This was my 2nd visit of 2003. I drove up from Chicago with 4 friends, arriving at 10:30ish. Seems like we waited forever to enter the parking lot… noticed the new “Park closer to the gate for $5 extra” signs. I can’t imagine that many able bodied people would bother paying the extra coin for this minor perk, especially considering that SFGam’s parking lot isn’t that large to begin with. Hope Six Flags uses the extra cash to fix Déjà vu.
Speaking of Déjà vu, I originally intended to wait until later this year to visit the park again, in hopes that the big green boomerang machine would be back in business, but my buddies wanted to attend Gay Day so I figured I’d tag along.
We timed things pretty well today. Most waits were bearable even without buying Fastlane. Hitting Vertical Velocity before 11am was an excellent idea, as the line grew to 45min+ by noon.
V2 - 2nd Row/10 min
Grade: ( A- )
This thing is still a tremendous rush. I always love taking first time riders on this one. The holding brake never fails to scare the crap out of them.
IRON WOLF - 2nd Row / 15 min
Grade: ( C+ )
A little better than my May 17th ride, but still a bangy little beast. I’ll probably skip this next time. It honestly makes me wish Z-force was still here. It least that ride was unique.
RAGING BULL - Back Row / 45 min
Bull was magnificent as usual. The park was only running 2 trains – I the only reason I could see for this was perhaps to help sell more “Fastlane” cards, as it would have easily been less than a half hour all day with 3 train operation. It’s still the best ride in the park, so I certainly didn’t mind the extra queue time.
AMERICAN EAGLE (blue) - Back Row / 20 min
The true surprise of the day - this was perhaps one of the best rides I’ve ever had on AE, and I’ve probably taken more than 100 laps on this thing since I was a kid. The speed, airtime, and intensity were remarkable. It was racing most of the afternoon, which definitely enhanced the experience.
DEMON - Back Row / 10 min
Grade: ( B )
This arrow looper is still a fun ride. All the effects/music were working.
SUPERMAN - Back Row / 1hour 15min
We met 2 nice guys named Alex & John while waiting in line for this one. They hadn’t visited SFGam since 1992 and were a bit overwhelmed by all the new coasters. Being the “coastergeek” of our group - having ridden this S:UF 10+ times during Coasterbuzz Con, I suggested riding in the back row – far left seat. (the best place for intensity & face choppers). John’s terror mixed with glee reaction to his ride experience was one of the highlights of my day.
BATMAN - Back Row / 25 min
Fast – intense – smooth – a classic!
VIPER - 2nd to last row / 25 min
Grade: ( B+ )
Good wooden twister. Everyone liked this ride, although a friend of mine mentioned he had a scare with his lapbar popping up a few clicks while riding earlier in the day (eek!)
AMERICAN EAGLE (Red) - Back row/Walk-on
Comments:Yet another amazing ride on Eagle. I normally prefer this side, but Blue backwards was just rockin’ today.
WHIZZER - Back Row / 15 min
Rode this one by myself. No one else wanted to bother… their loss.
RAGING BULL - Back row / 40 min
Grade: ( A )
Kinda chilly at 8:30pm, but worth braving the icy winds for.
SUPERMAN - Back Row / 35 min
GRADE: (A- )
For our final ride of the day, we managed to get on the 2nd to last train of the night. I honestly prefer this ride during the daytime. Maybe if they lit it a bit more creatively...
Today actually seemed just as crowded as the Saturday of Coasterbuzz Con, even though this was a Monday. There seemed to be a lot of school & youth groups in attendance, which is to be expected at the end of the school year.
The “Gay Day” thing seemed very low key. Other than the occasional couple holding hands, it really didn’t seem different than any other day at the park.
THE EATS: Grabbed a pretzel for a snack and had dinner at Mooseburger Lodge (probably the best place to eat in the park IMHO).
I’ve been generally pleased with my two visits to SFGam this year, despite the Déjà vu downtime. The collection of coasters is quite respectable by modern standards. A 150ft + floorless looper or 4D coaster are the only things I can think of that the park could really use. Maybe a Huss “Delerium” style flat ride where Power Dive once stood. Ice Mountain Splash (The former Yankee Clipper Flume) seems to be SBNO this year. Does anyone know if this thing has run even once this season?
Most of the staff were friendly and efficient and everything was relatively clean. I was certainly impressed enough to consider attending Fright Fest this year. Here’s hoping I’ll have a “Deja BOO” visit this October!
(Cedar Point June 2003 trip report coming soon...)
*** This post was edited by djgreghaus 6/18/2003 4:05:45 PM ***
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