. Something needs to be done about that.

Overall - 9/10

ME - blew me away with new paint job, rough in some spots, but good ride.

Overall - 8/10

Roar - Rougher than ME, IMO. I was beat up by the Mike Tyson coaster. He must have signed a contract with this ride to advertise him when he comes to fight @ the MCI Center this Summer. Good ride still.

Overall - 7/10

Batwing - Blew me by storm. A employee asked us did we want to ride twice, but said no thanks. Then he offered us front seats. Thanks mister!!!! He said Enjoy your Flight!!!! Wasn't rough at all IMO.

Needs paint job. I would like to see this ride get the paint scheme of Batman: The Dark Knight @ SFNE.

Overall - 10/10

Didn't do Superman due to 1 train operation and line was very long. Two-Face, it was getting late and the park was about to close, so we didn't have time. Didn't do any flats also because we had limited time in the park. Next time we come, we will do everything.


Hurricane Harbor, see you SOON!!! ;)

Coaster Lover said:

Think about the station for TSC how there are parts where the bricks are revealed underneath, this is the same way except it’s rocks. There is also a weird stepel like object on site. It may be for a lighthouse, but that’s just my guess.

Yeah I also noticed that..... Weird, but its REAL GOOD to see that they are adding things around the park. Tells me that SFI is taking their 100% commitment seriously!!!! I also like the front page of the park map... Mr. Six Everywhere!!!!

Batwing... Werent there 3 trains for this coaster? I've only seen 2? What happened? *** Edited 5/2/2005 3:10:46 AM UTC by SF Critic***

I don't know ALL the Facts!!!!!!
I've seen it valley there before, and it's actually a quick fix valley. They winch it to pull it up the second hill just enough to get it on the chain then the chain can do the rest. What time did it valley? I'd imagine that they'd have had it reopened within about 3 hours if the park wasn't already closed by that time.

The third Batwing train is still in rehab. It's got a LOT of moving parts and takes quite a bit to get it assembled. The park typically likes to run one less train than they have on the track, so if there are two trains available, they run one, three trains available they run two, that way if one of the trains has a problem, they can take it off the track and still have a completly functional train to replace it while mechanics repair it. *** Edited 5/2/2005 6:27:41 AM UTC by Coaster Lover***

If you can't stand the heights, get out of the line.

Coaster Lover said:

The third Batwing train is still in rehab. It's got a LOT of moving parts and takes quite a bit to get it assembled. The park typically likes to run one less train than they have on the track, so if there are two trains available, they run one, three trains available they run two, that way if one of the trains has a problem, they can take it off the track and still have a completly functional train to replace it while mechanics repair it. *** Edited 5/2/2005 6:27:41 AM UTC by Coaster Lover***

Ok thanks. Yeah when I got to the park they was only 1 train operation.

Fastlanes vs. Q-bots?

Yesturday i noticed that they had fastlane sign in the queues for certain cars on coasters. How does that work? Some people didn't even have fastlane and was getting on. What do you do when you have this system? Do you notify a ride op? Personally your jumping infront of people just to get to the front, or do they have a entrance for fastlane?

I would like to see Q-bots. Even though i haven't even tried it yet, I heard from people its better. You can use it as much as you want and swipe it at multiple rides in the order of which you want to ride them and the wait time is a bit shorter then actually waiting in line and you know when you can ride and you go to the ride at your time and u have a 5 minutes window beforehand and 10 minute after that you can ride and while you are waiting in the virtual line you can go on other rides, its so convinient. Fastlane meanwhile is a complete ripoff.

If our park gets Q-bot one day Batwing would have a high compacity. They would be able to use both stations. Personally I've never seen them use the second station. It just sits dormant. Other rides you wouldn't have to wait on, because they will block of two cars which really don't bother me. I would really use this system on Fright Fest and special occasions. I will try this system at SFGAdv.

I don't know ALL the Facts!!!!!!
Fastlane at SFA you go in the exit, hand the op at the exit your ticket and must sit in the row marked for fastlane. Not a bad idea if you want to just get credits.

Watch the tram car please....
SFA was originally one of the parks that was suppose to get Q-Bot until Lo-Q (the company that made Q-Bot) went belly up. So we eneded up stuck with Fastlane. Typically if the coasters are running two trains you wouldn't need Fastlane at SFA on a Sunday afternoon. The only coaster I've ever really used Fastlane tickets on was Batwing and I recently used one on Superman.

BTW, I posted my pics from yesterday online.

Check them out by clicking the link below.

http://snipurl.com/elyk *** Edited 5/2/2005 1:18:52 PM UTC by coasterguts***

A day at the park is what you make it!

Thought of a few more things to add to my TR...

-When Two Face was down, the ride ops were entertaining the guests outside the queue line with a hoola-hooping contest. I've seen them playing double dutch jump ropeing with the guests in past visits as well. Once while we were waiting for Superman to open and once just in the midway in front of Joker's Jinx.

-Also included with the paint job of Mind Eraser was the paint job of the Mind Eraser cherry picker to match the new colors. It had previously been painted to match the teal and red color scheme and now is mostly orange with some yellow trim.

If you can't stand the heights, get out of the line.

coasterguts said:
SFA was originally one of the parks that was suppose to get Q-Bot until Lo-Q (the company that made Q-Bot) went belly up. So we eneded up stuck with Fastlane.

What do you mean went belly up if you don't mind explaining? Currently there are only 5 SF parks that have Q-Bot system (SFNE, SFGAdv, SFStl, SFOT, and SFOG). I'm surprised they don't have the Q-Bot at the major parks (SFMM and SFGAm).

Hurricane Harbor

Looks like our Tornado is the last one to go up in the SF chain since the rest are basically completed. *** Edited 5/2/2005 11:20:14 PM UTC by SF Critic***

I don't know ALL the Facts!!!!!!
SFMM and SFA were supposed to get Q-bots the same year (the year after they installed it at the before mentioned parks), but for some reason they didn't. Some said that it was because the company went out of buisness... well, no, that's not true. But they may have downsized. Q-bot is currently ONLY at those five Six Flags parks and hasn't expanded to any other parks, however, it has expanded onto all the newly opened coasters at those Six Flags parks, so the company still must be supplying the hardware. Here's the website... you can read more for yourself:


If you can't stand the heights, get out of the line.

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